National Washington Post correspondent Phil Bump called out President Donald Trump’s “lazy” talking points claiming that what the whistleblower said was inaccurate.
Trump has tried this route, with his White House releasing talking points saying that if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) had waited for the transcript she wouldn’t have supported impeachment. He even tweeted that the whistleblower complaint was clearly inaccurate. The problem for Trump, of course, is that his own White House released the notes from the call proving the whistleblower’s case.
Sounding more and more like the so-called Whistleblower isn’t a Whistleblower at all. In addition, all second hand information that proved to be so inaccurate that there may not have even been somebody else, a leaker or spy, feeding it to him or her? A partisan operative?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 27, 2019
In fact, the notes were far more damning. Trump not only replied to a request for weapons with the demand of “a favor,” the Ukrainian president made the case for the emoluments lawsuits against Trump.
The worst, laziest argument about the whistleblower complaint is that it’s inaccurate. It’s been shown to be quite accurate — by the White House. https://t.co/Moe6RFVQQV
— Philip Bump (@pbump) September 30, 2019
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) tried to make the same argument during a “60 Minutes” interview, but it didn’t go well.
As Bump noted, when the White House publishes the transcript saying one thing and talking points saying another, it’s fairly obvious what they’re trying to do. It didn’t work out well for McCarthy, however.
“The answer is simple. Although much of what the complaint includes is indeed secondhand or based on news reporting, those are hardly disqualifying,” Bump wrote in an analysis this week. “The news reports are mostly citations of Trump’s mentions of the situation with Ukraine or references to Trump-friendly articles at the Hill. And those secondhand assertions in the complaint (read them here) that can currently be verified have been verified — by White House comments or in the rough transcript (read it here) of the July 25 call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.