The Quid Pro Quo Debate

A little bit of this for a little bit of that.

“#UNGA” by The White House is in the Public Domain

A remarkable aspect of the memo released this week by the White House is the degree to which is fully exposes what Trump did. A side helping of remarkable is the degree to which Trump and his supporters are acting like it exonerates him, when, in fact, it is more damning than I expected it to be.

First, I noted the other day, before the memo was released:

If Trump mentioned Biden at all, then he is in very big trouble, because the only logical reason to mention Biden is because Biden is a high-probability opponent in the elections. If he mentioned Giuliani in the call, then that directly connects Trump’s personal agent to the inquiry (Giuliani does not work for the US government. He works for Trump).

Ends up, both were true.

Further, while the words “quid pro quo” aren’t used in the call, nor did Trump say, the words “investigate Biden or we won’t provide military support” that message is clearly present in the call.

From the call, here is Trump describing how the US helps Ukraine more than other countries do and notes that the relationship has not been reciprocal (emphases throughout are mine):

The President: […] I will say that we do a lot for Ukraine. We spend a lot of effort and a lot of time. Much more than the European countries are doing and they should be helping you more than they are. Germany does almost nothing for you. All they do is talk and I think it’s something that you should really ask them about. When I was speaking to Angela Merkel she talks Ukraine, but she ·doesn’t do anything. A lot of the European countries are the same way so I think it’s something you want to look at but the United States has been very very good to Ukraine. I wouldn’t say that it’s reciprocal necessarily because things are happening that are not good but the United States has been very very good to Ukraine.

So, Germany “does almost nothing” and a “lot of the European countries are the same way” but, he notes, “the United States has been very good to Ukraine.”

When defenders of Trump suggests that he didn’t bring up weapons, what do they think the above was referencing? Keep in mind that at the time the call was made Trump was personally holding up military aid to Ukraine.

And the suggestion that the relationship isn’t adequately “reciprocal” raises quids and quos rather obviously.

Zelensky certainly understood that the topic at hand was defense aid:

President Zelenskyy: […] I would also like to thank you for your great support in the area of defense. We are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps specifically we are almost. ready to buy more Javelins from the United States for defense purposes.

Right after telling Zelensky how much the US has done for Ukraine and bringing up reciprocity, and after Zelensky has explicitly raised the issue of weapons, Trump this says:

The President: I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike… I guess you have one of your wealthy people… The server, they say Ukraine has it. There are a lot of things that went on, the whole situation. I think you’re surrounding yourself with some of the same people. I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it. As you saw yesterday, that whole nonsense ended with a very poor performance by a man named Robert Mueller, an incompetent performance, but they say a lot of it started with Ukraine. Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it if that’s possible.

First, the obvious issue here is that after talking about how good the US has been to Ukraine, raising the notion of reciprocity, and right after Zelensky has specifically asked about weapons, Trump asks for “a favor.”

Part of the favor is about a conspiracy theory linked to the DNC server and the Mueller investigation. Via Forbes: The CrowdStrike Conspiracy: Here’s Why Trump Keeps Referencing The Cybersecurity Firm.

*Silicon Valley-based CrowdStrike was hired in 2016 by the DNC to investigate the origins of the hack. The company didn’t give the DNC’s physical server to the FBI, which has been seized on by conspiracy theorists as evidence of a cover up

*According to the false theory, which has been prominent on right-wing blogs and news websites and repeated by Trump and former campaign consultant Roger Stone, Democrats and CrowdStrike concocted evidence to frame Russia for the hack in order to discredit Trump’s win in 2016.

*The supposed evidence of Russia’s innocence relies on the belief that a DNC server has been hidden in Ukraine, possibly by CrowdStrike’s co-founder Dmitri Alperovitch.

[…]

Trump has frequently raised questions about the “missing DNC server” and why the FBI never got to look at it. He even brought it up standing next to Vladimir Putin at the now-infamous 2018 Helsinki meeting, where Trump refused to acknowledge Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election (“You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why didn’t they take the server? Where is the server, I want to know, and what is the server saying?”).

