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Bill McEwen

And the Award for Best Trump Defender Goes to … Devin Nunes



Composite image of President Trump and Devin Nunes
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Should Rep. Devin Nunes ever exit politics, he might consider Hollywood — stage right.
When it comes to defending President Donald Trump,  a nearly round-the-clock task, the Tulare congressman airs his disgust with Democrats far better than, for example, Rudy Giuliani, who is best kept locked in the basement.

Portrait of GV Wire News Director Bill McEwen
Bill McEwen
Nunes is the master of sound bites that Fox News and other conservative websites wolf down like diabetics left alone with Hershey’s Kisses. These same sound bites have another purpose: spiking the blood pressure of Democrats to urgent-care levels.

Nunes’ Greatest Hits Then and Now

Thursday morning, Nunes delivered some of his greatest hits from the past and coined a couple of new ones as the ranking member of the House Intelligence Intelligence Committee.
(I swear, every time a television camera focuses on Nunes sticking up for Trump, I hear Carly Simon singing “Nobody Does It Better” in the background.)
The committee, chaired by Democrat Adam Schiff of Burbank, examined how Joseph Maguire, the acting director of National Intelligence, handled a whistle-blower’s allegation about Trump’s dealings with Ukraine.
Voice perfectly modulated, Nunes wove his conspiracy theories without falling off his chair and disappearing into a rabbit hole.

Nunes: Dems Sought ‘Nude Pictures of Trump’

From the start, Nunes made it clear that from his vantage point the whole shebang was much ado about nothing.
“They don’t want answers. They want a public spectacle,” Nunes said of Democrats. “And so we have been treated an unending parade of press releases, press conferences, and fake news stories.”

“If the whistle-blower operation doesn’t work out, the Democrats and their media assets can always drum up something else.” — Rep. Devin Nunes
Nunes also cited golden oldies like “the Russian collusion hoax” and “Fusion GPS.” Sure to rocket up the charts: Thursday’s allegation that some Democrats on the intelligence committee pursued “nude pictures of Trump” by negotiating with people “they thought were Ukrainians.”
Nunes might want to drop that line from his next TV appearance.
The mere thought of Trump naked is a guaranteed channel-changer for everyone. Even Republicans — with the possible exceptions of Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham.
Specifically addressing the whistle-blower’s complaint that accused Trump of soliciting help from the Ukraine government for his reelection bid, Nunes said: “If the whistle-blower operation doesn’t work out, the Democrats and their media assets can always drum up something else.”
Before questioning Maguire, a smiling Nunes told him, “You’re going to be part of a charade of legal word games. (Democrats are) going to try to get you to say something that can be repeated by the media.”

Some Republicans Stray From Nunes’ Lead

But, unlike Nunes, two Republicans on the intelligence panel, didn’t offer knee-jerk defenses of Trump.
Referencing a transcript of Trump’s call with Ukraine’s leader, Rep. Mike Turner of Ohio said, “Concerning that conversation, I want to say to the president, this is not OK. That conversation is not OK.”
Tweeted Texas Rep. Will Hurd before the hearing: “There is a lot in the whistleblower complaint that is concerning. We need to fully investigate all of the allegations addressed in the letter, and the first step is to talk to the whistleblower.”
Last year, Trump suggested that Nunes should receive the Medal of Freedom for “what he has gone through and his bravery” in pushing back against the Russia investigation.
Medal of Freedom?
An Emmy maybe.

Watch: Nunes Queries Acting Intelligence Director

Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email