Parnas document release details Giuliani-arranged surveillance, possible threat to Amb. Yovanovitch (1 Viewer)

FullMonte

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If that is your standard then impeachment is just a political weapon, because the parties routinely disagree on what is a benefit to the U.S.
Sure...that's fine. When a president, for example, takes some kind of action that he claims is a benefit to the country, there will be those that agree, and there will be those that disagree that it is a benefit.

But, when the president asks a foreign government to announce an investigation into his political opponent, with no real desire (or care) about an actual investigation, so that he can use that announcement to damage his opponent politically...is there anyone who will agree that action is a benefit to the US, as a whole?
 

TaylorB

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If that is your standard then impeachment is just a political weapon, because the parties routinely disagree on what is a benefit to the U.S.
But with respect to security support to Ukraine, there is bipartisan agreement that it benefits the US. The NDAA for 2019, which passed 359-54 in the House, 87-10 in the Senate, and was signed by the President into law(!), included the following language:

To protect the national security of the United States and fulfill the ironclad commitment of the United States to its obligations under the North Atlantic Treaty, it is the policy of the United States to pursue ... an integrated approach to strengthening the defense of allies and partners in Europe as part of a broader, long-term strategy backed by all elements of United States national power to deter and, if necessary, defeat Russian aggression.

it is the sense of Congress that in order to strengthen the defense of the US allies and partners in Europe, the Secretary of Defense should… support robust security sector assistance for Ukraine, including for defensive lethal assistance… develop and implement a comprehensive security cooperation strategy that integrates support for allies and partners most directly threatened by Russian aggression and malign influence…”


If robust security assistance to Ukraine "protects the national security of the United States" -- which Congress unequivocally says it does -- then conversely, the deliberate withholding of robust security assistance to Ukraine harms the national security of the United States.

So Trump withheld the security assistance in contravention to US foreign policy and in a way which harmed national security, at least, according to a bipartisan law passed by a co-equal branch. What was the benefit to the US of withholding the aid and pressuring investigations, and was Trump the person who made the unilateral determination that that benefit outweighed what Congress wanted? Doesn't it appear from the timing of the release and the Parnas texts (9/12/19 - "Bolton f****ed everything up") that the only reason the aid ever got released was because the public was about to find out what was happening? But even if not - again, what was the benefit?
 

JimEverett

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But with respect to security support to Ukraine, there is bipartisan agreement that it benefits the US. The NDAA for 2019, which passed 359-54 in the House, 87-10 in the Senate, and was signed by the President into law(!), included the following language:

To protect the national security of the United States and fulfill the ironclad commitment of the United States to its obligations under the North Atlantic Treaty, it is the policy of the United States to pursue ... an integrated approach to strengthening the defense of allies and partners in Europe as part of a broader, long-term strategy backed by all elements of United States national power to deter and, if necessary, defeat Russian aggression.

it is the sense of Congress that in order to strengthen the defense of the US allies and partners in Europe, the Secretary of Defense should… support robust security sector assistance for Ukraine, including for defensive lethal assistance… develop and implement a comprehensive security cooperation strategy that integrates support for allies and partners most directly threatened by Russian aggression and malign influence…”


If robust security assistance to Ukraine "protects the national security of the United States" -- which Congress unequivocally says it does -- then conversely, the deliberate withholding of robust security assistance to Ukraine harms the national security of the United States.

So Trump withheld the security assistance in contravention to US foreign policy and in a way which harmed national security, at least, according to a bipartisan law passed by a co-equal branch. What was the benefit to the US of withholding the aid and pressuring investigations, and was Trump the person who made the unilateral determination that that benefit outweighed what Congress wanted? Doesn't it appear from the timing of the release and the Parnas texts (9/12/19 - "Bolton f****ed everything up") that the only reason the aid ever got released was because the public was about to find out what was happening? But even if not - again, what was the benefit?
The aid was sent to Ukraine.
 

