Withheld from Congress: US Intelligence Community’s IG Report on Whistle-blower’s Complaint

Frank Underwood

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I'm an Independent who believes Trump has committed crimes worthy of impeachment. I also believe the Ukraine debacle is the lesser offense among them. Impeachment seems to only become viable when the president goes up against the establishment. Like an article I posted said, they didn't try to impeach Bush for war crimes because they were complicit in them.
 

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...but if the public transcript is accurate, ...
The complaint references a “word-for-word transcript” produced by the Situation Room. If that is different from the one released by the White House, then perhaps there is still a smoking gun to be found.
It's my understanding that the public transcript is in essence a memo that is a 5-page summary of a 30-minute phone call in the President's private quarters. It is thought that a transcript of a 30-minute call would obviously be more than 5 pages long.

Certainly, the public transcript is not the transcript produced by the Situation Room. It's my understanding that the latter is the transcript that had been unusually secreted away in the most highly secured server which is not meant for transcripts of phone calls of that nature. To investigators, that spoke to intent to conceal something in it.

The whistle-blower’s complaint underscores the tenuous evidence to date: Its concerns are based entirely on second-hand and open-source information.
1. The whistle-blower's complaint is broad in scope, going beyond info/concerns about the Ukraine matter. The public hasn't seen anything about the rest.
2. Per the report on Senator Chuck Grassley's statement:
Atkinson's office issued a statement later Monday saying there is no requirement that a whistleblower have firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing. It also noted that the Ukraine whistleblower did indeed have "direct knowledge of certain alleged conduct."

Democrats would be pushing for the most serious verdict possible, removal of the president from office, on a shaky case. Democrats also opted to do so before both the transcript and complaint were released.
I've no idea which transcript and complaint Mate is referring to here. As I understand it, and I might be wrong in the details, the members of all the committees in the House and Senate got to read the entire complaint in secured rooms at some point before the complaint specific to the Ukraine matter + redacted transcript was released to the public.
 
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Zable

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...but if the public transcript is accurate, ...
The complaint references a “word-for-word transcript” produced by the Situation Room. If that is different from the one released by the White House, then perhaps there is still a smoking gun to be found.
It's my understanding that the public transcript is in essence a memo that is a 5-page summary of a 30-minute phone call in the President's private quarters. It is thought that a transcript of a 30-minute call would obviously be more than 5 pages long.

Certainly, the public transcript is not the transcript produced by the Situation Room. It's my understanding that the latter is the transcript that had been unusually secreted away in the most highly secured server which is not meant for transcripts of phone calls of that nature. To investigators, that spoke to intent to conceal something in it.

The whistle-blower’s complaint underscores the tenuous evidence to date: Its concerns are based entirely on second-hand and open-source information.
1. The whistle-blower's complaint is broad in scope, going beyond info/concerns about the Ukraine matter. The public hasn't seen about the rest.
2. Per Senator Chuck Grassley's statement:
Atkinson's office issued a statement later Monday saying there is no requirement that a whistleblower have firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing. It also noted that the Ukraine whistleblower did indeed have "direct knowledge of certain alleged conduct."
Democrats would be pushing for the most serious verdict possible, removal of the president from office, on a shaky case. Democrats also opted to do so before both the transcript and complaint were released.
I've no idea which transcript and complaint Mate is referring to here. As I understand it, and I might be wrong in the details, the members of all the committees in the House and Senate got to read the entire complaint in secured rooms at some point before the complaint specific to the Ukraine matter + redacted transcript was released to the public.
 

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During his 2016 campaign for president, Trump bragged that he could “stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot someone, and I wouldn’t lose any voters.” Hyperbole aside, the POLITICO/Morning Consult poll put that to the test: 62 per cent of voters said Trump “could do something that would cause me to support impeaching him and removing him from office.”

But nearly one-in-four, 24 per cent, said there’s “almost nothing Trump could do that would cause me to support impeaching him and removing him from office.”
And that's true, of course. I knew when Trump said that (Feb 2016??) that his "hyperbole" wasn't hyperbole at all. And it was evident even then that his fanbase had their collective and individuals egos more connected to the blustering con man than to most political candidates that have come down the pike, and that they so liked and respected his bastardy, that they'd knowingly follow him over a cliff, and for no benefit to themselves.

