Obama Admin Cleared Hunter for Ukraine Gig Despite Warnings State Dep’t Fear Veep’s Son ’conduit for currying influence’

CAP

By Edwin Mora

The Obama administration dismissed warnings raised by top State Department official George Kent in 2015 that the Ukrainian company that was employing then-Vice President Joe Biden’s son Hunter at the time was corrupt, the Washington Post confirmed Thursday.

The Post’s report suggested the Obama administration allowed Hunter Biden to continue serving on Burisma Holdings’ board of directors although it knew the company was corrupt.

Echoing a report from NBC News issued earlier this week, the Post noted:

A career State Department official overseeing Ukraine policy told congressional investigators this week that he had raised concerns in early 2015 about then-Vice President Joe Biden’s son serving on the board of a Ukrainian energy company but was turned away by a Biden staffer, according to three people familiar with the testimony.

George Kent, a deputy assistant secretary of state, testified Tuesday that he worried that Hunter Biden’s position at the firm Burisma Holdings would complicate efforts by U.S. diplomats to convey to Ukrainian officials the importance of avoiding conflicts of interest, said the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of confidentiality rules surrounding the deposition.

Kent said he had concerns that Ukrainian officials would view Hunter Biden as a conduit for currying influence with his father, said the people. But when Kent raised the issue with Biden’s office, he was told the then-vice president didn’t have the “bandwidth” to deal with the issue involving his son as his other son, Beau, was battling cancer, said the people familiar with his testimony.

The Washington Post has previously reported that there had been discussions among Biden’s advisers about whether his son’s Ukraine work would be perceived as a conflict of interest, and that one former adviser had been concerned enough to mention it to Biden, though the conversation was brief.

Kent’s comments came during his closed-door deposition in the House Democrats’ impeachment probe on Tuesday.

When Kent raised his concerns about Burisma, the Obama administration had already cleared Hunter to serve on the company’s board of directors. Hunter joined Burisma’s board of directors in 2014. The former vice president was leading U.S. efforts to crack down on corruption at the time.

The State official explicitly warned the Obama administration that Burisma was “corrupt,” NBC News revealed near the end of its article on Kent’s testimony, noting:

During his nearly 10 hours of testimony, Kent also told members of Congress and their staff that Burisma, the energy company where Hunter Biden was a board member, was corrupt, according to a separate person who was present in the room. Kent said he told the Obama administration in 2016 that they should not hold an event with Burisma because of the company’s extensive corruption in Ukraine.

In the July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that triggered the impeachment probe, Trump urged his counterpart to investigate corruption allegations against Biden and his son Hunter.

As vice president, Biden threatened to withhold aid to Ukraine to force the Eastern European country to fire its top prosecutor in 2016, who had investigated the owner of Burisma, Mykola Zlochevsky, for possible corruption.

Hunter had been serving on the board of Burisma for up to $83,000 per month at the time despite having no background in energy, prompting allegations of corruption. He admitted to ABC News last weekend that his father’s political position helped him secure the lucrative appointment to Burisma’s board of directors.

A “whistleblower” allegation that during the July 25 call Trump attempted to pressure Ukraine into investigating the Bidens by withholding aid triggered the impeachment probe. Trump and Ukraine have denied the allegations.

The Democrats’ impeachment probe is primarily seeking to determine whether Trump withheld aid to Ukraine in a bid to get dirt on White House hopeful Biden. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the leader of the probe, has said, however, that there does not need to be a quid pro quo to impeach Trump.

 

Democratic Presidential Candidates On Impeaching Trump At CNN/NYT Debate

Posted By Ian Schwartz

CNN: The 2020 presidential candidates comment on the impeachment inquiry at the CNN/New York Times debate in Westerville, Ohio.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN MODERATOR: Since the last debate, House Democrats have officially launched an impeachment inquiry against President Trump, which all the candidates on this stage support.  Senator Warren, I want to start with you.  You have said that there’s already enough evidence for President Trump to be impeached and removed from office.  But the question is, with the election only one year away, why shouldn’t it be the voters who determine the president’s fate?

