For days now we have been enduring the charge that President Trump speaking with a foreign leader is a wildly outrageous scandal. This is of course “an impeachable offense”. (By Twitchy’s inexact measuring system this makes for the 137th impeachable offense.) Despite the story unraveling faster than a t-shirt bought at a truck stop, Brian Stelter used his Reliable Sources program to stoke the dwindling fire.
At issue is the accusation that President Trump contacted the Ukraine to speak with the newly installed President Volodymyr Zelensky. What has everyone in a dander in the press is the supposed claim that Trump leveraged $250 million in aid to the country in order to compel them to help him bring down Joe Biden. Even as details have dissolved this accusation Brian Stelter had on Carl Bernstein to raise the hysterics to proper red-line levels.
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) September 22, 2019
Next Brian helpfully gave us Bernstein’s comments…now we do not have to seek out his show and endure his petulance.
Bernstein: "I keep getting asked, are there echoes of Watergate in this? And there are, in the following ways" >> rough transcript here >> pic.twitter.com/QgsLqOSx9S
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) September 22, 2019
Well now — you mean to tell us that Bernstein compares this latest Trump scandal to Watergate?? The only people who did not see this coming are those who do not know who Carl Bernstein is.
But in Carl’s own words here we see exactly how hollow all of this bluster the past few days has been. Look at how many qualifiers he has to use in his accusation of impropriety:
- – “seems to be happening”
- – “perhaps dirty tricks”
- – “if this is what happened”
It used to be that back in the day journalists would not even run a story if terms like “seems”, “perhaps”, or “if” were applicable. Here Carl uses ALL THREE neutering terms and goes forward as if this were a proven scandal of historic proportions.
You. Got nothing…
— the devil's lettuce (@Vono13) September 22, 2019
Isn’t that the same guy who you all had on all the time swearing up and down the Russia thing was Watergate all over again and he had inside info that was totally wrong? So I think I’ll pass on his thoughts, thanks though
— Sean schafer (@Schafer1868) September 22, 2019
You need to listen to/watch yourself. You don’t run a news show & it’s definitely not reliable-should change the name. It’s an “opinion show” with one goal – be as vicious & critical & attacking of POTUS as possible (proof not required). How can you call yourself a journalist?
— NonBiasedAmerican (@NoBiasAmerica) September 22, 2019
Just to put things into perspective, it was just weeks ago that Stelter had declared the Sharpie-hurricane map “scandal” was the biggest lie Trump had ever told, so we need to modulate the hysterics with Tater.
But the funniest aspect in this; Stelter, the self-proclaimed monitor of journalism does not seem to monitor his own network.
The entirety of this scandal hangs on the testimony of an unnamed and unknown whistleblower. This individual claims that they bore witness to Trump trying to strongarm the newly installed Ukrainian President into delivering oppo-research on Joe Biden. It is based on this that laws involving the protection of whistleblowers and the turning over of official documents to the DOJ involving the charges are invoked.
One problem. This mystery individual it seems has no functional knowledge of what they are claiming took place. According to one news report, “There is so far no public evidence that the whistleblower’s complaint pertains to this conversation or that there was any abuse of power by Trump.” Huh. That seems an interesting detail in this story that is being touted as worse than Watergate.
And it gets worse.
The whistleblower didn’t have direct knowledge of the communications, an official briefed on the matter told CNN. Instead, the whistleblower’s concerns came in part from learning information that was not obtained during the course of their work, and those details have played a role in the administration’s determination that the complaint didn’t fit the reporting requirements under the intelligence whistleblower law, the official said.
To repeat now. This ENTIRE scandal is hinged on the testimony of one individual, and that individual “didn’t have direct knowledge of the communications.” Which means they are not coming forward with inside information, they are passing on a rumor. This means that none of the legal requirements being screamed about pertain because this person is not a whistleblower — they are a gossip.
Brian Stelter, the expert media analyst at CNN, could have learned about this crucial detail — if he had bothered to analyze the media delivered by CNN itself. The fact this whistleblower does not in fact know about the very accusations was reported by CNN.
That Brian Stelter is oblivious to what his own network is reporting makes this “scandal” all the more hilarious to watch as it unfolds into a collapsing pup tent.