Looks like the Democrats have finally stopped talking and started acting. Although there still has not been a formal impeachment vote on the House floor, things are ramping up. Of course this could be just more talk, but really folks, if you're going to impeach the guy it's about time you got going. A good start was made by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who changed the House rules to allow depositions of witnesses to be taken without minority members present. This is a good step if you want to impeach a guy you hate: just don't allow his supporters in the room! Then, when the articles of impeachment are drawn up, the other side will have no clue when the Senate holds their trial. That's what I call fair treatment. After all, the president is a prick so he deserves it, right?
Source: "Pelosi’s House Rule Changes are Key Part of “Articles of Impeachment”, Being Drafted Over Next Two Weeks…"
The source is a conservative publication called the Conservative Treehouse, so the information in it is immediately suspect of course. After all, if Adolf Hitler, a known fascist, said that 2 + 2 = 4, we couldn't trust the information. (This logical fallacy is used all the time. However, the source of a fact is (or should be) irrelevant. But facts have long been discarded in this absurd, contentious screaming match between left and right where the truth is the first casualty).
In a tweet several days ago, Trump tweeted about “Liddle Adam Schiff” in reference to the whistleblower complaint filed with the ICIG, The Intelligence Community Inspector General.
My take on this is that Trump is saying that the complaint was written by lawyers on Schiff’s staff. We know now that Schiff's committee had the whistleblower complaint document before it was released. The complaint reads like a legal brief. Go read it yourself, it's all over the internet.
The former NSA chief of staff suggests that the complaint was written by Congress people. See “Former NSA Chief of Staff Suggests Whistleblower May Have Had Congress Members’ Help on Drafting Complaint ” at https://www.theepochtimes.com/former-nsa-chief-of-staff-suggests-whistleblower-may-have-had-congress-members-help-on-drafting-complaint_3098870.html
One other important fact: The whistleblower complaint form, called the “Disclosure of Urgent Concern Form”, was changed in August 2019, just a month before the complaint came out, to allow hearsay evidence.
According to The Federalist,
Between May 2018 and August 2019, the intelligence community secretly eliminated a requirement that whistleblowers provide direct, first-hand knowledge of alleged wrongdoings. This raises questions about the intelligence community’s behavior regarding the August submission of a whistleblower complaint against President Donald Trump. The new complaint document no longer requires potential whistleblowers who wish to have their concerns expedited to Congress to have direct, first-hand knowledge of the alleged wrongdoing that they are reporting.
“The brand new version of the whistleblower complaint form, which was not made public until after the transcript of Trump’s July 25 phone call with the Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky and the complaint addressed to Congress were made public, eliminates the first-hand knowledge requirement and allows employees to file whistleblower complaints even if they have zero direct knowledge of underlying evidence and only “heard about [wrongdoing] from others.”Source: “Intel Community Secretly Gutted Requirement of Firsthand Whistleblower Knowledge,” https://thefederalist.com/2019/09/27/intel-community-secretly-gutted-requirement-of-first-hand-whistleblower-knowledge/
The current Disclosure of Urgent Concern form (second image) can be found at https://www.dni.gov/files/ICIG/Documents/Hotline/Urgent%20Concern%20Disclosure%20Form.pdf
Apparently “I heard about it from others” is good enough these days to file a whistleblower complaint. This is called hearsay. I found the definition of “hearsay evidence” by going to startpage.com and picking the first non-ad entry, from findlaw.com:
Created by FindLaw's team of legal writers and editors.
“The rule against hearsay is deceptively simple, but it is full of exceptions. At its core, the rule against using hearsay evidence is to prevent out-of-court, second hand statements from being used as evidence at trial given their potential unreliability.
Hearsay is defined as an out-of-court statement, made in court, to prove the truth of the matter asserted. These out-of-court statements do not have to be spoken words, but they can also constitute documents or even body language. The rule against hearsay was designed to prevent gossip from being offered to convict someone.”https://criminal.findlaw.com/criminal-procedure/hearsay-evidence.html
I’m no lawyer, but I do know that prosecutors don’t like cases based on second and third hand accounts -- they prefer eyewitness accounts or docs. Much easier to get a conviction that way. The complainant admitted that he was not on the call between Trump and Zelensky, nor did he have access to the actual transcript before he filed the complaint.
The person who filed the complaint is a CIA officer who was assigned to the White House. That’s great. The CIA is, of course, known for its integrity. These are the same guys who organize coups to overthrow democratically elected leaders in other countries, give bad intelligence to U.S. policy makers that lead to foreign wars in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and who generally lie whenever it suits them. We should always trust the CIA.
If Congressional staffers did indeed write the complaint, this is the sequence of events:
1) Congressional staffers help a CIA officer who used to be assigned to the White House (and whose lawyers used to work for Hillary Clinton and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D, NY)) to write a complaint against Trump. The complaint, nicely legal and looking good, and based on hearsay, is then submitted to the ICIG.
2) The ICIG sends it to staff lawyers in the department who claim that the complaint (the validity of which can easily be determined by actually reading the 5 page transcript of the conversation between Trump and Ukrainian President Zelensky) doesn’t meet the requirements of a valid whistleblower complaint. The complaint is eventually released based on the new definition that hearsay evidence is acceptable.
3) Nancy Pelosi then starts an “impeachment inquiry” (a precursor to a formal vote in the House directing House committees to begin writing the Articles of Impeachment) based on the complaint.
4) Mainstream news outlets then begin a campaign to impeach the president.
5) Adam Schiff, in committee, then reads a fabricated version of Trump’s conversation with Zelinsky. This is shown on news programs all over the country.
6) When minority members of Schiff’s Intelligence committee compare what he said to the actual transcript, they realize that the chairman has altered the text of what was actually said, and they call him on it.
7) Schiff then says that the minority member is right, but that his statements were “a sort of parody,” and that what he said wasn’t what the president said, but ‘it’s what the president meant, in so many words.’
9) The impeachment inquiry proceeds, trumpeted by the always objective mainstream media.
So we have a recently altered whistleblower form that has been changed to accept hearsay evidence just before a CIA officer submits a whistleblower complaint against Trump. The complaint itself may have been written by Congressional staffers, and the complainant’s lawyers worked for the opposition party. This complaint is then used as the basis of an impeachment investigation.
As the great David Crosby (of the Byrds) said in one of his songs, "There's something going on around here, that surely won't stand the light of day."