So, the President of the United States was offering up, in a way that had to be difficult for Zelensky to understand, a conspiracy theory. And note that proving that conspiracy true (that the DNC perpetrated a fraud with the help of the Ukrainian government that created false evidence that led to the Mueller report) is mostly about proving that the investigation of him really was a witch hunt after all (oh, and it would clear the Russians, too).

Before anyone says that he is just trying to get to address a theory or who thinks there is a chance this conspiracy theory is true, let me note that if there was a shred of evidence that the DNC, HRC, the Obama administration, or whomever had engaged in such an elaborate activity, then we have law enforcement and other governmental mechanisms to investigate those things. And, if there was a shred of evidence that such a massive fraud was perpetrated, then they should investigate. But babbling on the phone about “Crowdstrike,” and “one of your wealthy people” isn’t the way to get to the bottom of something.

Again: this favor is very much about Trump’s personal goals and desires, not the business of the office which he holds.

Zelensky then goes on to note that Rudy Giuliani has been in Ukraine:

President Zelenskyy: […]. I will personally tell you that one of my assistants spoke with Mr. Giuliani just recently and we are hoping very much that Mr. Giuliani will be able to travel to Ukraine and we will meet once he comes to Ukraine.

This is a major problem because Giuliani is Trump’s personal attorney and we already know that he has been working in Ukraine for campaign-related issues. I cannot stress enough that Giuliani is not a member of the US government and that his interests are for Trump as a private citizen and candidate. And the fact that it appears that he has been working with the State Department does not make his actions better, it makes the actions of State highly problematic. The State Department should not be working to help Trump’s personal attorney attend to campaign-related matters. That is an abuse of power.

Trump continues along those lines, and then drops Biden’s name in as well:

The President: Good because I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair. A lot of people are talking about that, the way they shut your very good prosecutor down and you had some very bad people involved. Mr. Giuliani is a highly respected man. He was the mayor of New York City, a great mayor, and I would like him to call you. I will ask him to call you along with the Attorney General. Rudy very much knows what’s happening and he is a very capable guy. If you could speak to him that would be great. The former ambassador from the United States, the woman, was bad news and the people she was dealing with in the Ukraine were bad news so I just want to let you know that. The other thing, There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me.

Let’s be clear: this is the President of the United States asking a foreign government to investigate a private citizen because that private citizen is linked to a potential political opponent. This is not a formal investigation. This is not law enforcement nor formal diplomacy. This is a head of state trying to leverage another head of state to his government to go after a private citizen because it would be a great favor.

Also, the casual equivalency of Giuliani and Barr, the Attorney General of the United States, is disturbing.

Trump reiterates the need for a call from Giuliani and Barr later in the call.

And if there was any doubt that Zelensky was trying to suck up to his much more powerful counterpart, we get him using Trumpian language about draining the swamp early in the call, and late in the call we get this:

President Zelenskyy: I would like to tell you that I also have quite a few Ukrainian friends that live in the United States. Actually last time I traveled to the United States, I stayed in New York near Central Park and I stayed at the Trump Tower.

As one does.

At any rate, note that if Trump had said, directly: “President Zelensky, the US government will not release defense aid to Ukraine unless there is substantial, and measurable, progress on corruption in Ukraine. The State Department will coordinate with your government on this issue,” that would be perfectly fine. And it would be a quid pro quo in the technical sense of the term, X in exchange for conditions defined as Y. But that would be a public policy outcome linked to the public policy goals of the US government.

To ask for favors in the context of the power of his office to deny (or enhance) help to Ukraine is an abuse of power. Trump asked Zelensky to speak to his personal attorney. He asked Zelensky to investigate a conspiracy theory linked to the alleged origins of what became the Mueller probe. He asked for a political rival to be investigated.

This is all abuse of power. And there is a clearly implied quid pro quo: weapons/support for political help (and it is not too subtle, either).

Also, this is worth noting:

The President: Good because I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair…

The prosecutor in question, Viktor Shoskin, was not “very good”–he was internationally recognized as corrupt.