Sorta like devil worship. There's nothing in it for the followers, and yet they have this dark, self-destructive compulsion to do it that overrides everything else.

Trump's not Hitler, but the only way he could be even more popular with his base is if he were. They think rottenness is strength, even when they're the victims. And they'll go to their graves, by their own admissions, loyal and true.
 

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the complaint specific to the Ukraine matter + redacted transcript was released to the public.
Correction: that portion of the sentence should read: "... the redacted complaint specific to the Ukraine matter + WH phone call transcript was released to the public".
 

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ETA:
Giuliani Throws Pompeo Under The Bus

Earlier today (Wednesday) in Rome, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo admitted he’d listened in on the phone call between Prezs Trump & Zelenskiy of Ukraine.
In Washington, the chairmen of three House committees have accused Pompeo of intimidating witnesses and said he is considered “a fact witness” in the impeachment inquiry based on his role in Trump’s call with Zelenskiy, according to Reuters


Democrats to seek White House records as impeachment probe heats up

By Patricia Zengerle and David Brunnstrom | Oct 2nd


WASHINGTON/ROME (Reuters) - Democrats on Wednesday intensified their impeachment inquiry into U.S. President Donald Trump, saying they would subpoena White House records concerning his July telephone call with Ukraine’s leader and warning Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other officials not to obstruct the investigation.

Pompeo, a close ally of Trump, acknowledged earlier in the day during a trip to Italy that he had listened in on the call in which the Republican president asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to investigate a domestic political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden.

The call prompted the Democratic-led House of Representatives to launch its impeachment inquiry last week.

Pompeo’s admission came a day after he objected to Democratic efforts as part of the impeachment inquiry to obtain depositions from five current and former State Department officials.

“We’re not fooling around here, though. We don’t want this to drag on months and months and months, which appears to be the administration’s strategy,” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, whose panel leads the inquiry, told a news conference alongside House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings said he intends to subpoena the White House for Ukraine-related records on Friday, the latest demand for evidence from an administration that has repeatedly resisted such efforts by Democrats.

Cummings, in a memo to the committee explaining the move, accused Trump’s administration of “flagrant disregard of multiple voluntary requests for documents.”

Schiff said Democrats are deeply concerned about the Trump administration’s potential interference with witnesses, saying any such efforts by the president, Pompeo or others would be considered obstruction of justice.

The House launched its impeachment inquiry, which threatens Trump’s presidency, following a complaint brought by a whistleblower within the U.S. intelligence community over Trump’s request to Zelenskiy.

Biden is a leading contender for the Democratic nomination to challenge Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Trump made his request to Zelenskiy shortly after he had frozen nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine. Zelenskiy agreed to the request on the call, and the aid was later provided. Democrats have accused Trump of pressuring a vulnerable U.S. ally to meddle in the 2020 election for his own political benefit.

“It’s hard to imagine a more corrupt course of conduct,” Schiff said.

Trump, running for re-election, has denied wrongdoing and described the impeachment probe as a politically motivated Democratic attempt to oust him.


“They’ve been trying to impeach me from the day I got elected,” Trump told reporters at the White House.


Trump also said he “might” limit how many people listen in on his calls with foreign leaders.

ON THE CALL

Scrutiny of Pompeo’s role in the administration’s interactions with Ukraine, including the recall of the U.S. ambassador to Kiev earlier this year, rose after the Wall Street Journal first reported that the top U.S. diplomat had listened in on the Trump-Zelenskiy call.

“I was on the phone call,” Pompeo told reporters in Rome on Wednesday.

Pompeo sought to portray the call as proper, saying it was in the context of U.S. policymaking in Ukraine, including “taking down the Russia threat,” rooting out corruption in government and boosting the economy.

Senator Bob Menendez, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s top Democrat, called on Pompeo to recuse himself from Ukraine related-matters, citing what he described as a conflict of interest in the Trump-Zelenskiy matter.

