Hello Rick Perry our old friend. We knew this would get you in the end.
Hello Rick Perry our old friend. We knew this would get you in the end.
Hey guys! I don’t have cable so I’m going to rely on your reporting until this interview is online.
Here it is:
Big takeaways are that Lev Parnas realized he was going to take the fall and that he was a loose end. He is getting all of this out there now because he’s terrified of Bill Barr, Rick Perry and Lindsey Graham were involved, Biden is innocent, Trump tried to fire Yovanovitch but got held up by stalling people and his own gutting of the government, and John Dowd tried to silence him with the aid of Jay Sekulow, telling him that since he was working for Rudy and Rudy working for Trump, he was covered by Presidential Privilege – this is why he didn’t testify during House investigations.
I watch part 1 today. It’s in my “summary”. But Part 2 is slated for tonight. So I was bummed I’d have to read Twitter takes before watching myself. This link worked for me. Thanks!
I know this is parody, but I want it to be real.
The full transcript is at the link above. To save you some time, I’ve extracted the highlights.
Things I left out:
Maddow’s commentary. Athough it was persuasive and elucidating, I just wanted to cut to the chase.
Robert Hyde’s stalking of Ambassador Yovanovitch. This is a crucial story, but it’s still breaking news and has too many unknowns – best covered elsewhere.
Other material that seemed redundant – with the aim of distilling this down to just the essentials.
What I added: Section headings that reflect my own opinions. I placed these outside of the “quotation mark bars” to make clear that they are not Maddow’s words and not quotations from Parnas. I used stronger language than Maddow or Parnas. For example, I call out extortion and bribery when I see it. I refer to the announcement of an investigation into Biden as “a smear on Trump’s political rival” – and so on.
Trump lied when he said he didn’t know Parnas
Trump was out to smear his political rival, not investigate corruption
Parnas was Trump’s personal representative in Ukraine
Parnas describes one of his extortion sessions
Pence is a co-conspirator in the extortion scheme
Bolton knew – and is part of the coverup
Giuliani offered a bribe to an indicted oligarch: we’ll dismiss your case if you deliver dirt
Barr helped set up meetings with the oligarch Giuliani was bribing
Barr knew about the extortion scheme and kept it secret
Nunes was involved in the scheme to smear Biden and never disclosed this fact while serving as the top Republican investigator
MADDOW: What do you think is the main inaccuracy or main lie that’s being told that you feel like you can correct?
PARNAS: That the president didn’t know what was going on. President Trump knew exactly what was going on. He was aware of all my movements. He – I wouldn’t do anything without the consent of Rudy Giuliani or the president. I have no intent, I have no reason to speak to any of these officials. I mean, they have no reason to speak to me. Why would President Zelensky’s inner circle or Minister Avakov – or all these people, or President Poroshenko meet with me? Who am I?
They were told to meet with me. And that’s the secret that they were trying to keep. I was on the ground doing their work.
MADDOW: In terms of the president and what he has said about you, he said about you and Mr. Fruman, Igor Fruman: I don’t know those gentlemen. I don’t know about them. I don’t know what they do.
You’re saying that was not a true statement from the president?
PARNAS: He lied. I mean, we’re not friends. I mean, when you say friends, I mean, me and him didn’t watch football games together, we didn’t eat hotdogs. But he know exactly who we were. He know exactly who I was especially because I interacted with him at a lot of events.
PARNAS: I had a lot of one-on-one conversations with him at gatherings or they have (ph) special like these roundtables, where there are only six people at the table. We have several of those.
And basically, I mean, I was with Rudy more than – I mean, four or five days out of the week. I mean, I was in constant contact with him. So – and I was with Rudy when he would speak to the president, plenty of times. I mean, so it’s just ludicrous.
MADDOW: You’ve been with Mr. Giuliani when he was on the phone with the president?
MADDOW: When you say that the president knew about your movements and knew what you were doing, are you saying specifically – and I want to sort of drill down on that – that the president was aware you and Mr. Giuliani were working on this effort in Ukraine to basically try to hurt Joe Biden’s political career? He was – he knew about that?