WARREN:  Because sometimes there are issues that are bigger than politics.  And I think that’s the case with this impeachment inquiry.

When I made the decision to run for president, I certainly didn’t think it was going to be about impeachment.  But when the Mueller report came out, I read it, all 442 pages.  And when I got to the end, I realized that Mueller had shown, too, a fare-thee-well, that this president had obstructed justice and done it repeatedly.  And so at that moment, I called for opening an impeachment inquiry.

Now, that didn’t happen.  And look what happened as a result.  Donald Trump broke the law again in the summer, broke it again this fall.  You know, we took a constitutional oath, and that is that no one is above the law, and that includes the president of the United States.

Impeachment is the way that we establish that this man will not be permitted to break the law over and over without consequences.  This is about Donald Trump, but, understand, it’s about the next president and the next president and the next president and the future of this country.  The impeachment must go forward.

COOPER:  Thank you, Senator Warren.  You’re all going to get in on this, by the way.  Senator Sanders, do Democrats have any chance but to impeach President Trump?  Please respond.

SANDERS:  No, they don’t.  In my judgment, Trump is the most corrupt president in the history of this country.  It’s not just that he obstructed justice with the Mueller Report.  I think that the House will find him guilty of — worthy of impeachment because of the emoluments clause.  This is a president who is enriching himself while using the Oval Office to do that, and that is outrageous.

And I think in terms of the recent Ukrainian incident, the idea that we have a president of the United States who is prepared to hold back national security money to one of our allies in order to get dirt on a presidential candidate is beyond comprehension.  So I look forward, by the way, not only to a speedy and expeditious impeachment process, but Mitch McConnell has got to do the right thing and allow a free and fair trial in the Senate.

COOPER:  Vice President Biden, during the Clinton impeachment proceedings, you said, and I quote, “The American people don’t think that they’ve made a mistake by electing Bill Clinton, and we in Congress had better be very careful before we upset their decision.”  With the country now split, have Democrats been careful enough in pursuing the impeachment of President Trump?

BIDEN:  Yes, they have.  I said from the beginning that if, in fact, Trump continued to stonewall what the Congress is entitled to know about his background, what he did, all the accusations in the Mueller Report, if they did that, they would have no choice — no choice — but to begin an impeachment proceeding, which gives them more power to seek more information.

This president — and I agree with Bernie, Senator Sanders — is the most corrupt president in modern history and I think all of our history.  And the fact is that this president of the United States has gone so far as to say, since this latest event, that, in fact, he will not cooperate in any way at all, will not list any witnesses, will not provide any information, will not do anything to cooperate with the impeachment.  They have no choice but to move.

COOPER:  Senator Harris, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said that members of Congress have to be, in her words, fair to the president and give him a chance to exonerate himself.  You’ve already said that based on everything you’ve seen, you would vote to remove him from office.  Is that being fair to the president?

HARRIS:  Well, it’s just being observant, because he has committed crimes in plain sight.  I mean, it’s shocking, but he told us who he was.  Maya Angelou told us years ago, listen to somebody when they tell you who they are the first time.

During that election, Donald Trump told us he could shoot somebody on Fifth Avenue and get away with it.  And he has consistently since he won been selling out the American people.  He’s been selling out working people.  He’s been selling out our values.  He’s been selling out national security.  And on this issue with Ukraine, he has been selling out our democracy.

Our framers imagined this moment, a moment where we would have a corrupt president.  And our framers then rightly designed our system of democracy to say there will be checks and balances.  This is one of those moments.  And so Congress must act.

