RUSH: So all these analysts on TV, Fox and CNN (impression), "Oh, man, after Trump's tweet today, I don't know where the Republicans are going to go. Trump has really, really put them in a box. The Republicans aren't going to have any way of going at Yovanovitch. Oh my God! Oh my God!" They were never going to go at Yovanovitch. That's not what they are going to do. They are going after the sham hearing. What Devin Nunes just did is classic.
Devin Nunes just got her to admit that she had nothing to do with the July 25th phone call. She's never talked to Donald Trump in 2019. She was not involved in a meeting in Warsaw with Trump and somebody from Ukraine. He elicited from her that she is not a "fact witness" to anything here. She was not part of discussions surrounding the phone call. She was not part of discussions surrounding the delay of aid. This is their second witness... If you count Kent and Taylor as one witness, this is the second witness, and she was not involved in any of it.
Nunes said (summary), "I don't even know what this is. This is more like what we should be doing. This woman is upset she got fired. This is a human resources issue. This isn't impeachment. Some subcommittee on human resources at the State Department ought to be handling this." Then he yielded time to Congresswoman Stefanik at which point Schiff pounded the gavel and told her she can't ask any questions, that Nunes cannot delegate time to her, pass time to her, that only he and counsel can ask questions.
She tried to ask questions and Pencil Neck refused to let Stefanik ask any questions.
It was great TV.
RUSH: The Republican counsel is now asking questions of Yovanovitch, and he elicited from her that she wasn't anywhere near the phone call on July 25th. She was let go in May. She was dismissed from her post in May. The phone call happened in July. For those of you in Rio Linda, that's two months later.
So the Republican lawyer here asked her, "Well, how did you know about it?"
"Oh, George Kent told me."
"What did George Kent tell you?"
She was stumbling and fumbling.
"What did George Kent tell you about the phone call?"
"As I understood it, the president was asking the new president... Oh, I don't know. It was something about, um, um..."
Look, these people have told a bunch of lies to get here. Now, under oath, they can't repeat them. Schiff lied about the characterization of Trump on this phone call saying, "He told the president of Ukraine to 'dig up dirt, make up dirt. You keep doing it! You don't call me back.' He told him seven times," and Schiff totally lied about the phone call.
All the other people have told themselves a similar lie, that Trump was so outrageous and so inappropriate on this phone call. But now, she wasn't even on the phone call. She was let go two months before the phone call. She only knows about the phone call because one of the bow-tied witnesses from Wednesday told her about it.
"Well, what did he tell you about it?"
"How did you feel about it?"
(mumbling) "It was really... I don't know."
Again, she wasn't anywhere near it. She wasn't even at her post when the phone call was made, and the phone call is why they are doing these hearings. What the whistleblower said about the phone call is why we're here. She was not involved in discussions surrounding the phone call. She was not involved in discussions surrounding the delay of aid. The supposed delay of aid which was eventually fulfilled without any investigation.
So, let me tell you who Marie Yovanovitch is, because if you've watched cable TV today, you've had a picture painted. "Great public servant. Wonderful career. Epitome of perfection. A woman of impeccable integrity." The same resume we get for every critic of Donald Trump, and she may have had a stellar career. Folks, I never heard of her before this. But I have, of course, now endeavored to find out who she is.
Trump is being blasted. He's being criticized, he’s being impeached for daring to criticize her work, not her. Her work is being challenged, and that's something in this group you don't do. You don't challenge their work. They are excellent. They are perfect. They are elites. They are the epitome of perfect diplomats. You don't criticize their work. That is one of the greatest insults you can engage in is to criticize their work. There's Trump: I don’t like the job they are doing. They are not going to be the right kind of people to implement what I want to do in Ukraine.
So he dismissed them. You just don't do that.
So let's review Marie Yovanovitch. Let's put all politics aside. She was Obama's ambassador to Ukraine. While she was ambassador to Ukraine, Ukraine became one of the most corrupt countries in the world, and its most corrupt company, Burisma, hired Hunter Biden. And she wasn't outraged. She didn't shed any tears. She wasn't concerned at all about this corruption when she was ambassador under Obama. While she was ambassador under Obama, Ukraine was invaded by the Russians.