JimEverett

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It was held illegally. GAO stated that. Did the WH send notice to Congress that they were holding funding from July 25th till September 11th per the Impoundment Act? Because they got caught and released it doesn't mean it was never held.
The House did not charge the President with violating the Impoundment Act.

To say that aid was "withheld" is factually incorrect. Aid was delayed - and it is an important point.
 

insidejob

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The House did not charge the President with violating the Impoundment Act.

To say that aid was "withheld" is factually incorrect. Aid was delayed - and it is an important point.
Another important point - the only reason it stopped being delayed is because Trump knew he was about to be busted for delaying it illegally for his own personal political gain when he found out about the whistleblower.
 

Nebaghead

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The House did not charge the President with violating the Impoundment Act.

To say that aid was "withheld" is factually incorrect. Aid was delayed - and it is an important point.
I give up, you win. I guess stop breathing non-voluntarily is different then murdering someone.
 

JimEverett

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I give up, you win. I guess stop breathing non-voluntarily is different then murdering someone.
Lol. Do you think "withheld" means something different than "delay" I do.

Plus, as far as I am aware, the President is not charged with "attempt" of anything.
 

FullMonte

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The House did not charge the President with violating the Impoundment Act.

To say that aid was "withheld" is factually incorrect. Aid was delayed - and it is an important point.
Well, if we are going to play word games...The ICA requires the president to send a special message to congress if the funding is "deferred." And holding off on spending it for more than 45 days would constitute a deferral. And....more than 45 days is also more than he is allowed to defer it, even if he does send the message.
 

Nebaghead

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Lol. Do you think "withheld" means something different than "delay" I do.

Plus, as far as I am aware, the President is not charged with "attempt" of anything.
The GAO said it wasn't a systematic delay but withheld. Withheld until caught is not the same as a systematic delay.

Abuse of power was in regards to withholding/delaying/freezing funds to the Ukraine for personal gain. Because he was caught and released the funds doesn't eliminate why the funds were delayed in the first place.
 

st dude

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The aid was sent to Ukraine.

Jim, the evidence and timeline is quite clear. The money was withheld from Ukraine and sent only when the reason it was withheld was about to be exposed. That does not exculpate Trump, quiet the opposite.

If you want to argue withholding the aid to squeeze Ukraine to investigate the Bidens is just typical political shenanigans that do not bother you, that's fine. I don't agree it is okay, but at least I can understand why some do.

But if your argument, and the argument of others, is that Trump didn't squeeze Ukraine and withhold aid for political purposes, I just do not see how any reasonably objective person could believe that. I also think many who support Trump in this matter find ways to not directly address this central issue. Do you believe or not Trump was behind the delay of aid to Ukraine and did so to squeeze Ukraine into investigating the Bidens or not?

Whether that is impeachable might be a different question. I would have more respect for the Republicans if they just said he did it and we don't think its impeachable and did not insult my intelligence by pretending the obvious did not happen.


My take on the aid being sent later is it absolves Trump about as much as the person who returned the cookie to the cookie jar after getting caught taking one is absolved.
 

dtc

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Sure...that's fine. When a president, for example, takes some kind of action that he claims is a benefit to the country, there will be those that agree, and there will be those that disagree that it is a benefit.

But, when the president asks a foreign government to announce an investigation into his political opponent, with no real desire (or care) about an actual investigation, so that he can use that announcement to damage his opponent politically...is there anyone who will agree that action is a benefit to the US, as a whole?
Yeah, but you missed it.

He didn't ask.

He demanded and he did so as part of a blackmail attempt of a foreign president contingent upon legally sanctioned US aid.

It's not a favor he asked for.
 

samiam5211

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Yeah, but you missed it.

He didn't ask.

He demanded and he did so as part of a blackmail attempt of a foreign president contingent upon legally sanctioned US aid.

It's not a favor he asked for.
He literally said “We need you to do US a favor, though.”

