Donald Trump on Monday upped the ante against House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, saying he should be arrested for ‘treason’ because the congressman read a parody version of the phone call between the president and his Ukrainian counterpart.
‘Rep. Adam Schiff illegally made up a FAKE & terrible statement, pretended it to be mine as the most important part of my call to the Ukrainian President, and read it aloud to Congress and the American people. It bore NO relationship to what I said on the call. Arrest for Treason?,’ the president wrote.
Schiff, who’s taken the lead for Democrats in the impeachment inquiry, became a target of Trump’s wrath after the California Democrat read a mocking version of the transcript between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a congressional hearing last week.
President Trump called for House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (above) to be arrested for reading a parody version of his call with the Ukrainian president in Thursday’s hearing
Donald Trump also kept up his steady stream of complaints about the whistle-blower who prompted the impeachment investigation
Additionally on Monday, the president kept up his steady stream of complaints about the whistle-blower who prompted the impeachment investigation into the president, arguing the person’s description of the call between him and Ukrainian president ‘is a fraud.’
Trump stayed out of the public eye over the weekend – spending time at his Trump National Golf Club in Virginia – but he was active on Twitter as he berated the media, Democrats, and the whistle-blower.
He added to his litany of complains on Monday morning, writing: ‘The Fake Whistleblower complaint is not holding up. It is mostly about the call to the Ukrainian President which, in the name of transparency, I immediately released to Congress & the public. The Whistleblower knew almost nothing, its 2ND HAND description of the call is a fraud!’
The president launched six tweets in around an hour on Monday blasting back against the impeachment inquiry.
‘The Greatest Witch Hunt in the history of our Country!,’ he complained of the investigation into his call with Zelensky.
‘Again, the President of the Ukraine said THERE WAS NO (ZERO) PRESSURE PUT ON HIM BY ME. End of case!,’ he noted.
He also claimed whistle-blower rules were changed shortly before his accuser came forward.
‘WHO CHANGED THE LONG STANDING WHISTLEBLOWER RULES JUST BEFORE SUBMITTAL OF THE FAKE WHISTLEBLOWER REPORT? DRAIN THE SWAMP!,’ he wrote.
‘#FakeWhistleblower,’ he added.
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, a staunch Trump ally, argued on Sunday the ‘hearsay’ rule regarding whistle-blowers was changed shortly before the person came forward.
‘I want to know who told the whistle-blower about the phone call. I want to know why they changed the rules about whistle-blowers not – the hearsay rule was changed just a short period of time before the complaint was filed,’ Graham told CBS’ ‘Face the Nation.’
Conservative websites also have claimed the rules were changed to allow second-hand information to be sufficient for a whistle-blower’s claims.
The Federalist reported the rule change happened sometime over a one-year period ‘between May 2018 and August 2019.’
The whistle-blower was not on the call with Trump and Zelensky but based his or her complaint on sources who heard the conversation and read the transcript.
Details in the whistle-blower’s letter about the call were later confirmed when the transcript of the conversation was released.
Trump and Graham played golf together over the weekend.
The president is attacking the whistle-blower as the person’s lawyer, in a letter to acting Director of National Intelligence Director Joseph Maguire, wrote about concerns of the whistle-blower’s safety.
Attorney Andrew Bakaj, the lead attorney for the whistle-blower wrote on Saturday about concerns their client ‘will be put in harm’s way’ and specifically cited a Trump tweet in the matter.
‘The fact that the President’s statement was directed to “the person that gave the Whistleblower the information” does nothing to assuage our concerns for our client’s safety,’ Bakaj wrote.
‘Unfortunately, we expect this situation to worsen, and to become even more dangerous for our client and any other whistleblowers, as Congress seeks to investigate this matter,’ he noted.
Additionally, in a series of tweets over the weekend, the president pushed back against allegations he should be impeached for urging Zelensky to investigate Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden.
The president launched six tweets in around an hour on Monday blasting back against the impeachment inquiry
He also demanded to meet the whistle-blower.
‘Like every American, I deserve to meet my accuser, especially when this accuser, the so-called ‘Whistleblower,’ represented a perfect conversation with a foreign leader in a totally inaccurate and fraudulent way,’ Trump tweeted.
Additionally, the president accused Schiff of lying to Congress last week about what Trump said to Zelensky in their call and suggested it was ‘treason.’
‘He wrote down and read terrible things, then said it was from the mouth of the President of the United States. I want Schiff questioned at the highest level for Fraud & Treason,’ he wrote.
The White House released a transcript of the July 25 phone call on Tuesday.
In an Intelligence committee hearing on Thursday, in his opening statement, Schiff paraphrased a White House memo on the call in what he later said was ‘in part, parody.’
‘This is the essence of what the president communicates,’ Schiff said at the hearing. ‘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. I have a favor I want from you, though, and I’m gonna say this only seven times, so you better listen good,’ Schiff noted. ‘I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand? Lots of it — on this and on that.’
Trump also pushed a comment made by Senator Lindsey Graham on ‘Face the Nation’ Sunday morning that claimed the whistle-blower rules were changed before the accusation against him
Trump and his allies claim Biden, when he was vice president, pressured the Ukrainian government to fire the country’s top prosecutor to protect his son Hunter, who sat on the board of a Ukrainian gas company, Burisma Holdings, accused of corrupt practices.
There has been no evidence of illegal activity or wrongdoing in Ukraine by the Bidens.
But the transcript from the July 25 call shows Trump urged Zelensky to investigate the matter and said his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, would be in touch as would Attorney General William Barr.
The Justice Department said Barr never contacted the Ukraine and had no knowledge of Trump’s call.
But the matter resulted in Speaker Nancy Pelosi announcing a formal impeachment inquiry into the president last week.
‘We could not ignore what the president did. He gave us no choice. So it wasn’t any change of mind. I always said we will follow the facts where they take us. And when we see them, we will be ready. And we are ready,’ she told ’60 Minutes’ on Sunday.