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Tipsheet

Fireworks: Townhall's Katie Pavlich Wrecks Chris Wallace Over Trump Impeachment

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton has decided to air dirty laundry in a new book that just happened to be released prior to the Trump Team taking their first full day of counterarguments to the Democrats’ shoddy impeachment case against President Trump. The New York Times printed a story from Bolton where he alleges that Trump wanted to withhold Ukraine aid until a corruption investigation was opened into Hunter Biden’s shady employment arrangement with Burisma, an energy company. It was yet another salvo for those who want witnesses in this show trial. Leah had the details:

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Over dozens of pages, Mr. Bolton described how the Ukraine affair unfolded over several months until he departed the White House in September. He described not only the president’s private disparagement of Ukraine but also new details about senior cabinet officials who have publicly tried to sidestep involvement.

For example, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo acknowledged privately that there was no basis to claims by the president’s lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani that the ambassador to Ukraine was corrupt and believed Mr. Giuliani may have been acting on behalf of other clients, Mr. Bolton wrote.

Mr. Bolton also said that after the president’s July phone call with the president of Ukraine, he raised with Attorney General William P. Barr his concerns about Mr. Giuliani, who was pursuing a shadow Ukraine policy encouraged by the president, and told Mr. Barr that the president had mentioned him on the call. A spokeswoman for Mr. Barr denied that he learned of the call from Mr. Bolton; the Justice Department has said he learned about it only in mid-August.

And the acting White House chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, was present for at least one phone call where the president and Mr. Giuliani discussed the ambassador, Mr. Bolton wrote. Mr. Mulvaney has told associates he would always step away when the president spoke with his lawyer to protect their attorney-client privilege.

During a previously reported May 23 meeting where top advisers and Senator Ron Johnson, Republican of Wisconsin, briefed him about their trip to Kyiv for the inauguration of President Volodymyr Zelensky, Mr. Trump railed about Ukraine trying to damage him and mentioned a conspiracy theory about a hacked Democratic server, according to Mr. Bolton. (NYT)

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And that allegation has collapsed. The timing is suspect. Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney had denied this tale, but it did its job. Mitt Romney and Susan Collins now say that they’re curious as to what Bolton might have to say. Bolton has long said he was willing to testify as a witness in this kangaroo court. 

Our own Katie Pavlich got into it with colleague Chris Wallace over the whole process of this clown show. During the Clinton impeachment, all of the witnesses, including those from the grand jury investigation, were interviewed as part of the House impeachment process, done before the articles were voted on and formally transmitted to the Senate. Wallace took issue with that and sparks flew:

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I don’t know why, even Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI), a staunch anti-Trump Democrat, admitted that the House did a piss-poor job with the discovery process:

The Democrats thought this impeachment process was so critical to the nation that they decided to sit on it for a couple of weeks, then hold some bush-league hold out because they know the Republican Senate will kill this effort. They don’t have the evidence and the House doesn’t get to dictate the terms of the Senate trial. So, if they wanted witnesses, they should have thought about all of this prior. Instead, we got celebrations and sighs of relief from Democrats that they got the articles passed out of some whacko promise to their base to impeach Trump over the fact that he won the 2016 election. It’s nakedly political, partisan, and half-assed. And all it has done is push swing states further away from Democrats and bolster Trump’s approval numbers in the process. 

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