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Whacked: Adam Schiff says Trump sounds like a ‘mafia boss’ on transcript

(Photo by Mark Wilson/SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

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Following the White House release of the unredacted — and now infamous — Ukraine call memo, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (the real one despite Nancy Pelosi’s claim) held a press conference to address impeachment proceedings.

He began the presser by almost immediately likening the president of the United States to a “Mafia boss” in the use of his language toward Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Schiff would go on to invoke the image of the mafia several times throughout his speech, and his repeated use of the term “shakedown” was most definitely not a mistake.

“The notes of the call reflect a conversation far more damning than I or many others had imagined,” Schiff lamented. “It is shocking at another level that the White House would release these notes, and felt that somehow this would help the President’s case or cause. Because what these notes reflect is a classic mafia-like shake-down of a foreign leader.”

Schiff then went on to paint Ukraine as a nation “desperate” for United States military aid.

“They reflect a Ukranian president who was desperate for U.S. support, for military support to help that country in a hot war with Putin’s Russia,” he said. “A country that is still occupied by regular Russian forces, in which people face a very dangerous and continuing and destabilizing action by their aggressive neighbor.”

That’s when he dropped his “mafia boss” comment.

“And at the same a president of the United States who – immediately after the Ukraine president expresses the need for further weapons – tells the Ukraine president that he has a favor to ask.” Schiff details. “The president communicates to his Ukrainian counterpart that the ‘United States has done a lot for Ukraine. We’ve done an awful lot for Ukraine, more than the Europeans or anyone else has done for Ukraine, but there’s not much reciprocity here. This is how a mafia boss talks.”

Watch below:

This was a generalization made earlier by CNN’s Brian Stelter, who accused Trump of speaking “in code” like a “mob boss.”

The Ukrainian president himself has even refuted allegations of Trump’s attempt to “pressure” him into investigating former Vice President Joe Biden’s suspicious behavior, saying that the only person who can pressure him is his 6-year-old son.

“Nobody can put pressure on me, because I am the president of an independent country. Only one person can put pressure on me – it’s my son who is six,” Zelensky reportedly told Channel One Russia’s correspondents.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the aisle, Republican Lindsey Graham has dubbed the released memo “underwhelming,” and a “nothing burger.” He went on to mock his Democrat colleagues for calling the memo a “smoking gun” before it was disseminated, only to find out that their “quid pro quo” dreams would be dashed.

This is playing out exactly the same as the Mueller testimony, with Democrats and Republicans fairly evenly split down party lines, arguing over how damning the seemingly-anemic evidence is.


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