Trump on Thursday called on the governments of Ukraine and China to help him get an advantage in the 2020 presidential election.
Donald Trump's internationally televised request on Thursday that Ukraine should investigate former Vice President Joe Biden was an "admission" of guilt, says a former federal prosecutor.
Speaking on the White House lawn to reporters Thursday morning, Trump said he wants Ukraine to "start a major investigation into the Bidens." For good measure, Trump also called on the Chinese government to "start an investigation into the Bidens."
"I've prosecuted a lot of cases in state and federal court, this is what we would call an admission, right? This is from the president's own mouth," said former federal prosecutor Anne Milgram, a CNN legal analyst, right after Trump spoke.
She added that "the president of the United States just essentially doubled down" on the illicit offer originally seen in the memo of his conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Milgram served from 2007 to 2010 as New Jersey's attorney general. Before that, she was an assistant district attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney's Office and was a prosecutor at the Department of Justice.
CNN anchor Kate Bolduan noted that after Trump's admission, the attacks and excuses from him, his defenders like personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy can "go out the window" because Trump's rhetoric obliterated his defenses.
"What's really important is: You don't have to trust the whistleblower, you have the president himself saying it," Milgram noted. "So it really changes the conversation."
Trump's open admission squarely places him in the middle of the scandal and further implicates the actions of key administration figures like Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General Bill Barr, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Several Democrats noted the stakes raised by the admission.
"It's clear the President understands he's been caught red-handed and has now moved to normalize this kind of corrupt behavior," said Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) in response to the latest disclosure. "If the United States is to remain a sovereign democracy, we cannot allow this to become the new norm. GOP must speak out."
"This jeopardizes our national security by encouraging foreign interference in American elections," said Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA).
"Legally, we have enough evidence right now to draft Articles of Impeachment," noted Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA).
Again and again, the most damning witness against Trump continues to be Trump himself.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.