PARNAS: Basically. Yes, it was all about Joe Biden, Hunter Biden, and, also, Rudy had a personal thing with the Manafort stuff, the black ledger.
PARNAS: And that was another thing they were looking into, but it was never about corruption. It was never – it was strictly about Burisma, which included Hunter Biden and Joe Biden.
MADDOW: Your attorney told the federal court in New York that you were both Rudy Giuliani’s clients and you were working for Mr. Giuliani in his capacity as personal attorney to the president.
MADDOW: Which, by the transitive property, makes it seem like you were working for the president of the United States as part of this legal defense.
PARNAS: Absolutely. Yes, absolutely.
MADDOW: And so, did anybody in the U.S. government or Mr. Giuliani actually conveyed to officials in Ukraine that you were there as a representative of President Trump?
PARNAS: Absolutely. To each one of those officials, that – you know, the – I put Rudy on the phone with Mr. Avakov, Minister Avakov several times, Ivan Bakanov, Yuri Lutsenko at the time was the attorney – general.
The first thing I did is to introduce myself and tell them, I’m here on behalf of Rudy Giuliani and the president of the United States, and I’d like to put you on speakerphone for he’d know (ph) to confirm them, which we did. We put Rudy on the phone. Rudy relayed to him basically that we were there on behalf of the president of the United States.
MADDOW: That you were there to speak on President Trump’s behalf.
PARNAS: Correct, exactly, those exact records.
MADDOW: Did you meet with the Ukrainian official Sergey Shaffer (ph)?
PARNAS: Yes, I did.
MADDOW: Sergey Shaffer is a very senior aide to President Zelensky.
MADDOW: It has been reported as far as we understand, from public reporting, that you conveyed to Mr. Shaffer the exact quid pro quo, that you wanted Zelensky to announce investigations into Joe Biden or military aid would not be released to Ukraine. Is that accurate?
PARNAS: It was a little bit more than that. Basically, the message that I was supposed – that I gave Sergey Shaffer was a very harsh message. I was told to give it to him in a very harsh way, not in a pleasant way.
MADDOW: Who told you to give it to him a harsh way?
PARNAS: Mayor Giuliani, Rudy, told me after, you know, meeting with the president at the White House. He called me. The message was, it wasn’t just military aid, it was all aid. Basically their relationships would be sour, that he would – that we would stop giving them any kind of aid that –
PARNAS: – unless that there was announcement made – it was several things. There were several demands at that point. A, the most important was the announcement of the Biden investigation.
MADDOW: Did you also convey to him that the U.S. government would stop showing support for Mr. Zelensky, that they wouldn’t attend the inauguration? Or that –
PARNAS: That was – that was the biggest thing, actually. That was – that was the main – it wasn’t – because at that time, you have to understand the way Ukraine is.
For President Zelensky, winning on that platform, being a young president, and not really having any experience, the number one thing – and being at war with Russia at the time, the number one thing was not even aid, and I know it sounds crazy, but it was more support from the president.
PARNAS: By having a White House visit, by having a big inauguration, by having all the dignitaries there. That was the key.
At that time, they were already aware because of their conversations with the – I guess with the embassy that – Vice President Pence was supposed to come to the inauguration. It was already discussed. And they were planning it out. They were just working on days that would be good for him.
PARNAS: At our meeting, I was very, very stern. It was a heated conversation from our part to him, basically telling him what needs to be done. I mean, basically me.
And at the – at – in the conversation, I told him that if he doesn’t – the announcement was the key at that time because of the inauguration, that Pence would not show up. Nobody would show up to his inauguration.
MADDOW: Unless he announced an investigation into Joe Biden, no U.S. officials, particularly Vice President Pence would not come –
PARNAS: Particularly Vice President Mike Pence.
MADDOW: So, the day after that meeting that you had with Mr. Shaffer –
PARNAS: This was Sunday, Sunday the 12th.
MADDOW: I believe it was the following day that, in fact, Vice President Pence’s visit to the inauguration was canceled.
PARNAS: It was after my phone call. The conversation I laid out to Mr. Shaffer was basically what I was told to do by Giuliani and the president. And then, afterwards, I relayed back to them saying that he’s going to get back to me later that tonight and we’re supposed to meet.
