In a bizarre interview this week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California claimed that one of her colleagues, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff, “did not make up” quotes from President Donald Trump at a congressional hearing last week.
In fact, Schiff had indeed made up the quotes and even admitted they were a “parody” of what Trump actually said.
Schiff’s controversial behavior came during acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire’s testimony Thursday before the Intelligence Committee.
Maguire was answering questions about Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
So what exactly did the California Democrat say?
“The essence of what the president communicates” during his call with Zelensky, Schiff said, was as follows: “We’ve been very good to your country. Very good. No other country has done as much as we have. But you know what? I don’t see much reciprocity here.”
“I hear what you want,” the congressman continued. “I have a favor I want from you, though. And I’m going to say this only seven times so you better listen good: I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent. Understand? Lots of it, on this and on that. I’m going to put you in touch with people, not just any people, I’m going to put you in touch with the attorney general of the United States, my attorney general, Bill Barr.
“He’s got the whole weight of the American law enforcement behind him. And I’m going to put you in touch with [Trump attorney] Rudy [Giuliani], you’re going to love him, trust me.”
That wasn’t all.
“You know what I’m asking, and so I’m only going to say this a few more times, in a few more ways,” Schiff said. “And by the way, don’t call me again. I’ll call you when you’ve done what I asked.”
Schiff then claimed “this was in sum and character what the president was trying to communicate with the president of Ukraine. It would be funny if it wasn’t such a graphic betrayal of the president’s oath of office.”
Later, he said the fabricated quotes were a “parody” but argued the fact that some people didn’t realize that was a problem in and of itself.
Schiff’s behavior has attracted the ire of many congressional Republicans, as well as Trump himself.
So it came as no surprise when Pelosi was asked about it during an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that aired Thursday during “Good Morning America.”
“Was it right for [Schiff] to have that dramatic interpretation of the president’s transcript of the phone call at the hearing last week?” Stephanopoulos asked.
Pelosi’s response boiled down to one word: Yes
“I want the American people to know what that phone call was about. I want them to hear it,” she said. “So yeah, it’s fair. It’s sad, but it’s using the president’s own words.”
Stephanopoulos, to his credit, corrected the House speaker, noting that Schiff had not actually directly quoted the president.
Nancy Pelosi lying again!
She claims Liar Adam Schiff was
“using the president’s own words. He did not make it up”
— Elizabeth Harrington (@LizRNC) October 3, 2019
“Those weren’t the president’s words, it was an interpretation of the president’s words. They’re saying he made this up,” the ABC host said.
“He did not make it up,” Pelosi responded.
She then launched into a bizarre explanation of how she and her colleagues are defending the Constitution, while Republicans are not.
“Look, I’m going to tell you something,” Pelosi said.
“When I took the oath of office to support and defend the Constitution, as my colleagues have done as well, I did not say I will do this as long as the Republicans can understand the Constitution. So the fact that their loyalty is to Trump and not to the Constitution is not going to slow down or impair our ability to keep the Republic.”
So there you have it.
Pelosi insisted that Schiff had used Trump’s “own words,” even though he clearly didn’t and even admitted as much.
Either the speaker of the House was telling an easily debunked lie about Schiff’s behavior, or she had absolutely no idea what she was talking about.
Either way, it’s not a good look for the face of House Democrats’ efforts to impeach Trump.
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