Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) has delivered one of the best, most vigorous defenses of President Donald Trump that we’ve seen since the Democrats launched their impeachment inquiry.
Responding to a letter sent by Reps. Devin Nunes and Jim Jordan, asking for any information he might have as to President Trump’s interactions with the Ukrainians, Johnson blew the lid of the Democratic Party’s impeachment theory, stating that Ukraine never felt the slightest pressure to cough up Biden investigations in order to get their military aid. Furthermore, Johnson said that Trump himself rejected the idea of putting political strings on the aid.
“I view this impeachment inquiry as a continuation of a concerted, and possibly coordinated, effort to sabotage the Trump administration that probably began in earnest the day after the 2016 presidential election,” Johnson said.
He recalled being part of the U.S. delegation that attended the inauguration of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in May, at which time he was taken aback when Lt. Col Alexander Vindman publicly contradicted him in front of U.S. embassy staff.
Johnson told staff that a good relationship with Ukraine was crucial to the U.S.’s ongoing strategic position against Russia. Vindman spoke up, insisting that there was no connection between the two relationships.
“My blunt response was: ‘How in the world is that even possible?’” Johnson said.
But while he was irritated by Vindman’s nonsensical analysis, Johnson wasn’t surprised.
“A significant number of bureaucrats and staff members within the executive branch have never accepted President Trump as legitimate and resent his unorthodox style and his intrusion onto their ‘turf,’” Johnson said. “They react by leaking to the press and participating in the ongoing effort to sabotage his policies and, if possible, remove him from office.”
Vindman, of course, has been positioned as one of Adam Schiff’s star witnesses in the Ukraine impeachment charade.
Johnson said that while conversations with and about Ukrainian officials included a lot of talk about corruption, neither he nor anyone he spoke to in Ukraine was aware of any quid pro quo arrangement.
“At no time during those meetings did anyone from Ukraine raise the issue of the withholding of military aid or express concerns regarding pressure being applied by the president or his administration,” Johnson said.
Later, Johnson said that Ambassador Gordon Sondland relayed to him that Ukraine might be more likely to get their aid if they “did something to demonstrate its serious intention to fight corruption and possibly help determine what involvement operatives in Ukraine might have had during the 2016 U.S presidential campaign.”
Johnson, who did not want to see the military aid held up or delayed, contacted President Trump to ask him about this situation.
“I asked him about whether there was some kind of arrangement where Ukraine would take some action and the hold would be lifted,” Johnson said. “Without hesitation, President Trump immediately denied such an arrangement existed. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, I quoted the president as saying, ‘(Expletive deleted) — No way. I would never do that. Who told you that?’ I have accurately characterized his reaction as adamant, vehement and angry — there was more than one expletive that I have deleted.”
If Johnson is to be believed – and we see little reason to doubt his account of what happened – then not only was Trump NOT involved in any quid pro quo demand with Ukraine, he was furious at even having the idea brought to his attention.
But yeah, let’s impeach him. That makes sense.