Politics

Here’s How Much the ‘Whistleblower’ Really Knew About Trump’s Phone Call

Succinct analysis puts a complicated story — and Pelosi's claims — in perspective

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Screenshot CNBC video

Brit Hume, a longtime political reporter and currently a senior political analyst for the Fox News Channel, summed up exactly what’s going on in terms of the so-called whistleblower who has ignited a firestorm on Capitol Hill — and who may or may not know what President Donald Trump said on the phone to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky back in late July of this year.

The “whistleblower,” it turns out, never heard Trump’s call himself/herself and is relying only on reports from others.

That scenario raises far more questions than Democratic members of Congress are willing to admit — but one that Republicans have reminded them of and will, repeatedly.

It raises questions about who those “reporters” of Trump’s phone call might be, what their political leaning is, exactly (one can imagine), and how and under what circumstances they fed information to the “whistleblower.”

Hume sent out a tweet yesterday that nails what’s going on. Check out his message here:

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“As of Wednesday morning, when the Ukraine phone call transcript was released, the public knew more about what transpired on the call than the whistleblower knew when he/she filed the complaint.”

That’s right. Trump released the transcript of his phone call — which had been protected by executive privilege — in the interest of being transparent.

Yet Democrats are seizing on it and interpreting it as they choose to and as they see fit.

Now, an unnamed Ukrainian official said Kiev was not made aware the U.S. had suspended security funds until a month after Trump’s call with Zelensky, which raises questions about the whistleblower’s account and Democrats’ vehement arguments that there was a quid pro quo for such aid, as Fox News pointed out in a new piece.

The official told The New York Times, as Fox News noted, that Zelensky’s administration was unaware of the aid issue until a month after Trump’s July 25 phone call in which he discussed Joe Biden and Biden’s son, Hunter.

“The whistleblower complaint — citing U.S. officials — claimed that officials in Kiev knew that the military aid could be in jeopardy in early August, but the whistleblower admitted to not knowing ‘how or when they learned of it,'” as Fox News noted.

Zelensky said this week in New York City, during a joint press conference with Trump, that he never felt pressured to investigate the Bidens.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) began a new push in the House toward impeachment proceedings this week — saying on Thursday that she’s being “prayerful” about it — but Democrats are not holding a roll call vote to authorize the effort.

She also accused Trump and his administration of a “cover-up.”

Meanwhile, Democratic members of the progressive “squad” want Trump out of office now — raising questions about whether Pelosi is indeed being pushed by some of the most Left-leaning members of the House. Members of Congress are about to head home to their congressional districts for the next two weeks — during which they’ll be making the case to constituents for the immediate removal of Trump, even though he was elected by the American people.

Related: Adam Schiff Riffs: Makes Up ‘Parody’ Version of Trump’s Call with Zelensky

The squad has power, left-leaning media outlets claim — for “when they speak, everybody listens,” according to a piece in The New York Times recently.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), for one, argued the recently released transcript of Trump’s phone call with the Ukraine president indicated the conversation was “worse than we thought” — and she accused the president of betraying the nation.

“I think we have to hold this president accountable,” she told reporters, “and protect our democracy.”

She also said, “I’m pretty confidence that we are not going to see this process dragged along,” noting she’s expecting swift action.

Here’s her recent tweet on the issue:

“Either the president does not know the weight of his words or he does not care about ethics or his constitutional responsibilities,” she also said in a statement on Wednesday obtained and shared by Fox News.

“The transcript and the Justice Department’s acting in a rogue fashion in being complicit in the president’s lawlessness confirm the need for an impeachment inquiry. Clearly, the Congress must act.”

And see this commentary on AOC’s words and actions as well:

But that’s not all. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) joined Ocasio-Cortez in calling for Trump’s impeachment, saying the transcript alone was proof Congress should pursue the process.

Yet neither of them mention the questionable dealings of former Vice President Joe Biden regarding his role in having a prosecutor fired — someone who was looking into corruption in Ukraine.

Joe Biden acknowledged last year on camera that, when he was vice president, he successfully pressured Ukraine to fire its top prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings — where Hunter Biden, Joe Biden’s son, was on the board.

Shokin himself had separately been accused of corruption.

So where is the investigation of that — as Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and others have wondered?

All of this is why it’s no surprise that Trump on Thursday morning called the current investigation “another witch hunt … Really a disgrace, a terrible thing for our country”?

He shared those thoughts just ahead of his return to the White House after his trip to New York City for the United Nations General Assembly earlier this week.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Wednesday cut through much of the noise and said bluntly, “Democrats have lost their minds.”

The South Carolina senator was referring to congressional Democrats’ latest efforts to try to kick Trump out of the office he was duly elected to because of the phone call with Zelensky.

Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire, in tense testimony on Thursday on Capitol Hill, defended his handling of the explosive whistleblower complaint alleging Trump pressured the Ukrainian president to investigate the Biden family — while calling the matter “unprecedented,” as many outlets reported.

But after maintaining his composure for most of the morning, his frustration showed through at the end, when House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) repeatedly pressed him to agree that the matter should be investigated.

Maguire stressed that the committee now has all of the relevant information, including the whistleblower complaint itself that was released publicly Thursday morning, and said it’s up to them to decide how to proceed. “The horse has left the barn,” Maguire said.

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LifeZette's Editor-in-Chief Maureen Mackey helped launch the site from its earliest days and previously served as its managing editor. Prior to her time at LifeZette, she held senior editorial positions at several national publications and is a former book editor. Her work has appeared in many outlets including Real Clear Politics, CNBC, The Fiscal Times, A Fine Line, AARP Magazine, Reader's Digest, and Fordham Magazine. She is a member of the Newswomen's Club of New York and the American Legion Auxiliary. She can be reached at [email protected].

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