Crimea? Ukraine had one-third of their country stolen from them by Russia because Ukraine did not have any weapons of defense, because Ukraine had surrendered their weapons of defense demanded by the Obama administration. The Obama administration had a deal with them. If you're attacked, we'll come to your defense. We'll defend you. Well, they were attacked. The Russians came in and annexed Crimea, and Obama didn't lift a finger.
Ukraine had no way to defend against this. We talked about it when it happened. Marie Yovanovitch did not shed a single tear when this happened to her precious Ukraine, which at the time was one of the most corrupt countries in all of Eastern and Western Europe. Obama didn't do anything. He refused to send any military aid because she was afraid that might anger Putin, and Yovanovitch did not complain. She was not distressed like she's now totally distressed and nonplussed over Trump.
She was the ambassador, and Russia takes one-third of Ukraine without any effort to stop them. That's her career in Ukraine. That's what happened when she was there. And none of that bothered her. None of that distressed her. We're not aware she shed a single tear. Because, well, it happened under Obama, which makes it perfectly fine and okay because Obama is brilliant and because Obama was a God and because Obama was a savior. Because Obama was whatever he was. So whatever Obama wanted was perfectly fine.
Obama went through channels. Obama did all this stuff that the elites expect to be done, and he did it the way they expect it to be done. So the results don't even count. The substance of foreign policy doesn't even matter. All that matters is the appearance, the "going through the right channels," and the "adherence to the diplomatic code." But when it comes to what Donald Trump is supposedly being impeached for, she doesn't have an iota of involvement.
She has no facts. Nothing about it has she witnessed. Let me correct, she was not Obama's ambassador when Russia invaded, but she was at the State Department when Russia invaded and Burisma hired Biden, and she was a Ukraine devotee. She wasn't the ambassador, but she was the Ukraine devotee, and she was not distressed at all by any of this. And, of course, none of this has come up at all because this is all about Trump.
She was the principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of European and European Affairs, which would have included Ukraine, but she was not the ambassador. So I need to make that correction. She was not the ambassador. But she was at the State Department in an area that oversaw Ukraine. The point is, she's being portrayed here as a Ukraine expert, and she's being portrayed as somebody totally distressed and upset by what Trump has done. All Trump did was get rid of her and some of her friends.
As Devin Nunes said, "It is a human resources issue. She's upset she lost her job. This is not something for the impeachment committee." But everybody in Washington thinks that she's been a flawless and perfect witness. And I guess from their standpoint maybe she is.
My problem is that I just can't avoid the substance of this stuff. And I automatically reject the premise or the premises of people I consider political opponents. In this case, the Democrats. In this case, the media. In this case, the people trying to undermine Donald Trump.
I refuse to accept the premise of these people at any point because I know what their objective is. Trump is simply getting rid of people like Yovanovitch because they refused to implement his foreign policy. They tried to bottle it up. They leak. They undermine. They sabotage.
Now, here's what happened with Trump and the tweet during her testimony. This is the Mediaite version of the story. "President Donald Trump attacked former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch in real time as she testified in the Trump impeachment inquiry, denigrating her career as a diplomat and asserting his 'absolute right to appoint ambassadors.'"
As she was testifying, Trump tweeted this: "'Everywhere Marie Yovanovitch went turned bad. She started off in Somalia, how did that go? Then let’s fast forward to Ukraine, where the new Ukrainian president spoke unfavorably about her in my second phone call with him.
"'It is a U.S. President’s absolute right to appoint ambassadors. They call it "serving at the pleasure of the president." The U.S. now has a very strong and powerful foreign policy, much different than proceeding administrations. It is called, quite simply, America First! With all of that, however, I have done FAR more for Ukraine than'" Obama did. "Yovanovitch was posted to Somalia early in her career as a diplomat, and received her first ambassadorship under George W. Bush.
"She was recalled from her post in Ukraine following a reported pressure campaign from Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani," who really who was the guy on trial today when this all started. So what's Trump doing here? Trump is totally in character. There is no way this could be said to be witness intimidation because she didn't even know Trump had tweeted it. Trump tweeted it. Schiff got word of it, brought the hearings to a stop and read the tweet and posted it. And then said, "How does that make you feel?"
"Do you feel intimidated?"
"Wuh, wuh.. (mewling) Strange, very strange."
"Do you feel intimidated?"
“This is beyond the pale.”
