My head exploded as I read the impeachment report released by the House Intelligence Committee.20191203_-_full_report___hpsci_impeachment_inquiry_-_20191203
Here are a few things that struck me.
A. Witness Intimidation
Although not the leading point, witness intimidation (a federal crime) is included.
If someone asks, “where’s the crime?” you can say, “the President of the United States endangers the lives of American citizens who speak out against him.”
How many GOP voters are OK with that? There is a lot of talk about the GOP losing the suburbs. The suburban conservative women I know are not okay with that kind of bullying.
B. What’s Going On With Devin Nunes?
Look at this call record for April 12, 2019:
Who’s who on this call list:
- Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer
- Jay Sekulow, another of Trump’s lawyers
- Lev Parnas, indicted buddy of Giuliani
- John Solomon, author of the March 20 hit piece against Marie Yovanovitch that ran on March 20.
- The Office of Budget Management
- Victoria Tsoensing, a lawyer, and Giuliani’s buddy, who also happens to represent Firtash, Ukrainian oligarch and former Paul Manafort business partner, who’s facing extradition to the US on corruption charges.
- and “1” who is probably Trump.
The plot thickens.
For context, some items from my timeline (which I am currently updating in real time)
By April 12, the smear campaign against Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch was in full swing.
On March 20, John Solomon published his hit piece against her in the Hill.
On March 26: Pompeo had one of several phone calls with Giuliani (staff members set up the phone calls and confirmed that they took place). One phone call was set up by Madeleine Westerhout, who was White House Director of Oval Office operations.
March 29 and April 1: Devin Nunes and Giuliani were both scheduled to talk with Pompeo. April 25: in an interview with Fox News, Trump called Lutsenko’s claims about Yovanovitch “big” and “incredible” and said he imagined that the Attorney General “would want to see this.”
Lev Parnas’ attorney, Bondy, said: “Devin Nunes was definitely part of an attempt to gather information about the Bidens. He was definitely involved in Ukraine.”
In a bit of dramatic irony, Nunes’ name appears first on the Republican report defending Trump and attacking the House inquiry into what me might call Operation Ukraine Shakedown.
We can see that in fact Nunes was part of a felony conspiracy, and investigating his own crime.
The intelligence committee report directly also implicates Mulvaney, Pompeo, and Perry, saying that Operations Ukraine Shakedown happened with their “knowledge and approval.”
The report also calls out Pence by name, saying that he, too, knew what was happening.
The report was much better written, and more gripping, than the Mueller Report, probably because this report didn’t pull any punches.
Originally posted on MUSING ABOUT LAW, BOOKS, AND POLITICS.
Re-posted with permission.
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