Bill Taylor Met With Schiff Aide in Ukraine a Few Days Prior to Leak About Aid

Earlier this week, media and Democrats were pushing that the testimony of William Taylor, the chargé d’affaires in Ukraine since June 2019, was the “smoking gun” showing quid pro quo in the Ukraine matter.

But just as with the Mueller report where the same folks trumpeted “smoking guns” multiple times, it isn’t exactly what it appears to be.

“During that phone call, Ambassador Sondland told me that President Trump had told him that he wants President Zelensky to state publicly that Ukraine will investigate Burisma and alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 U.S. election,” Taylor said in his prepared statement that was conveniently leaked, according to Fox News.

“By mid-July it was becoming clear to me that the meeting President Zelensky wanted was conditioned on the investigations of Burisma and alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 U.S. elections,” Taylor wrote.

But if you read that and think it sounds like multiple hearsay, you’d be right. It’s basically multiple hearsay, “he said that he said that he said.”

Plus that isn’t what the transcript of the July 25 Ukraine call reflected at all. The transcript of the call showed no discussion of quid pro quo. Indeed, Ukrainian President Zelensky said there was no quid pro quo, that he didn’t feel pressured in any way. So whatever Taylor thought, it wasn’t what Zelensky thought. Additionally Volker said that no one knew that any aid hold up was even in question until late August, long after the July 25 call.

As Republicans who heard his testimony noted when he was questioned, Taylor’s testimony didn’t really support the claim of a quid pro quo. Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) said that the claim didn’t hold water.

“At the end of the day, this was about quid pro quo and whether or not the Ukrainians were aware that military aid was being withheld and on that most important issue. Neither this witness or any other witness has provided any evidence that there was a quid pro quo, or any evidence that the Ukrainians were aware that military aid was being withheld on July 25,” Ratcliffe said on “The Story” Tuesday night, claiming that absent testimony speaking to that point, “a quid pro quo is legally impossible.” ….

“The mainstream media reporting that he provided evidence of a quid pro quo involving military aid is false — I questioned him directly on that,” Ratcliffe said Tuesday. “I can’t tell you what he said … but I can tell you what he didn’t say — neither he nor any other witness has provided testimony that the Ukrainians were aware that military aid was being withheld.”

He added: “You can’t have a quid pro quo with no quo.”

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Ratcliffe’s questioning blew apart Taylor’s version and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) said media and Democratic reports didn’t tell the story, calling for the full testimony to be released.

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) breaks it down well here:

But now there’s some more interesting information about that may have bearing on the matter.

Ivan Pentchoukov of The Epoch Times points out that Thomas Eager, a staffer for the House Intel Committee run by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) met with Taylor on August 25 in Ukraine and they discussed Ukraine’s interactions with both past administrations and the current, Trump, administration.

Then Politico published a story about the possible withholding of aid a few days later on August 28 based on a leak from a “senior administration official.”

The senior administration official, who asked to remain anonymous in order to discuss internal matters, said the president wants to ensure U.S. interests are being prioritized when it comes to foreign assistance, and is seeking assurances that other countries are “paying their fair share.”

Pentchoukov also pointed out some other interesting coincidences.

Just interesting coincidences. Perhaps Republicans want to ask Taylor, Schiff and Eager about some of these coincidences?

HT: Twitchy