Then around 8:00, or 9:00 at night, I texted them back again saying, any word? What’s the situation? And at that point, because on WhatsApp when a person like disconnects you, and he disconnected me, our conversation, he basically was –
MADDOW: He blocked you?
PARNAS: He blocked me. I understood that was a no. So, I called back and said no-go, and he – I remember Rudy going, OK, they’ll see. Basically, the next day, Pence, to my awareness, Trump called up and said, to make sure Pence doesn’t go there.
MADDOW: So, you believe that Mr. Pence’s trip to the inauguration was canceled because they didn’t agree –
PARNAS: Oh, I know, 100 percent.
MADDOW: – to announce an investigation into the Bidens?
PARNAS: Oh, because there’s other – the chain of events, that was key to where we are today, because after that, what left – take a look at what transpires. … So, now, they realize that what I – what I was telling them is true.
MADDOW: So Vice President Mike Pence has his planned trip to the inauguration canceled after you were unable to get the Ukrainian government to commit to announcing investigations into Vice President Biden.
Do you know if Vice President Pence was aware that was the quid pro quo, that that was the trade, and that that in fact is why his inaugural visit was called off?
PARNAS: I’m going to use a famous quote by Mr. Sondland, everybody was in the loop.
MADDOW: You believe that Vice President Pence knew what he was – knew that his trip to the inauguration was contingent on those investigations being announced?
PARNAS: Again, I mean, I know he went to Poland also to discuss this on Trump’s behalf. So, he couldn’t have not known, absolutely.
MADDOW: Let me make sure I understand what you’re saying. When Vice President Pence went over there in September 1st, again in President Trump’s stead, you believe – you have reason to believe that Vice President Pence was tasked at that meeting with getting President Zelensky to announce investigation of Joe Biden specifically?
MADDOW: And to tell him that they wouldn’t get their aid until they –
PARNAS: I don’t know exactly what he was – but it was all –
MADDOW: To demand an investigation.
PARNAS: Like I said, the aid itself was something that I think the president decided to do – what’s it called? But it was I think a reaction that there was no announcement being made after so many attempts and so many promises.
MADDOW: When you say that Mr. Bolton may have something to say about this, did Mr. Bolton know that Vice President Pence was supposed to secure that agreement from Zelensky, that he’d announce these investigations?
PARNAS: I don’t know exactly what Mr. Bolton know, but I know Mr. Bolton was definitely involved in the loop because of the firing of Maria Yovanovitch.
MADDOW: But you believe he knows what the administration was pressuring Ukraine to do?
PARNAS: A hundred percent. He knows what happened there.
MADDOW [showing Parnas one of his handwritten notes]: So, this first note – get Zelensky to announce that the Biden case will be investigated, that’s Mr. Giuliani tasking you, that you should get that commitment from Zelensky?
PARNAS: That was always the main objective. Correct.
MADDOW: Did Rudy Giuliani tell you he had spoken to the attorney general specifically about Ukraine?
PARNAS: Not only Rudy Giuliani. I mean, Victoria and Joe, they were all best friends. I mean, Barr was – Attorney General Barr was basically on the team.
PARNAS: So, at some point we had a meeting at our – in our BLT office on the second floor [the BLT restaurant where they frequently met].
MADDOW: At the Trump hotel?
PARNAS: At the Trump hotel.
At that meeting with Rudy and Victoria and Joe, John brought up saying he had some incredible information from Firtash camp, which later we found out it was I think Lenny Davis gave it to him, but that it was – basically what showed that Andrew Weissmann was doing some legal stuff, and offering a deal, and it could blow up the smaller investigation up the kazoo.
MADDOW: Can I stop you there for a second?
So, the allegation, as you understood it, was that Andrew Weissmann, one of the prosecutors working on the Mueller team, had made – had had an interaction with Dmytro Firtash, who’s under indictment by the Justice Department, who’s fighting extradition here, and that interaction Mr. Solomon (ph) was saying would be something scandalous that would discredit the Mueller investigation.
PARNAS: Correct. So, we were tasked basically with trying to establish a relationship and –
MADDOW: Specifically to get information to try to discredit the Mueller investigation.
