The contempt of Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani for the House impeachment inquiry has spread to his circle of associates. Two of Giuliani's colleagues who helped him follow his Ukrainian conspiracy theories, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, officially stated Monday that they would not meet Monday's deadline to deliver their documents to House investigators, nor will they appear in scheduled statements. for Thursday and Friday. On a Letter sent to House investigators – and written in Comic Sans source – former Trump attorney John Dowd, who now represents Parnas and Fruman, said his clients could not provide the necessary documents in such a limited period of time by calling the request. “Overly broad and overly burdensome.” “The subject of your requests is far beyond your scope of investigation,” Dowd wrote, adding that he came to the “inevitable conclusion that the members of the Democratic Committee are intended to harass, intimidate and embarrass. my clients ”.
Parnas and Fruman, both Ukrainians born in the Soviet Union, became entrepreneurs in South Florida, supposedly acted as "post office" by Giuliani during his search for dirt on Joe Biden in Ukraine, and introduced him to former Ukrainian prosecutors Viktor Shokin and Yuri Lutsenko, who promoted Biden's unfounded allegations. Dowd's letter notes that his clients also helped Giuliani "in connection with his representation of President Trump," whom the two men supported through donations of $ 325,000 combined with a political action committee allied with Trump in 2018. Parnas and Fruman became even more involved in weekend scandals, such as the Associated Press reported that the two entrepreneurs, along with Boca Raton oil tycoon Harry Sargeant III, tried to leverage their ties with Trump as part of a scheme to replace the CEO of Ukrainian state-owned natural gas company Naftogaz and then “enter into lucrative contracts with companies”. controlled by Trump's allies. ”(Dowd characterized his efforts for the AP as“ an attempt to do legitimate business that did not work out, ”and Giuliani denies playing any role in the trade deal.) As part of their efforts, the two men allegedly pushed for the dismissal of the former. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and told business partners about the imminent expulsion of Yovanovitch – which would have been orchestrated by Trump and Giuliani – before it happens.
Giuliani, the man at the heart of the Ukraine scandal that now spurs Trump's impeachment, signaled that he could follow suit by refusing to comply with his own House-issued subpoena. "I didn't make up my mind," the lawyer said The Daily Beast Monday on whether or not to comply with the subpoena, citing its belief that the House Intelligence Committee, whose chairman Adam Schiff became the target of Trump's allies during the impeachment confrontation, is "illicit." I have a real question as to whether I should recognize their legitimacy, ”he said. Giuliani formerly said ABC News that "of course" would testify if Trump wanted it, "even if I think Adam Schiff was an illegitimate president," but remained undecided. (The president's lawyer, of course, is also "at risk of criminal exposure" for his big role in the Ukraine scandal, as former US lawyer Barb McQuade told Vanity Fair, which increases the risk of any information that he does – or does not give – the House.)
This resistance effort by Giuliani and his colleagues is in line with the Trump administration's broader response to the House impeachment investigation, which has so far echoed its months-long obstruction effort against other Democratic-led investigations. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declined to meet a deadline to deliver documents and claimed House investigators “harassed and abused State Department officials,” and the White House allegedly plans issue a letter saying that they will not respond to requests until the House holds a formal vote to begin the impeachment process. While there have been some recent benefits to House investigators, such as the explosive text messages from former envoy Kurt Volker and upcoming testimonials from Yovanovitch and Ambassador Gordon Sondland, Schiff told the Washington Post on Sunday that he expects the "siege" of White House continue.
. (tagsToTranslate) Rudy Giuliani (t) impeachment (t) ukraine