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MATTHEW BOOSE: Ukraine-gate is Russiagate with a bad facelift. It should scare us that it’s even happening.
The Democrat’s impeachment “inquiry” is not about anything Trump did or didn’t do. Like the anti-climactic Russian soap opera that came before it, it’s about discrediting President Donald Trump before the 2020 election. Their last attempt failed; unashamed and undeterred, they’re giving it another shot.
Nancy Pelosi deserves some credit. She played the waiting game. She knew that the Russia hoax was a loser, and she has been rewarded for her patience. Russiagate was a long, miserable war of attrition that ended in spectacular embarrassment. Robert Mueller’s sphinxlike pronouncements muddled what was an impossibly byzantine tale to begin with, and by the end of the saga, the Democrats were demoralized and resigned to beating Trump at the ballot box.
But then, as if by divine intervention … a mysterious bureaucrat with a “complaint” emerged to save the day. Lightning flashed, the earth shook. The verdict was rendered: guilty! An anonymous, highly respected man from the CIA said that the Orange Man is Bad, and henceforth, Democracy is Canceled.
Now, Democrats have forgotten all about Robert Swan Mueller and have moved onto their new hero. Even more enigmatic than his predecessor, the “whistleblower” has the advantage of being not only silent, but invisible. He’s also, Democrats say, invincible. His claims are unquestionable, and anyone who sees a Russia repeat in the works is a crazy conspiracy theorist who is “inciting violence” against this helpless victim.
This is all familiar tripe by now, after the maundering, national fever dream of Russiagate, which elevated Mueller and the ominously named “intelligence community” to a position of god-like, moral pre-eminence.
The Ukraine scandal is following well-worn tracks, ones which are so obvious by now that it is actually insulting for the left to expect the American people to go along. Once again, we have a smattering of anonymously fed allegations against the president, this time provided by some CIA spook with an anti-Trump axe to grind (rather than a former British spy with an anti-Trump prejudice); these allegations, contained within a document elevated to the status of the Federalist Papers by a malicious media (much like the Mueller Report before it), have provided the “hook” for the press to launch a relentless cannonade at the White House.
The same cast of characters, from the CIA to Shifty Schiff, have reprised their roles. We even get the same talking points! There is, once again, a “cover up” in our midst. Just as before, when Trump “covered up” the Mueller report by promptly releasing it, we are now told that Trump “covered up” the Ukraine phone call by disclosing its transcript and the full whistleblower’s complaint in a matter of days. If you’re skeptical about the cover-up, consider that there might be a cover up of the cover up.
As it turns out, Pencil Neck Schiff got a tip from Deep Throat before the whistleblower complaint even surfaced, and Schiff lied about it. It’s almost a verbatim repeat, but somehow even more ridiculous. Like last time, Democrats are threatening to hold Trump accountable for “obstruction” if he dares push back against this nakedly partisan coup.
Despite all the red flags that this is obviously nonsense, Pelosi seems to think that the Ukraine story is fresh and momentous enough to make impeachment a risk worth taking. Many seem to think that she is not thinking at all — that she is trying to placate the left and actually has walked into a giant trap. But clearly she senses some advantage, or she would not be doing this.
Why suppose that this will all play out like Clinton’s impeachment and punish the Democrats more than it hurts Trump? Pelosi does not actually need to succeed in removing Trump from office to hurt him. Think of the damage the left was able to do with Russiagate. It permanently sullied Trump’s presidency, wasted enormous amounts of time and resources, and convinced a sizable part of the electorate that the president was illegitimate and a Russian spy. Now take that and multiply it, while factoring in the proximity of the 2020 election.
If Ukraine-gate is a repeat of Russiagate, then it still has great potential, like its predecessor, to harm Trump. Public opinion is fluid; who knows what will happen?
So far, Pelosi has the Democrats hovering in the limbo of impeachment-without-impeachment: it’s more of the same sham hearings and pointless “inquiries,” but with more political theater. That it’s mostly performance art so far does not mean that Pelosi isn’t serious. Pelosi seems to think that she can tar Trump as a criminal months before the election, and that the solemn pageantry (or corny attempts at such) of impeachment will be enough to convince the American people that there’s really a there there. She can rely on the media in this war effort, which already has its arsenal lined up, cannons pointed at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
The more serious take-away is that the media and the Deep State are more recalcitrant, more powerful than could have been imagined.
Back in April, I predicted that there would be no consequences for the media or the Deep State actors who perpetrated Russiagate. I am waiting with bated breath for that IG report, but so far, there has been no real accountability of any kind. No penalties have come for John Brennan or James Comey (we’ll see about McCabe) or the numberless court eunuchs who promoted the Russia myth in their never-ending war of succession against a democratically elected president.
Not only have there not been consequences, but those same players and institutions are attempting Russiagate a second time, in plain sight — and so far they’re getting away with it.
Russiagate was about discrediting the 2016 election. It’s a little late for that now, so Democrats are looking ahead and attempting to damage Trump’s re-election effort. Joe Biden is no loss for them if it means turning public opinion against the Bad Orange Man.
So far, Trump has been handling it spectacularly. Trump may be an unfocused president but nobody can deny that he knows how to campaign, and right now he’s in war mode. There is absolutely no successful response to this threat which does not involve Trump relentlessly attacking Adam Schiff, the whistleblower, and the whole charade for what it is. Yes, it’s “bullshit.” Let the people know that.
That this repeat is even possible, though, should alarm everyone. So what if Trump wins another term or not, when a host of shadowy, unelected bureaucrats can just make things up and cancel an election whenever they feel like it?
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