Trump suggests Pelosi committed treason, should be ‘immediately impeached’


President Trump
 late Sunday suggested that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was guilty of treason and should be “immediately” impeached.

“Nancy Pelosi knew of all of the many Shifty Adam Schiff lies and massive frauds perpetrated upon Congress and the American people, in the form of a fraudulent speech knowingly delivered as a ruthless con, and the illegal meetings with a highly partisan ‘Whistleblower’ & lawyer,” he tweeted.

“This makes Nervous Nancy every bit as guilty as Liddle’ Adam Schiff for High Crimes and Misdemeanors, and even Treason. I guess that means that they, along with all of those that evilly ‘Colluded’ with them, must all be immediately Impeached!”

Members of Congress cannot be impeached, but the Constitution says each House of Congress “may determine the Rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.” Members may also be censured.

Trump last week ratcheted up attacks targeting House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) for exaggerating a partial transcript of the July 25 call between the president and Ukraine’s leader.

At the time, Trump suggested that Schiff should be arrested for treason, which is punishable by death or a prison term.

During a televised congressional hearing, Schiff said that Trump directed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to “make up dirt on my political opponent” a full “seven times.”

The California Democrat defended his comments amid backlash from Republicans at the time, saying: “Of course, the president never said, ‘If you don’t understand me I’m going to say it seven more times,’ my point is, that’s the message that the Ukraine president was receiving in not so many words.”

It was also reported last week that the whistleblower at the center of a House impeachment inquiry into Trump contacted Schiff’s committee before filing a complaint.

Trump’s attacks late Sunday came shortly after reports emerged of a second whistleblower said to have firsthand knowledge of some of the allegations detailed in the original complaint.

Mark Zaid, an attorney at the firm that represents the whistleblower who filed the original complaint regarding Trump’s interactions with Ukraine, said that he was representing the second whistleblower.

Zaid said the second whistleblower is also an intelligence official and has direct knowledge of some of the allegations detailed in the original complaint.

According to Zaid, the second whistleblower has already spoken to the head of the intelligence community’s internal watchdog office, Michael Atkinson. However, they have not yet spoken with congressional committees investigating Trump’s communications with Ukraine.

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham defended Trump after reports surfaced of the second whistleblower and said “it doesn’t matter how many people decide to call themselves whistleblowers about the same telephone call.”

She also said that it “doesn’t change the fact that he has done nothing wrong.”

[The Hill]


Trump publicly urges China to investigate Bidens amid impeachment inquiry

 President Donald Trump urged another foreign government to probe Joe Biden and his son Thursday, saying the Chinese government should investigate the former vice president and son Hunter Biden over the latter’s involvement with an investment fund that raised money in the country.

“China should start an investigation into the Bidens because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine,” Trump told reporters outside the White House.

While Trump said he hasn’t requested Chinese President Xi Jinping investigate the Bidens, the public call mirrors the private behavior on which Democrats are partially basing their impeachment inquiry — using the office of the presidency to press a foreign leader to investigate a political rival.

It is “certainly something we can start thinking about, because I’m sure that President Xi does not like being on that kind of scrutiny, where billions of dollars is taken out of his country by a guy that just got kicked out of the Navy,” Trump said Thursday of asking China to probe the Bidens. “He got kicked out of the Navy, all of the sudden he’s getting billions of dollars. You know what they call that? They call that a payoff.”

The U.S. in the midst of a tense trade war with China. The president, discussing progress on negotiations with Beijing on a possible trade agreement just moments prior to his remarks about the Bidens, told reporters that “if they don’t do what we want, we have tremendous power.”

Chinese officials will be in Washington next week in another attempt to revive talks, Trump said.

Trump, seeking to expand his corruption accusations against the Bidens beyond Ukraine, has in recent days repeatedly accused Hunter Biden of using a 2013 trip on Air Force Two with his father, then the vice president, to procure $1.5 billion from China for a private equity fund he had started.

Prior to Thursday, Trump had not called for an investigation of the matter. The White House declined to comment on Trump’s remarks.

Despite Trump’s accusations, there has been no evidence of corruption on the part of the former vice president or his son. In a statement, Biden’s deputy campaign manager and communications director, Kate Bedingfield, said the president “is flailing and melting down on national television, desperately clutching for conspiracy theories that have been debunked and dismissed by independent, credible news organizations.”

