Team Trump Unleashes 'Quid Pro Joe' Nickname, Flips the Script on Ukraine Allegations
President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign is throwing allegations of a quid pro quo straight back at Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, who as vice president was involved in stifling a prosecution in Ukraine that may have targeted his son.
Democrats have claimed Trump tried to strike a quid pro quo deal with Ukraine by releasing $400 million in aid in exchange for renewed prosecution of a 2016 case that was dropped at Biden’s request. However, a transcript of a controversial July 25 call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, which a whistleblower claimed was improper, shows the aid issue was never raised.
The Trump campaign sent out a fundraising email Sunday that put the affair in a different light.
“The ‘whistleblower‘ had NO direct knowledge of the call AND he is in favor of one of the corrupt 2020 Democrats. Total political bias!” the email said, according to the Washington Examiner.
“The Democrats are trying to DESTROY the Republican Party and all that it stands for,” the email read. “In 2016, millions of hard-working Americans, like you, were called ‘deplorable.’ Now, the Left is calling you “DESPICABLE.” What’s really despicable is the gross double standard the corrupt Democrats are giving QUID PRO JOE.”
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) September 28, 2019
Others have noted that although the main target of the Democrats is Trump, Biden cannot escape damage if the issue remains a political firestorm.
“The first casualty of [House Speaker Nancy] Pelosi’s cause is almost certain to be the front-runner for the party nomination. Joe Biden has already, this past week, fallen behind Sen. Elizabeth Warren in Iowa, New Hampshire and California,” conservative commentator Patrick Buchanan wrote in a column Friday.
“By making Ukraine the focus of the impeachment drive in the House, Pelosi has also assured that the questionable conduct of Biden and son Hunter Biden will be front and center for the next four months before Iowa votes,” Buchanan wrote.
Hunter Biden was paid $50,000 a month as a board member of Burisma Holdings, a Ukranian gas company that was investigated by a prosecutor whom Joe Biden bragged about getting fired.
Buchanan was not the only commentator to note that Democrats cannot attack Trump without damaging Biden.
“The second consequence, or perhaps I should say casualty: Joe Biden. That now-famous Ukraine call sucked him right back into the scandal mill,” Stuart Varney wrote in an opinion piece on Fox Business.
“As vice president, he was demanding the firing of a Ukrainian prosecutor who was investigating his son, Hunter Biden. The only reason hunter Biden was involved in business with Ukraine and China was the fact that his dad was vice president. He’s what the Chinese call a ‘princeling.’ This does not help Joe Biden. It hurts him. And it hurts the Democrats because, without Joe, they’re left with socialists, Warren and Sanders, to carry the Democrat flag in 2020,” he wrote.
Varney said the impeachment effort launched by Democrats last week based on the Ukraine phone call will have no good outcomes.
“This impeachment drive is the result of unbridled hatred and contempt. It started the day Donald Trump was elected president and has not let up for a single day ever since. We’ve gone through Russia, Russia, Russia: that died. Then it was obstruction of justice: that’s either stalled or dead. Now it’s ‘the phone call to Ukraine’ that’s officially launched the impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump,” he wrote.
“Congress does nothing. Joe Biden sucked into yet more scandal. A country even more bitterly divided. Such are the consequences of hate and contempt,” Varney wrote.
Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Kimberly A. Strassel said nailing Biden and Trump could be a twofer for far-left Democrats.
“Since Democrats insist on making this all about Ukraine, get ready for daily new revelations about the young Mr. Biden’s questionable activities and ‘Quid Pro Joe’s’ involvement. This is why the former vice president’s promises that this scandal will fade are nonsense. True, the media is doing double-duty on his behalf. Its general line is that Mr. Biden’s conflicts are fine; asking about them is corrupt,” Strassel wrote.
“The problem for Joe Biden is that outright criminality is not necessary for these stories to stink. The appearance of conflict of interest is bad enough, and there is plenty of it.
This could prove campaign-ending because progressives will work to make it so, Strassel wrote.
“While the president might want Mr. Biden’s Ukraine history to be an issue, the left wants it even more. They saw in the broader Ukraine issue a twofer: their much-desired impeachment proceeding and the hobbling of a not-liberal-enough front-runner,” she wrote.
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