Counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway's only defense of the aid to Ukraine being held up by Trump for political purposes was to pretend to Fox's Chris Wallace that it didn't happen.
November 3, 2019

How pathetic is it that Fox's Chris Wallace ended up doing a better job than any of the other cable news network hosts at pushing this gaslighting Trump sycophant on her ridiculous talking points on impeachment? But here we are.

Counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway made an appearance on this weekend's Fox News Sunday, and was repeatedly pushed by Wallace on whether there was a quid pro quo with Ukraine, the damning testimony behind closed doors over the last week, and whether or not it would be an impeachable offense if it's proven that Trump held up the aid, and the best Conway could come up with is to pretend it didn't happen.

WALLACE: Let's get into the merits. The president said he wants Republicans to focus on the substance of the case. […] So let's look at the case, because over the last few weeks, Fiona Hill and William Taylor and Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, all of them top foreign policy officials officials for this president, have all testified about repeated instances where they saw that support for Ukraine was dependent on Ukraine investigating the Bidens. Isn't that the definition of a quid pro quo?

CONWAY: The fact is that Ukraine has that aid, they are using that aid as we sit here. Under President Obama they've got pillows and blankets – we've given them aid. That's important. (crosstalk)

WALLACE: That the aide was withheld until --

CONWAY: Ukrainian president says he has no idea there it was withheld and he felt no pressure. Why doesn't it matter what the two presidents who were involved in that phone call and in the entire transaction and indeed the bilateral relations between our two nations --

WALLACE: Does it matter that the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, that currently the acting ambassador, William Taylor, said that there was a quid pro quo? Does it matter that Lieutenant Colonel Vindman, who was actually on the call was so upset about it afterwards he went to see the NSC lawyer?

CONWAY: Yes, and and by the way I will never question his patriotism. I do question his interpretation and why it would be relevant in this case because it was rejected and in fact The Washington Post and The New York Times this week, Chris, said that what Lieutenant cClonel Vindman suggested be added or corrected in the transcript would not have "fundamentally changed what the lawmakers believe of that call." […]

So we cannot impeach a president of United States based on an interpretation of any staffer, vindman, me, anyone else. We impeach presidents of the United States sparingly in this country because it has to be such an extraordinary moment that 67 United States senators say that president who has been democratically elected and likely will be again in one short year needs to be removed.

WALLACE: Let me ask you this question. For the sake of the argument let's say, because it wasn't just a phone call. There was a long campaign by Rudy Giuliani and some others like Gordon Sondland, Kurt Volker, before the call and a long campaign by those same people after the call. This went on from the spring of 2019 up until September of 2019. Let's just say that president Trump did condition giving the military aid -- withheld it and said it will be given out only if you investigate Joe Biden. Is that -- is that an impeachable offense?

CONWAY: Is that a high crime and misdemeanor? I wouldn't think so. But you're giving a hypothetical. In other words --

WALLACE: No, I'm just saying, I think it's a clarifying question. If all of it is true, are you saying it's impeachable or not?

CONWAY: Let's have these hearings. We are going to remove a president of the United States based on the fact that a couple of news outlets insisted -- insisted, they still have their jobs unfortunately, insisted there were eight quid pro quo's inherent that he asked to investigate Biden and his political rival. I don't see anything in this transcript. Maybe you can circle it for me, about 2020, about Biden and his political rivals, about holding up aid, about quid pro quo.

Zelensky is talking most of the time about how he took -- he learned so much from Donald Trump, drain the swamp, he's complaining about Merkel and Macron, not Donald Trump and the U.S. in terms of helping out Ukraine. He knows he's getting more aid for Ukraine than he ever got --

WALLACE: Let's talk about the bottom line. One of the things that you want other White House officials say, the aide was given anyway.

CONWAY: That's important, because they are using it right now as we speak.

WALLACE: Let's talk about the timeline for getting the aide. The aide was held up all summer and it was finally released on September 11th a month and a half ago. Here's the timing. Two days before the inspector general informed the house intelligence committee about the whistle-blower complaint. Kelly aid, the president didn't release the aide until the story was out.

CONWAY: You're trying to make that causation where it may be coincidence --

WALLACE: I find that an awfully interesting coincidence.

CONWAY: They got their aid and that's what's important --

WALLACE: No, no, no. But how the aide came out, it was held up all summer until the 11th of September and the only reason it came out was because --

CONWAY: Now, don't say that. Don't go there.

WALLACE: It had already --

CONWAY: You have no idea that's why it was held up.

WALLACE: So you think it's a coincidence that the whistle-blower complaint comes on the 9th and aide is released on the 11th? You're suggesting it's not a coincidence?

CONWAY: I'm suggesting you don't know that what you were just about to say to be truth, that the only reason it came out was because two days before --

WALLACE: Do you know it's true? Do you know it's not true?

CONWAY: Well, I'm suggesting that you don't know what you were just about to say to be true, that the only reason it came out was because two days before a whistle-blower...

WALLACE: Do you know it's not true?

CONWAY: Adam Schiff was colluding with the whistle-blower apparently.

She's going to have her hands full defending the indefensible once the open hearings start.

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