More money has gone missing in Donald Trump’s Ukraine extortion scandal

As we enter the Judiciary Committee phase of Donald Trump’s impeachment, it is important to remember all the facts, especially when many Republican members of Congress continue to spew debunked conspiracy theories. While Trump claims that his call with Ukrainian President Zelensky was “perfect,” the summary provided by the White House proves otherwise. We know that Trump withheld Congressionally appropriated funds, necessary for Ukraine to protect itself from further incursions by Russia – but it turns out that even after they were finally released, Ukraine never actually received all of the money.

MSNBC host Ali Melber made this point on Thursday, saying “It’s not a valid legal defense to bribery. In fact, other politicians are in prison today for unsuccessful bribery plots. So Trump’s alleged extortion of Ukraine was going on while the money was frozen.” Republican Congressmen such as Steve Scalise, Jim Jordan, and Tom Cole have made recent public statements excusing Trump for his clearly impeachable acts. While their partisan efforts fly in the face of truth and the Constitution, this appears to be the only defense that Republicans can muster up.

As it turns out, even after Trump released the Congressionally appropriated funds for Ukraine, just two days after he became aware of the whistleblower’s claims, not all of the money made its way to Ukraine, an ally who is still desperately counting on American assistance in an effort to protect itself from Russia, an adversary who is currently in a hot war with Ukraine. Despite all of Trump’s claims, or those of his Congressional lickspittles regurgitating Russian propaganda, his efforts to withhold military assistance to Ukraine is still ongoing.

“Trump’s actions have denied, not a dollar, or a hundred thousand dollars, or a million dollars, but thirty-five million dollars,” Melber reported. “So Trump did not actually get all the money back to Ukraine even as he tried to lift the hold to cover up the plot.” While the facts remain the same – Trump sold out American national security for personal political gain – we must be vigilant in recognizing the gaslighting and lies from Republicans in Congress.

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