The Democratic chairmen of three House committees have accused Pompeo of intimidating witnesses and said he is considered “a fact witness” in the impeachment inquiry based on his role in Trump’s call with Zelenskiy.

Pompeo said State Department employees had been contacted directly by lawmakers or their staff and told not to talk to the State Department’s legal counsel. He has said, however, that he would cooperate with Congress.

Democratic-led committees previously subpoenaed Pompeo and Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, as well as documents.

The State Department’s inspector general, Steve Linick, is scheduled to brief congressional staff on Wednesday to address Ukraine-related documents that have been subpoenaed, according to two sources familiar with the situation.

Schiff said the intelligence community’s Inspector General Michael Atkinson will testify privately before the House intelligence committee on Friday. Atkinson has concluded the whistleblower complaint was of urgent concern and appeared credible.

According to a summary of the July call released by the White House, Trump asked Zelenskiy to investigate Biden and his son Hunter in coordination with U.S. Attorney General William Barr and Giuliani. Hunter Biden had sat on the board of a Ukrainian gas company that had been under investigation by Kiev.

The prospect that Trump solicited Ukraine’s help against his potential challenger next year has infuriated Democrats, many of whom blame the loss of the 2016 presidential election on Russian interference. Moscow has denied interfering in that campaign.

On Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he saw no evidence of pressure in Trump’s July conversation with Zelenskiy and added that there was nothing wrong with the U.S. president asking for an investigation into potential corruption.

U.S. intelligence agencies and Special Counsel Robert Mueller concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election with a scheme of hacking and propaganda to boost Trump’s candidacy and disparage his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton.

Kurt Volker, who resigned last Friday as Trump’s special representative for Ukraine, is scheduled to give a deposition to House staff on Thursday. Marie Yovanovitch, who was U.S. ambassador to Ukraine until she was abruptly recalled in May, has agreed to appear on Oct. 11. In his phone call with Zelenskiy, Trump called Yovanovitch “bad news.”

The impeachment probe could lead to approval of articles of impeachment - or formal charges - against Trump in the House. A trial on whether to remove Trump from office would then be held in the Republican-controlled Senate. Republicans, however, have shown little appetite for ousting him.​

Source: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-whistleblower-pompeo-idUSKBN1WH1BP
 
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On Tuesday (Oct 1st) State Department inspector general Steve Linick requested an urgent briefing with senior congressional staff members. His request came after "Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pushed back on House Democratic demands to turn over documents related to Ukraine and to depose current and former State officials", according to CNN.

CNN reported that Linick planned to "provide staff with copies of documents related to the State Department and Ukraine" at a bipartisan closed-door briefing with relevant congressional committees on Wednesday afternoon. It is not known whether those documents are the documents the chairmen of 3 House committees had sought from Mr Pompeo.


Fmr. Dem Senator: State IG's "Urgent" Meeting "Means Something Big Is Up" | The Last Word | MSNBC

ETA:
Bloomberg is reporting that Mr Linick "is planning to brief lawmakers privately on efforts inside the department to punish officials who cooperate with the House impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump".
 
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Secular Talk video: Dems Fail To Answer Basic Corruption Question Correctly
IMO, KK appears to be making the ridiculous argument that a/all questionable ethical situation(s) entail corruption.

And, the folk highlighted in his video weren’t being asked if they agreed. Which left them free to say what they felt needed to be said.

Did Elizabeth Warren say she had to check her plans as he claimed? No.

The question put to her was: “…under a Warren administration will your vice-president’s child be allowed to serve on the board of a foreign company?” Her immediate response was “No.” The she had a second thought. “I don’t know,” she said. “I mean, I’ll… I’ll have to go back and look at the details.” Why assume it’s the details of her plans? Why not assume that she realised that she couldn’t bar anything of that sort because the law doesn’t make it unlawful and, likely, she had no idea how far her presidential rights extended to someone who was a private citizen and not in government service?

It is Kyle's wont to forever be distastefully spinning situations just so he can segue into whatever he wants to rant about or pontificate on; and if at the same time he can surreptitiously portray a person or a group in bad light so that they lose support, then he thinks it well and good. Ugh!
 
