Impeachment Weekend

Ken AshfordL'Affaire Ukraine, Polls, Republicans, Trump & Administration, Trump ImpeachmentLeave a Comment

Compared to last week, there was little development over the weekend on the impeachment inquiry, but for a lot of eyes on the Trump team’s defense, as well as GOP reaction in Congress.

From the talking heads on Sunday’s news shows, it looks like the Trump team defense is going to be… ineffective.

Mainly, it looks like the Trump team wants to attack not only the whistleblower complaint, but the whistleblower himself. HE’S BIASED, IT IS THIRD-HAND, etc.

Of course, that does not mean that the complaint itself is inaccurate (it was chillingly accurate about the phone call to Ukrainian President Zelensky). The argument that the whistleblower didn’t hear things first hand isn’t exculpatory.  And it is only a matter of time before Congress speaks to the FIRST HAND sources which the whistleblower will no doubt reveal.

This weekend was insane with Trump tweets and rants. Things like this:

“Civil war”? That caught a few eyes, and quite possibly, we might have a death toll to this impeachment process, thanks to Trump’s incitement of some grazed gun nut wanting to be the “shot heard round the world.”

One Harvard law professor thinks that tweet alone is grounds for impeachment:

The attorney for the intelligence community whistleblower whose complaint fueled a House inquiry into impeaching President Donald Trump says he has “serious concerns” that Trump’s comments had put his client in danger.

Trump also tweeted:

This was in response to Schiff giving a “parody” account of Trump’s call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky while speaking on the House floor on Thursday. Included in Schiff’s hyperbolic interruption of the president’s July 25 call, which can be viewed in the video below, was a comment that Trump asked Zelensky “to make up dirt on my political opponent.”

Hardly a smart move by Schiff, but TREASON??

Then, there is crazy Rudy… FRUITY-G as I call him… with bizarre conspiracy theories. On Sunday, former Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert was sharply critical of Trump personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who was also a guest on “This Week With George Stephanopoulos”. He expressed a combination of frustration and bewilderment that some members of the Trump team continue to spout debunked conspiracy theories about the hack of the Democratic National Committee [DNC] computer servers during the 2016 election campaign. Rudy Giuliani explained that he wants to know who in Ukraine provided information damning to Trump during the 2016 campaign.

GIULIANI: I have never peddled it. Have you ever hear me talk about Crowdstrike? I’ve never peddled it. Tom Bossert doesn’t know what he’s talking about. I have never engaged in any theory that the Ukrainians did the hacking. In fact, when this was first presented to me, I pretty clearly understood the Ukrainians didn’t do the hacking, but that doesn’t mean Ukraine didn’t do anything, and this is where Bossert…

STEPHANOPOULOS: So, why does the president keep repeating it?

GIULIANI: Let’s get on to the point…

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, this was in the phone call.

GIULIANI: I agree with Bossert on one thing, it’s clear: there’s no evidence the Ukrainians did it. I never pursued any evidence and he’s created a red herring. What the president is talking about is, however, there is a load of evidence that the Ukrainians created false information, that they were asked by the Obama White House to do it in January of 2016, information he’s never bothered to go read. There are affidavits that have been out there for five months that none of you have listened to about how there’s a Ukrainian court finding that a particular individual illegally gave the Clinton campaign information. No one wants to investigate that. Nobody cared about it. It’s a court opinion in the Ukraine. The Ukrainians came to me. I didn’t go to them. The Ukrainians came to me and said…

STEPHANOPOULOS: When did they first come to you?

GIULIANI: November of 2016, they first came to me. And they said, we have shocking evidence that the collusion that they claim happened in Russia, which didn’t happen, happened in the Ukraine, and it happened with Hillary Clinton. George Soros was behind it. George Soros’ company was funding it.

I just don’t get what Team Trump is trying to do.

Trump’s strategy, according to @davidfrum:

1. Talk MORE about impeachment
2. Show no contrition
3. Leave fingerprints everywhere
4. Make no attempt at persuasion
5. Read the stage directions aloud

There seems to be little co-ordination. Maybe that’s why Stephen Miller had to go on TV and get stumped:

Where are Republicans politicians? Still quiet. House Minority Leader McCarthy went on 60 Minutes, and by all accounts, did a horrible job of it.

Oh, and a 6th Republican Congressman from Texas just threw in the towel in the 2020 election.

But at least McConnell said this:

And the people… they are swinging for impeachment, according to a YouGov/CBS poll. Still the expected differences along party lines, but on the whole, the numbers are bad for Trump.

Another poll:

Another poll:

Also… there is a lot of this:

And in a related note, Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) was the first member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump. Tomorrow he pleads guilty to insider trading. Corruption has rotted the Republican Party from top down.