The day Republican’s impeachment efforts died

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How delicious it is to sniff the smoking wreckage of the House Republican’s fake impeachment probe.

For starters, we learned last month that the MAGA sleuths’ star witness against Joe Biden, a grifter named Alexander Smirnov, created “a false fictitious record” (according to a federal grand jury), concocting fake allegations against the president at the behest of the Kremlin. Turns out (according to federal court documents) Smirnov has “extensive and extremely recent” ties with “Russian intelligence agencies.”

He’s dwelling in a prison cell, awaiting trial for lying to the FBI.

This week, the guy who was originally tasked by Donald Trump to dig up Joe Biden dirt showed up at a House hearing and dynamited the entire proceedings.

Lev Parnas, a Soviet-born Ukrainian-American businessman who says “I was a Republican for Donald Trump,” was sent overseas at Trump’s behest to find evidence of Biden criminality in advance of the 2020 election. Turns out, he found absolutely nothing – except fake dirt ginned up by Russia.

Fox News declined to cover his testimony. No surprise there. Here’s what its viewers didn’t hear Parnas tell members of Congress:

“The American people have been lied to by Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani, and various cohorts of individuals in government and media positions. They created falsehoods to serve their own interests… In my travels, I found precisely zero proof of the Bidens’ criminality. Instead, what I learned in that time frame was the true nature of the conspiracy that the Kremlin was forcing through Russian, Ukrainian, American, and other channels to interfere in our elections. Ultimately this was meant to benefit Trump’s re-election, which would in turn benefit Vladimir Putin…”

Parnas testified the only information pushed on the Bidens came from just one source: Russia and its agents, “predicated on a bunch of false information that is being spread by the Kremlin.” Parnas said he never presented any evidence of Biden’s corruptions “because there truly was none.”

“On the contrary, by setting up a search for false criminality, every individual majorly involved in this plan was disguising their own criminal activity. That persists to this very day,” Parnas added. “The impeachment proceedings that bring us here now are predicated on a bunch of false information that is being spread by the Kremlin.“

Parnas also named names – most notably Ron Johnson, the Russian asset Wisconsin senator – for “pushing a false narrative” in sync with key figures at Fox News “who use this narrative to manipulate the public ahead of the 2020 election. Sadly, they are still doing this today as we approach the 2024 elections.”

Parnas tried last year to warn James Comer, the impeachment sleuth who chairs the House Oversight Committee, that he was drilling a dry hole – Parnas said in a letter, “With all due respect, Chairman Comer, the narrative you are seeking for this investigation has been proven false many times over.” But Comer, in true MAGA fashion, refused to face reality. So he held his hearing and Parnas blew it up. Which further confirmed what has long been obvious, that Comer makes Inspector Clouseau look like Elliot Ness.

The hearing was so comical that one Democratic congressman, Jared Moskowitz, decided to torture the panel’s MAGA Republicans by making a motion to impeach Biden and inviting the MAGAts to second it. None of them spoke. Moskowitz taunted, “No? Nothing! OK, we got nothing! They don’t have evidence! This is a show! It’s all fake!”

But all mockery aside, Lev Parnas’ message was very serious: “I believe that what we are facing now is the culmination of a much larger plan for Russia to crush Ukraine by infiltrating the United States,” by doing everything possible – hence Alexander Smirnov’s mission – to damage Biden’s reelection prospects and boost the useful idiot who would deliver Ukraine to Putin on a platter.

The big problem, of course, is that most American voters couldn’t care less about these geopolitical stakes. Putin’s intelligence team, which worked hard to meddle in the 2016 and 2020 presidential races, is still playing the long game, and now it has the GOP, a formerly pro-America party, at its beck and call, running fake probes, operating the U.S. House as a wing of Putin’s Duma.

How tragic it is that so many Americans worry so much about migrants at the border when the real enemy is already within.

Copyright 2024 Dick Polman, distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Dick Polman, a veteran national political columnist based in Philadelphia and a Writer in Residence at the University of Pennsylvania, writes at Email him at [email protected]