“As Joe Biden forcefully said last night, the defining characteristic of Donald Trump’s presidency is the ongoing abuse of power. What Donald Trump just said on the South Lawn of the White House was this election’s equivalent of his infamous ‘Russia, if you’re listening’ moment from 2016 — a grotesque choice of lies over truth and self over the country,” Bedingfield said.

Trump, during a 2016 campaign rally, encouraged the country to meddle in the 2016 election by trying to access Hillary Clinton’s emails, saying, “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.”

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation found that within hours of Trump‘s invitation, Russian military intelligence initiated a hack against Clinton’s office. Trump and his allies have said he wasn’t serious when he made the comment.

In pushing back on Trump, Biden’s campaign previously pointed to a fact-check from The Washington Post that found Trump’s claims false while tracing the origins of the $1.5 billion figure to a 2018 book published by conservative author Peter Schweizer.

In addition, Hunter Biden’s spokesman, George Mesires, told NBC News previously that Hunter Biden wasn’t initially an “owner” of the company and has never gotten paid for serving on the board. He said Hunter Biden didn’t acquire an equity interest in the fund until 2017, after his father had left office.

And when he did, he put in only about $420,000 — a 10 percent interest. That puts the total capitalization of the fund at the time at about $4.2 million — a far cry from the $1.5 billion that Trump has alleged.

Trump also said Thursday that he still wants Ukraine to conduct “a major investigation” into Joe and Hunter Biden.

[NBC News]

Reality

Lawfare: Former federal prosecutor and current professor at the University of Alabama School of Law Joyce White Vance concisely yet methodically explained why Trump’s statements constituted a crime.

“Trump just committed a felony violation of law by soliciting something of value in connection with a US election from a foreign government on national TV. 52 U.S. Code § 30121. Violating the law isn’t necessary for Impeachment but it certainly warrants it,” Vance wrote (including a citation to a statute).

She then explained how previously documented accounts of similar behavior render Trump’s conduct here even more culpable than in earlier instances of his requests for foreign assistance.

“The statute requires knowledge your conduct is a crime. After the Mueller investigation, there’s no way Trump was unaware this violates the law. Ukraine/China can you hear me is even worse than Russia, if that’s possible, because it comes from a sitting president,” she wrote.

Trump, Republicans accuse top Dem of orchestrating whistleblower complaint

The intelligence community employee who has accused President Donald Trump of abusing his office filed his whistleblower complaint after first consulting with an aide to the Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, a committee spokesman acknowledged Wednesday, touching off a firestorm of criticism from Republicans.

But while President Trump and others accused House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., of orchestrating the complaint, Democratic committee aides told NBC News that what happened was rather routine, and no different from the two to three times a month an intelligence agency employee comes to them with concerns.

They said they did what they usually do in that situation: They instructed the future whistleblower to file a formal document with the inspector general, as called for in the law.

“Like other whistleblowers have done before and since under Republican and Democratic-controlled committees, the whistleblower contacted the committee for guidance on how to report possible wrongdoing within the jurisdiction of the Intelligence Community,” committee spokesman Patrick Boland told NBC News. “This is a regular occurrence, given the committee’s unique oversight role and responsibilities. Consistent with the committee’s longstanding procedures, committee staff appropriately advised the whistleblower to contact an Inspector General and to seek legal counsel.”

The sequence of events was first reported by the New York Times. The future whistleblower, a CIA officer, came to the committee after he had already filed a complaint with the CIA general counsel, and was concerned that the complaint was not being properly handled, Democratic committee aides said.

“At no point did the Committee review or receive the complaint in advance,” Boland said.

Trump, at a news conference, seized on the revelation and made an unsupported allegation that Schiff had helped prepare the complaint.

“He knew long before and helped write it, too. It’s a scam,” the president said.

The House Republican leader, Kevin McCarthy, claimed on Twitter that Schiff “just got caught orchestrating with the whistleblower before the complaint was ever filed. Democrats have rigged this process from the start.”

Boland and a lawyer for the whistleblower denied that Schiff played any role in writing the complaint.

However, Republicans focused on the veracity of a statement Schiff made on MSNBC’s Morning Joe a few days after he publicized the existence of the complaint.

“We have not spoken directly with the whistleblower,” Schiff said. “We would like to, but I’m sure the whistleblower has concerns that he has not been advised, as the law requires, by the inspector general or the Director of National Intelligence, just as to how he is to communicate with Congress.”

A committee aide said Schiff was referring to the committee writ large “officially interviewing the whistleblower,” as distinct from the brief conversation with a staffer. But Sam Stein, the Daily Beast journalist who asked the question, tweeted, “Schiff did appear to lie here in previously saying that his office had not spoken directly with the whistleblower.”

