The Impeachment Witness Schiff Wouldn’t Let You Hear
The public portion of Congressman Adam Schiff’s (D-CA) impeachment inquiry was a bust. Support for impeachment dropped by more than 10% over the course of the hearings, and Trump’s popularity rose back up to his 2017 post-inauguration highs. And several days after the hearings were closed and everyone had lost interest, the transcript of one witnesses secret basement deposition was finally released for the public to see.
That interview was conducted by a fellow named Mark Sandy, a career employee at the Office of Management & Budget (OMB). The reason why Sandy’s deposition is so important is because he completely exonerated President Trump.
Sandy’s official job title is “Deputy Associate Director for National Security Programs.” It’s also important to note that Mark Sandy is not a political appointee. This is his day-to-day job at OMB, and he’s been doing it since 2013.
He’s a career bureaucrat. His job seems to entail cutting the checks that go out to other nations as foreign aid or “foreign assistance” as we’re supposed to call it these days, once the aid has been approved by Congress and then finally released by the Executive branch.
In other words, Mark Sandy is the one person in the Executive branch other than President Trump who knows all the details of the $400 million in aid that was released to Ukraine. If there was any quidding or pro-ing or quo-ing that went on, Mark Sandy would be the guy who knows it and could tell us.
Not that presidents demanding a quid pro quo in exchange for releasing foreign aid is a crime – because it’s not. But if that’s the thing that we’re all supposed to be so upset about that we will undo the 2016 election over it, no one would know the details better than Mark Sandy – a guy who entered his current position when Barack Obama was president, and who is still doing the same job.
During Adam Schiff’s public impeachment hearings, the “witnesses” who had not actually witnessed anything gave droning, seemingly endless opening statements. It was a parade of foreign service bureaucrats who hate Donald Trump, talking for 45 minutes each about how vitally important, smart, important, liberal, important, knowledgeable, and important they are to America. They were a bunch of dorks who most likely were unable to secure dates for the Homecoming Dance years ago and are still bitter about it.
Contrast those opening statements with Mark Sandy’s. Here is his opening statement, in its entirety:
“I am here today as a fact witness and as a nonpartisan civil servant and military veteran who proudly serves the Executive Office of the President across administrations. I am not here to advocate for any outcome but simply to honor the oath we all share. Thank you.”
And following that 15-second opening statement, the humble and forthright Mark Sandy proceeded to completely eviscerate the impeachment narrative.
Sandy testified that every explanation that he received for withholding aid to Ukraine was based on one thing, and one thing only. President Trump was concerned that America was completely carrying the freight of Ukraine aid, while other European countries were not chipping in.
According to Sandy’s testimony, the release of Ukraine aid was never tied to investigations of Joe Biden, his son Snorty Biden, or the gas company Burisma that was paying Snorty $50,000 a month for a no-show job in an industry which Snorty had no relevant experience in.
Sandy’s explanation for the withholding of Ukraine aid matches up perfectly with President Trump’s sentiment about foreign aid in general. Why is America expected to be the world’s piggy bank for countries that have nothing to do with us or our national security, while prosperous nations much closer to the regions needing aid chip in next to nothing? (Looking at you, Germany.)
Trump used to complain about the wasteful nature of foreign aid on the Oprah Winfrey Show. There’s absolutely nothing surprising about the fact that he privately espouses the same view that he has publicly expressed for decades.
But Adam Schiff sat on that exculpatory interview. The transcript wasn’t released by Schiff until right before Thanksgiving. This was intentional, of course. It was also a travesty of justice. Any prosecutor who deliberately withheld exculpatory evidence like this from a judge would lose his job.