The impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump from House Democrats is continuing to heat up. This weekend, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin ended up in the hot seat when he appeared on ABC’s This Week, where he resorted to utterly outlandish extremes in trying to deflect criticism of the president’s behavior. In short, we have now again reached the stage of the meltdown where the Trump team is trying to get us to not believe something we can all see and hear. Standing before the press outside the White House, Trump explicitly said Ukraine and China should investigate the Bidens — but according to Mnuchin, people “trying to imply the president is asking for things” are “ridiculous.”
After playing a clip of Trump saying China should investigate the Bidens, host Jonathan Karl asked Mnuchin:
‘Can you just settle something for me because some of the president’s allies have suggested he was joking there, that he wasn’t being serious. Was he serious? Does he think that China should investigate the Bidens?’
‘I can’t comment on whether he was serious or not but what I can comment on is that one, we have never had any discussions in the trade meetings. The president has never had any discussions with us, and in the Oval Office, when the president was asked about this in front of the vice premier, the president made very clear — they can do what they want. So again, people who are trying to imply that the president is asking for things or quid pro quos — I think this is ridiculous.’
“I can’t comment on whether he was serious or not,” Sec. Steve Mnuchin tells @jonkarl when asked about Trump saying China should investigate the Bidens.
“People who are trying to imply the president is asking for things … I think this is ridiculous.” https://t.co/3tAlJG7GQM pic.twitter.com/CffFPQUnEW
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) October 13, 2019
In the original impromptu press conference, Trump had said:
‘China should start an investigation into the Bidens because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine.’
How in any understanding of basic reality is that ambiguous?
Trump has at this point gone on and on publicly about the supposed need for foreign governments to investigate the Bidens.
Directly asked recently whether he was joking when he called for China to investigate the Bidens, he indicated that no, he was not, jumping right into the answer:
‘China has to do whatever they want. If they want to look into something, they can look into it. If they don’t want to look into it, they don’t have to. Frankly, as far as I’m concerned, if China wants to look into something, I think that’s great, and if they don’t want to, I think that’s great too. That’s up to China.’
The president’s stance here is one of a wannabe mob boss trying to use indirect pressure to get a subordinate to obey, not that of someone who was “just joking.”
Even China confirmed that they took the request seriously. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said:
‘China has long pursued the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. We have no intention of intervening in the domestic affairs of the United States.’
Why would the Chinese foreign ministry make a statement if Trump’s call was just a joke? The chips just keep falling.
Featured Image via screenshot