- In an interview with Rachel Maddow of MSNBC on Wednesday, Lev Parnas provided new details about the Ukrainian pressure campaign.
- The American Ukrainian Parnas was a trading partner of Rudy Giuliani and was a key figure in Giuliani’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to yield to President Donald Trump’s demands for political dirt against his rivals.
- Parnas involved several senior administration officials in his interview, including Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr and Representative Devin Nunes of California, the senior member of the House Intelligence Committee.
- Parnas’ interview with Maddow was issued the day after the House Intelligence Committee published documents detailing its central role in the pressure campaign.
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Lev Parnas, an American Ukrainian business partner of Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City who is now President Donald Trump’s personal defense attorney, has sent shock waves across Washington by implicating senior administration officials in the plan to intimidate Ukraine to yield to Trump staff. demands.
Trump sought investigations in Ukraine about his political opponents while retaining vital security assistance and a meeting at the White House that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky desperately wanted. Concerns about his dealings with Ukraine led to his dismissal on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
Parnas spoke with Rachel Maddow of MSNBC in an explosive interview that was broadcast on Wednesday, just a day after the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee published a treasure trove of documents containing text messages and handwritten notes detailing the Intricate role of Parnas in the pressure campaign.
Here are the highlights of the Parnas interview:
He apologized to former ambassador Marie Yovanovitch for the smear campaign linked to his expulsion.
Marie Yovanovitch, former US ambassador UU. In Ukraine, he testified in Trump’s impeachment investigation in November that he was suddenly removed from office after a smear campaign.
The new documents of the House Intelligence Committee included text message conversations between Parnas and his associates discussing plans to monitor Yovanovitch. The saying Maddow “the only motivation” to expel the former ambassador was that she was “on the road” from the pressure campaign.
Parnas exchanged text messages with Robert Hyde, a Republican who ran for Congress in Connecticut, who repeatedly called Yovanovitch a “bitch.”
Hyde issued a statement after the text messages were posted, sending text messages to the NBC News reporter Josh Lederman the following: “How low Adam Bull Schiff can become. To take some text messages that my friend and I wrote while having drinks for a bite I met several times … Bull Schiff is a desperate idiot.”
Parnas saying Maddow said that Hyde was “drunk all the time.”
Parnas He apologized Yovanovitch during the interview for the smear campaign that is believed to have led her to lose her job in Ukraine.
He said you can clearly hear Trump’s phone calls with other people
In his interview, Parnas intentionally observed that the president’s voice could be heard on the other side of a phone call even by those who did not hold the phone, based on his own experience.
While the detail may seem trivial, it corroborates the testimony of State Department Assistant David Holmes, who recalled hearing a July 26 phone call between Trump and Gordon Sondland, the US ambassador to the European Union.
George Conway, critic of the president who is the husband of the White House counselor, Kellyanne Conway, also intervened in that statement, saying on Twitter: “You can often hear it clear as a bell.”
He said Mike Pence canceled a trip to Kiev in apparent reprisal for Ukraine not investigating the Bidens.
Parnas said Vice President Mike Pence was also “informed” about the Ukrainian pressure campaign.
Originally, Pence would go to the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, to attend Zelensky’s inauguration, but canceled the trip, Parnas said.
Parnas said he was “100% sure” that Trump asked Pence to cancel his trip after Ukraine did not announce an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden, who was a board member of the energy company Ukrainian Burisma until the last April. No evidence of irregularities was found by the Bidens.
“That was the key to where we are today, because after that, take a look at what happens,” Parnas continued.
“In the next few days, they suddenly realize that now they find out because, obviously, when Pence cancels, they receive the news that Pence will not arrive. So now they realize that what he was telling them was true.”
He said representative Devin Nunes ‘wanted to help’
Parnas said he met with representative Devin Nunes of California “several times” in connection with the pressure campaign against Ukraine. Parnas said Nunes was “aware” of the campaign and “had a lot of information.”
“I was in shock when I was watching the [impeachment] hearings, and when I saw Devin Nunes sitting there … I sent a text message to my lawyer and said: ‘I can’t, this is happening because they were involved in getting all this about Biden,’ “Parnas told Maddow.
“It’s hard to see them lying like that when you know it’s like that,” he continued. “It’s scary that he was sitting there and making all these statements and all that when he knew very well what was happening.”
Nunes told Fox News presenter Sean Hannity in December that he did not remember hearing Parnas’s name before, despite records of calls showing that he had called Parnas and Giuliani three or four times during the publication of the Mueller report.
“He knew what was going on,” Parnas said. “He knows who I am.”
He said Attorney General William Barr “was basically on the team”
Parnas said Barr “had to have known everything” about the Bidens investigation. Although he said he had never spoken to the attorney general, he said he was aware of the talks between Barr and Giuliani.
“Attorney General Barr was basically on the team,” he told Maddow.
A representative of the Department of Justice told Maddow in a statement that Parnas’s claim about Barr’s role was “100% false.”