It was made public Wednesday after reports of a whistleblower complaint about the call spurred Democrats to launch an impeachment inquiry against Trump.
Trump has characterized the call as innocent. He said it was a “very friendly and totally appropriate call, and, later, “perfect.”
The memo — which is based on staff records rather than being an exact transcript — shows Trump asking Zelensky to investigate Biden and his son. He asks that Zelensky work with Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and Attorney General William Barr in doing so.
During the call, Trump said: “I would like you to do us a favor.”
Democrats say that it strengthens their case against the president. Some called it a “smoking gun.”
The reaction prompted officials to say privately that the release was a mistake, Axios reported.
Some thought that the memo could help Trump, but instead have found that it has deepened suspicion of his actions with Ukraine.
Other aides also expressed concern that the White House releasing the details of a call between two world leaders sets a bad precedent that would make other leaders doubt the privacy of their calls with the president.
Trump said Wednesday that he “hated” to release the memo due to national security concerns, but that he was forced to do so because “folks were saying such lies, such horrible things about a call that was so innocent and so nice.”