PARNAS: Absolutely, yes. And basically, we went to – I was given certain documents by John Solomon that would validate to Dmytro Firtash that I was in the loop and that I knew what was going on, because Mr. Firtash is a gentleman that just doesn’t see anybody, and that’s – you know, it’s impossible to even to get to meet with him.
For us to be able to receive information from Firtash, we had to promise Firtash something.
PARNAS: So, for Firtash, it was basically telling him we knew his case is worthless here and that he’s being prosecuted for no reason and that basically it could get taken care of. That –
MADDOW: That was your offer to Mr. Firtash.
PARNAS: Correct, correct.
MADDOW: That we can get this prosecution of you dropped.
PARNAS: Your extradition case, correct, yes.
So, that was basically the situation at that point.
MADDOW: So the exchange with Mr. Firtash was going to be, you provide us information that would be detrimental to the public perception of the Mueller investigation, and we in turn will get your case dropped at the DOJ, so you won’t get extradited to the United States anymore?
PARNAS: That’s how it began.
MADDOW: Mr. DiGenova and Ms. Toensing were going to become lawyers to effectuate this trade?
MADDOW: And you were supposed to broker this?
MADDOW: And what’s this $100,000 a month?
PARNAS: That was expenses for them, because –
MADDOW: That’s what you were supposed to negotiate that this is what they were getting paid?
PARNAS: Yes, correct.
MADDOW: What are you supposed to be getting from about Burisma and the Ukrainian ledger from Lanny Davis and Mr. Firtash?
PARNAS: Well, supposedly, John Solomon said there was stuff (ph), there’s case about that.
MADDOW: Aha. So, that’s why this was all one conversation with Mr. Rudy Giuliani.
MADDOW: The – announcing the Biden investigation and talking about getting Firtash off from this Department of Justice prosecution, these were connected?
PARNAS: It was all connected. I mean, it was all – at the end of the day, it was all – the agenda was to make sure that the Ukrainians announced the Biden investigation.
MADDOW: Did you ever meet with or speak with or have any interaction with Attorney General William Barr?
PARNAS: I personally did not speak to him, but I was involved in lots of conversations that Joe diGenova had with him in front of me, Rudy had with him in front of me, and setting up meetings with Dmytro Firtash’s team. I was involved in that.
MADDOW: Do you know if Rudy Giuliani was ever in contact with Mr. Barr, specifically about the fact that he was trying to get Ukraine to announce these investigations into Joe Biden?
PARNAS: Oh, absolutely.
MADDOW: Mr. Barr knew about it?
PARNAS: Mr. Barr had to have known everything. I mean, it’s impossible.
MADDOW: Did Rudy Giuliani tell you he had spoken to the attorney general specifically about Ukraine?
PARNAS: Not only Rudy Giuliani. I mean, Victoria and Joe, they were all best friends. I mean, Barr – Barr was – Attorney General Barr was basically on the team.
MADDOW: When President Trump and President Zelensky spoke in July, we know from their White House notes of the call, that President Trump told Mr. Zelensky that he should contact William Barr about these investigations –
MADDOW: – that he wanted him to do, including into Joe Biden –
MADDOW: Do you know Congressman Devin Nunes?
PARNAS: Yes, I do.
MADDOW: What’s been your relationship with him?
PARNAS: We don’t have too much of a relationship. We met several times at the Trump hotel, but our relationship started getting basically where it expanded was when I was introduced to his aide, Derek Harvey, and the reason why Derek Harvey was more – I understood, I was told at that time because Devin Nunes had an ethics, something to do with an ethics committee, and he couldn’t be in a spotlight. He was kind of shunned a little bit and that he was looking into this Ukraine stuff also, wanted to help out. And Devin Nunes – they gave me Derek Harvey to deal with.
MADDOW: You told Mr. Harvey what you and Mr. Giuliani were working on in Ukraine, trying to get Ukraine to announce this investigation?
PARNAS: He was aware of that already. He knew everything.
MADDOW: He already knew that by the time he talked to you.
PARNAS: He had a lot of information already.
MADDOW: Do you believe he’d gotten that information from Mr. Giuliani?