He added, “But if you care more about this stuff than the actual substance of the whistleblower complaint then you’re being a hack.”

Boland noted that the committee did not receive a copy of the complaint from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence until the night before the acting director of national intelligence’s testimony, more than three weeks after the legal deadline by which the committee should have received the complaint.

“The whistleblower should be commended for acting appropriately and lawfully throughout every step of the process,” he added. “The committee expects that they will be fully protected, despite the President’s threats. Only through their courage did these facts about the President’s abuse of power come to light. The committee encourages all whistleblowers to come forward and seek advice on how to make disclosures of serious or flagrant wrongdoing. The committee — and the nation — rely on brave members of the Intelligence Community to raise the alarm and avail themselves of established channels.”

Schiff does not know the identity of the complainant, the committee aides said, adding that the whistleblower passed on only a vague account of his or her concerns. They would not comment on whether Schiff knew they involved a Trump phone call with the Ukrainian president.

But one result of the heads up was that Schiff, alone among members of Congress, knew there was something important when the inspector general of the Intelligence Community notified the House and Senate intelligence committees that an “urgent concern” complaint was being withheld from them on legal grounds. On September 13, a Friday night, Schiff announced without warning that he was issuing a subpoena for the complaint, and suggested the complaint was being withheld to protect the president. Other Democrats did not appear to know what he knew.

The committee aides added that the bulk of the whistleblower’s complaint was marked unclassified, and that he therefore did not violate the whistleblower law that prohibits intelligence employees from conveying classified information to Congress without going through procedures, including filing a complaint with an inspector general.

A source close to the whistleblower’s legal team said there was no violation, and did not dispute the sequence of events as reported in the New York Times and confirmed by committee aides.

When the whistleblower first had a colleague convey his or her concerns in very general terms to the CIA’s general counsel, the CIA’s counsel briefed the White House Counsel’s Office about the complaint, a person familiar with the matter said. When the whistleblower learned about that, he became concerned the complaint was being swept aside, the New York Times reported.

“The intelligence community whistleblower followed the advice of legal counsel from the beginning,” Andrew Bakaj, lead counsel for the whistleblower, said. “The laws and processes have been followed.”

[NBC News]

Trump calls investigations ‘BULLSHIT’

President Donald Trump’s furor with House Democrats’ barely week-old impeachment probe reached new heights on Wednesday, apparently prompting the president to resort to obscenities to express his discontent.

In a slew of tweets fired off as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff held a briefing on lawmakers’ impeachment efforts, Trump branded the Democratic Caucus as “Do Nothing Democrats” and proceeded to call their oversight efforts “bullshit.”

“The Do Nothing Democrats should be focused on building up our Country, not wasting everyone’s time and energy on BULLSHIT, which is what they have been doing ever since I got overwhelmingly elected in 2016, 223-306,” he wrote, incorrectly stating the breakdown of Electoral College votes he and Hillary Clinton received.

He also fired off a warning to Democrats ahead of their nominating contest next year: “Get a better candidate this time, you’ll need it!”

Later speaking to reporters in the Oval Office alongside Finland’s visiting president, Trump managed to partially censor himself in making a crude reference to Schiff, one of his top congressional rivals.

“He is a shifty dishonest guy who was critical of one of the great secretary of States,” Trump said of Schiff, who’d just criticized Mike Pompeo on national television. “The most honorable person, Mike Pompeo, and this guy was negative on Mike Pompeo.”

Trump then delivered some locker room talk about Schiff: “He can’t — you know there’s an expression, he couldn’t carry his blank strap,” he said, apparently bleeping out “jock strap.”

“I won’t say it,” Trump went on, “because they’ll say it was so terrible to say, but that guy couldn’t carry his blank strap, do you understand that?”

Pelosi only formally launched an impeachment inquiry into Trump last week, after it was reported the president pressured Ukraine’s president to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter. Biden is among the top candidates vying to run against Trump next year.

The probe stems from a whistleblower complaint filed by a member of the intelligence community citing that call, prompting the White House to release its rough transcript of the conversation. Democrats, citing Trump’s sudden decision to withhold military aid from Ukraine, suggested the conversation may have contained a quid pro quo, though no such offer is explicitly made, according to the White House’s account of the phone call.

Trump’s outbursts come as the investigation has intensified on a daily basis. Early Wednesday morning, Pompeo confirmed that he was on the July phone call with Trump and Ukraine’s Volodymyr Zelensky after initially playing down any knowledge of what was discussed on the call.