The New York Times reported the following on March 29, 2016:

The United States and other Western nations had for months called for the ousting of Mr. Shokin, who was widely criticized for turning a blind eye to corrupt practices and for defending the interests of a venal and entrenched elite. He was one of several political figures in Kiev whom reformers and Western diplomats saw as a worrying indicator of a return to past corrupt practices, two years after a revolution that was supposed to put a stop to self-dealing by those in power.

As the problems festered, Kiev drew increasingly sharp criticism from Western diplomats and leaders. In a visit in December, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. said corruption was eating Ukraine “like a cancer.” Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, which props up Ukraine financially, said last month that progress was so slow in fighting corruption that “it’s hard to see how the I.M.F.-supported program can continue.”

[…]

Since his appointment a year ago, Mr. Shokin had been criticized for not prosecuting officials, businessmen and members of Parliament for their roles in corrupt schemes during the government of former President Viktor F. Yanukovych. He also did not press cases for sniping by the police and opposition activists during the street protests in 2014 that killed more than 100 people and wounded about 1,000.

Note, also, the following from the Irish Times also from March of 2016: EU hails sacking of Ukraine’s prosecutor Viktor Shokin.

The European Union has welcomed the dismissal of Ukraine’s scandal-ridden prosecutor general and called for a crackdown on corruption, even as the country’s political crisis deepened over efforts to form a new ruling coalition and appoint a new prime minister.

Ukraine’s parliament voted overwhelmingly to fire Viktor Shokin, ridding the beleaguered prosecutor’s office of a figure who is accused of blocking major cases against allies and influential figures and stymying moves to root out graft.

As such, the narrative that Biden went in and got a great prosecutor fired is just incorrect.

FILED UNDER: Donald Trump, Impeachment, US Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor of Political Science and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. drj says:

    Of course, going after Hunter Biden is not a proper US foreign policy objective.

    So it doesn’t even matter if there was a quid pro quo. The quid (Trump asking Zelensky to go after Biden) was sufficient to establish criminality.

    The pro quo (renewal of military assistance) only makes it worse.

    ReplyReply
    8
    1
  2. James Joyner says:

    I don’t see any way to read that call as anything other than a threat to withhold US Government support unless the Ukrainian government does Trump a favor. That the favor in question just so happens to be about the son of his most likely 2020 adversary is, to say the least, problematic. And that he misused a classification portal and tried to bypass Federal law on whistleblower procedures to cover it up certainly doesn’t help.

    ReplyReply
    13
    1
  3. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    I keep thinking about Reynold’s comment from yesterday…how ridiculous it is that Republicans have chosen this ass-hat to pledge their fealty to, and destroy the party for.
    Again…this whole episode is over conspiracy theories and debunked claims.
    And for that, and to appease a false orange god, the GOP is willing to destroy itself.

    ReplyReply
    3
    1
  4. grumpy realist says:

    The argument from the other side will be “well, Trump didn’t explicitly say it was a quid pro quo, therefore obviously he’s innocent.”

    May they all live in locations infested with Mafia dons asking for protection money and then, when they complain to the police, have the exact same argument turned on them to explain why a case can’t be brought. Goose, gander.

    ReplyReply
    10
    1
  5. CSK says:

    @James Joyner: Nor that Trump threatened the life of a CIA officer.

    ReplyReply
    6
    1
  6. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    I’m left wondering why not a single US Newspaper has called for Trump’s resignation.
    Obviously he isn’t going to.
    But 100’s called for Clinton to resign for a bj in the Oval Office.

    ReplyReply
    11
    1
  7. @drj:

    So it doesn’t even matter if there was a quid pro quo. The quid (Trump asking Zelensky to go after Biden) was sufficient to establish criminality.

    To be clear, I concur.

    ReplyReply
    9
    1
  8. Andy says:

    Good summary Steven.

    Even giving Pres. Trump the benefit of the doubt, it’s difficult to see a charitable, reasonable or legitimate explanation for the details we know so far.

    ReplyReply
  9. @Andy: The best defense that Trump has, such as it is, is that he actually thinks this is all okay and the way governments function.

    That doesn’t excuse him, mind you, but it is the best defense he has.

    ReplyReply
  10. Andy says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    I think that’s probably the best explanation. He still doesn’t seem to realize that the tactics one can use to gain leverage in real estate deals can’t be used as President.

