Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Thursday, September 26, 2019

In this extremely well written analysis, Lawfare's experts present the Trump-Zelensky memo piece by piece, explaining the context and implications of the U.S. President's phone call with another world leader: This time it's different. The misconduct cannot be dismissed as unproven; it screams off the plain text of the White House's own memorandum detailing the president's phone conversation with his Ukrainian counterpart.

Advertisement

More

Comments

Admin's note: Participants in this discussion must follow the site's moderation policy. Profanity will be filtered. Abusive conduct is not allowed.

Yet another long and interesting analysis from Lawfare.

#1 | Posted by et_al at 2019-09-26 12:21 AM | Reply

Michael Crowley @michaelcrowley (WH correspondent covering foreign policy, @nytimes)

Trump tells Zelensky of the man pushed out by Biden: "I heard the prosecutor was treated very badly and he was a very fair prosecutor."
I've never heard anyone who knows about Ukraine say this. They all say he was corrupt.

Tom Malinowski @Malinowski

Tom Malinowski Retweeted Michael Crowley
I was an Assistant Secretary of State when this happened. All of us working on Ukraine wanted this prosecutor gone, because he was NOT prosecuting corruption. So did the Europeans. So did the IMF. This didn't come from Joe Biden - he just delivered our message.

#2 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 07:13 AM | Reply

Incredible.

#3 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-09-26 07:42 AM | Reply

leaving office in disgrace.

Now lets watch the orange pig run an insanity alzhiemers defence in order to avoid getting frog marched... just like Reagoon did.

republiclwns are idiots.

#4 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2019-09-26 07:48 AM | Reply

The operative paragraph:

The misconduct cannot be dismissed as unproven; it screams off the plain text of the White House's own memorandum detailing the president's phone conversation with his Ukrainian counterpart. It cannot be disparaged as the result of a "Witch Hunt" or blamed on angry Democrats working for a special counsel or attempting a coup from the depths of the "Deep State." The revelation did not flow from any investigation at all but, instead, from the complaints of shocked subordinates, complaints that generated pressure that ultimately caused the president himself to fess up and release the document. It cannot be blamed on "The Squad" or on Nancy Pelosi or on Adam Schiff. None of these people made the president say the words that appear in that document. None of them made him take the actions into which the memo offers dramatic visibility. Nor does the president deny that he said those words. He just thinks it's fine for a president to do so.
This.

#5 | Posted by tonyroma at 2019-09-26 07:49 AM | Reply

When Zelensky comes in with his ask "for the president's support for Ukrainian efforts to acquire defensive equipment from the United States" Trump is ready. He immediately pivots to an ask of his own, telling Zelensky that "I would like you to do us a favor though[.]"

But the favor in question is not a policy favor for the United States. It's a political favor for Trump.

As law professor Alan Rozenshtein put it earlier today: "The question is not whether Trump broke federal criminal law. The question is whether he has failed to uphold his constitutional duties and should be impeached and removed from office."

The request to a foreign government to involve itself in American electoral politics is as direct as can be. The president in this document is asking his counterpart to deliver the goods on a possible electoral opponent. And he is doing it himself. There is no plausible deniability. If this is not collusion in precisely the sense that collusion's absence was purportedly so exculpatory in the Russia context, it's hard to imagine what collusion would look like. And unlike the conduct described in Volume I of the Mueller report, the president is no longer a private citizen. Now, he is actually corruptly wielding the powers of his office in order to achieve this abusive end. This represents a dramatic escalation in severity.

Give Trump enough rope....

#6 | Posted by tonyroma at 2019-09-26 08:11 AM | Reply

Get the jam. Someone is toast.

#7 | Posted by Zed at 2019-09-26 08:11 AM | Reply

A bit quiet on the Right here this morning. Just an observation.

#8 | Posted by Zed at 2019-09-26 08:31 AM | Reply

It cannot be disparaged as the result of a "Witch Hunt" or blamed on angry Democrats working for a special counsel or attempting a coup from the depths of the "Deep State."

Actually, that's exactly what Trump and his Felchers on his propaganda network have aready been doing - they've painted the whistleblower as a "partisan."

