You’ve got the remarkably troubling history of accepting (and even urging) electoral help from Russia. You’ve got the pressure on Ukraine’s president to dredge up imaginary dirt on a political rival. You’ve got the threat “to hold back almost $400 million in military aid for Ukraine at least a week before a phone call in which Trump is said to have pressured the Ukrainian president to investigate the son of former vice president.” And now you’ve got the reprise of some golden (plated) oldies like “Witch Hunt” and blaming the Ukraine aid scandal on the fact that “European countries have not paid their fair share.” Why would Trump remix the same old misdeeds, lies, and laughable obfuscations? Because the strategy has worked throughout his business and political careers. Lifelong criminals don’t suddenly decide to stop. They have to be stopped. And so far, no one has stopped Donald Trump. That may finally change as Nancy Pelosi seems ready to stick it to Teflon Don. WaPo: House Speaker Pelosi to announce formal impeachment inquiry of Trump. Meanwhile, the whistleblower could be ready to talk. Here’s the latest on a fast-moving story that promises to accelerate. (This morning, I predicted the impeachment inquiry would be launched within 72 hours. Looks like I should have said 72 minutes…)

+ The New Yorker: Trump’s Ukraine Defense Is the Same One He’s Used for Years: I Did It. So What? “Trump certainly won’t change. Right now, he’s banking on Republican cowardice and general scandal fatigue to get him through the whistle-blower story. If he manages to ride it out, he’ll go into next year’s campaign even more convinced that he can get away with anything, and even more likely to set new precedents for Presidential wrongdoing. That’s who he is.” (Trump won’t change. The question was always whether those charged with providing checks and balances would change.)

+ In other news: Trump mocks teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg. (The House should let Greta Thunberg lead the impeachment questioning…)