    ReplyReply
  11. michael reynolds says:

    @Andy: @Steven L. Taylor:

    No, that doesn’t fly. Trump showed consciousness of guilt when he tried to cover it up, and then lied about it, then told a different lie, and threatened the whistleblower. Trump is a rich kid who’s been getting a pass his entire worthless life, it’s not that he doesn’t know right from wrong, he just doesn’t think any of that applies to him. And now he has no grown-ups around to stop him from self-harm.

    ReplyReply
    11
    2
  12. @michael reynolds: Well, the defense that the rules don’t apply to him is pretty much what I am saying, and it really isn’t a defense.

    ReplyReply
  13. Mikey says:

    As such, the narrative that Biden went in and got a great prosecutor fired is just incorrect.

    I’m not at all surprised Trump considers Shokin a great prosecutor. Shokin allowed corruption at the highest levels to proceed unchecked by the law.

    ReplyReply
  14. James Joyner says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    I keep thinking about Reynold’s comment from yesterday…how ridiculous it is that Republicans have chosen this ass-hat to pledge their fealty to, and destroy the party for.

    Honestly, it’s pretty easy to explain: he got their party’s nomination and then got elected President.

    Most elected Republicans were skeptical of, if not hostile to, Trump. But when it came down to Trump vs Hillary Clinton, the choice was to either back Trump or leave the party. When he got sworn in as President, for all intents and purposes, he became the party.

    It’s possible that impeachment will serve as a safety valve. It could rid Republicans of Trump and given them a chance to save the party.

    ReplyReply
  15. DrDaveT says:

    @James Joyner:

    It’s possible that impeachment will serve as a safety valve. It could rid Republicans of Trump and given them a chance to save the party.

    Serious question: how many GOP Senators do you think might possibly buy that argument, and will they dare to collude (to borrow a term) to make it happen?

    ReplyReply
  16. Kingdaddy says:

    I think we’re inevitably headed to a defense based on stupidity and ignorance. It may be completely cynical, or it may be, to some large or small degree, completely honest. However, I don’t see a reason why the Trump team won’t at some point say, (1) he doesn’t understand the fundamentals of American government, and his job, but that’s OK because people voted for him to be a “disrupter,” and (2) sure, he has a limited intellect and serious personality disorders, but that’s OK, because of tax cuts and Supreme Court seats.

    ReplyReply
  17. @Kingdaddy: Yup.

    ReplyReply
  18. Mikey says:

    @Kingdaddy: I think I’ve heard #1 many times since January 2017, and even if the GOP doesn’t explicitly state #2, their actions indicate they hold it as a guiding principle.

    ReplyReply
  19. Kathy says:

    @Kingdaddy:

    I’ve been thinking lately a good attorney would use senility/dementia as a defense. But then that would disqualify Trump from his position, necessitating a 25th Amendment move.

    And if Pence is involved as some have pointed out, that would mean President Nancy Pelosi until at least January 2021.

    ReplyReply
    1
    1
  20. Raoul says:

    This is the best summary of the conversation I have read
    – well done.

    ReplyReply
  21. Joe says:

    Concurring with Stephen, we would be in a very different place if the quid (or is it the quo) were an object of US policy and not a personal goal of DJT.

    I was rewatching The Godfather (I) yesterday and it was stunning how much the conversations on his daughter’s wedding day sounded like this call summary. It’s like DJT has seen this movie several times and has done everything but stuff cotton in his cheeks.

    Also stunning, so many in the room with DJT could read that summary and not see the glaring problem. “Yes, Emperor, those are truly lovely clothes!” That’s the ultimate problem of yes-men. They all watched that and said, yes, this is how government is supposed to work.

    ReplyReply
    3
    1
  22. @Joe:

    Also stunning, so many in the room with DJT could read that summary and not see the glaring problem.

    Well, if I understand the whilstleblower report properly, some of them did understand, and that is why they put it in the special classified system (i.e., they helped cover it up).

    And it would seem that some others may have been sources for that report.

    But yes: they basically went along with it.

    ReplyReply
  23. Indeed: this goes to show why staff and appointees matter.

