Call of the Wild

Following the release of the call summary between President Trump and Ukraine President Zelensky, Americans are playing a country-wide game of telephone. At first reading, the details from the call seem pretty damning, but by the time it passes through partisan filters, it can mean almost anything. Let’s cut through the static and call the call what it is. From AP: “President Donald Trump repeatedly prodded Ukraine’s new leader to work with the U.S. attorney general and lawyer Rudy Giuliani to investigate Democratic political rival Joe Biden.”

+ Adam Schiff: “It is shocking at another level that the White House would release these notes and felt that somehow this would help the president’s case or cause. Because what those notes reflect is a classic Mafia-like shakedown of a foreign leader.” (The Fraudfather?)

+ In case this controversy didn’t have you at hello, let WaPo’s David Ignatius explain: “Why is this more than just another Trump vs. Democrats mud fight? Because the Ukraine issue is about compromising U.S. national security — and direct pledges to allies — for the president’s personal political gain.”

+ WaPo: Giuliani pursued shadow Ukraine agenda as key foreign policy officials were sidelined. The sequence … involved the abrupt removal of the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, the circumvention of senior officials on the National Security Council, and the suspension of hundreds of millions of dollars of aid administered by the Defense and State departments.”

+ WaPo: Acting director of national intelligence threatened to resign if he couldn’t speak freely before Congress on whistleblower complaint.

+ Next up, the White House is preparing to release whistleblower complaint to Congress.

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