From the beginning, Vice-President Mike Pence has been up to his eyeballs in the felonious shenanigans of this Administration.
1. He was MANAFORT’S CHOICE FOR VICE -PRESIDENT.
2. He was Head of the Transition.
3. He lied all about Mike Flynn.
So, when I read this article, I wasn’t shocked. For several reasons. Pence keeps on this scam, thinking that if he just hides in the background, that folks will forget all the mess that he’s eyeballs deep into with this Administration. He doesn’t grasp that Dolt45 isn’t going down alone. If he’s going down, ERRRRRRBODY is going down with him, and that begins with Mike Pence.
Rachel Maddow had a good and entertaining segment about this. How Pence and his team’s lies just don’t correspond with what happened. And, not only does it not correspond, but, in many ways, Pence’s actions put him in closer with the crimes that Dolt45 is being impeached over than anyone else, other than Dolt45 himself.
Report implicates VP Pence in intensifying Trump scandal
10/03/19 08:00 AM
By Steve Benen
The timeline of events paints an exceedingly unflattering picture. We know that Trump personally intervened to delay U.S. aid to Ukraine, which was desperate for the American assistance. We also know that Trump soon after had a telephone meeting with Zelenksy in which the Ukrainian leader stressed the significance of the aid package, only to hear his American counterpart say in response, “I would like you to do us a favor, though.”
Trump’s wish list included, among other things, Ukraine taking law-enforcement action to undermine Joe Biden ahead of the 2020 election.
We now also know that in the wake of that conversation, it was Mike Pence who spoke with Zelenksy in person, reiterating Trump’s expectations.
That’s not a great position for the vice president to find himself in. Trump’s actions are likely to lead to his impeachment, and it now appears Pence may have done something quite similar.
One of the most striking things about the Washington Post’s report on this isn’t just the top-line revelation, but also the behind-the-scenes drama – because reading the article, it seems clear that there are factions inside the White House, one of which is eager to drag Pence into this mess, and one of which is scrambling to keep the vice president out of it.
The trouble with the defense from Team Pence is how underwhelming it is.
The Post article noted, for example, that officials close to the vice president “insist that he was unaware of Trump’s efforts to press Zelensky for damaging information about Biden and his son.” Or put another way, Pence told the Ukrainian leader that U.S. aid was on hold, and Pence pressed Zelensky about “corruption” concerns, but the Indiana Republican didn’t fully understand the big picture.
There are problems with the defense. A top member of Pence’s team, for example, was on the Trump/Zelensky call. Pence also had access to the transcript of that call soon after it took place. The Post also reported, “White House officials said that Pence probably would have received the detailed notes of the president’s call in his briefing book on July 26,” the day after the phone meeting.
What’s more, the detailed call summary was likely part of the briefing materials Pence received before his in-person meeting with the Ukrainian president. The article added, “Officials close to Pence contend that he traveled to Warsaw for a meeting with Zelensky on Sept. 1 probably without having read — or at least fully registered — the transcript of Trump’s July 25 call with the leader of Ukraine.”
I did appreciate the use of the word “registered” – as if Pence saw the document showing Trump pressing Zelensky on Biden, but the vice president didn’t fully get it.
Team Pence will have to do better than this.
Here’s that good Maddow segment:
Rachel Maddow shares reporting from the Washington Post that Donald Trump made Mike Pence the middle man in his scheme to manipulate the president of Ukraine, leaving Pence scrambling to explain how he wouldn’t have been aware of the role he was playing.
So, we now have the Secretary of State, The Attorney General, and now the Vice-President all wrapped up in this.
But, there’s more.
I fully believe that there is a transcript of a call to China on that secret server. Always believed that.
REPORTER: What exactly did you hope the Ukrainian president would do about the Bidens?
TRUMP: “I would think that if they were honest about it, they’d start a major investigation … they should investigate the Bidens … China likewise should start an investigation.” pic.twitter.com/gLVBjmSs3q
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 3, 2019
Trump brazenly (and on camera) pushes for foreign campaign help
10/03/19 12:41 PM
By Steve Benen
So, on the one hand, Trump and his team are engaged in intense trade negotiations with China. On the other hand, Trump is now publicly calling on China to dig up dirt on one of his domestic political rivals. Indeed, within a minute of seeking Beijing’s 2020 help, Trump added, “I have a lot of options on China, but if they don’t do what we want, we have tremendous power.”
Daniel Dale joked, “If a whistleblower had come forward to say Trump had privately told Xi he should launch an investigation into the Bidens, it’d be a huge story. That’s what Trump just did publicly.”
In case that weren’t quite enough, during the same brief Q&A, the American president again called on Ukraine to go after the Democratic presidential hopeful. “I would say that President Zelensky, if it were me, I would recommend that they start an investigation into the Bidens.”
Subtlety has been thrown out the window. Trump is now doing publicly what he’s being impeached for doing privately.
At the least the cover-up phase is over: accused of privately pressing foreign officials to target an American opponent, Trump has decided to publicly press foreign officials to target an American opponent.