If these public impeachment hearings, as both LifeZette and GOP Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) of the House Intelligence Committee have termed them, a boring sitcom or a badly written “direct-to-TV” production — then the Democrat writers need to go back to film school.
The pacing was turgid, some of the characters — such as Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), who bears a striking resemblance to Andy Kaufman — were not believable, and the overall plot was trite and contrived.
Who greenlit this thing?
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Oh, that’s right, Pelosi Studios — in a multi-day deal with Schiff Productions.
How some suffered through this theater of the absurd since first thing in the morning to well past dinner hour on Tuesday is a testament to the sheer endurance and self-obsession of this nation’s institutional, political, and leftist pop culture class. (And just think: We have two more days of this production this week.)
Everywhere outside that D.C., N.Y., and L.A. bubble, the ratings were dismal.
But trudge on we did, sometimes momentarily distracted by the raging luminosity emitting from Schiff’s forehead.
For Schiff and the Dems, though, the day was nowhere as illuminating.
Once questioning by members started, Republicans started partaking in a mutual admiration society with the witnesses.
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) began the love-in when he forcibly declared that witness Ambassador Kurt Volker, former special envoy to Ukraine, was no “irregular channel” but the real thing.
Volker lit up at that. Tim Morrison, former National Security Council director, played it close to the vest all day.
But he also refused to be led by the nose by Schiff and stuck to his guns regardless of obviously mounting Democrat frustration at his answers.
This seeming witness double-cross was not at all to the liking of Schiff and his colleagues.
Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) derided Dem reliance on the “feelings,” as opposed to facts, emoted by previous witnesses. He was followed by Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas) — who asked the chairman to cite the exact law that protected the CIA informant from exposure and testifying in front of the public.
Schiff ignored him and moved on.
Conaway did one other thing. He was the first to utter the GOP mantra of the day — lyrics previewed by Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) yesterday. Conaway asked Volker: Did he hear or know of any attempt on the part of the president “to take part in bribery, extortion, crime, treason, a quid pro quo or make any demand” of the Ukrainians?
Both witnesses repeatedly said no when they were asked this same question by various GOP questioners.
As it did when Stewart first asked this kind of query on Monday, it blew the Dem case right out of the water.
However, the Dems tediously and mirthlessly marched on.
Jordan, one of the emerging GOP stars of this outing, along with Stewart and Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), reminded Volker of Ukrainian government officials who defamed candidate Trump in print in 2016.
Volker did not dispute that — and indeed verified Jordan’s accounts of official Ukrainian animus against Trump in 2016.
Stefanik then again brought up the fact that the Ukrainians did not know there was a hold on military aid until a month after the July 25 phone call between President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky. Thus, how could they have felt threatened by a quid pro quo they had no idea even possibly existed at the time of the phone call?
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Jordan wrapped up the good day for the GOP by expressing his frustration at the waste of time and resources the entire inquiry had been from the outset. Nunes amplified the message.
Schiff countered with a fading closing statement that was strange in its halting delivery and thoroughly stranger in its close-to-catatonic tone.
Score two days for the Republicans — as new hearings begin again on Wednesday morning.
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