WSJ says, “The White House didn’t commit a crime in delaying aid to Ukraine.”

Link to source BEHIND PAYWALL.

The editors note, “The GAO is a nonpartisan agency that works for Congress, and its legal opinions aren’t binding on the executive branch.”

They recount the events that prompted GAO to issue its opinion: “To rewind the tape, the Office of Management and Budget last summer put a hold on $250 million in Pentagon funds that Congress had appropriated in 2018 for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. Congress made the money available through the end of the fiscal year on September 30, but OMB enjoys discretion over when to let funds flow.

“OMB in July and August put a hold on the money putatively ‘to allow for an interagency process to determine the best use of such funds’…and OMB released the funds on September 12.

“But no spending was deferred. The money was spent in the fiscal year of the Congressional appropriation, and OMB says the Pentagon didn’t intend to obligate most of it until September anyway.”

The editors conclude, “There was thus no derogation of Congress’s power of the purse.”

As with other elements of the Democrats’ impeachment narrative, this one has collapsed.

15 thoughts on “WSJ says, “The White House didn’t commit a crime in delaying aid to Ukraine.”

  1. A WSJ opinion about a GAO opinion.

    My opinion is that September 30th would have come and gone without aid to Ukraine had a patriotic American not blown the whistle on the regime.

    Of course, my opinion is more humble, ergo the right one.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Timing is everything in this case. The “aid was released before the deadline, so no harm no foul” crowd has to go there because they know, but refuse to accept the fact, Mr. Trump abused his office for his own personal political gain. There is no other explanation viable. I refer back to my kidnapping analogy on another thread. Just because the hostage was released before the ransom was paid, the perpetrator is still guilty of kidnapping.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I commented on the fact that GAOs opinion is worthless but for Democrat squabbling earlier. OMG is perfectly within the law in its appropriations oversight. This was supposed to be more “evidence” from the dim wit House riff raff but it foundered too. He said, she said, I thought, well maybe not is all this sham has going for it. In a court, it would have been thrown out long ago. No crime, just “I don’t like you” is the factual basis.


    1. @BobR

      This WSJ piece is a joke. The funds were blocked. The government of Ukraine was told what they had to do to unblock them. That is extortion. Instructing the OMB to withhold funds in furtherance of a criminal purpose is a crime. THAT was the opinion of the GAO and it is clearly correct.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Believe it or not, the GAO had the audacity to send Mr Obama a few of those nice little opinion letters, too. However, the OMB has its own attorneys and they have their own opinions. On occasions, they litigate their differences, but most of the time, they do not.

    This stuff is all civil anyway; thus, it is irrelevant.

    Click to access 388698.pdf

    Click to access 660395.pdf

    Click to access 665390.pdf

    Click to access 665685.pdf

    Click to access 674163.pdf

    Click to access 676341.pdf


  4. Yes, yes, not a crime. A civil offense, like, oh say, violating the Cuban Travel Ban. It’s worse than a crime.

    Violation of the law is wrongdoing. Wrongdoing by a public official is malfeasance.
    Malfeasance is an especially good reason to remove someone from office. In fact, malfeasance is a better reason to depose than is, say, shooting someone in the face on 5th Avenue.

    Malfeasance is EXACTLY a failure to execute the Office, a direction violation of the oath of office.
    Shooting someone, while perhaps a success in execution, is not a violation of the oath of office.

    Liked by 2 people

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