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Even if the House impeaches Donald Trump, the Democrats will still need 2 more keys to turn in order to unlock Democratic Party victory in the 2020 general election, says Prof Allan Lichtman, who correctly predicted 8 presidential winners.

Professor who predicted last 9 presidential elections on how impeachment will impact 2020

 
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1. President Trump angered by Reuters reporter
2. State IG Steve Linick's briefing: The document he brought

Trump erupts at reporter over key question in impeachment inquiry

 

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In case you missed it: Fox News’ Chris Wallace outted Joe diGenova and Victoria Toensing as working for Mr Trump “off the books”

Giuliani didn't work alone in Biden Ukraine probe

 

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Giuliani: I think there are a lot of people in the State Department who maybe have questions about what he (Kurt Volker) did and why he did it, but I should tell you he wasn’t the only one, he was joined by another ambassador (advisor??) who talked to me, debriefed me, gave me information about what to ask (Andrey Yermak?/). I didn’t do this on my own, I did this at the request of the State Department. … When I talked to Mr Secretary last week, he said he was aware of it, told me he was aware of it. [/Meow]

Cenk: It’s a problem when the State Department is authorizing trips that are not on behalf of the United States government but on behalf of Donald Trump as a person…

The Moment Pompeo Realized It's All OVER| The Young Turks| Oct 2nd


The blockbuster coming Thursday, Oct 3rd: The testimony of Kurt Volker, former US special envoy for Ukraine.

Here’s what we can expect, according to the Washington Examiner:

‘Not going to take a fall:' Kurt Volker, former Ukraine envoy, poised to dispute Giuliani in congressional testimony

By Joel Gehrke | Oct 2nd

Kurt Volker, the former special representative for Ukraine negotiations, will dispute Rudy Giuliani’s account of back channel meetings with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, sources told the Washington Examiner.

“He's not going to take a fall needlessly for people if it's not warranted,” said Evelyn Farkas, a friend who worked as deputy assistant secretary of defense for three years under Barack Obama.

Volker, 54, who resigned his post as the U.S. special representative for Ukraine last week, will testify Thursday in a deposition that congressional Democrats scheduled as the first major step in an “an expeditious, coordinated” probe to impeach President Trump. Volker, who took the unpaid diplomatic assignment in addition to his work at the McCain Institute for International Leadership, is expected to prioritize defending his own reputation in a controversy that threatens to consume the administration.

Volker resigned amid a deepening controversy over Giuliani’s efforts to find evidence implicating former Vice President Joe Biden, a perceived front-runner in the 2016 Democratic presidential primaries, in a Ukrainian corruption scandal. In the whistleblower complaint that sparked the inquiry, Volker was portrayed as advising Ukrainian officials on “how to ‘navigate’ the demands” that Trump made during a July 25 phone call in which the president asked the Ukrainian leader to open an investigation into Biden.

“It's fair to say [Volker] resigned his position as envoy so he could assure that he could defend himself and cooperate with the committee,” said Frances Fragos Townsend, a trustee at the McCain Institute, where Volker works as executive director.

Farkas said: "He likely got involved in something sort of inadvertently, meaning he was asked to do one thing and it may have become bigger. But, he certainly would never have condoned anything that would subvert American democracy, or Ukrainian democracy, for that matter."

Giuliani, the president’s personal attorney, maintains that Volker orchestrated his outreach to Zelensky’s team. “He should step forward and explain what he did,” Giuliani said in a television interview last week. “I got a call from Volker. Volker said, ‘Would you meet with him? It would be helpful to us. We really want you to do it.’”

Lawmakers await the explanation slated for Thursday.

"I believe that Kurt will take the position that he was not directing Rudy,” said Townsend. “If anything, Rudy was asking for his assistance and Kurt was not fully aware of what [Giuliani wanted] from the Ukrainians."

That forecast suggests that Volker, who rose through the ranks of the Foreign Service to be U.S. ambassador to NATO in 2008, will not sacrifice his reputation and future prospects in order to protect Trump.

“If he doesn't cooperate with Congress, he certainly would have a much more difficult time assuming, in the future, a Senate-confirmed position, for obvious reasons,” Farkas said. “I think that may be a motivation, which is fine, and there may be other motivations, so let's let him speak for himself.”