#9 | Posted by JOE at 2019-09-26 08:39 AM | Reply

HPSCI has released the declassified Whistleblower complaint:

intelligence.house.gov

#10 | Posted by JOE at 2019-09-26 08:41 AM | Reply

Advertisement

Advertisement

During the trial, and this is what no one is thinking about right now, the President's attorneys will have the right to subpoena andquestion ANYONE THEY WANT!
That is different than the special counsel investigation, which was very one-sided. So, during the impeachment trial, we will be hearing testimony from James Comey, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, Bruce Ohr, Glenn Simpson, Donna Brazille, Eric Holder, Loretta Lynch, Christopher Steele, Hillary Clinton, John Brennan, James Clapper, and a whole host of other participants in this whole sordid affair and the ensuing coverup activities.
A lot of dirt will be dug up; a lot of truth will be unveiled. Finger pointing will occur. Deals will start being made, and suddenly, a lot of democrats will start being charged and going to prison. All this, because, remember, the President's team will now, for the first time, have the RIGHT to question all of these people under oath " and they will turn on each other. That is already starting.

#11 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 2019-09-26 08:48 AM | Reply | Funny: 1

Shimon Prokupecz @ShimonPro

A lawmaker tells @Acosta that the sheer scope of the pressure placed on Zelensky and the number of administration officials involved will likely lead to calls for multiple Trump aides to testify in hearings, more than just the whistleblower.
9:11 PM - 25 Sep 2019

#12 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 08:49 AM | Reply

#11 If the impeachment proceedings focus on Trump's July call to the Ukrainian president, why would all those people need to be called to testify?

#13 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 08:51 AM | Reply

The White House buried the official word-for-word transcript of Trump's call with Zelensky. This criminal has got to go.

#14 | Posted by anton at 2019-09-26 08:51 AM | Reply

What's new so far:

"In the days following the call, I learned from multiple U.S. officias that senior White House officials had intervened to "lock down" all records of the phone call, including the official word-for-word transcript that was produced - as is customary - by the White House Situation Room.

"White House officials told me that they were "directed" by White House lawyers to remove the electronic transcript from the computer system in which such trancripts are typically stored for coordination, finalization, and distribution to Cabinet-level officials.

"Instead, the transcript was loaded onto a separate electronic system that is otherwise used to store and handle classified information of an especially sensitive nature. One White House official described this act as an abuse of this electronic system because the call did not contain anything remotely sensitive from a national security perspective."

#15 | Posted by JOE at 2019-09-26 08:52 AM | Reply

A bit quiet on the Right here this morning. Just an observation.

#8 | POSTED BY ZED AT 2019-09-26 08:31 AM | REPLY

Everyone is waiting for their talking points. Phester went back to an old one - threatening to attack anyone holding them accountable. In fact, it's inappropriate to lash out at the systems that provide a check and balance. Good point seems to be that nobody should ever enforce the law. That's messed up. It's the reason Trump needs to go. Cons should be acting better than this.

#16 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-09-26 08:52 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

But:

1. Her emails
2. Obama's tan suit
3. Benghazi
4. Hunter Biden

Sincerely,

The Deplorables

#17 | Posted by anton at 2019-09-26 08:54 AM | Reply

#15 whoah...

#18 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-09-26 08:55 AM | Reply

#11 Unless boaz really comes out swinging later, you have likely written the dumbest thing that will be posted on the internet today.

#19 | Posted by qcp at 2019-09-26 08:57 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

A lot of dirt will be dug up; a lot of truth will be unveiled.

#11 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 201

Lordy, Lordy. I sure hope so, PHESTER.

#20 | Posted by Zed at 2019-09-26 08:57 AM | Reply

Everyone needs to read the link in #10. There's a lot more to this than the phone call.

It reads like it was produced by a very senior intel official who had many people coming to him/her with this information. My guess is Sue Gordon.

#21 | Posted by JOE at 2019-09-26 08:57 AM | Reply

#16 - If they are waiting on their talking points they only need to contact Nancy Pelosi, they mistakenly sent them to her yesterday! :-D

#22 | Posted by Sezu at 2019-09-26 08:59 AM | Reply | Funny: 1

Deals will start being made, and suddenly, a lot of democrats will start being charged and going to prison. All this, because, remember, the President's team will now, for the first time, have the RIGHT to question all of these people under oath " and they will turn on each other. That is already starting.

#11 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 2019-09-26 08:48 AM | Reply | Flag:

Sort of makes you wonder why there is this wave for impeachment, doesn't it? I mean, it's so self-destructive and everything.

