According to Corn, during impeachment hearings, Republicans such as Devin Nunes were echoing the president and pushing an “alternative” narrative about Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
“What’s their evidence?” Corn asked.
Their claims are not rooted in reality, according to the journalist, who observed that Republican theories appear to stem from op-eds and social media posts penned by various Ukrainian officials.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Corn explained, Trump suggested that the United States should have a better relationship with Russia, and argued that the country should be allowed to keep Crimea, a disputed territory in eastern Ukraine.
The president’s statements alarmed Ukrainian officials, so they publicly stated their opposition to Trump’s foreign policy, but this does not mean the Ukrainian government meddled in the election, according to Corn.
Republicans are pushing Trump’s theories about Ukraine in order to cover up what really happened during the election, the journalist suggested.
“They’re trying to take away the stain, the blot of the real intervention,” he said, referring to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The journalist noted that neither Nunes, nor Jim Jordan nor Mark Meadows — Trump allies who have been spreading untested theories about Ukraine — want to talk about Russian interference campaigns, deliberately focusing on their “alternative” narrative about Ukraine.
“All they do is talk about this other Ukrainian narrative, which Trump put into motion because he still is trying hard to change reality to get that asterisk after his election thrown off the books,” he said.
— David Corn (@DavidCornDC) November 16, 2019
According to House Democrats, Trump pressured the Ukrainian government in order to benefit his 2020 presidential campaign.
The president, Democrats claim, targeted his political rivals, including former Vice President Joe Biden, and threatened to withhold military aid unless Ukraine launches investigations.
House Democrats’ claims are based on a formal complaint filed by an intelligence community whistleblower, whose identity remains unknown.
In response to the impeachment inquiry, Republicans in the House of Representative have gone on the offensive, protecting Trump every step of the way, and alleging that Democrats are launching questionable investigations in order to remove the president from the White House.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, a key figure in the impeachment probe, has become the GOP’s favorite target, and Republican lawmakers have taken legal action to derail his investigations.
Schiff has vowed that the impeachment inquiry will not abet “sham” investigations into Democrats.