Volker might not be able to convince lawmakers of his ignorance, given that he has made public statements acknowledging that some Ukrainian officials were trying to curry favor with Trump by working with Giuliani.

Farkas believes that Volker aimed to "block Giuliani from doing damage to the United States or Ukraine.”

“I think he's acknowledging that on some level he knew what was going on and he was trying to prevent it from getting out of control,” Farkas said, adding that she hadn’t spoken directly on the subject to Volker.

Friends and colleagues in both parties hope Volker can prove that he put Giuliani in contact with Zelensky’s advisers in order to shut down the effort to investigate Biden by allowing the Ukrainian leader’s team to “set him straight.”

“That would be the good news story for Kurt coming out of all of this. Or another possibility that it ends up being that he was playing more of a compromised role,” another foreign policy expert who knows Volker told the Washington Examiner on condition of anonymity. “I certainly hope it's the former, not the latter.”​

Source: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/...o-dispute-giuliani-in-congressional-testimony
 
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Frank Underwood

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IMO, KK appears to be making the ridiculous argument that a/all questionable ethical situation(s) entail corruption.

And, the folk highlighted in his video weren’t being asked if they agreed. Which left them free to say what they felt needed to be said.

Did Elizabeth Warren say she had to check her plans as he claimed? No.

The question put to her was: “…under a Warren administration will your vice-president’s child be allowed to serve on the board of a foreign company?” Her immediate response was “No.” The she had a second thought. “I don’t know,” she said. “I mean, I’ll… I’ll have to go back and look at the details.” Why assume it’s the details of her plans? Why not assume that she realised that she couldn’t bar anything of that sort because the law doesn’t make it unlawful and, likely, she had no idea how far her presidential rights extended to someone who was a private citizen and not in government service?

It is Kyle's wont to forever be distastefully spinning situations just so he can segue into whatever he wants to rant about or pontificate on; and if at the same time he can surreptitiously portray a person or a group in bad light so that they lose support, then he thinks it well and good. Ugh!
Kulinski can get a bit hyperbolic at times, but I agree with his general sentiment. Warren in particular has a habit of taking the right positions, and then backtracking to a more establishment approved response. It's like when she said the primaries were rigged against Bernie Sanders in 2016, and then later said she "misspoke." She's clearly riding the fence.

IMO, downgrading acts many consider corrupt to "questionable ethical situations" could just as easily be considered spinning situations to portray someone in a less negative light. Many considered the Trump Tower meeting to be an example of corruption, but the Trump team wasn't charged for it. Does that mean it too is downgraded to a "questionable ethical situation?"

And as for portraying a person in a bad light so that they lose support, you've just described what FOX, CNN, and MSNBC have been doing to Bernie Sanders for the past four years. IMO, Kulinski's much more of an objective critic than those outlets are. He doesn't hide his support for Bernie and Tulsi, yet he's still done segments on issues he believes they've gotten wrong.
 
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Many considered the Trump Tower meeting to be an example of corruption, but the Trump team wasn't charged for it. Does that mean it too is downgraded to a "questionable ethical situation?"
I think it has to be, in fairness. What was the evidence to support the suspicion of wrong-doing in the first place? You can't charge unless the perceived wrong-doing actually broke the law. ETA: One consideration for a charging decision would have been whether the state could meet the standard for the burden of proof. If the evidence at hand can't rise to meet that, then why bother to prosecute.
 
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Frank Underwood

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I think it has to be, in fairness. What was the evidence to support the suspicion of wrong-doing in the first place? You can't charge unless the perceived wrong-doing actually broke the law.
So does the term "corruption" only apply if a law has been broken? That's where my confusion is setting in, as I've long heard legal yet unethical violations referred to as corruption.
 

