The latest oops is a mass of documentation that the Trump people tried hard to find a rug big enough to cover everything.

Internal emails show that the White House scrambled to come up with a justification for freezing the money [for military aid for Ukraine] just days after the White House Counsel’s Office was told that an anonymous CIA official had filed a complaint with the agency’s general counsel concerning the president’s July 25 phone call, suggesting people on the inside knew they were fucked.

The Washington Post reports that a confidential White House review of Trump’s decision to put a hold on aid to Ukraine has “turned up hundreds of documents that reveal extensive efforts to generate an after-the-fact justification for the decision and a debate over whether the delay was legal.” In early August, for example, email exchanges show acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney asking acting Office of Management and Budget director Russell Vought to provide and update on the legal rationale for holding up the aid and how much longer it could be delayed.

Yo Russ, will you please get off your ass and come up with this fig leaf for us before we all fry.

Vanity Fair quoting the Post:

Mulvaney’s request for information came days after the White House Counsel’s Office was put on notice that an anonymous CIA official had made a complaint to the agency’s general counsel about Trump’s July 25 call to Volodymyr Zelensky during which he requested Ukraine investigate former vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden, as well as an unfounded theory that Ukraine interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This official would later file a whistle-blower complaint with the intelligence community’s inspector general, which ignited the impeachment push when its existence became public.

Now why would a CIA official object to any of that? Probably because Ukraine is an ally, and under attack by Russia, which is not an ally but a Hostile Power. Probably also because using Congressionally authorized military aid as a pry bar to force an allied president to kneecap the US president’s personal rival is not just sleazy af but also dangerous.

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