"Russian Interference in the 2016 United States Election”, Biden, corruption, Crimea, Donbas, impeachment, Javelins, Mueller, precedent, Putin, Russia, Schiff, Trump, Ukraine, Ukraine security assistance, Ukraine Security Assistance blocked, Ukraine Security Assistance hold, US Congress, US House Intel Committee, USA, Zelensky
“I AM GRAVELY CONCERNED THAT IF WE MERELY ACCEPT THIS THAT WE INVITE NOT ONLY FURTHER CORRUPTION OF OUR ELECTIONS BY THIS PRESIDENT, BUT WE ALSO INVITE IT OF THE NEXT PRESIDENT. SO I AM KEENLY AWARE OF THE SIGNIFICANT OF THE PRECEDENT WE SET IN WHATEVER DIRECTION WE MOVE. I’M ALSO STRONGLY GUIDED BY THE FACT THAT ONE OF THE SEMINAL MOMENTS IN THIS SCHEME TOOK PLACE THE DAY AFTER BOB MUELLER TESTIFIED, THE DAY AFTER DONALD TRUMP THOUGHT THE LAST INVESTIGATION WAS OVER, HE BEGAN THE NEXT SIGNIFICANT STEP IN A NEW COURSE OF MISCONDUCT…” (US HOUSE INTEL CHAIR ADAM SCHIFF, DECEMBER 3, 2019)
July 24, 2019 Mueller testifies.
July 25, 2019 Trump calls President Zelensky: “the President’s July call with Ukrainian President Zelensky, in which he solicited an investigation to damage his most feared 2020 opponent, came the day after Special Counsel Robert Mueller testified to Congress about Russia’s efforts to damage his 2016 opponent and his urgent warning of the dangers of further foreign interference in the next election.
With this backdrop, the solicitation of new foreign intervention was the act of a president unbound, not one chastened by experience.” (US House Intel Impeachment Report, Dec. 2, 2019)
“ Unidentified Speaker
>> JUST TO BE CLEAR, IT SOUNDS LIKE YOU SUPPORT IMPEACHING THE PRESIDENT. DO YOU SUPPORT IMPEACHING AND THE SENATE REMOVING HIM FROM OFFICE?
MR. SCHIFF: I’M GOING TO RESERVE ANY KIND OF PUBLIC JUDGMENT ON THAT UNTIL I HAVE A CHANCE TO CONSULT WITH MY COLLEAGUES, WITH OUR LEADERSHIP, AND I THINK THIS REALLY NEEDS TO BE A DECISION THAT WE ALL MAKE AS A BODY. SO I’M GOING TO CONTINUE RESERVE JUDGMENT. AS YOU CAN TELL, I AM GRAVELY CONCERNED THAT IF WE MERELY ACCEPT THIS THAT WE INVITE NOT ONLY FURTHER CORRUPTION OF OUR ELECTIONS BY THIS PRESIDENT, BUT WE ALSO INVITE IT OF THE NEXT PRESIDENT. SO I AM KEENLY AWARE OF THE SIGNIFICANT OF THE PRECEDENT WE SET IN WHATEVER DIRECTION WE MOVE. I’M ALSO STRONGLY GUIDED BY THE FACT THAT ONE OF THE SEMINAL MOMENTS IN THIS SCHEME TOOK PLACE THE DAY AFTER BOB MUELLER TESTIFIED, THE DAY AFTER DONALD TRUMP THOUGHT THE LAST INVESTIGATION WAS OVER, HE BEGAN THE NEXT SIGNIFICANT STEP IN A NEW COURSE OF MISCONDUCT.
“There’s a huge loophole in the GOP’s claim that Trump’s sale of Javelin missiles to Ukraine shows his support for the country” By John Haltiwanger Nov 22, 2019, 9:34 AM
Excerpt: “But Republicans have left out that the Ukrainians cannot actually use the anti-tank missiles in the conflict against pro-Russian separatists based on the terms of the sale… Under the rules of the sale, the Javelin missiles have to be stored in western Ukraine, which is far from the frontlines of the ongoing conflict in the eastern part of the country (the Donbas region) against pro-Russia separatists.” https://www.businessinsider.com/republicans-leaving-out-key-detail-trump-javelin-sale-to-ukraine-2019-11 The article discusses that Obama’s nonlethal aid (aka tech and training for self-defense) was more useful.
