President Trump has faced his share of scandal here in his first term, that’s for certain, but it appears as though at least some of this controversy is getting walked back in recent weeks.
It was just days ago that declassified handwritten notes from the FBI revealed that they were considering tricking General Michael Flynn into lying to them back during the RussiaGate probe. Flynn was indeed charged with lying to the FBI, and was in the midst of that case when the revelation struck. This led to the DOJ dropping the charges against Flynn – a decision that is facing some rebuke from the judge in the case.
Now, a witness who testified against Trump during the UkraineGate scandal is also taking some lumps, as her story comes crumbling down late this week.
Newly-released State Department documents suggest that former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch knew more about Burisma, the corrupt company tied to Hunter Biden, than she told the House impeachment inquiry last year.
In November 2019, Yovanovitch testified in a public hearing before the House Intelligence Committee that she first learned about Burisma when she was being briefed for her confirmation hearings in 2016, and that the company was “not a focus” when she arrived at post.
In October, in her closed-door deposition, Yovanovitch told the committee — under oath — that she did not recall being briefed by embassy staff about Burisma, and that much of what she had learned came from “press reports.”
Here’s where it gets wild.
But investigative reporter John Solomon reported Wednesday that Yovanovitch had discussed the company with staff:
[N]ewly unearthed State Department memos obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show Yovanovitch’s embassy in Kiev, including the ambassador herself, was engaged in several discussions and meetings about Burisma as the gas firm scrambled during the 2016 election and transition to settle a long-running corruption investigation and polish its image before President Trump took office.
Yovanovitch, for instance, was specifically warned in an email by her top deputy in September 2016 — three years before her testimony — that Burisma had hired an American firm with deep Democratic connections called Blue Star Strategies to “rehabilitate the reputation” of the Ukrainian gas firm and that it had placed “Hunter Biden on its board,” the memos show.
She also met directly with a representative for Burisma in her embassy office, less than 45 days before Trump took office, a contact she did not mention during her impeachment deposition.
The discussions about Burisma inside Yovanovitch’s embassy were so extensive, in fact, that they filled more than 160 pages of emails, memos and correspondence in fall 2016 alone, according to the State Department records obtained under FOIA by the conservative group Citizens United.
This throws even more cold water on the case that led to President Trump’s impeachment.
How much worse can the week get for the Deep State? We’re excited to find out.