PARNAS: No. I think that they – like I said, there was other people doing like this op research or whatever.
MADDOW: Oppo research.
PARNAS: I don’t know what you call it, but it was coming from different sides, yeah.
MADDOW: Given that interaction that you just described with Congressman Nunes and his aide, Mr. Harvey, does it strike you as unusual or inappropriate that Devin Nunes would be one of the lead investigators into this scandal on the House Intelligence Committee? He’s obviously the top Republican on that committee?
PARNAS: I was in shock when I was watching the hearings and when I saw Devin Nunes sitting up there, and then there was a picture where Derek Harvey was in back over there sitting. I texted my attorney I said I can’t believe this is happening.
PARNAS: Because they were involved in getting all this stuff on Biden. I mean, Derek Harvey had several interviews – Skype interviews I set up with different prosecutors like Haladitsky (ph), which the anti-corruption prosecutor of Ukraine, Kostiantyn Kulyk was one of the major guys that’s had this whole Biden stuff.
So, it’s hard to see them lie like that when you know it’s like that scary because you know, he was sitting there and making all these statements and all that when he knew very well that he knew what was going on. He knew what’s happening. He knows who I am.
Trump is adding Ken Starr AND Alan Dershowitz to his defense team?
Wow, maybe he will have Rudy on it after all, with a move this dumb.
BREAKING NEWS: From top to bottom - Pam Bondi, Ken Starr, and Alan Dershowitz pose for their official Trump Impeachment Legal Team Photo.
The state of Virginia is under a state of emergency because of threats from armed militias (or, as Trump calls them, very fine people). The FBI arrested a trio trying to smuggle in an assault weapon with 1500 rounds.
And Trump just through napalm on the fire:
Devin Nunes to the honorable Ted Lieu: Take back everything about me working with Lev Parnas and Rudy or I’ll sue.
Ted Lieu responds: Bring it. Truth is the best defense.
House Democrats on Friday released new documents from indicted Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas ahead of the Senate trial that includes new information about the apparent surveillance of former US Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch and additional contacts between Parnas and an aide to Rep. Devin Nunes of California.
The new documents add to the growing trove of allegations and evidence that have come from Ukrainian-American businessman Lev Parnas this week. Democrats have released three sets of Parnas documents this week after his attorney provided materials to the committee last weekend, and Parnas did television interviews with CNN and MSNBC in which he implicated Trump and said the efforts were “all about 2020.”
The new documents include screenshots of undated text messages that appear to show Robert Hyde, a Republican congressional candidate in Connecticut, messaging with a foreign number from Belgium, which appear to describe efforts to surveil Yovanovitch. Hyde appeared to share the screenshots with Parnas, which is how they wound up on his phone that he turned over to House investigators.
The Belgian country-code number sends Hyde a screenshot of an official photo of Yovanovitch. The Belgium number, whose identity is not known, writes “My contacts are checking,” adding, "I will give you the address next week."
Hyde replied, "Awesome."
In another series of texts, the Belgian number tells Hyde at 2:05 p.m., “Nothing has changed she is still not moving they check today again,” shortly adding, "It’s confirmed we have a person inside."
"She had visitors," the Belgian number texted in another exchange.
The messages come after an earlier document release showed Hyde texting with Parnas about the apparent surveillance. Hyde has denied conducting surveillance of Yovanovitch.
The new documents also show communications between Parnas and Nunes aide Derek Harvey, in which they arrange interviews with Ukrainian officials and apparent meetings at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., including with Giuliani.
The new materials draw Nunes, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, even further into the efforts undertaken by Giuliani and his associates to push out Yovanovitch in Ukraine and dig up dirt on the President’s political rivals. Last month, Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee included in their impeachment inquiry report phone records of calls exchanged between Nunes and Parnas and other allies of President Donald Trump.
Nunes admitted Wednesday to speaking on the phone with Parnas, who has become a key figure in the Ukraine scandal, after previously saying such a conversation would have been "very unlikely."
The WhatsApp exchanges show that Harvey raised questions about foreign assistance to Ukraine in late March 2019.
On March 29, 2019, Harvey asked Parnas, “Can we get materials?”