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So does the term "corruption" only apply if a law has been broken?
I don't know. I've long believed that for me to call a situation corrupt I need to know for sure that the circumstances rise or amount to what the law definitely sees as corruption. (Perversely, I generally won't say that sex between consenting underaged couples -- ie, where there's been no accusation by one party against the other of non-consensual sex -- who are teenage love birds is statutory rape even if the law says it is.)
That's where my confusion is setting in, as I've long heard legal yet unethical violations referred to as corruption.
I've been grappling with that lately myself, for the same reason you mention. I think that situation has arisen because our personal values shape our ideas of right- and wrong-doing and we've been reacting to that, assigning our individual judgement to matters in a way that is outside the laws that society has helped put in place.
 

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Bloomberg is reporting that Mr Linick "is planning to brief lawmakers privately on efforts inside the department to punish officials who cooperate with the House impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump"
UPDATES:

Extract from the Daily Beast: https://www.thedailybeast.com/rudy-...ept-ig-handed-to-congress-originated-with-him

After State Department Inspector General Steve Linnick briefed Congress on Wednesday and handed over materials that some Democrats said amounted to a packet of “propaganda” apparently designed to smear former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani proudly told CNN that some of these documents originated with him.

“What Giuliani told me is that he somehow routed this information — this is at the end of March, earlier this year—he says he routed that to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo,” reporter Michael Warren said on CNN Wednesday night. “He did say that he received a call a couple of days later from Pompeo who said that he had gotten these documents and that he would refer it for investigation.”

“Giuliani telling me he was frustrated he never heard anything back from the State Department thereafter,” Warren added.

The chairs of the House Intelligence, House Foreign Affairs and Oversight Committees released a joint statement hours earlier expressing concerns about the “urgent” briefing that they had been summoned to by the State Department. The documents given to lawmakers at that briefing “raise troubling questions about apparent efforts inside and outside the Trump Administration to target specific officials,” the statement said, including former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Biden’s son Hunter.

“The documents provided by the Inspector General included a package of disinformation, debunked conspiracy theories, and baseless allegations in an envelope marked ‘White House’ and containing folders labeled ‘Trump Hotel,’” the statement read. “These documents also reinforce concern that the President and his allies sought to use the machinery of the State Department to further the President’s personal political interests.”

The committee chairmen further noted that the IG “stated that his office interviewed Secretary Pompeo’s Counselor, Thomas Ulrich Brechbuhl, who informed the Inspector General that Secretary Pompeo told him the packet ‘came over,’ and that Brechbuhl presumed it was from the White House.”

Giuliani later appeared on Fox News’ Hannity, where he boasted about the Ukrainian documents he had fed to the State Department in the spring.

“And the committees, I guess, they were sitting there figuring out how they can do impeachment based on nothing and what they got shoved down their throats, it’s a complete, total absolutely terrific prosecutorial outline of why Joe Biden is so guilty,” Giuliani exclaimed to Trump-boosting host Sean Hannity. “It’s a joke for me to describe it to you.”

Giuliani also credited conservative columnist John Solomon—who apparently shared his Ukraine stories with Giuliani’s allies before publication—with helping to get his Ukraine-Biden narrative to the forefront.

“Ultimately it was John Solomon, who should get a Pulitzer Prize, by the way, put them all on tape, so it’s all memorialized on videotape,” he declared, referencing Solomon’s interviews with Ukrainian figures. “This is as solid as it can get.”

Democrats say Trump administration used misinformation to attack U.S. diplomat

By Jonathan Landay, Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democrats accused the Trump administration on Wednesday of using “propaganda and disinformation” to attack the former US ambassador to Ukraine and demanded that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo explain how the material circulated at top levels of his department.

The Democrats, who are pursuing an impeachment probe of President Donald Trump, leveled the charge after State Department Inspector General Steve Linick delivered a package of documents to a hastily called hour-long briefing with staff for eight congressional committees.

“We are now in possession of this packet of propaganda and disinformation,” said Democratic Representative Jamie Raskin, the only lawmaker who joined committee staff members at the meeting. “The real question is where did it come from and how did it end up in our lap?”

Photographs of some of the documents, seen by Reuters, promoted unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. envoy to Ukraine, who was removed from her post in May, months before she was due to leave, after Trump allies accused her of disloyalty.

Multiple meeting participants, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the materials arrived at the State Department this spring and that Linick passed them on to the FBI.

