Trump falsely claims impeachment transcripts were 'doctored'

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Trump wants Republicans to release their own transcripts from the closed-door impeachment depositions.

Donald Trump on Monday tweeted a baseless lie about the spate of transcripts the House released last week from closed-door interviews with impeachment inquiry witnesses — wrongly claiming that the transcripts were "doctored."

"Shifty Adam Schiff will only release doctored transcripts," Trump tweeted, referencing Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), chair of the House Intelligence Committee. "We haven't even seen the documents and are restricted from (get this) having a lawyer. Republicans should put out their own transcripts! Schiff must testify as to why he MADE UP a statement from me, and read it to all!"

There is absolutely no evidence that any of the transcripts — which laid out how Trump corruptly tried to use the power of the presidency to extort a foreign nation for political gain — were doctored.

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Witnesses who were interviewed got to review their transcripts before the documents were publicly released. And MSNBC reporter Garrett Haake tweeted that "multiple" Republicans who sat in on the impeachment depositions "believed the released transcripts were real and complete."

Trump has been railing against Schiff for weeks, trying to make him into a bogeyman to rile up his base and get them to oppose impeachment.

Trump wrongly accused Schiff of incorrectly reading the rough transcript aloud of Trump's July 25 call with the Ukrainian president.

Schiff accurately portrayed the call, in which Trump asked the Ukrainian president for a favor in exchange for military aid — a quid pro quo that's at the heart of the impeachment inquiry.

Republicans even tried to censure Schiff for the baseless lie that he made up the retelling of Trump's call — an effort that failed.

Trump's arguments against the impeachment inquiry have grown more desperate in recent days, as House investigators ready the probe for its public phase.

Over the weekend, Trump said there shouldn't be a public phase of the impeachment inquiry, after first claiming it was wrong that the House was holding closed-door depositions.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.