But the reality of it is that I don’t really think this impeachment process is going to take very long, because as a former prosecutor, I know a confession when I see it.  And he did it in plain sight.  He has given us the evidence.  And he tried to cover it up, putting it in that special server.  And there’s been a clear consciousness of guilt.  This will not take very long.  Donald Trump needs to be held accountable.  He is, indeed, the most corrupt and unpatriotic president we have ever had.

COOPER:  Senator Booker, you have said that President Trump’s, quote, “moral vandalism” disqualifies him from being president.  Can you be fair in an impeachment trial?  Please respond.

BOOKER:  So, first of all, we must be fair.  We are talking about ongoing proceedings to remove a sitting president for office.  This has got to be about patriotism and not partisanship.

Look, I share the same sense of urgency of everybody on this stage.  I understand the outrage that we all feel.  But we have to conduct this process in a way that is honorable, that brings our country together, doesn’t rip us apart.

Anybody who has criticisms about a process that is making all the facts bare before the American public, that works to build consensus, that’s what this nation needs, in what is a moral moment and not a political one.  So I swore an oath to do my job as a senator, do my duty.  This president has violated his.  I will do mine.

COOPER:  Thank you, Senator Booker.

Senator Klobuchar, you have — what do you say to those who fear that impeachment is a distraction from issues that impact people’s day-to-day lives, health care, the economy, and could backfire on Democrats?

KLOBUCHAR:  We can do two things at once.  That’s our job.  We have a constitutional duty to pursue this impeachment, but we also can stand up for America, because this president has not been putting America in front of his own personal interests.

He has not been standing up for the workers of Ohio.  He’s not been standing up for the farmers in Iowa.  And I take this even a step further.  You know, when he made that call to the head of Ukraine, he’s digging up dirt on an opponent.  That’s illegal conduct.  That’s what he was doing.  He didn’t talk to him about the Russian invasion.  He talked to him about that.

So I’m still waiting to find out from him how making that call to the head of Ukraine and trying to get him involved in interfering in our election makes America great again.  I’d like to hear from him about how leaving the Kurds for slaughter, our allies for slaughter, where Russia then steps in to protect them, how that makes America great again.  And I would like to hear from him about how coddling up to Vladimir Putin makes America great again.

It doesn’t make America great again.  It makes Russia great again.  And that is what this president has done.  So whether it is workers’ issues, whether it is farmers’ issues, he has put his own private interests…

COOPER:  Thank you.

KLOBUCHAR:  … and I will not do that.

COOPER:  Thank you.  Secretary Castro, is impeachment a distraction?

CASTRO:  Not at all.  We can walk and chew gun at the same time.  And all of us are out there every single day talking about what we’re going to do to make sure that more people cross a graduation stage, that more families have great health care, that more folks are put to work in places like Ohio, where Donald Trump has broken his promises, because Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania actually in the latest jobs data have lost jobs, not gained them.

Not only that, what we have to recognize is that not only did the Mueller Report point out 10 different instances where the president obstructed justice or tried to, and he made that call to President Zelensky of the Ukraine, but he is in ongoingly — in an ongoing way violating his oath of office and abusing his power.

We have to impeach this president.  And the majority of Americans not only support impeachment, they support removal.  He should be removed.

COOPER:  Mayer Buttigieg, you have said that impeachment should be bipartisan.  There’s been, obviously, very little Republican support to date, yet Democrats are proceeding.  Is that a mistake?

BUTTIGIEG:  Well, it’s a mistake on the part of Republicans, who enable the president whose actions are as offensive to their own supposed values as they are to the values that we all share.

Look, the president has left the Congress with no choice.  And this is not just about holding the president accountable, for not just the things emerging in these investigations, but actions that he has confessed to on television.  It’s also about the presidency itself, because a president 10 years or 100 years from now will look back at this moment and draw the conclusion either that no one is above the law or that a president can get away with anything.

But everyone on this stage, by definition, is competing to be a president for after the Trump presidency.  Remember, one way or the other, this presidency is going to come to an end.  I want you to picture what it’s going to be like, what it’s actually going to feel like in this country the first day the sun comes up after Donald Trump has been president.