Here's a clue, PHESTER. You can't threaten honest people with this BS.

#23 | Posted by Zed at 2019-09-26 09:00 AM | Reply

Ha ha! That's hilarious.

#24 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2019-09-26 09:01 AM | Reply

Notice in the 'transcript' how Zelensky gets Trump off by stroking his ego about how great Der Dotard is, how Mr. Z will stay at Trump Tower, how the Z-Man has learned from the Trump political playbook, etc. Trump probably squirted all over his desk during the call. And our president gets played again...

#25 | Posted by catdog at 2019-09-26 09:04 AM | Reply

#11 | POSTED BY PHESTEROBOYLE

Republicans think everyone is corrupt as they are. We are not.

Republicans think that everyone puts party over country like they do. We do not.

If you can PROVE that Democrats broke the law, go for it. But do it properly, through the correct channels.

But, honestly, I very much doubt you will be able to prove anything. The Republican party put everything they had behind going after Hillary for the past 20 years, yet have come up with a big, fat nothing. We all know that you either are just spreading FUD (an ACTUAL "witch hunt") or are too incompetent to actually prove anything.

But, Republicans are PROVABLY corrupt, and extremely incompetent. So, again, bring it on. I only see "winning" for Democrats. You might actually find and root out a small bit of corruption on our side, which I see as a plus. And, in the process, we will pick apart the diseased corpse which is the GOP and scatter it so that its corrupt pieces will take a generation to reassemble themselves.

#26 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-09-26 09:13 AM | Reply

Btw the transcript has another breach of the constitution that isn't being discussed
Zelensky staying at ipbos tower is a flagrant breach of the emoluments clause

#27 | Posted by truthhurts at 2019-09-26 09:21 AM | Reply

The author's theory falls apart when they assume, without evidence, that this is a politically motivated investigation.
Investigating wrongdoing by the previous administration is not wrong. It's not bad. It's not improper.

Consider if it had been President Obama himself instead of VP Biden who had encouraged Ukraine to remove government employees and threatened to withold Congressionally authorized funding to enforce that desire.

Same situation, Trump asks the President of Ukraine to work with the Department of Justice to determine if wrongdoing had occurred. Is that still politically motived investigation to bolster his 2020 election?

If it is, then ANY investigation is politically motivated to bolster an upcoming election.
if it's not, then the only reason it is considered politically motivated now is because Biden is eligible to run for President.

Being a potential candidate in an upcoming election is not a defense to investigation of past wrongdoings. The American people have made that abundantly clear from calls to send Bush/Cheney to be tried in the Hague to the many calls of 'Lock her up' to calls on this very website for a full investigation and accounting for Trump's actions once he is out of office.

#28 | Posted by Avigdore at 2019-09-26 09:24 AM | Reply

To the contrary, reports indicate that officials on the National Security Council had grown concerned in recent months over the degree to which Trump and Giuliani have come to personally dominate Ukraine policy at the expense of other foreign policy officials.

So Biden and Obama driving it is just fine ...

The bias seeps through like a sieve, you just can't see it.

The unavoidable inference is that the request being made has nothing to do with the national interests such actions are supposed to advance, and everything to do with the president's own interests.

This is what I notice most about the article.... it believes, and iterates Trump is only speaking for himself.

He speaks for me too, I want to know why HunterBiden gets his position (April 2014) right after JoeBiden is in charge of Ukraine. Biden was the point man on Ukraine policy, yet he knew his son, Hunter, had no experience in the natural gas business. And he knew his son suffered from active drug and alcohol addictions that forced him into rehab over and over while sitting on Burisma's board. The younger Biden was discharged from the Naval Reserve for cocaine use only two months before he took this job.

So yeah I want to know WTH was going on..... Was Biden playing both sides? MrAnti-Corruption, while he shoe horned his son in for the TAKE from known corrupt company? Yes I would like to know this, there is more "evidence" that someone broke the law in that, than the Lawfare blog believed the dossier didn't lead to the FISA wiretaps.

If Senators can request write a letter to Ukraine's prosecutor general, Yuriy Lutsenko, expressing concern at the closing of four investigations they said were critical to the Mueller probe. In the letter, they imply that their support for U.S. assistance to Ukraine was at stake. Describing themselves as "strong advocates for a robust and close relationship with Ukraine,".

