WASHINGTON – A Ukrainian-born associate of President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said Wednesday night that “President Trump knew exactly what was going on” in Ukraine during the alleged White House pressure campaign in the Trump’s accusation center.
“I was aware of all my movements. I would do nothing without the consent of Rudy Giuliani, or the president. I have no intention, I have no reason to speak with any of these officials, “Parnas told Rachel Maddow of MSNBC in an interview.
House Democrats accused Trump of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for retaining military aid and a visit to the White House to pressure Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden. That included Trump’s personal request to Zelensky for an investigation, made in a July 25 call.
Parnas and another associate of Giuliani, Igor Fruman, They face unrelated campaign finance charges and the evidence in the case includes $ 325,000 allegedly contributed under a false donor name to a super political action committee for Trump.
New evidence of political judgment: Lev Parnas, associate of Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, pressured Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden
Earlier, Trump denied knowing the two business partners born in Ukraine when asked, dismissing a photograph that showed him with one of the men in the White House.
“I don’t know those gentlemen,” Trump told reporters in South Lawn in October.
Parnas called that denial “lie” to Maddow.
The interview with Parnas comes after House Democrats published new records and evidence of him, including a photograph of a previously undisclosed letter from Giuliani to the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, on May 10.
“In my capacity as personal advisor to President Trump and with his knowledge and consent, I request a meeting with you next Monday, May 13 or Tuesday, May 14,” Giuliani wrote.
Parnas continued in the interview: “I mean they have no reason to talk to me. Why does President Zelenskiy’s intimate circle, or Minister Avakov, or all of these people, or President Poroshenko meet with me? Who am I? ? They were told to meet with me. And that is the secret they are trying to keep. “
“He was on the ground doing his job,” he said.
Parnas said Wednesday that the desired investigations into Biden “were never about corruption,” as the Trump administration and its allies in Capitol Hill have claimed, and were political. “It was strictly about Burisma that included Hunter Biden and Joe Biden.”
The president of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, signed the resolution on Wednesday to send the articles of political trial against Trump to the Senate for her trial.
Contributors: Bart Jansen, Nicholas Wu, Kevin McCoy, Jeanine Santucci USA TODAY