Open Thread | Next Up….the Vice-President and China

From the beginning, Vice-President Mike Pence has been up to his eyeballs in the felonious shenanigans of this Administration.
Never forget:
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:

at center of Trump Ukraine scheme, scrambles for cover

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.
Hello, China.
I fully believe that there is a transcript of a call to China on that secret server. Always believed that.

Dolt45 yesterday:

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.”
— 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.

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55 Responses to Open Thread | Next Up….the Vice-President and China

  1. rikyrah says:

    Adam Klasfeld (@KlasfeldReports) Tweeted:
    NEW: Trump’s attorney tells a federal judge that if he does not rule on their motion to temporarily block Manhattan DA Vance’s subpoenas by their Monday morning deadline, he will treat that “inaction” as a denial and appeal.

    cc: @CourthouseNews

  2. rikyrah says:

    A United States Senator 😒😒😒

    The Curve for Unqualified White Men is REAL 😠 😠

    • Liza says:

      They are now saying it was a heart attack, myocardial infarction.

      Like I been saying, Bernie is too old for the 2020 election, so is Joe Biden.

  3. rikyrah says:

    I am going to do tribute post for Ms. Carroll.

    RIP 😪 😪

  4. rikyrah says:

    Diahann Carroll, pioneering actress on ‘Julia’ and ‘Dynasty,’ dies at 84

    NEW YORK —Diahann Carroll, the Oscar-nominated actress and singer who won critical acclaim as the first black woman to star in a non-servant role in a TV series as “Julia,” has died. She was 84.

    Carroll’s daughter, Susan Kay, told The Associated Press her mother died Friday in Los Angeles of cancer.

    During her long career, Carroll earned a Tony Award for the musical “No Strings” and an Academy Award nomination for “Claudine.”

    But she was perhaps best known for her pioneering work on “Julia.” Carroll played Julia Baker, a nurse whose husband had been killed in Vietnam, in the groundbreaking situation comedy that aired from 1968 to 1971.

    Although she was not the first black woman to star in her own TV show (Ethel Waters played a maid in the 1950s series “Beulah”), she was the first to star as someone other than a servant.

  5. rikyrah says:

    The Democrats should have an entire Impeachment Social Media Team.

    Dems fume over DNC treatment of Biden
    The national party’s low-key role sparks frustration as Trump pummels the former vice president.
    Oct 4, 2019

    The Republican National Committee and its chair, Ronna McDaniel, have been blasting out dozens of tweets ripping Joe Biden — and Democratic impeachment efforts — for days on end. Donald Trump has been busy doing the same.

    But the first tweet from the Democratic National Committee all week about accusations that Trump asked foreign countries to dig up dirt on his political opponent didn’t come until late Thursday morning. Its official Twitter feed has instead been focused on minimum wage issues, health care and immigration.

    The social media disparity is just one measure of how Trump’s attacks on Biden and the impeachment inquiry are turning into a Democratic messaging quagmire, marked by almost no cover from the national party apparatus.
    “The DNC should be much more active and vigorous than they have been. It should have been and should now be more even more forceful in its condemnation of Trump,” said Don Fowler, a former DNC chair, who stressed he wasn’t criticizing the party’s current chair, Tom Perez. “They should consider at least putting out a statement pointing out that Biden has served with honor, has done nothing improper, illegal or unethical and that his record on these kinds of matters is essentially spotless and that Donald Trump is just a lying no-good son of a bitch.”

  6. rikyrah says:

    IRS Whistleblower: Political taint in Trump or Pence audits: WaPo

    Tom Hamburger, national security reporter for the Washington Post, talks about what is known about an IRS whistleblower who has raised alarm that audits of Donald Trump or Mike Pence’s taxes, which should be insulated from politics, have been subject to pressure from a Treasury Department political appointee.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Pence strains credulity with ‘obliviousness’ defense

    Greg Miller, national security reporter for the Washington Post, talks with Nicolle Wallace about Mike Pence’s argument that he had no idea about the subtext of the message he was delivering to Ukrainian President Zelensky, and the growing amount of reporting on the opportunities Pence had to be better informed, as well as his responsibility to do so.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Congress refining Trump corruption into impeachment case

    Matt Miller, former spokesman for the Justice Department, discusses the range and rate of scandalous behavior produced by the Donald Trump administration and the urgency with which House committees are working to distill that behavior into a clear case for impeachment.

  9. rikyrah says:

    McFaul: Why did no one say, ‘Mr. President, this is wrong’?