Parnas told Harvey in an April text message that he would be interviewing “the general prosecutor that got fired by Biden,” who is Viktor Shokin. Parnas also references Ukraine’s then-prosecutor, Yuriy Lutsenko. Both prosecutors also spoke to Giuliani in his effort to dig up dirt on the Bidens.
"Let’s do our call at 12 and we can do the first prosecutor at 1 your time?" Parnas texts Harvey on April 17, 2019.
"Okay," Harvey responds.
Two days later, Harvey texts Parnas: “Lev. I think we are best served by sending the official letter and receiving documentation before any more interviews.”
The text exchanges between Harvey and Parnas includes multiple references to John Solomon, the former conservative columnist for The Hill who published columns attacking Yovanovitch.
In one text, Harvey tells Parnas in April 2019 that “Solomon needs to get me the material.”
There are multiple references to meetings apparently at the Trump Hotel, including a May 7, 2019, meeting with Giuliani and Solomon.
“Can you come now,” Parnas asks.
“Yes,” Harvey responds.
A spokesman for Nunes did not respond to a request for comment.
Just making a side note here about the Trump push to make bribery of foreign officials legal.
He bribed Ukraine. This could well be a push to retroactively protect himself on the Ukraine extortion. Would anybody put it past him to try that?
Further corroboration that Barr was “in the loop” with Giuliani and Trump in pressuring Ukraine to smear Biden.
So now we have:
Am I missing anything else? The big question is why hasn’t Barr recused himself? I wish someone in Congress would take this on and call out Barr. At the very least, the House could take a vote, even if it’s just advisory, that Barr should recuse himself. More importantly, they should open a formal investigation into his involvement.
In a six-page letter formally responding to the impeachment charges, President Trump’s lawyers rejected the case against him as illegitimate and called the effort to remove him dangerous.
The things Parnas believed are truly cult-like and more than a little anti-Semitic in its rabid fear of Soros, akin to anything you can find in Q-Anonsense mythos.
“They used me, abused me, and threw me out with the trash.”
Should have seen this coming; Pam Bondi and Lev Parnas both lived in Florida and moved in the same circles, after all.
Um… can anybody confirm or deny this:
So somebody found me this in asking around, showing that is wrong. They can MOVE for dismissal, which is still bad, but they can’t out-of-hand dismiss.
Trump’s tactics always shift the excuse from “I didn’t do it” to “yeah, I did it, but it’s not wrong”. Next usually comes “okay, so it was wrong, what are you going to do about it?”
The Senate can move to dismiss at any point during the impeachment trial but they need a simple majority. That was the risk from the beginning.
This is the first time we’re hearing about the intelligence community withholding information from Congress.
During an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” Schiff was asked about a POLITICO report that intelligence agencies officials don’t want to testify in public during an upcoming hearing in the House Intelligence panel on global security threats, asking that the session be held in private instead. Trump slammed the intelligence chiefs one year ago for the assessment of Iran, calling them “extremely passive and naïve” on the issue.
Schiff confirmed that report, and then asserted that Ukraine-related information is being withheld from Capitol Hill. Schiff blamed the White House for the failure to turn over the information to lawmakers.
“And I’ll say something even more concerning to me, and that is the intelligence community is beginning to withhold documents from Congress on the issue of Ukraine,” Schiff said. “The NSA, in particular, is withholding what are potentially relevant documents to our oversight responsibilities on Ukraine, but also withholding documents potentially relevant that the senators might want to see during the trial.”
Schiff added: “There are signs that the CIA may be on the same tragic course. We are counting on the intelligence community not only to speak truth to power, but to resist pressure from the administration to withhold information from Congress because the administration fears that they incriminate them.”
An Intelligence Committee official later said, “Both the NSA and CIA initially pledged cooperation, and it appears now that the White House has interceded before production of documents could begin.”
There were no details on what documents were being withheld or how this information may play into the Senate impeachment trial.
Yeah, we found the full story. Apparently PV there never sources their stories. I worry, since that post had over 1k likes and re-tweets. Disinfo spreader.
The story there is that Trump’s LEGAL TEAM would have that power, which was the issue, and appears to be untrue.