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Washington Post Editorial Board Shoots Down Every Republican Talking Point About Impeachment in Scathing Editorial

Washington Post Editorial Board Shoots Down Every Republican Talking Point About Impeachment in Scathing Editorial
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee is expected to vote in favor of articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Friday, teeing up a full House vote for next week.

The move comes after weeks of hearings with Republicans shouting in defense of the President and against the efforts to hold him accountable for soliciting foreign assistance in an election.

Now, a new editorial from the Washington Post—whose reporting on the Watergate scandal was instrumental in sparking the impeachment inquiry against former President Richard Nixon—is shooting those talking points down.

The op-ed, titled Impeachment exposes the widening gap between Republicans and the truth, specifically calls out two of the President's most vocal supporters, Congressmen Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL).

Gaetz and Jordan put forth nearly all of the most popular GOP talking points against impeachment, each of which the Washington Post assails.

The editorial first points out the claim that there was no quid pro quo in Trump's July 25 call with the Ukrainian President:

"They said there was no quid pro quo mentioned in a July 25 phone call between Mr. Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky; but the documented contacts between U.S. and Ukrainian officials before the call make clear that when Mr. Zelensky promised to conduct the investigations Mr. Trump wanted, and Mr. Trump answered by offering him a White House visit, they were confirming a precooked deal."

Then on the claim that President Zelensky felt no pressure from the White House.

"The Republicans said the Ukrainians never felt pressured by Mr. Trump, relying on a polite comment Mr. Zelensky made while sitting next to Mr. Trump and disregarding the testimony of U.S. diplomats in Kyiv, who described the Ukrainian president and his aides as 'desperate.'"

As for the talking point that Ukrainians didn't know the military aid was withheld...

"Republicans said the Ukrainians did not know that Mr. Trump had withheld military aid, even though a Pentagon official testified the Ukrainians first asked about the hold the same day the two presidents spoke."

They contextualized the claim that Ukrainians got the aid without announcing any investigations.

"Mr. Jordan and Mr. Gaetz pointed to the fact that Ukrainians received military aid without announcing the investigations. But Mr. Trump released the aid two days after the announcement of a congressional investigation of his extortion attempt — and Mr. Zelensky still has not been invited to the White House."

And, finally, shot back against some of the more insulting claims made by House Republicans.

"Mr. Gaetz and several colleagues sunk still lower, alleging that Mr. Biden and his son Hunter were guilty of corruption and that Mr. Trump was justified in demanding an investigation of them and of a Russia-propagated allegation that Ukraine and not Russia hacked the server of the Democratic National Committee in 2016. Both charges were debunked by multiple U.S. officials and, in the case of Ukraine's alleged interference, the U.S. intelligence community. Yet, Republicans follow Mr. Trump in brazenly restating them."

After hours of lies trumpeted throughout the hearings and markup, others were fed up with the lies as well.

The editorial hammered home one more point:

"The airing of such disinformation may advance Mr. Trump's underlying aim with Ukraine, which was to smear an opponent and cloud the record of Russian interference. But it does nothing to refute the charges against the president."

On Friday morning, the House Judiciary Committee voted to send articles of impeachment to the House floor, where it's likely to impeach the President.