House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., questions Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire,as he testifies before the House Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 26, 2019. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
On Tuesday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff submitted new impeachment evidence to Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler which will be included in the file expected to be turned over to the Senate today. Schiff’s letter to Nadler can be viewed here. This 11th hour attempt to sabotage President Trump is reminiscent of Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-CA) introduction of Christine Blasey Ford’s letter which accused current Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct in the “early 1980s,” during his Senate confirmation hearing in September 2018.
Damning? Given that it’s been tricky finding any coverage of the story, other than at MSNBC or the Washington Post early on Wednesday morning, it’s difficult to say.
Much of this evidence has come from Lev Parnas, whom Schiff describes as a ‘close associate’ of Rudy Giuliani. Parnas was indicted by the SDNY in October 2019 along with Igor Fruman on charges of conspiring to violate straw and foreign donor bans. According to Fox News, Parnas and Fruman had been “working with Giuliani to push for investigations of the Bidens. The two Florida-based businessmen were also leveraging political connections to Trump and other prominent Republicans to pursue a lucrative natural gas deal.”
Politico’s Andrew Desiderio broke the story on Tuesday evening. In the tweet below, he shares Schiff’s letter to Nadler and Parnas’ undated note to himself scribbled on a Ritz Carlton Vienna notepad. It says, “get Zalensky [sic] to Announce that the Biden case will Be Investigated. start commun[icating] with Zalensky [sic] without [Pinchuk or Kolomoisky].” He could have written the notes yesterday for all we know.
Additional information and documents are available on Desiderio’s Twitter page.
Here’s a handwritten note from Lev Parnas.
— Andrew Desiderio (@AndrewDesiderio) January 14, 2020
Schiff’s evidence also includes text messages. One “seemingly showed Parnas’ associates tracking the movements of Marie Yovanovitch.” Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine whom Trump fired in May 2019, appeared as a witness during Schiff’s House impeachment inquiry last fall.
Fox reported on several text message exchanges between Parnas and Trump donor Robert F. Hyde in March 2019 about then Ambassador Yovanovitch:
Hyde wrote that he “can’t believe” Trump “hasn’t fired this b–ch. I’ll get right in that.”
“Guess you can do anything in the Ukraine with money,” Hyde texted, after apparently establishing that Yovanovitch was under some form of surveillance.
“She’s talked to three people. Her phone is off. Computer is off,” Hyde wrote on March 25, 2019.
“She’s next to the embassy. … Not in the embassy. Private security. Been there since Thursday.”
As Yovanovitch testifed during Democrats’ impeachment inquiry,” Hyde wrote on Twitter that she was a “traitor,” a “scumbag,” and a “yuge pos.”
These text message exchanges can be viewed here on the House Intelligence Committee’s website.
Fox New’s Laura Ingraham and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) discussed Schiff’s new evidence on “The Ingraham Angle” last night and were unimpressed. Ingraham said, “We got these notes of, like, scribble scrabble in a Ritz Carlton Vienna notepad, and we’re all supposed to all think oh, the Democrats have a smoking gun? This is ridiculous, this has nothing.”
It’s obviously a different story over at MSNBC with headlines that scream, “Shocking new evidence rocks Trump impeachment before Senate trial” and “New document release exposes connections between Parnas, Fruman.”
The current headline at the Washington Post reads, “Lev Parnas and Rudy Giuliani have demolished Trump’s claims of innocence,” and the sub-headline says, “New documents show why the president has been trying to hide evidence from Congress.”
Here we go.