    ReplyReply
  24. @Raoul: Thanks.

    ReplyReply
  25. Tevr says:

    What’s that term I’ve heard lawyers use about situations like where people take actions to hide the transcript in a classified database? “Consciousness of Guilt”? I’m not a lawyer, but I have a good idea with that means.

    ReplyReply
  26. Teve says:

    It occurs to me that I haven’t heard any of the Trump Chumps say No Collusion! lately.

    ReplyReply
    1
    1
  27. Joe says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    By those in the room, I mean those who decided it was a good idea to release the phone call summary. I agree with you that those who heard the call understood the problem and thus generated the complaint. But those who read the summary and thought it exonerated DJT are just not working in the real world.

    ReplyReply
  28. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Joyner:

    Honestly, it’s pretty easy to explain

    I guess…but the unfettered fealty…I mean, look at what has happened to Graham!!! He’s embarrassing himself.

    ReplyReply
  29. mattbernius says:

    @Andy:

    He still doesn’t seem to realize that the tactics one can use to gain leverage in real estate deals can’t be used as President.

    At which point, Impeachment again seems an option to remove a dangerously inept leader.
    @Joe:

    Also stunning, so many in the room with DJT could read that summary and not see the glaring problem.

    If you read the whistleblower complaint, the did see this issue which is why, to Andy’s point from yesterday, this was improperly classified (most likely without Trump’s knowledge).

    Once he decided to release the memo, then there was nothing they could do.

    ReplyReply
  30. Teve says:

    July 25 Trump made the most recent Ukraine phone call. 3 days later Coats’s resignation was announced. His last day was August 15. The next day the new acting DNI got the whistleblower complaint.

    Tell me Coats didn’t find out what was up and say “NOPE. FUCK YOU, FUCK THIS, SUE GET YOUR SHIT WE’RE OUT.”

    ReplyReply
  31. Moosebreath says:

    @James Joyner:

    “Most elected Republicans were skeptical of, if not hostile to, Trump. But when it came down to Trump vs Hillary Clinton, the choice was to either back Trump or leave the party. When he got sworn in as President, for all intents and purposes, he became the party.”

    I think this explanation, while fitting the current era and party, was not true not so long ago. Presidents like Carter and Bush the Elder did not find that to be the case, and often clashed with Congressional leaders who had more control over the party.

    ReplyReply
  32. Teve says:
  33. Kathy says:

    About “the server,” it’s far more likely there were a number of servers, not just one, and which were used for more than just email. The DNC is a large, sprawling organization, after all. One server won’t cut it. The company I work for is large, and has offices, plants, and warehouses in several states. We have a bunch of servers for various purposes, like email, accounting software, logistics, inventory, etc.

    Further, if you commit a crime or fraud involving your servers, you don’t hide them somewhere. you wipe the hard drives, gather all the back-ups, run the whole thing through a wood chipper, set the fragments on fire, mix the ashes and remaining solids with concrete, and throw the blocks of concrete at widely spaced points in the ocean.

    ReplyReply
  34. Teve says:

    @Kathy:

    Further, if you commit a crime or fraud involving your servers, you don’t hide them somewhere. you wipe the hard drives, gather all the back-ups, run the whole thing through a wood chipper, set the fragments on fire, mix the ashes and remaining solids with concrete, and throw the blocks of concrete at widely spaced points in the ocean.

    Well okay then 🙂

    ReplyReply
  35. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Kathy:
    Um…you’ve done this before….

    ReplyReply
  36. Kathy says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    Not with servers.

    ReplyReply
  37. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    @Kathy: Even if you didn’t commit a crime you generally thoroughly destroy or wipe computers being retired. I once worked IT for a company where one of the highlights was, when a server or employee desktop was replaced, we would pull the hard drives and put them in the company’s impact tester, to drop a massive weight on them and reduce them to teeny bits. And that just because no one wanted confidential company information to accidentally get out when the rest of the hardware was recycled, let alone trying to destroy evidence.

    It’s just more evidence of how silly these conspiracy theories are. Yeah, sure, “this server has evidence of illegal activity! I know, let’s ship it to Ukraine!”

