We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

The Trump–Ukraine Transcript Contains Evidence of a Quid Pro Quo

1 0 0
25.09.2019

I haven’t been a litigator since 2015. I haven’t conducted a proper cross-examination since 2014. But if I couldn’t walk a witness, judge, and jury through the transcript of Donald Trump’s call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky and demonstrate that a quid pro quo was more likely than not, then I should just hang up my suit and retire in disgrace. Far from being “scattershot” — as my esteemed colleague Kyle Smith declares — the actual sequence is extremely tight, and the asks are very clear.

Indeed, as I also laid out today in Time and on Twitter, the sequence unfolds quite literally in consecutive paragraphs.

First, right near the beginning of the call, President Trump signals his displeasure with Ukraine. He notes that while the United States has been “very good” to Ukraine, he “wouldn’t say” that Ukraine has been “reciprocal” to the United States. There’s nothing subtle about this statement. It’s plain that Trump wants something from Ukraine.

To be clear, there is nothing inherently wrong with that. Nations strike deals all the time. It’s the nature of the proposed deal that’s potentially problematic, not whether two leaders........

© National Review