'I Would Like You to Do Us a Favor, Though'
This morning, the White House released what was mistakenly called a transcript, and which is in reality a phone summary with many redacted points, and trumpeted their victory over the Democrats.
Then everybody read it—or read someone who read it—and their jaws fell open. Key exchange:
Zelensky: I would also like to thank you for your great support in the area of defense. We are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps specifically we are almost ready to buy more Javelins from the United States for defense purposes.
Trump: I would like you to do us a favor, though, because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike... I guess you have one of your wealthy people... The server, they say Ukraine has it. There are a lot of things that went on, the whole situation. I think you‘re surrounding yourself with some of the same people. I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it: As you saw yesterday, that whole nonsense ended with a very poor performance by a man named Robert Mueller, an incompetent performance, but they say a lot of it started with Ukraine. Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it if that's possible.
... (< This ellipsis is mine)
The other thing, There's a lot of talk about Biden's son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it... It sounds horrible to me.
Republicans are still out there defending this, saying the Dems are crazy, that Trump is innocent, when it's obvious, just from the above—from the official White House redacted version—that he's not. It's astonishing, really. They‘ve listened to their own bullshit for so long, via Fox, Rush, et al., they think they can keep manufacturing their own version of reality no matter how far it strays from the actual version of reality. But they can’t. At some point, it breaks. This might be the point. Finally.
Does he go down? How fast? And who goes with him? Dems are already talking about keeping the focus of the impeachment inquiry narrow but I think that's a mistake. At the least, you‘ve got to keep an eye open for the rest of it. This isn’t even the tip of the iceberg. It's a snowball on the tip. This is just how Trump operates. You get this, and worse, everywhere.