What Schiff should have done. He should have called the Capitol Police. He should have called in the armed guards. Should have brought in armed cavalry to surround her and escort her out of there. If you're going to say that the witness has been intimidated, the witness is afraid and in great fear, then go ahead and play it out. If he had been thinking he would have done that, but he didn't. He then resumed with questioning.
But look at it from Trump's perspective. He has been denied due process. There are secret hearings going on in a basement of the Capitol building that Schiff is running. There were going to be more of them this afternoon. When these hearings are over, Schiff is going to convene the secret meetings again, and more witnesses are gonna be brought in and Schiff will selectively leak what they say. There are no Republicans allowed in there, and there certainly are no legal representatives from the president allowed in there.
Trump is being denied due process. Forget court-of-law business. This is due process in the public arena. Schiff and his buddies in the media have sole possession of media narratives. They get to report and leak and lie and say whatever they want to say that these witnesses are saying about Trump. Trump is not going to sit idly by and be treated unfairly. He doesn't care if he is altering the way things have always been done.
He doesn't care if he's outside the normal channels. He's being set up here. They are running a sham. And they are running it in public with the media and Trump is simply not going to sit idly by and let himself be tarred and feathered, lied about, impugned, mischaracterized and all that. So that's why he was responding here. This woman doesn't know a thing. She had nothing to do with the so-called impeachable offenses that are on display here.
He knows that nobody is going to challenge her character or her credibility because she is a woman. So he decides to do it. (summarized) "Everywhere she went, things turned bad. Somalia, Ukraine. She's got no complaint. I can fire anybody I want in the ambassadorial core. I appoint them.”
Every bit of this is right and now people are wringing their hands, “Oh, my God, this is bad. Trump, he's going against protocol. This is horrible. This changes the nature of everything." No, it's just Trump being Trump. It's why he got elected and there are people around the country cheering that he did this.
RUSH: Here is the sound bite. This is Devin Nunes suggesting that (summarized) "I don't know what you're doing here. This is more like a human resources complaint since you don't have any knowledge of anything that we're talking about here."
NUNES: Were you involved in the proposed Trump-Zelensky -- later Pence-Zelensky -- meetings in Warsaw, Poland, on September 1st?
YOVANOVITCH: No, I was not.
NUNES: Did you ever talk to President Trump in 2019?
YOVANOVITCH: No, I have not.
NUNES: Mick Mulvaney?
YOVANOVITCH: No, I have not.
NUNES: Thank you, Ambassador. Uh, I’m not exactly sure what the ambassador is doing here today. This is the House Intelligence Committee that’s now turned into the House Impeachment Committee. This seems more appropriate for the Subcommittee on Human Resources at the Foreign Affairs Committee.
RUSH: That is exactly right. (summarized exchange) "This seems more like it's intended for the Subcommittee on Human Resources at the Foreign Affairs Committee, because we've got an ambassador here that's upset she was replaced" (sobbing) and she feels really bad about it! (wailing) "You didn't talk to the president?" "No." "You weren't on the phone call?" "No." "You never talked to Mulvaney?" "No." "What about all of 2019." "Nope!" "Then why are you here? Nothing against you, Madam Ambassador. Why are you here?"
To the phones we go. Springfield, Illinois. Karen, you're first. It's great to have you today on Open Line Friday. Hi.
CALLER: Mega Dittos, Rush.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: I totally agree. What it looks like to me, she got the pink slip. She got invited to the exit interview after getting let go, and she goes to the exit interview. Instead of being a 10-, 15-minute wrap-up, he turned it into now, what, 12, 15 hours? That's certainly not how the exit interview should go.
RUSH: Let me tell you why she's there. I've mentioned this before, and a lot of you are going to think, "Oh, c'moooon, Rush." This is why she's there. In her deposition... Folks, they are looking for anybody from the ambassadorial core to back up Kent and Taylor that Trump doesn't know what he's doing, that he presents a danger. That he's irresponsible, blah, blah, blah, blah, that these are the seasoned veterans that are being ignored. She cried in her deposition. I don't know what the question or answer was.
She cried. Andrea Mitchell, NBC News, reported that she was so compelling. They are looking here for emotion. This woman could present herself as (sobbing) "physically damaged, mentally, emotionally damaged by what this brute Trump did." That's one of the reasons... She doesn't have a single fact, folks. She doesn't have a single fact. She doesn't have a morsel of any knowledge having to do with any of the so-called charges here.