Sunday, February 9, 2020

What did Donald Trump do today?

He said he'd get around to proving his innocence eventually.

While Trump ranted at Republicans and Democrats alike on Twitter, he sent his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to a Sunday morning cable show to deliver an interesting message: that he'd provide evidence he didn't try to strike a corrupt bargain with Ukraine "in the next couple of months."

GIULIANI: The acquittal, of course, was wonderful, but it never should have happened. I mean, he didn't do anything wrong. 
And I think over the — over the next couple of months, you're going to see that what he did was perfectly justifiable.  
The amount of crimes that Democrats committed in Ukraine are astounding. And when you say investigate and call Hunter Biden, I mean, Joe — Joe Biden was the guy who did the bribe.
Giuliani did not elaborate on "the bribe." It's not the first time Giuliani has teased shocking revelations that would help Trump politically, although none have ever actually panned out.

As he did so, Trump ally Sen. Lindsey Graham announced that the Justice Department had "created a process" so that Giuliani—Trump's private fixer, not a government employee—could report directly on his "findings."

There is, without a doubt, a great deal of evidence that has never been released about Trump's attempts to force Ukraine to "investigate" his political rival Joe Biden. This includes the actual transcript of the final call between Trump and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelinsky. (Trump has released only a carefully edited version, and even that was enough to get him impeached.)

But so far, the only "evidence" Giuliani has even hinted at appears to be that Viktor Shokin might be willing to implicate the Biden family in something. Shokin is the Ukrainian prosecutor, almost universally regarded as corrupt himself, who was forced out of office after strong bipartisan pressure from the United States and European nations.

In other words, it looks like Trump has authorized the United States government to "investigate" Biden, using his personal fixer as the conduit for "evidence," after his attempt to get Ukraine to do the same thing blew up in his face.

Giuliani did not explain why Trump could not provide evidence of his innocence now, or during the Senate trial.

Why should I care about this?

  • No one ever suppresses evidence of their own innocence.
  • Launching phony "investigations" of your political opponents is an abuse of power, and it's what dictators do.