    Michael McFaul, former U.S. ambassador to Russia, talks with Nicolle Wallace about the role of State Department officials in the Trump Ukraine scandal, and wonders why no one at the White House explained the U.S. national security interests of defending Ukraine from Russia to Donald Trump.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Swalwell: Trump engaged in a ‘shadow shakedown’ of Ukraine

    Rep. Eric Swalwell, member of the House Intelligence Committee, talks with Nicolle Wallace about the latest revelations about Donald Trump’s attempt to leverage military aid for Ukraine for his own personal political ends.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Trump envoys pushed Ukraine on Biden probe statement: NYT

    Michael Schmidt, Washington correspondent for the New York Times, talks about new reporting that envoys of Donald Trump pressured Ukraine to produce a statement committing to an investigation of his political rivals.

  12. rikyrah says:

    Comcast & Byron Allen’s $20B SCOTUS Battle Sees POTUS Candidates Assail NBC Owner Over Civil Rights Law

    By Dominic Patten
    Senior Editor, Legal & TV Critic
    October 3, 2019 4:02pm

    Days before the new session of the Supreme Court is set to begin, an ever-growing chorus of displeasure with the alliance between Comcast and Donald Trump’s Department of Justice in Byron Allen’s $20 billion battle with the NBCUniversal owner grew even louder and potentially more presidential.

    In the closing hours for amicus briefs to be filed to the high court earlier this week, Oval Office contenders Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) joined with members of the Congressional Black Caucus and the influential Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal to stop a perceived pivotal change to long-standing civil rights legislation in the case that is to be heard before the justices on November 13.

    “As members of Congress, amici have a strong interest in ensuring that the laws Congress has passed are interpreted in a manner that is consistent with their text, history, and Congress’s plan in passing them,” says the brief (read it here) that was filed Monday along with a flood of similar documents from the NAACP, the National Urban League, the National Action Network, ACLU, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the National Women’s Law Center and over a dozen more organizations.

    “The statute at issue in this case—42 U.S.C. § 1981—was passed immediately after the Civil War as part of a broader effort to ensure that the newly freed slaves enjoyed the same rights as other citizens,” the Senators and Congressional Representatives state. “This Court should not rewrite Section 1981 and disturb the vital protections that Congress passed that statute to provide.”

    Amid battling Allen and his Entertainment Studios for nearly four years in the courts, Comcast got a boost from the Trump administration on August 15, when the William Barr-led Justice Department filed a brief that seeks to tighten the definitions of the Reconstruction Era statute in the Philadelphia-based corporation’s favor.

    The DOJ’s brief frames the statute to require that Entertainment Studios has to prove race was not merely a motivating factor, as the 9th Circuit interpreted the statute earlier this summer. Now, if Chief Justice John Roberts and associate justices agree, Allen’s lawyers would have to prove that race was absolutely the only reason Comcast didn’t place the company’s channels on its distribution services and platforms – which is a near-impossible standard by any measure.

    Remarkably, Comcast isn’t just taking a helping hand from the DOJ, they are in what seems like full partnership, with the company giving federal lawyers 10 minutes of their time before the SCOTUS to argue the matter.

  13. rikyrah says:

    John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) Tweeted:
    response of GOP House member when i asked about demonstration of quid pro quo in texts releases last night:

    “Haven’t seen them. More focused on Schiff and Pelosi’s refusal to follow normal process for impeachment inquiry. Delegitimizes the entire effort”

  14. rikyrah says:

    Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) Tweeted:
    Not a single Republican member of Congress will be able to claim, “Hey, when Trump stood on the White House grounds and betrayed our democracy, I immediately took a principled stand to defend our Constitution”

  15. rikyrah says:

    We could have had taco trucks on every corner 😒😒😒

    Look at this deliciousness 😋😋😋

  16. rikyrah says:

    He works for Dolt45. Of course, he is a villain. Still wants to save himself,like the viper he is.😒😒

  17. rikyrah says:

    By a 52-21 margin, Americans think asking Ukraine to investigate Biden is an abuse of power, per USAToday poll.

    The gap among independents is huge: 45%-16%.

    It’s even close among Republicans: 30%-40%.

    Doubling down like this is … unbelievably risky.

    — Derek Thompson (@DKThomp) October 3, 2019

  18. rikyrah says:

    Garbage..pure garbage
    Maggie Haberman
    got her hands on that “Clinton Cash” book, y’all

  19. rikyrah says:

    Things are moving fast. Yesterday, Mr. Volker testified for NINE HOURS.


  20. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😊😊😊

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