DemDaily: Betrayal of Office

September 25, 2019

At 5:00pm yesterday House Speaker Nancy Pelosi spoke to the nation, announcing the initiation of "a formal impeachment inquiry" into the actions of President of the United States Donald Trump.

Pelosi announces impeachment inquiry

The Trigger
The incident that triggered the long-awaited call for impeachment of the President was not Special Counsel Mueller's Report on Russia-Trump collusion.

Nor was it one of the at least ten federal criminal investigations, eight state and local investigations, & 11 Congressional investigations underway into President Donald Trump's associates, campaign, inauguration, presidency, and businesses.

It was, instead, a whistleblower complaint filed by a member of the intelligence community alleging corrupt actions committed by the President in his conversation with aforeign leader.

"This week, the president has admitted to asking the president of Ukraine to take actions which would benefit him politically," Pelosi said. "The actions of the Trump presidency revealed dishonorable facts of the president's betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections." -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

The Timeline
April 21, 2019
Volodymyr Zelensky is elected the new President of Ukraine.

May 2, 2019: On Meet the Press, Trump mentions "major scandal" involving formerVice President Joe Biden's son Hunter and a Ukrainian company. At the same time, his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said in an interview, "It is a case crying out to be investigated."

Trump claims that, while still Vice President in 2016, Biden pressured the Ukrainian government to fire Ukraine's top prosecutor Viktor Shokin, because he was investigating a Ukrainian company with ties to Biden's son, Hunter.

But the already-shelved investigation pre-dated Hunter Biden's appointment to the company's board, and the senior Biden's calls for to an end to corruption. The Ukrainian prosecutor, Yuri Lutsenko, who succeeded Shokin, also publicly stated the there was no evidence of wrongdoing by either Biden.

June 12, 2019
Trump said in an interview that if he were approached with information on a political opponent, he would want to hear it.

Volodymyr Zelensky was elected President in April (Getty)

July 1, 2019: An ABC/Washington Post poll shows Biden leading Trump 53%-43% in a head-to-head match.

July 18, 2019: The White House puts a hold on the $391 million in military and security aid to Ukraine, which had been allocated by Congress, as a part of the 2019 fiscal package, to help ward off Russia aggression.

July 24, 2019: Special Counsel Robert Mueller testifies to Congress about his Russia-Trump campaign interference investigation.

July 25, 2019: In a conversation with Zelensky, Trump, after reminding him of the US assistance to Ukraine, pressed the new Ukrainian president to investigate his political opponent Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. Trump allegedly pressured him eight times to work with Attorney General Willam Barr and his personal attorney, Rudy Gulliani, on the matter.

"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."
"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 in Ukraine.
I will have Mr. Guiliani give you a call and I am also going to have Attorney General Barr call and we will get to the bottom of it. I'm sure you will figure it out." 
-- President Trump to President Zelensky on investigating Bidens

August 12, 2019: The Intelligence Community's Inspector General (ICIG), Michael Atkinson, receives an "urgent concern," disclosure pursuant to the Whistleblower Act.

By law, the ICIG evaluated, and found credible, the complaint, and forwarded it August 26th to the Acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Joseph Maguire. Under the Whistleblower statute, he is then required to submit the complaint to the House Intelligence Committee, but he was prevented from doing so by Attorney General William Barr and the DNI.

Trump's Attorneys: Rudy Giulliani and "US" AG Bill Barr

August 24, 2019Trump downplays Russia's military intervention in Ukraine and pushes for Russia to be reinstated into the G7, an annual gathering of the world's largest advanced economies.

August 28, 2019: Trump asks his national security team to review the aid under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative.

September 2, 2019: Vice President Michael Pence, in a press conference, said the delay in aid was over concerns of potential corruption in Ukraine and to ensure the money is being used in the best interests of the United States.

September/Early: Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Chris Murphy (D-CN) meets with Zelensky in Ukraine. Murphy said Zelensky was concerned and confused about the cutoff of aid, and the pressure he was getting from the Trump administration to commence an investigation against the Biden family.

September 6, 2019: The Democratic and Republican leaders of the House Foreign Affairs Committee sent a letter to the White House, urging them to release the security assistance funds for Ukraine.

Intellegence Community IG Michael Atkinson

September 9, 2019: IG Atkinson informs the Congressional Intelligence Committees of the whistleblower complaint, which has not been forwarded to them, in potential violation of the law.

September 12, 2019: The White House releases its hold on the aid to Ukraine.

September 13, 2019: the House Intelligence Committee issues a subpoena to the DNI for the whistleblower complaint.

September 17, 2019: Director of National Intelligence McGuire, under direction of the Department of Justice, again refuses to turn over the whistleblower complaint.

September 22, 2019: Trump confirms he brought up Biden and corruption in the call with Zelensky, but top administration officials deny Trump "pressured" him to investigate Biden.

September 25, 2019:
* This morning, the White House released a "summary" of the July 25th Trump-Zelensky call at the heart of the complaint, but a full transcript has yet to be released.

Director of National Intelligence Joseph McQuire testifies Thursday 9am

* Today, Senate and House Intelligence Committee members were told they would, under secure conditions, be provided access to a copy of the actual Whistleblower complaint.

* House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff announced the whistleblower, through his/her attorney, has requested an opportunity to speak to the committee.

* This afternoon, in unexpected development, DNI McGuire has reportedly threatened to resign if the White House does not allow him to testify "freely" before Congress.

September 26, 2019: McGuire is scheduled to speak at 9:00am Thursday before the House Intelligence Committee.

As of this writing, 216 Members of the US House have publicly supported some form of impeachment proceedings. It takes 218 to proceed with an impeachment vote.

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Kimberly Scott

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Sources: CNN, WashingtonPost, WallStreetJournal, MSNBC, Politico

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