This morning we were told, amidst seemingly coordinated talking points about Vindman’s “affinity” for Ukraine, that we didn’t need to hear from Vindman because everyone can read the “perfect” transcript.
How many more Never Trumpers will be allowed to testify about a perfectly appropriate phone call when all anyone has to do is READ THE TRANSCRIPT! I knew people were listening in on the call (why would I say something inappropriate?), which was fine with me, but why so many?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 29, 2019
But what if the perfect transcript is … missing something?
Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman, the top Ukraine expert on the National Security Council, told House impeachment investigators on Tuesday that the White House transcript of a July call between President Trump and Ukraine’s president omitted crucial words and phrases, and that his attempts to restore them failed, according to three people familiar with the testimony.
The omissions, Colonel Vindman said, included Mr. Trump’s assertion that there were recordings of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. discussing Ukraine corruption, and an explicit mention by Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, of Burisma Holdings, the energy company whose board employed Mr. Biden’s son Hunter.
Colonel Vindman, who appeared on Capitol Hill wearing his dark blue Army dress uniform and military medals, told House impeachment investigators that he tried to change the reconstructed transcript made by the White House staff to reflect the omissions. But while some of his edits appeared to have been successful, he said, those two corrections were not made.
As the House prepares tomorrow to end the Republicans’ whining about how there has been no formal vote for an impeachment inquiry — a vote that will usher in a new era of Republican lawmakers
focusing on the facts misleadingly whining about other alleged procedural shortcomings — let’s hope there is a new focus on getting to the bottom of whether Vindman is right about what is missing from the transcript.
[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]