It starts out feeling like a happy thought; this particular brand of chaos and corruption will be over.  But really think about where we’ll be:  vulnerable, even more torn apart by politics than we are right now.  And these big issues from the economy to climate change have not taken a vacation during the impeachment process.

I’m running to be the president who can turn the page and unify a dangerously polarized country while tackling those issues that are going to be just as urgent then as they are now.

COOPER:  Thank you, Mr. Mayor.  Congresswoman Gabbard, you’re the only sitting House member on this stage.  How do you respond?

GABBARD:  If impeachment is driven by these hyperpartisan interests, it will only further divide an already terribly divided country.  Unfortunately, this is what we’re already seen play out as calls for impeachment really began shortly after Trump won his election.  And as unhappy as that may make us as Democrats, he won that election in 2016.

The serious issues that have been raised around this phone call that he had with the president of Ukraine and many other things that transpired around that are what caused me to support the inquiry in the House.  And I think that it should continue to play its course out, to gather all the information, provide that to the American people, recognizing that that is the only way forward.

If the House votes to impeach, the Senate does not vote to remove Donald Trump, he walks out and he feels exonerated, further deepening the divides in this country that we cannot afford.

COOPER:  Thank you, Congresswoman.

Mr. Steyer, you’ve been calling for impeachment for two years.  Does there need to be bipartisan support?

STEYER:  Well, Anderson, this is my first time on this stage, so I just want to start by reminding everybody that every candidate here is more decent, more coherent, and more patriotic than the criminal in the White House.

(APPLAUSE)

But I also want to point out that Anderson’s right.  Two years ago, I started the Need to Impeach movement, because I knew there was something desperately wrong at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, that we did have the most corrupt president in the country, and that only the voice and the will of the American people would drag Washington to see it as a matter of right and wrong, not of political expediency.  So, in fact, impeaching and removing this president is something that the American people are demanding.  They’re the voice that counts, and that’s who I went to, the American people.

COOPER:  Mr. Yang, do you think there’s already enough evidence out there to impeach the president?  Please respond.

YANG:  I support impeachment, but we shouldn’t have any illusions that impeaching Donald Trump will, one, be successful or, two, erase the problems that got him elected in 2016.  We’re standing in the great state of Ohio, the ultimate purple state, the ultimate bellwether state.

Why did Donald Trump win your state by eight points?  Because we got rid of 300,000 manufacturing jobs in your towns.  And we are not stopping there.  How many of you have noticed stores closing where you work and live here in Ohio?  Raise your hands.

It’s not just you.  Amazon alone is closing 30 percent of America’s stores and malls, soaking up $20 billion in business while paying zero in taxes.  These are the problems that got Donald Trump elected, the fourth industrial revolution.  And that is going to accelerate and grow more serious regardless of who is in the Oval Office.

The fact is, Donald Trump, when we’re talking about him, we are losing.  We need to present a new vision, and that even includes talking about impeaching Donald Trump.

COOPER:  Congressman O’Rourke, on impeachment, please respond.

O’ROURKE:  You know, I think about everyone who’s ever served this country in uniform.  We have two examples here on this stage tonight in Mayor Buttigieg and Congresswoman Gabbard, those who have willingly sacrificed their lives to defend this country and our Constitution.  We are the inheritors of their service and their sacrifice.

And we have a responsibility to be fearless in the face of this president’s criminality and his lawlessness.  The fact that as a candidate for the highest office in the land, he invited the participation, the invasion of a foreign power in our democracy.  As president, he lied to investigators, obstructed justice, fired James Comey, head of the FBI, tried to fire Mueller, head of the investigation, then invited President Zelensky to involve himself in our politics, as well as China, in exchange for favorable trade terms in an upcoming trade deal.

COOPER:  Thank you, Congressman.

