Plain As Day

The Center for Public Integrity went through the Freedom of Information Act to obtain copies of emails that, while heavily redacted, add more evidence that Trump directly ordered Ukraine military aid halted to pressure President Zelensky.

From Axios:

The Office of Management and Budget ordered the Pentagon to withhold military aid to Ukraine 91 minutes after President Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, emails released to the Center for Public Integrity show.

Details: The 146 pages of heavily redacted emails between the OMB and the Pentagon obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request and court order also show Trump asked about withholding aid to Ukraine the month before his July 25 call with Zelensky.

Today Chuck Schumer used the emails to argue for witnesses at the impeachment trial.

On Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) zeroed in on newly disclosed emails from Mike Duffey, an Office of Management and Budget official, which show he had requested the hold on the military aid to Ukraine about 90 minutes after President Donald Trump’s infamous July 25 call with the Ukrainian president.

In the emails, obtained via FOIA request by the Center for Public Integrity on Friday, Duffey told OMB and Pentagon officials to keep information on the request “closely held to those who need to know to execute direction.”

“If there was ever an argument that we need Mr. Duffey to come testify, this is that information,” Schumer told reporters during a press conference on Sunday. “This email is explosive.”

“A top administration official, one that we’ve requested, is saying ‘Stop the aid’ 91 minutes after Trump called Zelensky, and said ‘Keep it hush-hush,’” the Democratic leader added. “What more do you need to request a witness?”

Mitch McConnell is holding out for a unicorn, or maybe a note from God. There is nothing that would justify holding a real trial.

White House officials are predicting that Nancy Pelosi will cave on the impeachment articles, but I don’t think so. We may be in a holding pattern for a while.