What Trump Asked Ukraine to Investigate

In his phone call with Ukraine’s President Zelensky, President Trump asked for a favor. The favor was not, as was widely reported at the time, to investigate Joe Biden. Rather, the favor was for Zelensky’s government to investigate Ukrainian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election:

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 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.

There is a certain irony here: for three years, we have been told that investigating foreign interference in the 2016 election is of paramount importance. Now, it apparently is an impeachable offense.

If, like me, you didn’t remember that Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 election has been reported, this Politico article from January 2017 (via InstaPundit) is a useful reminder:

Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.
Politico’s investigation found evidence of Ukrainian government involvement in the race that appears to strain diplomatic protocol dictating that governments refrain from engaging in one another’s elections.

Someone forgot to tell Barack Obama about that “diplomatic protocol.” He contributed substantial resources to trying to defeat Prime Minister Netanyahu in Israel, and endorsed Justin Trudeau for Prime Minister of Canada just a few days ago.

The Politico article goes on to identify a highly-paid consultant to the Democratic National Committee who is the daughter of Ukrainian immigrants, who apparently played a key role in propagating the Russia collusion hoax.

Along with the general topic of Ukrainian election meddling, President Trump mentioned Crowdstrike, the firm that investigated the intrusion into the DNC’s email server, and the report that that server somehow came to rest in Ukraine after the Democrats refused to turn it over to the FBI. Is this true? I have no idea. Recent news reports have described this as a “debunked” theory, but nowadays “debunked” often just means denied by a Democrat. (This is the sense in which the assertion that Ilhan Omar married her brother is often referred to in the press as “debunked.”)

All of this is a good reminder of how appropriate President Trump’s request for a favor from President Zelensky was.

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