Lies, damned lies and impeachable lies

Lies, damned lies and impeachable lies
© Greg Nash

This has been a historic week for our country. It also has been a historic week to debunk and expose many of the fabrications, conspiracy theories and outright lies that President TrumpDonald John TrumpCNN's Don Lemon explains handling of segment after Trump criticism NPR reporter after Pompeo clash: Journalists don't interview government officials to score 'political points' Lawyer says Parnas can't attend Senate trial due to ankle bracelet MORE, his administration and disciples in Congress have perpetrated to a fatigued American public. Some lies were just conjured up in a desperate attempt to find excuses for Trump’s inexcusable behavior, which led to the drafting of two impeachment articles.

But some lies go back years. 

This is critical to note because no matter how many times these lies have been pointed out either by the media (the Washington Post has identified more than 12,000 lies since Trump took office), by Trump's critics and even by some of his own former staffers, they have been left to linger and metastasize into an insidious alternative reality that was destroyed this week.

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Sadly, that doesn’t mean that Trump and his lemmings won’t continue to try and spread these conspiracies; they will. But it does mean there is overwhelming proof from Trump’s own administration and from non-political experts that these untruths will no longer serve as Trump's Achilles shield.

These are the key fabrications that have come unraveled in the last couple of weeks:

  • That Trump held up aid to Ukraine only because he was interested in fighting corruption.

How many other countries has Trump demanded an accounting from on issues of corruption? How many other heads of state has he withheld aid to or a White House or presidential meeting because they have had serious corruption issues? Russia? No, Trump has met with Putin several times, including, chillingly, alone without any notetakers or staffers.

North Korea? Nope, Trump has met with the Dear Leader enthusiastically without getting anything in return. Both countries are ranked much higher on the Corruptions Perceptions Index than is Ukraine. 

Additionally, if this laughable excuse had any validity to it, Trump would have withheld aid to Ukraine in the past two years and not when a reformer president was just elected. What a coincidence that aid was withheld right after former-Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenPerry delegation talking points stressed pushing Ukraine to deal with 'corruption' GOP senator airs anti-Biden ad in Iowa amid impeachment trial Biden photobombs live national news broadcast at one of his rallies MORE, who Trump most fears in 2020, announced his campaign for president.

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  • That it was Ukraine and not Russia that interfered in our elections. (While Trump still does not acknowledge that Russia attacked our elections, Republicans even admit that Russia did.)

Republicans continued to kneel at the altar of Trump. Last week it was stomach wrenching interviews by Sen. John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (R-La.) This week, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has jumped on the baffling bandwagon, spewing the same conspiracy on national television.

In her expert testimony, Fiona Hill, Trump’s top expert on Russia, excoriated Republicans for advancing Russian conspiracy theories about Ukraine that only help Putin and hurt U.S. national interests. 

  • That Trump could not have engaged in a quid pro quo or bribery or extortion because Ukrainian President Zelensky said he did not feel any pressure from Trump and because the aid ended up being released to Ukraine and no investigation into the Bidens was ever initiated.

Seriously? Do Republicans know that when you are being extorted, you don’t admit feeling pressure; You’ll feign niceties and will cover for that person because you need something from him? 

And yes, the aid was finally disbursed because Trump got caught and had no choice. Come on, GOP, how stupid do you think the American people are?

Besides, Mick Mulvaney and UK Ambassador Sondland both acknowledged that there was a quid pro quo.

  • That the FBI spied on the Trump campaign and the investigation into Trump started on false or political premises.

The Department of Justice Investigator General’s report by Michael Horowitz was made public this week. It found that the FBI’s investigation into Trump started on solid ground and that there was no political bias at work. There were serious criticisms in the report about the FISA process, but that in no way obscured the most important finding, which is that the FBI did its job. 

The IG report was so clear in its findings that FBI Director Christopher Wray, who has defended the good work of his agents and his agency, is now the target of Trump’s ire and fury. 

And in yet more proof that the report is detrimental to Trump, Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrGiuliani calls Bolton a 'backstabber' over Ukraine allegations Bolton told Barr he was concerned Trump did favors for autocrats: report DOJ says surveillance of Trump campaign adviser Page lacked evidence MORE, who seems to think he works for Trump instead of the American people, blasted the FBI and doubled down on the troubling accusations Trump has hurled at the agency for months. Their indecency in the face of desperation knows no bounds.

  • That Democrats are the “Do Nothing Party.”

I wrote about this recently, offering a slew of examples demonstrating that Democrats are getting the job done and that it is Senate Republicans who are killing off every effort to help American families. 

This week, House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats offer mixed reactions to Trump's Mideast peace plan James Taylor to perform at awards ceremony for Ruth Bader Ginsburg this week Trump offers two-state peace plan for Israeli-Palestinian conflict amid skepticism MORE (D-Calif.) and the Democrats announced they have reached a deal on the USMCA, the new trade deal with Canada and Mexico.

The timing of this deal proves that Democrats can walk and chew gum at the same time. It proves that they take seriously both their oath to protect the Constitution and their oath to deliver for the American people.

The only thing Republicans take seriously is their pledge of allegiance to Donald Trump. This week proved, however, that in the midst of Trump’s lies, truth can prevail.

Maria Cardona is a principal at the Dewey Square Group, a Democratic strategist and a CNN/CNN Español political commentator. Follow her on Twitter @MariaTCardona.