Trump Ukraine controversy: President’s opponents don’t want to talk about 2016 campaign

The FBI was denied physical access to the DNC’s servers, and Trump told Zelensky that “they say Ukraine has it.” Who ”they” are and how the server would wind up in Ukraine is certainly a mystery, but this was the topmost thing on the president’s mind, the “favor” he asked for. The favor had nothing to do with Biden.

We also learned Wednesday that U.S. attorney John Durham, who is investigating the origins of the FBI’s probe into alleged ties between the Trump 2016 campaign and Russia, was already looking into whether the previous Ukrainian government led by then-President Petro Poroshenko was somehow involved in trying to undermine the Trump campaign. Maybe Durham’s team is the “they” who mentioned the server. But this is why Trump expressed concern to Zelensky that he is “surrounding (himself) with some of the same people,” i.e. Poroshenko’s deep-staters, and Trump’s request to the Ukraine leader that he “have the attorney general (William Barr) call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it.” Zelensky said that he will, and that “all the investigations will be done openly and candidly.”

And it is Zelensky — not Trump — who brings up the name of Rudy Giuliani and proposes a meeting. This was after Giuliani had cancelled a trip to Ukraine in May to investigate whether the previous government had aided the Clinton campaign by providing information concerning former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s work in the country. He was also seeking more information on why Ukraine fired Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin, who had been looking into Hunter Biden’s questionable business dealings. This nongovernment mission was all very public and was reported in detail last May.

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