Democrats Release New Documents On Eve Of Impeachment Trial

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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., joined at left by Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., meets with reporters as the House prepares to send the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats have released a trove of documents they obtained from Lev Parnas, a close associate of President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, including a handwritten note that mentions asking Ukraine’s president to investigate “the Biden case.”

The documents, obtained as part of the impeachment investigation, show Parnas communicating with Giuliani and another attorney before the removal of Marie Yovanovitch, who was the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. A man named Robert F. Hyde disparaged Yovanovitch in messages to Parnas and gave him updates on her location and cell phone use, raising questions about possible surveillance.

Democrats released the files Tuesday as they prepared to send articles of impeachment to the Senate for Trump’s trial. The documents add new context to their charges that Trump pressured Ukraine to investigate Democrats as he withheld military aid.

Parnas was in frequent communication with Giuliani and with Ukrainian officials, the messages show. He appeared to be pushing unsubstantiated allegations that Democrat Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, were somehow engaged in corruption in Ukraine.

Among the documents is a screenshot of a previously undisclosed letter from Giuliani to Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelenskiy dated May 10, 2019, which was before Zelenskiy took office. In the letter, Giuliani requests a meeting with Zelenskiy “as personal counsel to President Trump and with his knowledge and consent.”

One of the documents is a handwritten note on stationery from the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Vienna that says “get Zalensky to Annonce that the Biden case will be Investigated.” Trump asked Zelenskiy in a July call to investigate his political rival, Democrat Joe Biden, and his son Hunter. Hunter Biden served on the board of a gas company based in Ukraine.

Democrats said that Parnas’ attorney confirmed that Parnas wrote the notes.

The documents — including phone records, texts and flash drives turned over by Parnas — were sent to the House Judiciary Committee by three other House panels “to be included as part of the official record that will be transmitted to the Senate along with the Articles of Impeachment,” according to a statement. Some of the materials were made public while others were marked as sensitive.

Parnas and his business partner, Igor Fruman, both U.S. citizens who emigrated from the former Soviet bloc, were indicted last year on charges of conspiracy, making false statements and falsification of records. Prosecutors allege they made outsize campaign donations to Republican causes after receiving millions of dollars originating from Russia.

In several of the documents, Parnas communicated with Giuliani and another attorney, Victoria Toensing, about the removal of Yovanovitch. The ambassador’s ouster, ordered by Trump, was at the center of the Democrats’ impeachment inquiry. Yovanovitch testified in the House impeachment hearings that she was the victim of a “smear campaign.”

Trump on a July 25 call had promised Zelenskiy that Yovanovitch was “going to go through some things.” Roughly two months earlier, she was recalled from her diplomatic post.

On April 23, the day before Yovanovitch was directed to return to the United States, Giuliani texted Parnas, “He fired her again.” Parnas texted back, “I pray it happens this time I’ll call you tomorrow my brother.”

Parnas also received messages from Hyde, who referred to Yovanovitch as a “bitch.” Hyde is now running for a U.S. House seat in Connecticut.

After texting about the ambassador, Hyde gave Parnas detailed updates that suggested he was watching her. In one text, Hyde wrote: “She’s talked to three people. Her phone is off. Her computer is off.” He said she was under heavy security and “we have a person inside.”

Hyde at one point texted Parnas that ”they are willing to help if we/you would like a price,” and “guess you can do anything in Ukraine with money … is what I was told.”

Parnas texted back: “lol.”

Lawrence Robbins, an attorney for Yovanovitch, called for an investigation in to the messages.

“Needless to say, the notion that American citizens and others were monitoring Ambassador Yovanovitch’s movements for unknown purposes is disturbing. We trust that the appropriate authorities will conduct an investigation to determine what happened.”

Hyde could not immediately be reached and did not respond to requests for comment.

The text messages show that Parnas consulted Giuliani in Jan. 2019 after the U.S. denied a visa for former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. Giuliani replied: “I can revive it.”

The following day, Giuliani told Parnas: “It’s going to work I have no 1 in it.” Giuliani then predicted “he will get one” before giving Parnas the phone number for Jay Sekulow, the leader of the president’s personal legal team. Sekulow is expected to be part of Trump’s legal team during the impeachment trial.

A federal judge earlier this month ruled that Parnas could provide the materials to Congress as part of the impeachment proceedings.

Democrats voted in December to impeach Trump for abuse of power and for obstruction of Congress.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Why would Parnas turn that stuff over!?! Unless it’s a ploy directed by Giulianni to obscure that impeachment process with info that while hovers close to the President, only serves to provide more info “evidence” that is nothing more than circumstantial, and highlights that if there was a prime initiative on Trump’s part, it was through primarily private channels; i.e. his personal lawyer, which is allowed.

    Also, then his mentioning it in a call from the whitehouse is less of a scandal, since he’s arguably allowed to talk about more than solely official business, if they have other stuff going on. It’s not like he has to punch a clock and step out to the front lawn of where he lives, the whitehouse, to call the same guy from a personal cell phone number.

    Lastly, even with aid stalled, yet still guaranteed by Congress, having made no mention of it in the call, means there was no quid pro quo, just business as usual, at a snail’s pace.

    Shalom.

  2. So another Michael Cohen rat? Beautiful. I don’t think the AP gets it. They get too excited. You ain’t gona remove trump and won’t even get a majority in the senate. The best win I see for you dudes are 49 vote to impeach ( two republicans ) and two more substain so no majority acquittal. Either way you will lose and be humiliated while we drag Biden thru the mud as well

    • Educated Archy, only gangsters and other thugs refer people who cooperate with law enforcement “rats”.
      Cooperation with law enforcement is a meritorious endeavor for all citizens to engage in anytime they have something to contribute. I was very involved in an NYPD “drug busters” program years ago because I thought it was my civic duty to help.
      Archy do you believe that a contract should be out for hits on the “rats”?
      You should discuss your thinking on these matters with your Rav.

      • I was very involved in an NYPD “drug busters” program years ago because I thought it was my civic duty to help.

        I beileve that like a loch in kup.

        Look guys we have a new name here. Anyone notice how VIN gets so many esteemed contributors to comment on its website. Yonasonw, Phineas, Phoineas Eicher, Pualin are all involved in legal manners and have been actively involved in many high profile govt affairs going back to the Nixon era. Fuinny how you all happen to colas on VIN, a frum jewish pro trump website.

        Do you guys get the trend yet? If someone lies about his screen name and uses multiple names should assume any credibility or validity to the rest of his comments?

        • I was involved in the NYPD Drug Busters program and turned in quite a few low level dealers in the Flatbush area from 1981-1990. Why would I lie about such a thing. we all have an obligation to aid law enforcement whenever possible. I’m asn absolute straight shooter.

        • I have never claimed to be involved in “legal manners”, whatever that is, nor have I claimed to have been involved in high profile government affairs.

  3. That’s it. We finally nailed Trump. Perfect. Now Trump must resign, and in the process, save the the taxpayers millions of dollars. Pence should be sworn in. We’ll start Pence’s impeachment next week.

  4. There is solid evidence that Trump tried to harm an American ambassador and possibly have her killed and his supporters ignore the facts. Why am I not surprised ?

    • Trump was impeached but won’t go to jail. he will win reelections.

      Fake enws he never tried to harm his ambassador. he tried to monitor her.

      Sorry we just don’t care about this narishkiten

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