The White House dumped transcripts of President Trump’s calls to Russian strongman Vladimir Putin and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman into the same top-secret computer server where it hid the incriminating record of his dirt-digging call with Ukraine’s president.
The Trump calls were apparently put in the “lock down” server to prevent leaks of embarrassing or even incriminating quotes from the president like he made when he asked Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky to “do me a favor” and probe Democratic rival Joe Biden, a White House official said on condition of anonymity.
The shocking revelation will certainly lead to calls to release the documents, especially since it comes just hours after the Washington Post reported that Trump told Russian officials he was unconcerned about their election interference in a previously undisclosed conversation.
“Reports that President Trump (said) he didn’t mind Russian interference in the US elections are extremely harmful to both our national security and the integrity of our elections,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Saturday. “It’s one of the most disturbing things we’ve learned yet.”
The talks with the Saudi leader are sensitive because Trump has refused to take any action in response to the brutal torture murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, which American intelligence says bin Salman ordered.
The special server, which requires written permission for access even from top officials, is supposed to be reserved for only the most covert intelligence operations. But the Trump White House apparently saw the intense secrecy surrounding it as a useful tool to cover up Trump’s indiscretions.
Along with the call to Zelensky, the transfer of the transcript was one of the actions that prompted an intelligence whistleblower to file the blockbuster complaint that led to Democrats opening an impeachment inquiry.
The push continued to gather steam Saturday as Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Nev.) became the first GOP lawmaker to openly back the impeachment inquiry.
"I want to see what the process produces,” Amodei said on a conference call with Nevada reporters. “And quite frankly, if there’s something there that rises to that level, then guess what, that’s not something that we can have by a Democrat or a Republican.”
Other GOP rebels have suggested that they were “disturbed” or “troubled” by Trump’s actions but have stopped short of supporting impeachment. They have refused to say how they would prevent Trump from continuing to commit such acts.
There were more dramatic developments as the nation hurtles towards a partisan showdown over removing Trump from office.
Trump spewed insults again at Democratic impeachment leaders, branding Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-Manhattan), Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-Queens) as “Do Nothing Democrat Savages” on Twitter.
Can you imagine if these Do Nothing Democrat Savages, people like Nadler, Schiff, AOC Plus 3, and many more, had a Republican Party who would have done to Obama what the Do Nothings are doing to me. Oh well, maybe next time!
He was spotted heading for his usual weekend golf game accompanied by his ally Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)
Rudy Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, is almost certain to be called as a witness given that his freelance dirt-digging on Biden apparently spurred Trump to make the improper demand of Zelensky.
But the ex-mayor said Saturday he won’t testify to the impeachment inquiry unless Trump gives him the green light.
Giuliani abruptly dropped his plans to make a paid appearance at a Russian government-sponsored conference in Armenia where Putin is expected to speak.
The White House also was rocked by the abrupt resignation of Trump’s special envoy after he was one of the first witnesses subpoenaed by House Democrats.
Kurt Volker, a seasoned diplomated appointed by fired ex-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, was named by the whistleblower as someone who tried to “contain the damage” from Giuliani’s stunts.
His resignation could mean a break with Trump by a key insider who would be in a position to detail the inner workings of the Ukraine debacle.
With News Wire Services