The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

Washington debates meaning of Ukraine text messages

by Harvest Prude
Posted 10/04/19, 11:24 am

WASHINGTON—House Democrats have released a slew of text messages between U.S. diplomats and a Ukrainian aide that they say prove President Donald Trump wanted foreign leaders to undermine his political rivals. Former special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker turned over the messages Thursday. “American Presidents should never press foreign powers to target their domestic rivals,” House Democrats wrote in a statement accompanying the texts.

Are the texts open to other interpretations? Some of the messages suggest the president wanted to exchange a White House visit and aid to Ukraine for a commitment to cooperate in investigations of his political opponents. “I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign,” diplomat Bill Taylor said. But U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland said, “The president has been crystal clear: no quid pro quo’s of any kind.”

Dig deeper: Another phone call with a foreign leader—this time Chinese President Xi Jinping—has raised questions about whether Trump asked for political assistance in exchange for keeping quiet about the protests in Hong Kong. Trump said he asked world leaders to fight corruption but did not try to win political favors.

Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Harvest Prude

Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.

Read more from this writer


You must be a WORLD Member and be logged in to the website to comment.
  • news2me
    Posted: Fri, 10/04/2019 01:32 pm

    Just like the Dems debated the meaning of Mueller's witch hunt report based on Hillary's dirty politics. 

    Just like the famous Bill Clinton quote “It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is.” 

  • JerryM
    Posted: Fri, 10/04/2019 09:23 pm

    Whether there is any truth to the democratic party claims about Trump's foreign dealings, this is also likely a premptive political move to nullify any DOJ or IG findings of collusion between the democrats and the Russians and/or Ukrainians.  

    The investigative powers directed at Trump by the democrats and their media allies continues at a fever pitch, and continues to suck so much of the air out of our public discourse.

    In contrast, most of the MSM seems to care little about Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.  NPR is careful to clearly and emphatically state there is no evidence to suggest wrongdoing by Joe or Hunter Biden.  However, if you look at the National Review's comprehensive timeline, you see Hunter is surrounded by shady dealings.  Before any hard probing starts, I would not be surprised to see Joe Biden exit the leadership race blaming the media for the scrutiny, albeit still limited, of himself and his son.

  • OldMike
    Posted: Tue, 10/08/2019 02:43 am

    The Dems yell, “Fire! Fire! Look at the smoke!”

    But I think it’s just a dust cloud from the Dems furiously digging everywhere to try to find something substantial they can pin on President Trump.