Pompeo also stoked Democrats’ ire by appearing to accuse them on Tuesday of intimidating career employees at the State Department and by suggesting several potential witnesses could decline to appear for depositions with lawmakers.

In recent days, Trump demanded Schiff’s resignation while claiming the congressman and the anonymous whistleblower could both be guilty of treason.

But Democrats have moved forward quickly with their probe, hitting Trump and his allies with a number of subpoenas over the past week, and Trump has continued to lash out, calling their investigations an attempt at a “coup.” Schiff on Wednesday made clear that he would not put up with stonewalling by the White House, telling reporters that doing so would be considered evidence of obstruction in any eventual articles of impeachment.

In Wednesday’s news conference, Pelosi said she still believed Democrats could work with the White House on prescription drug pricing legislation and to make tweaks to Trump’s renegotiated deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, arguing that her colleagues could investigate and legislate simultaneously.

She also forcefully defended the probe, insisting she would be a fair arbiter while ensuring it moves forward at an aggressive pace.

As Trump barked out insults in the Oval Office, referring to Schiff as a “lowlife” and “shifty Schiff,” Finland’s Sauli Niinistö sat quietly in the chair beside him with a straight face.

When a Finnish reporter offered up the chance to change the subject, asking Trump what he could learn from “the happiest country in the world,” Finland, the president continued to lay into his rivals.

“Well if you got rid of Pelosi, and you got rid of shifty Schiff,” Trump trailed off with a grin after slapping Niinistö on the knee.

“Finland is a happy country, he’s a happy leader, too,” Trump added, eliciting an eyebrow raise and a knowing chuckle from Niinistö.

[Politico]

Reality

Donald Trump tweeted this during his 9 hours of Executive Time.

Trump Tweets Out Breitbart Online Poll Showing 97.83% of People ‘Stand With’ Him on Impeachment

Amidst a raft of polls showing a surge in support for his impeachment, President Donald Trump shared a more favorable metric of his popularity: an online poll from right wing website Breitbart on whether respondents “stand with” him.

“Do you stand with President Trump?” asked the online poll, labeled “BREITBART IMPEACHMENT POLL.”

97.83% of respondents voted “yes,” while 2.17% voted “no.”

“THANK YOU!” Trump wrote on Twitter in response.

Meanwhile, a new Quinnipiac poll out Monday found a dead heat in support for impeachment. 47 percent said they thought Trump should be impeached and removed from office, while 47 percent said they did not think he should be removed. The poll represents a significant surge in support for impeachment compared to last week.

[Mediaite]

Trump suggests arresting Adam Schiff for ‘treason’

President Donald Trump and his allies on Monday ratcheted up their campaign against Rep. Adam Schiff as the White House’s Ukraine scandal entered its second week — with Trump again suggesting the House Intelligence chairman committed treason.

Locked in a defensive crouch and staring down an impeachment inquiry, Trump continued to batter the California Democrat for allegedly mischaracterizing his July phone call with newly elected Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“Rep. Adam Schiff illegally made up a FAKE & terrible statement, pretended it to be mine as the most important part of my call to the Ukrainian President, and read it aloud to Congress and the American people,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “It bore NO relationship to what I said on the call. Arrest for Treason?”

During Trump’s conversation with Zelensky, the president urged his foreign counterpart to work with Attorney General William Barr to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son.

After Schiff offered a knowingly exaggerated version of the call’s transcript before a meeting of his committee last Thursday, conservative commentators and Republican lawmakers were quick to castigate the congressman on social media and cable news.

The president was unwilling to drop the issue Monday afternoon, complaining about Schiff’s remarks to reporters in the Oval Office following a swearing-in ceremony for his new Labor secretary, Eugene Scalia.

“Adam Schiff — representative, congressman — made up what I said. He actually took words and made it up,” Trump said, as Scalia’s family looked on. “The reason is, when he saw my call to the president of Ukraine, it was so good that he couldn’t quote from it. Because there was nothing done wrong. It was perfect.”

Trump previously demanded Sunday that Schiff be “questioned at the highest level for Fraud & Treason,” and claimed that his “lies were made in perhaps the most blatant and sinister manner ever seen in the great Chamber.”

Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, kept up that line of attack Monday, charging that Schiff “didn’t embellish” but instead “lied about” the memo the White House released last week summarizing the Zelensky call.

