Referring to talking points first reported by Axios, Berman went over the GOP’s arguments line by line and showed why they are unlikely to convince anyone of the president’s innocence.
“‘The July 25th phone call shows no conditionality or evidence of pressure,'” Berman began, quoting the first talking point. “The president says, ‘Do me a favor’ and brings up just the Bidens and the 2016 election, and also there are witnesses saying that there’s all kinds of conditionality around that call!”
Berman went on to give the same treatment to the other talking points as well.
“‘The Ukrainian government was not aware of the hold on aid during the July 25th call’ — that may be so, but there is new evidence they were aware much earlier than we thought,” Berman said. “‘Security assistance hold was lifted on September 11th’ — that was a couple of days after the White House knew about the whistleblower complaint! I’m surprised these are the four points Republicans are leading with.”
“I think it’s the best they’ve got,” replied New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman, who noted that testimony from multiple witnesses has left the GOP with very little room to mount robust defenses of the president’s actions.
Watch the video below.
Trump is a friendless ‘psychopath’ who now sees Kavanaugh and Gorsuch as enemies: Art of the Deal ghostwriter
Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch, who were nominated by Donald Trump, voted with the majority on Thursday against the president. Tony Schwartz, the ghostwriter behind “Trump: The Art of the Deal,” says that the president now views the two Supreme Court justices as his enemies.
“The psychopathy is why he does what he does,” Schwartz told CNN. “He has no conscience and so breaking the law for him is no big deal.”
The Supreme Court rejected claims by Trump's attorneys that the president enjoyed absolute immunity, but the rulings may still allow him to keep his financial records secret until after the November election.
‘All nine justices’ rejected Trump’s claim of absolute immunity: CNN’s Toobin
On Thursday, following the Supreme Court's 7-2 ruling that President Donald Trump's taxes are not immune from the Manhattan criminal investigation, CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin broke down the implications of the decision.
"All nine justices reject the position put forth by the president's lawyers in this case," said Toobin. "All nine justices say that the president does not have absolute immunity from a subpoena, and all nine agree that the case has to go back to district court."
"This is a legal defeat for the president, but it may be a practical victory," added Toobin. "The idea that the president can't be subpoenaed is completely rejected but the Supreme Court, and that even the two dissenting justices agree on ... the practical victory for the president is that the legal proceedings will continue. It seems unlikely, given this opinion, that the president will ultimately be able to stop the disclosure of these events to the grand jury in Manhattan, but it's going to take time. I mean, this process will begin again. The district court will get briefings. They may hear evidence. That will be appealed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, and then losing party will likely go back to the Supreme Court. All of this will take a while."
Trump is ‘running around like a toddler’ and wrecking everything for the GOP: Ex-Jeb Bush strategist
On CNN Thursday, former Jeb Bush strategist Tim Miller, a Never Trump conservative, warned there may be no way out for Republicans who have stuck by President Donald Trump and tied their political fortunes to him.
"I imagine ... discussions taking place with the pandemic where it is, which is bad, but it's also getting worse," said anchor John Berman. "So what do the consultants do or think about if this situation continues to get worse? How do you run on a situation even worse than this in October or November?"
"Maybe from lack of imagination, but, you know, I'm not sure that that's the case. You know, it's always darkest before completely black, as John McCain would say," said Miller. "I think these guys are stuck with him. You know, at this point they're pregnant, you know, they're past pregnant, you know? Their Trump kid is now running around as a toddler right now."