O’ROURKE:  If we do not hold him to account, if there is not justice, not only have we failed this moment, our Constitution and our country, but we have failed everyone who has sacrificed and laid their lives down on the line.

COOPER:  Thank you.

O’ROURKE:  And we cannot do that.

CBS PANEL WORRIES HUNTER BIDEN INTERVIEW HELPED TRUMP

CBS Panel Worries Hunter Biden Interview Helped Trump

‘Don’t ever go on TV again ever. You look awful. You look guilty’

  – OCTOBER 15, 2019

A panel of CBS hosts and analysts agreed that Hunter Biden’s “Good Morning America” interview likely complicated his father’s presidential ambitions and handed President Trump ammunition against Joe Biden.

“Former Vice President Biden is still facing criticism from President Trump over his son Hunter’s ties in the Ukraine. Does he have to respond to that tonight?,” co-host Anthony Mason asked the “CBS This Morning” panel on the Democrat debate Tuesday.

Biden “has to take the fight to Donald Trump,” said former Marco Rubio campaign adviser Terry Sullivan. “This is actually a huge opportunity that they’ve missed. You can either catch spears in politics or you can toss spears. Catching isn’t much fun.”

Lebron James Kneels Before His Chinese Overlords, Then Grovels On Social Media

James has shown his incredible lack of intelligence.

By Shane Trejo

NBA super star Lebron James embarrassed himself on Monday, making incoherent statements regarding China while referencing comments made by Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey in favor of Hong Kong freedom protests against the rogue communist state.

“I don’t want to get into a [verbal] feud with Daryl Morey, but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at hand, and he spoke,” James said to reporters before a preseason game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors.

“And so many people could have been harmed not only financially, physically, emotionally, spiritually. So just be careful what we tweet and say and we do, even though, yes, we do have freedom of speech, but there can be a lot of negative that comes with that, too,” James added.

When reporters asked James to explain his incomprehensible comments, he could not do so. He just continued to repeat what sounded like a script, which very well may have been prepared by his Chinese masters.

“I believe he was either misinformed or not really educated on the situation, and if he was, then so be it,” James said.

“I have no idea, but that is just my belief. Because when you say things or do things, if you are doing it and you know the people that can be affected by it and the families and individuals and everyone that can be affected by it, sometimes things can be changed as well. And also social media is not always the proper way to go about things as well, but that’s just my belief,” he added.

After James was destroyed on social media for his stunningly low IQ comments, he backtracked hours later – showing that he lacks a spine as well as a brain.

CAP

CAP

James’ embarrassing comments come at a time when the NBA is under fire for appeasing China while showing no regard for the values of free speech. Morey was forced to grovel publicly for offending China at a time when the NBA was celebrating its supposedly “woke” liberal opinions on social issues.

“I did not intend my tweet to cause any offense to Rockets fans and friends of mine in China. I was merely voicing one thought, based on one interpretation, of one complicated event. I have had a lot of opportunity since that tweet to hear and consider other perspectives,” Morey said in a nauseatingly obsequious apology.

“I have always appreciated the significant support our Chinese fans and sponsors have provided and I would hope that those who are upset will know that offending or misunderstanding them was not my intention. My tweets are my own and in no way represent the Rockets or the NBA,” he added.

James had previously interjected himself into matters of U.S. politics as if he was some kind of an authority. He regularly criticized President Donald Trump, and voiced support for washed up former NFL QB Colin Kaepernick as he led his anti-American kneeling act for publicity.

“He doesn’t understand the power that he has for being the leader of this beautiful country. He doesn’t understand how many kids, no matter the race, look up to the president of the United States for guidance, for leadership, for words of encouragement…. The people run this country, not one individual — and damn sure not him,” James said about President Trump in 2017.

“I stand with Kap. I kneel with Kap. I feel like what he was talking about nobody wanted to listen to. Nobody wanted to really understand where he was coming from,” James said about Kaepernick in 2018.

