WaPo: ‘Lev Parnas and Rudy Giuliani Have Demolished Trump’s Claims Of Innocence’

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It is no wonder that Donald Trump was so out of it in Wisconsin Tuesday night that he didn’t even know what day it was, because the Lev Parnas document dump drove all thought of anything other than impeachment from his already beleaguered and overtaxed  excuse for a mind. So while he was raving about Tom Cruise flying jets or broken toilets, what was really bothering him is that the jig was finally and inexorably up. He may get acquitted in the Senate, as conventional wisdom decrees, but he is not going to come out smelling like a rose. At least, not according to Obama’s former solicitor general, Neal Katyal, and his DOJ colleague Joshua Geltzer, who lay it all out succinctly in an op/ed in the Washington Post:

Americans who have been wondering why President Trump has taken the extraordinary step of trying to block every document from being released to Congress in his impeachment inquiry need wonder no longer. The new documents released Tuesday evening by the House Intelligence Committee were devastating to Trump’s continuing — if shifting — defense of his Ukraine extortion scandal, just days before his impeachment trial is likely to begin in the Senate. These new documents demolish at least three key defenses to which Trump and his allies have been clinging: that he was really fighting corruption when he pressured Ukraine on matters related to the Biden family; that Hunter Biden should be called as a witness at the Senate impeachment trial; and that there’s no need for a real, honest-to-goodness trial in the Senate.

The most basic principles of constitutional law require relevant information, including documents and executive branch witnesses, to be turned over to Congress in an impeachment proceeding. Particularly because sitting presidents cannot be indicted, impeachment is the only immediate remedy we the people have against a lawless president. For that remedy to have any teeth, relevant information has to be provided. That’s why President James Polk said that, during impeachment, Congress could “penetrate into the most secret recesses of the Executive Departments … command the attendance of any and every agent of the Government, and compel them to produce all papers, public or private, official or unofficial.” No president, not even Richard Nixon, thought he could just say “no” to impeachment. That’s why the House added Article II to Trump’s impeachment: “Obstruction of Congress.” It was a response to an unprecedented attempt by Trump to hide the truth.

The documents released Tuesday show what Trump has been so afraid of. For starters, they prove that Trump’s already-eyebrow-raising claim to have been fighting corruption in Ukraine was bogus. Notes taken by an associate of Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, Lev Parnas — now facing federal criminal charges — show what his and Giuliani’s mission was when they got in touch with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky: “get Zalensky to Announce that the Biden case will Be Investigated.” Look hard at the real goal here: not to prompt an investigation of Hunter Biden, but to score an announcement of a Biden investigation. Pursuing an announcement, rather than an investigation, makes sense only if Trump’s objective was to dirty the reputation of a leading political rival, Joe Biden.

Quid pro quos were in abundance in Ukraine. Not only the “give me an announcement, I give you your aid” quid pro quo, but one a lot scarier was going on, “give me Joe Biden’s head on a platter, I’ll give you Marie Yovanovitch’s.”  Two bit thugs were actually stalking Ambassador Marie Yovanovich. Trump implores us to “read the transcript.” Let’s do so: the transcript shows Trump saying about Yovanovich, “she’s going to go through some things.” Yeah, being told by the State Department to leave immediately because she was in danger is going through some things, I would venture to say.

Who knows how far these goons were willing to take the matter? i shudder to think that an assassination plot may have been hatched, but given what we know about the character of Yuri Lutsenko, the corrupt prosecutor who was deposed when Zelensky was elected, who detested Yovanovich and who got the ball rolling with Parnas to have the ambassador removed, it’s not out of the question. Yovanovich herself said that there were plans to “do things” to people, including herself. And of course Donald Trump had no problem whatsoever firing Yovanovich in exchange for Lutsenko’s agreement to give him non-existent “dirt” on Joe Biden. So, yes, Tuesday’s care package to Congress from Lev Parnas unscrewed the few hinges that Trump has left.

The Republicans are going to try their usual both sider bullshit to save the day. Rand Paul is already making noise about subpoenaing Joe Biden, but I suspect, after Black Tuesday, that that dog won’t hunt. There has been a seismic shift in the impeachment paradigm. The Republicans know it, and that’s why they’re trying to shut down press coverage at the trial and do damage control. It will be interesting to see what the polls for this week show. Last week they were showing 46% in favor of removing Trump from office. It’s hard to see that number going anywhere but up.

 

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2 Comments on "WaPo: ‘Lev Parnas and Rudy Giuliani Have Demolished Trump’s Claims Of Innocence’"

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Rutokin
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Rutokin

The mango maniac is sooooo screwed. It’s only going to get better

J.M.
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J.M.

If not removed, I’m off the grid in the woods. I can’t do this anymore!