October 5, 2019

Pence is already in the hot seat over his role in the Ukraine scandal as he grapples with Congressional demands for a long list of documents related to its impeachment inquiry. As Samantha Vinograd put it, Pence’s defense is he didn’t do his job well.

On this morning’s AM Joy, Jolly took a sledgehammer to that fig leaf as he called for the House of Representatives to open an impeachment inquiry into Pence:

JOLLY: Consider the facts, consider what we know already publicly available. The vice president cancelled his trip to the inauguration in May to attend a political rally for Donald Trump. There was not a significant obligation he had to attend to. We know the infamous phone call at the end of July with Trump. The text messages all occurred between the end of July and throughout August, preceding the president sending Vice President Pence to meet with Zelensky on September 1 where he told the vice president, we're not giving you the aid. We're not giving you the assistance. All this was occurring at the same time.

So to suggest that vice president did not know about a quid pro quo or that the leverage was being used to get an investigation into Biden would suggest that the president knew, the secretary of state knew, the attorney general knew, 12 people on the phone call knew, the ambassador to the EU, the acting ambassador to the Ukraine, the special envoy to the Ukraine, at least one whistle-blower, maybe a second, but Vice President Mike Pence didn't know anything about this? It's not believable.

While he was at it, Jolly called out Ivanka for (1) being complicit, and (2) going into hiding whenever anything gets dicey:

JOLLY: Vice president pence is the Ivanka Trump of the vice presidency. He expects us to be appreciative of his service to the country. He expects us to appreciate the fact that he's working within this administration on behalf of the people, but in moments of consequence he disappears. In moments of scandal he suggests he knows nothing about it. He and Ivanka are both complicit. Any time a scandal erupts, Ivanka hides behind her $5,000 dresses and $10,000 bags. Vice President Pence has mastered hiding behind this professed evangelical humility. Neither one of them are believable nor credible.

Host Joy Reid added that Pence was also oddly ignorant about Michael Flynn’s conversations with Russians about lifting sanctions. She also noted that it was former Trump campaign manager and current jailbird Paul Manafort, who picked Pence as Trump’s running-mate. That’s the same Paul Manafort who just happened to help elect Russia’s man in Ukraine.

In a later AM Joy discussion, a panel pointed out some problematic aspects of a Pence impeachment, namely that no Republicans would ever get on board with putting Nancy Pelosi in line to become president. But this could also be the time to start pressuring Trump to name someone untarnished as vice president in order to prevent a party turnover.

In any event, Jolly makes it clear just how damning Pence’s behavior is and just how important it is to get to the bottom of it.

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