The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., made up his own version of a transcript between President Donald Trump and his Ukrainian counterpart to fit the false narrative being peddled by Democrats and many in the media to frame the president for a crime that never happened.
In his opening statement at a congressional hearing featuring acting Department of National Intelligence Director Joseph Maguire, Schiff gave a fictional retelling of the conversation between the two leaders. Then had the gaul to call it “satire”.
And what is the President’s response — well it reads like a classic organized crime shake down. In essence, what the President Trump communicates is this: We’ve been very good to your country. Very good. No other country has done as much as we have. But you know what, I don’t see much reciprocity here. You know what I mean? I hear what you want. I have a favor I want from you though. And I’m going to say this only seven times, so you better listen good. I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand? Lots of dirt, on this and on that. I’m going to put you in touch with people, and not just any people. I’m going to put you in touch with the Attorney General of the United States — my Attorney General, Bill Barr — he’s got the whole weight of American law enforcement behind him. And I’m going to put you in touch with Rudy, you’re going to love him. Trust me. You know what I’m asking, so I’m only going to say this a few more times, in a few more ways. And don’t call me again. I’ll call you when you’ve done what I asked.
The actual transcript says no such thing. The “favor” in question was Trump seeking assistance with the Department of Justice’s probe into the 2016 election meddling by Ukraine. On the phone call, Trump later suggested that Ukrainian officials look into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter for their shady business dealings with a Ukrainian energy company to root out corruption in the European country. While overseeing the administration’s policy toward Ukraine, then-Vice President Biden played a role in firing the Ukrainian prosecutor going after the Ukraine company whose board Hunter sat on for $50,000 a month despite no prior experience working in the industry.
Later in the hearing, Schiff admitted that his fictional account of the transcript was a “parody.”
“My summary of the president’s call was meant to be at least part in parody,” Schiff tried to clarify. “Of course the president never said if I — if you don’t understand me, I’ll say it seven more times.”
Democrats and many in the media, however, have pushed a narrative that seeks to charge Trump with conspiring with a foreign leader to meddle in the next U.S. presidential election, mirroring false claims made three years ago when the president was accused of colluding with Russia to defeat Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Read the full unclassified and unredacted transcript between Trump and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky here.