James also tweeted this Martin Luther King tribute, which his seem at odds with his China commentary.

CAP

It turns out that James never had a real opinion of his own. He was just a propaganda puppet for Chinese communists this entire time.

 

Hunter Biden Defends Ethics Of Foreign Ventures

 

Posted By Tim Hains

Hunter Biden defended the ethical implications of his private ventures in an interview with ABC News, but conceded a political “mistake.”

“I know I did nothing wrong at all. Was it poor judgment to be in the middle of something that is a swamp in many ways? Yeah,” he told ABC’s Amy Robach at his Los Angeles home.

“I don’t regret being on the board [of a Ukrainian gas company]. What I regret is not taking into account that there would be a Rudy Giuliani and a president of the United States that would be listening to this ridiculous conspiracy idea,”he said, saying the allegations of impropriety have been “debunked by everyone.”

Robach next asked if he would have gotten the board seat if he had a different last name.

“I don’t know, probably not,” he responded.

 

JUST IN: GOP Congressman Matt Gaetz Kicked Out of Impeachment Inquiry Hearing

CAP

 

Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL), a very ardent supporter of President Trump’s, was booted from a congressional hearing Monday morning.

Gaetz, a member of the House Judiciary Committee tried to sit in on a testimony from Fiona Hill, a former National Security Council expert on Russia.

Rep. Gaetz was told to leave the hearing because he was not a member of the House Intelligence Committee.

Gaetz told reporters that Schiff didn’t want him sitting in on Fiona Hill’s testimony because Schiff  likes to use “selective leaks” to damage President Trump.

“It’s not like I’m on agriculture,” Gaetz said to reporters. “What are the Democrats so afraid of?”

Gaetz fired off a tweet blasting Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler and House Intel Chairman “Shifty Schiff.”

CAP

The Democrats’ lies and impeachment (coup) efforts can only thrive in darkness which is why they are conducting everything in secret and behind closed doors.

SHIFTY SCHIFF: ‘THERE DOESN’T NEED TO BE A QUID PRO QUO’ TO IMPEACH TRUMP

Shifty Schiff: ‘There Doesn’t Need to Be a Quid Pro Quo’ to Impeach Trump

Democrats moving impeachment goal posts once again

OCT 14, 2019

House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said that there doesn’t need to be a “quid pro quo” for President Trump to be impeached.

During an appearance on CBS’ “Face The Nation” on Sunday, Schiff appeared to move the goal posts once again, asserting that Trump committed an impeachable offense despite lack of evidence of a quid pro quo in Trump’s phone call with Ukraine’s president.

“Well, we’re keeping our focus right now on the president’s coercion of an ally, that is Ukraine, to create this sham investigations into his political opponent,” Shiff said.

“We have discovered in very short order not only the contents of that call but also the preparatory work that went into that call. The effort to condition something the Ukrainian president deeply sought, that is, a meeting with the president, to establish this new president to the Ukraine had a powerful patron in the United States that was vital importance to Ukraine, that was being conditioned as digging up dirt on the Bidens.”

“There doesn’t need to be a quid pro quo,” Schiff continued. “But it is clear already from the text messaged that this meeting that the Ukraine president sought was being conditioned on their willingness to interfere in the U.S. to help the president. That is a terrible abuse of the president’s power.”

“Whether that abuse goes further, that is the withholding of military aid as leverage. There is certainly strong indication that’s is true as well. We will get to the bottom of it. Here you have a president of the United States abusing his power to the detriment of our national security. And doing so yet to get another foreign country to intervene in our election. It’s hard to imagine more of a corruption of the office than that.”

The reason for Schiff’s sudden dismissal of a “quid pro quo” is obvious: the transcript of the Ukraine phone call released by Trump directly contradicts Democrats’ assertion that he somehow pressured Ukraine President Zelensky to investigate Joe Biden.

 

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