    PS: I miss that old job

    ReplyReply
  38. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: My only difference is that I don’t bother wiping the servers since they’re going into the chipper anyway. 🙁

    ReplyReply
  39. @Kathy:

    Further, if you commit a crime or fraud involving your servers, you don’t hide them somewhere.

    There is so much dumb going on here, that I glossed over this. He actually appears to think that the server was whisked away to be hidden in the Ukraine, doesn’t he?

    Ugh.

    ReplyReply
  40. Kathy says:

    @Just Another Ex-Republican:
    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Assume there was one DNC email server, and they shipped it to Ukraine for some reason.

    Then the DNC would have experienced an email outage lasting from several hours to several days, and the IT personnel would have realized, “Holy cow! The server’s missing!”

    Hiding all that would take far more skill, effort, time, and money than the original caper. So would wiping the servers and backups.

    ReplyReply
  41. @Kathy: As has been observed: the stupid, it burns.

    ReplyReply
  42. gVOR08 says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    He actually appears to think that the server was whisked away to be hidden in the Ukraine, doesn’t he?

    It’s likely he believes that, it’s apparently been a thing in RWNJ media. But it may be he just believed he could extort Ukraine into saying so. As someone commented a day or two ago, it’s not clear Trump wanted an investigation so much as he wanted Ukraine to invent evidence.

    ReplyReply
  43. @gVOR08: It is continually disconcerting to know that the President of the United States is a devotee of stupid conspiracies.

    ReplyReply
  44. Teve says:

    Hey Kurt Volker, where you going dude?

    ReplyReply
  45. Jax says:

    We’re gonna need more than a “Like” button on comments by the end of this impeachment stuff, guys. An emoji rolling down a hill laughing uproariously might work. 😉

    ReplyReply
  46. Kathy says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Many conspiracy theories offer deceptively simple explanations to complex issues.

    It seems incredible that a bunch of terrorists with basic knowledge of flight, could bring down two iconic NYC landmarks, kill thousands of people, and wreck a part of the Pentagon. but the notion of 9/11 being an “inside job” is harder to believe.Bringing down such buildings using explosives would take several dozen people, at least, several days just to place the explosives. And these would require drilling into support beams, tearing down walls, etc. And they’d do it in such a way that no one would notice. And then they’d commandeer and crash four commercial flights, since those planes did crash into those buildings. And several more objections.

    But if you don’t think much about it, or assume the explosives can be just placed anywhere in a few hours by a small crew, then it makes sense. And you don’t have to deal with the messy aftermath of a massive terrorist attack, right? But then you’d need to deal with the messy aftermath of a government that committed mass murder on its own citizens, as cover to launch two wars, wouldn’t you?

    There are no simple answers to be had, either way, unless you suspend your thinking with the slogan “9/11 was an inside job!” or “Barack Obama was born in Kenya!” But he’d still be a natural born citizen, as his mother was unquestionably American. No simple answers either way.

    ReplyReply
  47. MarkedMan says:

    @Kathy:

    Not with servers.

    Body parts? Asking for a friend…

    ReplyReply
  48. MarkedMan says:

    @DrDaveT:

    how many GOP Senators do you think might possibly buy that argument, and will they dare to collude (to borrow a term) to make it happen?

    Even if the answer to the first part was “every stinking one of them” the answer to the second will be “No”. It would imply a modern day Republican would put the parties interests above their own, and that ain’t happening. Heck, they won’t put their countries interests above their own, why would they do it for a frickin’ political party?

    ReplyReply
  49. Kathy says:

    @MarkedMan:

    Papers.

    But one might have had some human stick figures drawn on a corner.

    ReplyReply
  50. Jax says:

    I wonder what Robert Mueller is drinking tonight…..

    ReplyReply
  51. An Interested Party says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Terribly ironic, considering that one of the reasons why he is president right now is because of someone else’s server…

    I wonder what Robert Mueller is drinking tonight…..

    Whatever it is, hopefully it won’t make him as incoherent as he was when he testified before Congress…or, for his sake, maybe it will…

    ReplyReply

Speak Your Mind

*