Rep. Mark Meadows TORCHES Reporters During Impeachment Presser

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While Wednesday’s impeachment hearing was in a brief recess during the 12:00 p.m. ET hour, Republican Congressman Mark Meadows conducted a press conference with Capitol Hill reporters and called them out for their biased questions in real time. He repeatedly corrected the record as the journalists made misleading assertions about the hearing in an attempt to boost the partisan impeachment proceedings against President Trump.

“Congressman, how can you say that this was all hearsay when these two highly respected officials say they heard the exact same thing from everyone in the President’s inner circle?,” CBS’s Nancy Cordes shouted at Meadows. The North Carolina representative pushed back: “Well, I can say that it’s hearsay because that’s the testimony that I just came out from listening. So if you’d been listening, the American people have been listening, they said, ‘Well, I believe,’ ‘I thought I heard,’ ‘This was what was conveyed to me.’”

 

 

When CNN’s Manu Raju suggested Meadows must think any “new information” was “made up,” the lawmaker used the journalist’s own standards to point out how flimsy the testimony was:

What I’m saying is, is when it becomes second, third, and fourth-hand, and it’s relayed about the facts, we know how wrong it can get. You’re a journalist. And what’s the key? You always look for your sources, you look for two people to confirm it. And so, at this point we don’t even have that from a journalistic standard, let alone an impeachable standard that should be higher than your journalistic standard.

MSNBC’s Leigh Ann Caldwell followed up: “In [EU Ambassador Gordon] Sondland’s testimony behind closed doors, he backed up what Ambassador [William] Taylor said and is saying right here.” Meadows called her out: “What did he back up? I mean, I was in there seven hours, you weren’t in there. With all due respect, Leigh Ann, you weren’t in there. I was in there. So what part are you talking about that he backed up?”

Caldwell insisted: “He said that everything Ambassador Taylor testified, as far as he knew, was accurate.” Meadows completely dismantled her claims:

But he wasn’t in there for the testimony. What he’s talking about is the opening statement that was leaked by my Democrat colleagues to a few of you so that you could report out that. So he’s not – he wasn’t there, he wasn’t privy to it, he hasn’t read the deposition. And so, as you look at that, you make these broad sweeping statements that are not based on reality or facts of being in the room.

This was Caldwell’s second recent run-in with Meadows. Just last week, as she was standing in the halls of Congress during a live report and claiming that Republicans were “struggling to defend the President,” Meadows went right up to her and declared: “The Republicans are not struggling on anything.” 

Moments later in the Wednesday presser, Cordes began to hurl another accusatory question: “Congressman, for the case you’re making to be true, every single witness – ” Meadows corrected her: “Well, the case I’m making is true.” Cordes continued: “For the case you’re making to be true, every single witness who has testified, more than a dozen of them, would have to be either lying or mistaken. Is that really what you’re saying?”

Meadows hammered her hostile framing: “That’s not correct. Your characterization is so inherently wrong.”

He then turned the tables on her: “How many hours have you been in, sitting in these depositions? How many hours?” Cordes claimed that she had “read all the depositions.” Meadows pointed out that was impossible: “You have not read all the transcripts....because they haven’t all been released, so there’s no way that you’ve read them all.”

He then trashed the entire impeachment process:

Why are we doing this? Why are we all here 11 months from an election? Why not let the American people decide. All of a sudden what happened is the Mueller investigation didn’t work, the Russian collusion didn’t work, now they’re going to have Ukrainian 2.0. I’m just telling you, I see it for what it is, it is partisan and it is political, it has no basis.

If the media are going pick fights with Republican members of Congress like Meadows, they better show up armed with facts and not just Democratic talking points.

Help fight against the liberal media's impeachment crusade

Here is a transcript of the November 13 press conference:

12:22 PM ET

(...)

NANCY CORDES [CBS NEWS]: Congressman, how can you say that this was all hearsay when these two highly respected officials say they heard the exact same thing from everyone in the President’s inner circle?

REP. MARK MEADOWS [R-NC]: Well, I can say that it’s hearsay because that’s the testimony that I just came out from listening. So if you’d been listening, the American people have been listening, they said, “Well, I believe,” “I thought I heard,” “This was what was conveyed to me.”

[INAUDIBLE INTERRUPTION FROM CORDES]

Well, you were asking the question, I was going to answer your question. Do you want me to answer? Okay, alright. And so, in doing that, when they ask the question, every time that it gets close to the President of the United States, it is very clear there is no conditionality as it relates to why the aid was held. And so I think that we are consistent with that and that’s what we continue to hear.

(...)

12:25 PM ET

MANU RAJU [CNN]: Do you think this new information is not – do you think it’s made up?

MEADOWS: No, I mean, I’m not here to question anybody’s motives. What I’m saying is, is when it becomes second, third, and fourth-hand, and it’s relayed about the facts, we know how wrong it can get. You’re a journalist. And what’s the key? You always look for your sources, you look for two people to confirm it. And so, at this point we don’t even have that from a journalistic standard, let alone an impeachable standard that should be higher than your journalistic standard.

LEIGH ANN CALDWELL [MSNBC]: In Sondland’s testimony behind closed doors, he backed up what Ambassador Taylor said and is saying right here, so?

MEADOWS: What did he back up? I mean, I was in there seven hours, you weren’t in there. With all due respect, Leigh Ann, you weren’t in there. I was in there. So what part are you talking about that he backed up?  

CALDWELL: He said that everything Ambassador Taylor testified, as far as he knew, was accurate. He took issue with one small detail whether –

MEADOWS: But he wasn’t in there for the testimony. What he’s talking about is the opening statement that was leaked by my Democrat colleagues to a few of you so that you could report out that. So he’s not – he wasn’t there, he wasn’t privy to it, he hasn’t read the deposition. And so, as you look at that, you make these broad sweeping statements that are not based on reality or facts of being in the room.

(...)

12:31 PM ET

CORDES: Congressman, for the case you’re making to be true, every single witness –  

MEADOWS: Well, the case I’m making is true.

CORDES: For the case you’re making to be true, every single witness who has testified, more than a dozen of them, would have to be either lying or mistaken. Is that really what you’re saying?

MEADOWS: That’s not correct. Your characterization is so inherently wrong.

(...)

12:32 PM ET

MEADOWS: How many hours have you been in, sitting in these depositions? How many hours? I haven’t seen you –

CORDES: I’ve read all the depositions.

MEADOWS: You have not read all the transcripts.

CORDES: I have.

MEADOWS: You’ve read the – I beg to differ because they haven’t all been released, so there’s no way that you’ve read them all. But I can tell you, your premise is not right. I’ve been in those depositions and I can tell you there is contradictory information. This President had not put any condition on the aid. And certainly when we talk about impeachment, why are we doing this? Why are we all here 11 months from an election? Why not let the American people decide. All of a sudden what happened is the Mueller investigation didn’t work, the Russian collusion didn’t work, now they’re going to have Ukrainian 2.0. I’m just telling you, I see it for what it is, it is partisan and it is political, it has no basis.

(...)

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