February 2, 2020

Sen. Joni Ernst, one of the vulnerable Republican Senators who voted against witnesses and evidence this week during their sham of an impeachment "trial," and who gave away the game on what this entire exercise has been about -- smearing the Bidens -- made an appearance on this Sunday's State of the Union on CNN to defend her upcoming vote to acquit Trump on Wednesday.

Ernst admitted what Trump did was "wrong," ignoring that it wasn't just wrong, but criminal, and the fact that it would be a cold day in hell before she or anyone else in her party allowed a Democrat to do one tenth of what Trump has done since taking office without at least attempting to hold them accountable, which, sadly, was not pointed out to her by host Jake Tapper.

TAPPER: Do you think it was inappropriate and wrong?

ERNST: I think ferreting out corruption is absolutely the right thing to do. Now if he was tying it to other things, that's the president. It's probably something that I wouldn't have done, but focusing on corruption absolutely is...

TAPPER: He didn't mention corruption in that call though as you know. He just mentioned Joe and Hunter Biden and Burisma and he mentioned this conspiracy theory about Ukraine interfering in the election in 2016.

ERNST: So again, probably not something that I would have done...

TAPPER: So it's wrong?

ERNST: The president has a lot of latitude to do what he wants to do. Again, not what I would have done, but certainly, again, going after corruption Jake...

TAPPER: So you're saying it's not perfect. I get that.

ERNST: Maybe not the perfect call.

TAPPER: If it's not something you wouldn't have done, why wouldn't you have done it? Because it was wrong? Because it was inappropriate?

ERNST: I think generally speaking going after corruption would be the right thing to do. He did it maybe in the wrong manner. But I think he could have done it through different channels. Now this is the argument that he probably should have gone to the DOJ. He should have worked through those entities, but he chose to go a different route.

After asking Ernst whether Trump will do this again if he's acquitted, Ernst told Tapper that Trump “needs to go through the proper channels” and then justified her upcoming vote to acquit by playing the false equivalency game with Obama, and pretending his hot mic moment with Russian President Medvedev was the same as what Trump did with Ukraine.

Republicans and Fox have been taking Obama's comments to Medvedev out of context for years in order to smear him ever since he first made them back in 2012. As Media Matters explained at the time:

Once again, the right-wing media are working hard to create a controversy where none exists. This time, they're attacking President Obama for telling Russian President Dmitri Medvedev that he would have “more flexibility” to negotiate on the issue of missile defense after the November election. In the opinion of these media conservatives, Obama's comments are further evidence that he is “surrendering America.” In fact, according to Obama, he was referring to the fact that anything he could do on missile defense would require bipartisan buy-in, which is not very likely during an election year.

Following a meeting on Monday with Medvedev in Seoul, South Korea, Obama told the Russian president, “On all these issues, but particularly missile defense, this can be solved, but it's important for him to give me space,” adding: “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.” Medvedev responded: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir [Putin].” The comments were intended to be private, but were picked up by a hot microphone.

The right is dishonestly working the refs once again, this time to justify Trump's efforts to shake down a foreign government in order to announce a sham "investigation" into a political rival by withholding military aid, then hiding and lying about it, and continuing to do so even after they got caught.

It's not remotely the same thing, but that won't stop Ernst and her ilk from repeating the lie as long as they're allowed to go on the air and repeat it without challenge from these so-called reporters who interview them.

Can you help us out?

For nearly 20 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.