Excerpts from US House Intel Impeachment Report: “In making the decision to move forward, we were struck by the fact that the President’s misconduct was not an isolated occurrence, nor was it the product of a naïve president. Instead, the efforts to involve Ukraine in our 2020 presidential election were undertaken by a President who himself was elected in 2016 with the benefit of an unprecedented and sweeping campaign of election interference undertaken by Russia in his favor, and which the President welcomed and utilized. Having witnessed the degree to which interference by a foreign power in 2016 harmed our democracy, President Trump cannot credibly claim ignorance to its pernicious effects.
Even more pointedly, the President’s July call with Ukrainian President Zelensky, in which he solicited an investigation to damage his most feared 2020 opponent, came the day after Special Counsel Robert Mueller testified to Congress about Russia’s efforts to damage his 2016 opponent and his urgent warning of the dangers of further foreign interference in the next election. With this backdrop, the solicitation of new foreign intervention was the act of a president unbound, not one chastened by experience. It was the act of a president who viewed himself as unaccountable and determined to use his vast official powers to secure his reelection.
This repeated and pervasive threat to our democratic electoral process added urgency to our work. On October 3, 2019, even as our Committee was engaged in this inquiry, President Trump publicly declared anew that other countries should open investigations into his chief political rival, saying, “China should start an investigation into the Bidens,” and that “President Zelensky, if it were me, I would recommend that they start an investigation into the Bidens.” When a reporter asked the President what he hoped Ukraine’s President would do following the July 25 call, President Trump, seeking to dispel any doubt as to his continuing intention, responded: “Well, I would think that, if they were honest about it, they’d start a major investigation into the Bidens. It’s a very simple answer.”
By doubling down on his misconduct and declaring that his July 25 call with President Zelensky was “perfect,” President Trump has shown a continued willingness to use the power of his office to seek foreign intervention in our next election. His Acting Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney, in the course of admitting that the President had linked security assistance to Ukraine to the announcement of one of his desired investigations, told the American people to “get over it.” In these statements and actions, the President became the author of his own impeachment inquiry. The question presented by the set of facts enumerated in this report may be as simple as that posed by the President and his chief of staff’s brazenness: is the remedy of impeachment warranted for a president who would use the power of his office to coerce foreign interference in a U.S. election, or is that now a mere perk of the office that Americans must simply “get over”?…
The President Pressed Zelensky to Do a Political Favor
On the morning of July 25, Ambassador Volker sent a text message to President Zelensky’s top aide, Mr. Yermak, less than 30 minutes before the presidential call. He stated: “Heard from White House—assuming President Z convinces trump he will investigate / ‘get to the bottom of what happened’ in 2016, we will nail down date for visit to Washington. Good luck!” Shortly before the call, Ambassador Sondland spoke directly with President Trump. President Zelensky followed this advice during his conversation with President Trump. President Zelensky assured that he would pursue the investigations that President Trump had discussed—into the Bidens and 2016 election interference—and, in turn, pressed for the White House meeting that remained outstanding…
In the weeks following the July 25 call, the President’s hand-picked representatives increased the President’s pressure campaign on Ukrainian government officials—in person, over the phone, and by text message—to secure a public announcement of the investigations beneficial to President Trump’s reelection campaign…
Ukrainians Inquired about the President’s Hold on Security Assistance
Once President Trump placed security assistance on hold in July, “it was inevitable that it was eventually going to come out.” On July 25, DOD officials learned that diplomats at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington had made multiple overtures to DOD and the State Department “asking about security assistance.”…
The hold remained in place throughout August against the unanimous judgment of American officials focused on Ukraine policy. Without an explanation for the hold, which ran contrary to the recommendation of all relevant agencies, and with President Trump already conditioning a White House visit on the announcement of the political investigations, it became increasingly apparent to multiple witnesses that the military aid was also being withheld in exchange for the announcement of those…” https://intelligence.house.gov/report/