How is this any different? How about the author of pick apart that letter and a compare and contrast?

Its not hard to see the bias in this piece, by saying its only Trumps concern is an obvious one. The other is interpreting what Zelensky is saying, then quoting Trump, this displays my typical rule about contextomy, the writer has an axe to grind and by god you aren't going to get the facts.

#29 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2019-09-26 09:26 AM | Reply

#11 If the impeachment proceedings focus on Trump's July call to the Ukrainian president, why would all those people need to be called to testify?
#13 | POSTED BY GAL_TUESDAY

The "why" is above my pay grade. What I outlined is what will happen. The pelosi stall is becoming clearer now.

#30 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 2019-09-26 09:29 AM | Reply

This time there may actually be something there.

It's a good thing that Democrats and their media allies haven't been crying wolf for almost 3 years because otherwise an exhausted public might just yawn over this due to a bunch of manufactured nothing-burgers. So, good on all of you for keeping your powder dry on a bunch of nonsense prior to this.

#31 | Posted by JeffJ at 2019-09-26 09:36 AM | Reply

#28 To anyone who's been paying attention the last 3 years and has one functioning neuron, political motivation, stupidity and self-preservation are presumed in Donald Trump until proven otherwise. Guess we can count you out of that group.

#32 | Posted by JOE at 2019-09-26 09:36 AM | Reply

Okay, so who is the WB because this complaint sure as hell wasn't written by some low level coffee boy with an ax to grind against Trump.

#33 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 09:40 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#33 my money is on Dan Coats.

#34 | Posted by qcp at 2019-09-26 09:43 AM | Reply

"It reads like it was produced by a very senior intel official who had many people coming to him/her with this information. My guess is Sue Gordon."

Could be.

Dan Coats disrupted meeting to urge Sue Gordon to resign

www.washingtonexaminer.com

#35 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 09:44 AM | Reply

"#33 my money is on Dan Coats."

Also possible.

Is Dan Coats or Susan Gordon the Whistleblower? Probably.

www.dailykos.com

#36 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 09:45 AM | Reply

"due to a bunch of manufactured nothing-burgers."

What a riot.

If it were Obama, you'd be having daily meltdowns.

#37 | Posted by Danforth at 2019-09-26 09:47 AM | Reply

Ted Lieu @tedlieu

Ted Lieu Retweeted Jay Caruso
This is from the managing editor of the Washington Examiner, a conservative publication.

Jay Caruso @JayCaruso

The lack of an explicit quid pro quo is meaningless. When you read that memo from top to bottom, it's like the synopsis of a Ukranian version/episode of The Sopranos. "We do a lot for you but haven't seen a lot in return. We do for you. So...I have a favor to ask."
twitter.com

#38 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2019-09-26 09:51 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Deals will start being made, and suddenly, a lot of democrats will start being charged and unicorns, leprechans, fairies, unicorns, leprechans, fairies,unicorns, leprechans, fairies, unicorns, leprechans, fairieshave the RIGHT to question all unicorns, leprechans, fairies, unicorns, leprechans, fairies, unicorns, leprechans, fairies " and they will turn on each other. That is already starting.

#11 | POSTED BY PHESTEROBOYLE AT 2019-09-26 08:48 AM | FLAG: PPPFFFTTTTT

Phester you always make me laugh... you seem seem so lost in that nasty deep pit of hopey changey republiclwnery.
Stand up for yasef!! Tap them rubies giiiiirlfriend!!! You make yasef go wee wee all the way home!!!!

#39 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2019-09-26 09:52 AM | Reply

Senario #1, Trump gets impeached, found not guilty in Senate, goes on to win re-election.

Senario #2, Trump gets impeached, put out of office, Pence installed, wins election.

I truly dont see any senario where the Democrats get into the Presidency.

#40 | Posted by boaz at 2019-09-26 10:01 AM | Reply

Thanks for the warning, BOAZ. We are willing to take that chance. Anybody who believes Pence is gonna win any election ever is self-delusional. And yes, that means you.

Mitt, would be much more likely to punch Pence in the throat, light a cigarette and laugh at the albino cardboard cutout.

#41 | Posted by oldwhiskeysour at 2019-09-26 10:07 AM | Reply

If it were Obama, you'd be having daily meltdowns.
#37 | Posted by Danforth at 2019-09-26 09:47 AM

Projection noted.