The materials were inside an envelope marked “White House” that contained folders labeled “Trump Hotel,” said a statement issued by the Democratic chairmen of the House of Representatives intelligence, oversight and foreign relations committees.

The documents “reinforce concern that the president and his allies sought to use the machinery of the State Department to further the president’s personal political interests,” they said.

The meeting with Linick came as the Democratic-led U.S. House looks at whether Trump pressured Ukraine to investigate a Democratic political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son, Hunter, who was a director of a Ukrainian energy firm.

Following a whistleblower complaint released last week, Democrats launched the impeachment inquiry focusing on a July 25 call in which Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to investigate Biden, a Trump rival in the president’s race for re-election in 2020, and his son.

Pompeo said on Wednesday during a visit to Rome that he had listened in on Trump’s call with Zelenskiy.

Photographs of documents delivered by Linick to Congress included what appeared to be a cover sheet addressed to Pompeo on White House stationery.

One document, whose source was not disclosed, described a discredited theory promoted by Trump allies that Yovanovitch was installed in her post by billionaire George Soros, a Democratic donor frequently attacked by far-right activists.

“Until she is removed Soros has as much, or more, power over Yovanovitch as the President and the Secretary of State,” said the document.

Also in the packet was an email from John Solomon, a pro-Trump columnist for The Hill newspaper, to pro-Trump lawyers Victoria Toensing and Joe DiGenova, and Lev Parnas, a Soviet-born businessman who has been aiding Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.

The email contained a report by Solomon that the U.S. Embassy in Kiev pressed Ukrainian authorities to end an investigation into an anti-corruption group supported by Soros during the 2016 U.S. election.

The report also quoted a former Ukrainian prosecutor as saying Yovanovitch had given him a list of people, including Soros allies, who should not be prosecuted. The State Department has vehemently denied such a list existed.

Giuliani, who has called Parnas one of his clients, has been a leading promoter of the unsubstantiated allegation that Biden, while vice president, pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor investigating the company in which his son was a director.

The prosecutor has said the probe pre-dated Hunter Biden’s role in the company.

Giuliani told CNN he was the source of some of the information that the inspector general turned over to Congress, the network reported. Giuliani said he sent the documents to Pompeo, who told Giuliani he would refer it for investigation, according to CNN.

Giuliani, the White House, State Department, Solomon, Toensing and DiGenova did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Bob Menendez, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the materials provided by Linick appeared “to contain long-debunked theories and false statements about the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine and one of President Trump’s political opponents.”

He demanded an explanation of Pompeo’s role.

Before the meeting, congressional sources had told Reuters the session with Linick would focus on potential political retaliation against career State Department diplomats by the department’s leadership.​

Source: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-whistleblower-state-idUSKBN1WH1WA
 

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554
It is Kyle's wont to forever be distastefully spinning situations just so he can segue into whatever he wants to rant about or pontificate on; and if at the same time he can surreptitiously portray a person or a group in bad light so that they lose support, then he thinks it well and good. Ugh!
Kyle Kulinski (to Joe Biden): “Fu:censer: your family name. Step aside. Let a real candidate run. It’s got to be Bernie vs Trump. Bernie will destroy this guy and …”

[/Sigh]

Are we all going to pretend that Kyle has no idea who that “Ukraine gas executive” is in that 2014 photograph?

That’s Devon Archer, Hunter Biden’s business partner in his investment company Rosemont Seneca.

Why shouldn’t Joe Biden play golf with his sons and a close friend of one of his sons?

As I understand it, Archer was the first partner in Rosemont Seneca to join Burisma Holdings in his personal capacity (ie, as an individual, not as the representative of the investment company).

When Hunter decided to join Burisma as well in his individual capacity (after discussing it with another of Burisma’s directors who was a former President of Poland), another partner of his investment company – Chris Heinz, the stepson of former Secretary of State John Kerry – quit as their partner in Rosemont Seneca because he was concerned about corruption in Ukraine and uneasy about appearances.

Why shouldn’t we believe Joe Biden when he says “I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings”?

Why should we believe Joe Biden only associated with Devon Archer because he was a Burisma Holdings director?
 
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