Unredacted Ukraine Documents Reveal Extent of Pentagon's Legal Concerns

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The politics lead now amidst the presidential impeachment involving withheld White House meeting for the President of Ukraine Secretary of State. Mike pompeo cancelled his planned trip to Ukraine bear. He would have met with Ukrainian Presidents Alinsky. The State Department saying Pompeo did so so in order to monitor the violence surrounding Iraqi embassy. This news comes as new reporting from the website just security showing us. What's behind some of those black lines James? In the redacted emails the trump administration was forced to hand over to those requesting it which include warnings from the Pentagon that the hold on military Ukraine rain broke the law and that the decision withhold the aid came right from the top. CNN Sara Murray reports in the face of mornings from the Pentagon on that holding nearly four hundred million dollars in Ukraine could be illegal. A top budget official made it clear. The orders were coming directly from the President Clear Direction from Port Chris to continue to hold Michael Duffy. Atop Office of Management and budget official wrote in an email to Defense Department Comptroller Elaine mccusker on August thirtieth national security focused website just security reviewed the unredacted emails which had previously been released by the trump administration with heavier reductions. The emails reportedly show that weeks. Earlier mccusker flagged concerns that if the hold wasn't lifted soon the Pentagon couldn't guarantee all of the money would reach Ukraine and time. The emails highlight the finger pointing between Owen. Be and the Defense Department over the freeze on Ukraine funds today no MB. Spokesperson said. There was agreement every step of the way between Dod and lawyers who are responsible eligible for working out the details of the hold in line with the president's priorities Defense Department officials disagreed. One said we were always concerned about the ramifications sins of holding the military assistance to Ukraine the new details come as the impeachment proceedings remain in limbo White House. Aides were in touch with Senate majority leader. Mitch McConnell's office over the holidays. But when the Senate returns tomorrow McConnell plans to continue business as usual until Nancy Pelosi officially transmits the articles of impeachment. Each mint your house. Democrats seem to be suggesting they'd prefer never to transmit the articles Democratic lawmakers including Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are already seizing on these emails pointing to them as evidence that any kind of fair trial in the Senate is going to need to include documents documents and witnesses from the trump administration. Jake all right Sara Murray. Thanks so much and this is how Nancy Pelosi just responded to these new emails on a tweet trump engaged in unprecedented resonated total obstruction of congress hiding these emails all other documents and his top aides from the American people. His excuse was a phony complain about the house process. What's the excuse now? Why won't trump McConnell allow a fair trial? What do you make that argument Asia? What it is something that they're going to really drill down on these unredacted emails? They really do raise questions because you had ownby general counsel has sent a letter to the GAO so Basically saying that that they had held up this money and that the reason why they held up this money that but it didn't really make a big difference. That dod was telling them that there was no risk that this money wouldn't go out but what you see in. These emails is the direct opposite of what will be said that there was a risk that this money was going to be held up and there was a legal concern and this goes to the heart of what kind of Republicans have been saying that this was just people. This was just the deep state. They just disagreed with policy but the concern that we're being raised. Were not about policy. They were about legal issues. People in the Dod thought that this was illegal that they were withholding this money. I and here's this. One unredacted email from August thirtieth of last year from Michael Duffy. He's Office of Management and budget official to Elaine mccusker. She's a Pentagon comptroller. Roller mentions the quote clear direction from Potus President of the United States to continue to hold this obviously flies right in the face of those who are saying. There's nothing meantime president trump to this and. I don't think that many people actually believed that the number of Publicans elected officials the real people people the the the number who think it was a perfect call and there was nothing here is fairly low. The question is again whether that rises to the point point they want him removed. And that's a real open question. I'm not real sure what we're doing at this point. Are we going to transmit the articles of impeachment. Are we going to Redo the thing in the house because as we have more information or they just asking to be in control of the Senate rules and all of that sounds like Gobbledygook. That's what it sounds like to normal people as well and it will continue to sound like that which is y this is sort of stagnant and has been for quite some time and that part matters one of these I would say yes and no right if Democrats keep it very simple which is the president of the United States should tell the truth. Why are you blocking material evidence because every time in the last couple of weeks we've got new information? It undermines the president so it looks like he's using his power or to protect himself. And why won't you let these people come forward and testify now when we went through the house proceedings. Republicans kept saying well. These people don't have direct knowledge. Okay so now now Schumer saying we want people with direct knowledge. This report gives us more information from security. That gives an actually the New York Times even earlier. This week gives us more information of exactly. What kind of direct knowledge these individuals hat and their participation so I think if Democrat now that they're in this phase of negotiating? I'm sure tomorrow is going to be full of lots of bluster on the Senate floor. That'll be great. However I think this gives Schumer and Pelosi some leverage? It's not just about Mitch McConnell. It's about those senators who are vulnerable honorable right that doesn't move those needle move Nina with those enough Republicans. Four Republican senators. What would be needed for anything at the end of the day? Fifty one votes wins. I haven't seen that yet collins and Murkowski who expressed concerns but then they also say we're concerned with the democratic process or in case she said I'm open to waiting on the witnesses until after the case so if they're not willing to get behind Democrats in this push for firsthand witnesses and documents. It's just not going to happen. Would you look like you're about to say yeah. I'm just. I'm just skeptical. That there's enough enthusiasm to on this issue on the issue of witnesses inside a Senate trial among Americans wants to put enough pressure on a couple of senators for them to go. Oh Yeah we're GONNA change the way we do this. I can hardly and buck McConnell. It's very hard to imagine a president venting about a lot of things on twitter today as want quoted a conservative commentator from the NOCCO saying quote. It seems the Democrats have shot themselves in the foot in one one more way and this president is being persecuted over three years with one investigation after another and and that really plays to his base. It's it's an argument to me because I mean things are not clear cut here. We had the impeachment proceeding. And then it's just kind of as Mayor Catherine some points on hold and we're not really sure what's going to happen and the country is divided right like even though some polls have shown that the majority of the country thinks that he did something wrong that the president president did something wrong. They are divided on what happens next And so I think probably what you're having now is a Democrat trying to decide. What are they what type of pressure they can really put on president trump? He was saying that he wanted a trial but in the past few days. He's kind of been hinting that maybe he doesn't care what happens. I think he wants to be vindicated. I I think he's GonNa want some type of trial but it's not clear how much the Democrats are really going to be able to dictate that. Are they putting the Democrats putting enough pressure directly on Susan Collins. Lisa Murkowski Mitt Romney any other vulnerable Republican with ads with democratic grassroots activists. I mean I haven't seen that I agree with you. I haven't seen enough of it. I think there have been some efforts. It was a little bit challenging. I think during the holidays now that we're back in January. I think it'll be a lot easier and again as long as as they keep it simple. I think there is a very fair argument to be made about the facts and the

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