#42 | Posted by Avigdore at 2019-09-26 10:24 AM | Reply

Stand up for yasef!! Tap them rubies giiiiirlfriend!!! You make yasef go wee wee all the way home!!!!
#39 | POSTED BY RIGHTISTRITE

That looks like the final stage of TDS.
YIKES

#43 | Posted by phesterOBoyle at 2019-09-26 10:41 AM | Reply

Deals will start being made, and suddenly, a lot of democrats will start being charged and going to prison. All this, because, remember, the President's team will now, for the first time, have the RIGHT to question all of these people under oath " and they will turn on each other. That is already starting.
#11 Comrade Fester's Boils

LMAO! The anti-American (R)tards are melting down before our very eyes .
They know their Orange Fuhrer's goose is cooked. They are starting to drown in their own salty
Tears. I'm glad I stocked up on popcorn.

#44 | Posted by aborted_monson at 2019-09-26 01:08 PM | Reply

I truly dont see any senario where the Democrats get into the Presidency.

#40 | Posted by boaz

I do.

Senario [sic] #3, Republicans find their those morals, values and patriotism they've bleated endlessly about for decades and stop voting for idiotic lying conmen.

#45 | Posted by jpw at 2019-09-26 02:14 PM | Reply

It's a good thing that Democrats and their media allies haven't been crying wolf for almost 3 years because otherwise an exhausted public might just yawn over this due to a bunch of manufactured nothing-burgers.

#31 | POSTED BY JEFFJ

Oh... you mean "crying wolf" like saying that he was colluding with a foreign government (in a quid pro quo type of fashion) to get dirt on his political opponent to influence the election?

Just like he did here?

Do you still think that he did not do the same thing with Russia?

The problem for Democrats before was that Putin is smart enough (and experienced enough) not to get caught.

But, this time the Republican was leading the attempt at collusion. And we all know how good conservatives are at just about anything related to government (wouldn't want to be GOOD at anything, then you are "elitist") so, no surprise, there is straightforward evidence all over the place.

Donald Trump is who he is. He has not changed AT ALL since he first started running. Liberals saw what he did before, but conservatives were his willing patsy's. Now he is doing pretty much the EXACT SAME THING AGAIN and we get...

This time there may actually be something there.

And then you whine about that we were "crying wolf" before? Give me a break.

YOU built this.

#46 | Posted by gtbritishskull at 2019-09-26 04:27 PM | Reply

"It's a good thing that Democrats and their media allies haven't been crying wolf for almost 3 years because otherwise an exhausted public might just yawn over this due to a bunch of manufactured nothing-burgers."

^
Exactly what a Never Trumper who cried wolf on Trump before he got elected would say!

#47 | Posted by snoofy at 2019-09-26 04:28 PM | Reply

Hmmm... our resident real estate attny seems not to have an argument to this Lawfare analysis of his Party's Leader's criminal behavior.

Velly interesting, but stupid.

#48 | Posted by Corky at 2019-09-26 07:24 PM | Reply

#48 Cork,

"Velly"? How does auto-correct come up with that?

#49 | Posted by JeffJ at 2019-09-26 07:28 PM | Reply

""Velly"? How does auto-correct come up with that?

#49 | POSTED BY JEFFJ "

I think he was emulating Arte Johnson's German character from Laugh In

#50 | Posted by goatman at 2019-09-26 07:32 PM | Reply

Goatbot gets one post right in his life.

Maybe he'll... naw.

#51 | Posted by Corky at 2019-09-26 10:13 PM | Reply

"Velly"? How does auto-correct come up with that?

#49 | POSTED BY JEFFJ

I guess "Laugh-In" was before your time...

#52 | Posted by WhoDaMan at 2019-09-26 11:29 PM | Reply | Funny: 2

Someone remarked at how this phone call came one day after Mueller testified before Congress. That Trump figured that if he skated on the Russia probe he was free to do whatever he wanted to without consequences.

#53 | Posted by AMERICANUNITY at 2019-09-26 11:50 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Comments are closed for this entry.

Home | Breaking News | Comments | User Blogs | Stats | Back Page | RSS Feed | RSS Spec | DMCA Compliance | Privacy | Copyright 2019 World Readable

Drudge Retort