“He stood in front of the American people with millions of people listening and he lied,” Giuliani told the Fox Business Network. “He put on a stupid phony show, just like he lied when he said he had direct evidence of Russian collusion.”

Eric Trump, the president’s son, also assailed Schiff on Monday, telling the hosts of “Fox & Friends” that the congressman “is exactly why we need term limits in this country” and adding: “He’s a total disgrace.”

[Politico]

TRUMP THREATENS “CIVIL WAR” IF HE’S IMPEACHED

Over the past two and a half years, Donald Trump has carved out a niche for himself as a manic, deranged tweeter the likes of which the Oval Office—nay, the world—has never seen. In times of great stress—the Special Counsel’s investigation, the blue-wave midterms, a Fox News host not sufficiently fellating him—the president has amped up his output, tweeting dozens of times a day. But Sunday may have set a new record when the leader of the free world fired off a whopping 46 messages to the universe, including retweets from random supporters and one from an account called “Trump But About Sharks,” which replaces random words from his tweets “to make them about sharks.”

Most notable, though, was the president’s quoting of pastor/Fox News contributor Robert Jeffress, who made a rather bold impeachment prediction on air:

For those of you keeping up at home, threatening a Civil War is an escalation from Trump’s go-to prediction regarding what will happen to the country if he loses power, which is typically a stockmarketcollapse. Democrats, characteristically, condemned the retweet, but it inspired noteworthy pushback from one Republican corner as well: “I have visited nations ravaged by civil war,” Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a veteran, tweeted back. “I have never imagined such a quote to be repeated by a President. This is beyond repugnant.”

[Vanity Fair]

Trump demands to meet whistleblower, warns of ‘big consequences’

President Trump on Sunday evening railed against the whistleblower and other individuals at the center of a growing scandal involving his phone call with Ukraine’s president, warning there could be “big consequences.”

“Like every American, I deserve to meet my accuser, especially when this accuser, the so-called “Whistleblower,” represented a perfect conversation with a foreign leader in a totally inaccurate and fraudulent way. Then [Rep. Adam] Schiff made up what I actually said by lying to Congress,” Trump said in a series of tweets.

“His lies were made in perhaps the most blatant and sinister manner ever seen in the great Chamber,” he continued, before adding that he wants Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, “questioned at the highest level for Fraud & Treason.”

“In addition,” he added, “I want to meet not only my accuser, who presented SECOND & THIRD HAND INFORMATION, but also the person who illegally gave this information, which was largely incorrect, to the ‘Whistleblower.’ Was this person SPYING on the U.S. President? Big Consequences!”

[The Hill]

Trump rages at ‘unlawful impeachment’ and vows to come after lawmakers in ’50 Trump type Districts’

President Donald Trump kept up his steady drumbeat of retweeting posts from the RNC and fans of his presidency on Sunday morning, using a video produced by the Republican Party to call the pending impeachment proceedings “unlawful.”

Linking to a video posted by GOP chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, where she wrote, “This is just the beginning of an all-out fight to defend our democracy & our president,” and targeted Democratic lawmakers in GOP districts, Trump added, “Will happen to all of those seeking unlawful impeachment in 50 Trump type Districts. We will win big!”

You can see the video below:

[Raw Story]

Trump blasts ‘savages’ — Ocasio-Cortez, three other women of color, Schiff, Nadler

President Donald Trump blasted six members of the House of Representatives as “savages” on Saturday morning.

“Savages” began to trend on Twitter following the president’s post, which comes amid an impeachment inquiry over his dealings with Ukraine.

Some Twitter users pointed out that Trump’s latest broadside against Democrats focused on four women of color as well as the two heads of committees helping to lead the impeachment inquiry — Rep. Jerry Nadler of New York, who chairs the Judiciary Committee and Adam Schiff of California, who leads the Intelligence Committee.

“AOC plus 3” apparently refers to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, who is of Puerto Rican heritage, and the three other members of the so-called “squad” of progressive congresswomen: Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, an immigrant from Somalia; Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, who is black; and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, who is of Palestinian descent.

The three are among at least 225 House Democrats who now support some type of impeachment action.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry this week following claims that the president might have withheld aid to Ukraine to pressure officials there to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son.

Biden is currently a front-runner in the race for the Democratic nomination for president.

Trump has described the impeachment inquiry as “PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT” and “A total Witch Hunt Scam by the Democrats!” on Twitter.

His Saturday morning broadside came a day after Schiff — as well as Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, and Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., chairman of the Oversight Committee — wrote a letter demanding that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo turn over documents related to Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

[NBC News]

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