He was asking him to do the U.S. a favor. You know how bad he is with the teleprompter.

The house could have just subpoena’d the teleprompter to clear all this up, but you know how lazy democrats are.

Now they want the Senate to do their job for them, but Mitch’s hands are tied by the Constitution so now we’ll never know the truth until the teleprompter’s book comes out.
 
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Brandon13

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Jim, the evidence and timeline is quite clear. The money was withheld from Ukraine and sent only when the reason it was withheld was about to be exposed. That does not exculpate Trump, quiet the opposite.

If you want to argue withholding the aid to squeeze Ukraine to investigate the Bidens is just typical political shenanigans that do not bother you, that's fine. I don't agree it is okay, but at least I can understand why some do.

But if your argument, and the argument of others, is that Trump didn't squeeze Ukraine and withhold aid for political purposes, I just do not see how any reasonably objective person could believe that. I also think many who support Trump in this matter find ways to not directly address this central issue. Do you believe or not Trump was behind the delay of aid to Ukraine and did so to squeeze Ukraine into investigating the Bidens or not?

Whether that is impeachable might be a different question. I would have more respect for the Republicans if they just said he did it and we don't think its impeachable and did not insult my intelligence by pretending the obvious did not happen.


My take on the aid being sent later is it absolves Trump about as much as the person who returned the cookie to the cookie jar after getting caught taking one is absolved.
My feelings exactly.
 

FullMonte

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He literally said “We need you to do US a favor, though.”

He was asking him to do the U.S. a favor. You know how bad he is with the teleprompter
Actually, we don't know that. That's what the memorandum based on notes and recollections say. It would be interesting to see what the actual verbatim transcript says.
 

UncleTrvlingJim

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What standard do you use to determine that?
Does an Administration's abuse of the FISA Court to use U.S. intelligence services to spy on people closely connected to an opposition party's candidate for President fit the standard?

Or something far less "controversial": What about using the power of the United States to start a trade war that could result in huge damage to the opposition party?

It seems to me that the only defense of such examples is to claim that there is some "benefit" to the U.S. in each case - which is, of course, going to be political.
It goes to intent, if you can prove that the intent is to damage a political enemy or to primarily benefit yourself without regard to the interests of the United States you have an issue, right?

As far as the due process angle - I do not think foreign policy should be limited, in a pre-policy-making-way, by concern about potential outcomes based on Americans' conduct in foreign countries.

And I do not understand how opening an investigation, even if it were done domestically, is violative of a person's due process. It is not. At least not without some other behavior attached to it. But investigations in and of themselves are not violative of any due process.
Please explain, if Trump had his way and an investigation was announced by Ukraine that Biden was under investigation for corruption, it would damage him in a real way, right? That isn't a violation of his due process rights? The United States government intentionally damages a US citizen because he was a political adversary of the President.

We know that Trump, and no one on this board, believes Biden did anything corrupt, so this was purely to damage him politically.
 

MT15

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BTW, I just took your correction at face value and didn't double check. But, I have seen a couple of articles that have stated as a matter of fact that Pelosi did use pens that had her signature on them (and for some reason were shaped like rounds of ammo). I lifted the photo attached below from an article by the Guardian. Are you sure that her use of such pens has been debunked?

4c1eea8d12b4d9dfe578017b2eecac5a.jpg
I read that it wasn’t true, I will look again. I do think shaped like rounds of ammo is kinda a silly thought, though.

They look like pens to me. 🙂

BTW, I’m still smiling about the rounds of ammo remark, it’s truly funny, thanks for that.
 

dtc

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I read that it wasn’t true, I will look again. I do think shaped like rounds of ammo is kinda a silly thought, though.

They look like pens to me. 🙂

BTW, I’m still smiling about the rounds of ammo remark, it’s truly funny, thanks for that.
I found it funny too.

Don't all pens look like ammo after a fashion?
 

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