The imploding impeachment uproar over Ukraine can be summed up simply — the Democrats are playing politics by accusing President Trump of playing politics. This is the self-licking ice cream cone logic of almost every made-up scandal of the last three years.
As more facts about the case emerge, we see yet another case of Democrats pursuing a strategy attributed variously to Alinsky, or Gramsci, or Lenin, or Marx, namely to loudly accuse your opponent of doing what you have been up to all along. The entire purpose of the contrived “whistleblower” complaint seems to be to distract attention from the Justice Department investigation of the origins of the now discredited 2016 Russian collusion conspiracy hoax.
When news broke about the “whistleblower” complaint we were told that President Trump had bullied Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenski on a high-level phone call, demanding dirt on Joe Biden’s son in exchange for foreign aid. The actual log of the telephone conversation quickly disproved that contention; there was no such quid-pro-quo demand, the Biden topic was incidental to the call and in fact raised by Zelensky, and the only favor the president asked was for Kiev to cooperate with U.S. Attorney John Durham’s examination of the FBI’s Russia inquiry.
This is what Democrats really fear, exposing their own collusion with foreign powers to impact the 2016 election, the very thing they said was treason when they aimed their arrows at Donald Trump. In essence they are saying, “How dare you ask the new Ukrainian government to cooperate with your inquiry into how we asked the previous Ukrainian government to cooperate with our illicit activity?”
We know that in 2016 Ukrainian government officials assisted the Clinton campaign and tried to undermine Trump.
We know that a consultant working for the DNC solicited information from the Ukrainian embassy in Washington.
We know that Democratic senators wrote to Kiev implying negative consequences if they did not cooperate with the Mueller investigation.
And, of course, Schiff himself was more than eager to accept anti-Trump dirt from Ukraine, as demonstrated by Russian prank phone callers back in January 2018.
It is also astonishing that they accused President Trump of bullying tactics and extortion when this accurately describes Vice President Joe Biden’s open threats to Ukraine, demanding Kiev fire prosecutor general Viktor Shokin, who was investigating the company that was paying Hunter Biden $50,000 a month, or sacrifice a billion dollars in foreign aid. Biden was so proud of his strong-arm tactics he even bragged about the incident publicly.
The more we learn about the process behind the complaint the more it looks like a setup. We now know, courtesy of The New York Times, that the whistleblower received guidance from lead Democratic inquisitor Rep. Adam Schiff’s staff in how to develop the complaint. This bombshell alone should bring an end to this farce.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also slipped when she said she knew about the contents of the phone call in advance from the public record, which of course was impossible since it was classified. Then President Trump was criticized for keeping the classified phone record on a secure server, which is not only required by law but was especially important since Democrats had exploited such leaked phone records earlier in the administration. Of course when it comes to Hillary Clinton’s potentially criminal handling of classified documents, no comment.
We also are learning more about how the intelligence community inspector general’s office rationalized rule changes that somehow redefined second-hand hearsay as first-hand knowledge. And hopefully we will soon know more about the political biases of the person who filed the complaint, who appears to be cynically exploiting the whistleblower law to accuse Trump of being politically motivated.
If this hit job fails there are an unlimited number of other such schemes that can be hatched, twisting any normal presidential behavior or circumstances into impeachable offenses. For example Democrats are now looking with great interest into how unused reservations made at Trump hotels are a violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution. Bear in mind that a federal appeals court has already ruled such cases against the president are simply ridiculous.
It is ironic to see career politicians who make fortunes in Washington by handing out favors attack a president who takes no salary and who came into office with vast personal wealth for using his office for personal gain. The hypocrisy is overwhelming.
So the colluders accuse Trump of colluding, the bullies accuse him of bullying, the conspirators accuse him of coverups, the politicians accuse him of playing politics, the profiteers accuse him of profiteering. Whatever they accuse President Trump of next, you can bet they are already up to their necks in it.
Chris Farrell is director of investigations and research for Judicial Watch, a nonprofit watchdog group. He previously worked as a counterintelligence case officer.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.