Giuliani-Chucklefux-Hairball Lawyers-Dmitry Firtash Traveling Band: Now With MORE COWBELL!
HOLY COW! Devin Nunes is even deeper in the manure than even we thought! In a massive Friday night news dump (betcha Daily Beast was hot on their trail), CNN busted the GOP plot to smear Joe Biden wide open. Remember Thursday the Beast reported Devin's four-day, taxpayer-funded field trip facilitated by Lev Parnas to A COUNTRY in Europe last December? Well! Turns out Devin and three congressional aides spent $4,000 per day, per person, of your money to jet off to Vienna and pump corrupt former Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin for dirt on Joe Biden. So Nunes has been part of this drug deal from the very beginning.
"Mr. Parnas learned from former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Victor Shokin that Nunes had met with Shokin in Vienna last December," Parnas's lawyer Joseph Bondy told CNN. So a full year ago, before Joe Biden had even declared his candidacy, Devin Nunes was using government resources to smear him in cahoots with the president's former attorney and his Ukrainian-American fixer? Cool, cool.
Nunes himself spoke to Parnas at least three times about Ukraine, and he didn't think that was worthy of mention in testimony that prominently featured Rudy Giuliani and Lev Parnas's schemes? Instead he spent the entire hearing howling that Chairman Adam Schiff COLLUDED with the whistleblower by telling his lawyer to file a formal complaint?
ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING US WITH THIS SHIT?
We really shouldn't be surprised -- we are talking about the idiot who was forced to recuse from the Russia investigation after he ninja'ed out of an Uber to race to the White House to get leaked documents, only to stage a press conference on the White House driveway hours later pretending to deliver those same documents to the president. And yet, we are shocked!
According to Bondy, Nunes aide Derek Harvey (who's been waging a campaign to leak the name of the suspected whistleblower) told Parnas that the trip was deliberately timed to avoid reporting to Democrats, while sticking the government with the tab.
"Mr. Parnas learned through Nunes' investigator, Derek Harvey, that the Congressman had sequenced this trip to occur after the mid-term elections yet before Congress' return to session, so that Nunes would not have to disclose the trip details to his Democrat colleagues in Congress," he told CNN. Nunes was so impressed with Shokin, the guy so rancidly corrupt that the European Union, International Monetary Fund, and the entire US government insisted that he be fired to save civil society in Ukraine, that he decided to join forces with Giuliani and Parnas's anti-Biden campaign.
Parnas says that shortly after the Vienna trip, he and Harvey met at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where they discussed claims about the Bidens as well as allegations of Ukrainian election interference, according to Bondy.
Following this, Bondy says that in a phone conversation Nunes told Parnas that he was conducting his own investigation into the Bidens and asked Parnas for help validating information he'd gathered from conversations with various current and former Ukrainian officials, including Shokin.
Parnas says that Nunes told him he'd been partly working off of information from the journalist John Solomon, who had written a number of articles on the Biden conspiracy theory for the Hill, according to Bondy.
And where John Solomon goes, you know hairball lawyers Victoria Toensing and Joe diGenova can't be far behind.
According to Bondy, Parnas became part of what he described as a "team" that met several times a week in a private room at the BLT restaurant on the second floor of the Trump Hotel. In addition to giving the group access to key people in Ukraine who could help their cause, Parnas translated their conversations, Bondy said.
The group, according to Bondy, included Giuliani, Parnas, the journalist Solomon, and the married attorneys Joe diGenova and Victoria Toensing. Parnas said that Harvey would occasionally be present as well, and that it was Parnas' understanding that Harvey was Nunes' proxy, Bondy said.
HOOBOY! Toensing and diGenova have made no bones about their effort to trade dirt on Biden to the Justice Department to help their client Dmitry Firtash, a Ukrainian natural gas oligarch facing extradition to the US on federal bribery charges. Solomon has been flogging bullshit about Biden and 2016 from Shokin and his corrupt successor Yuriy Lutsenko in The Hill for months now. (He's now moved on to lie somewhere else.)
Parnas and Fruman were trying to develop GOP contacts in a bid to muscle in on the Ukrainian natural gas market. Rudy was trying to take out Trump's potential opponent in the 2020 election. And Nunes was trying to slime Democrats to help Trump on your dime, since Harvey undoubtedly paid for his share using the HPSCI credit card. So they all met in a back room to plot at their schemes at -- where else -- the Trump Hotel in DC, so they could slip a little extra cash to the Big Man while they did it.
Here, let CNN reporter Vicky Ward explain it to you.
Solomon -- who, like Dmitry Firtash, claims that Parnas is his "translator" and the stinky hairballs are his lawyers -- defends his role in crafting the smear campaign against Joe Biden.
Solomon confirmed the meetings to CNN but said that calling the group a team was a bit of a mischaracterization. Solomon said that connectivity happened more organically, and that his role was only as a journalist reporting a story.
Solomon also said that diGenova and Toensing, his lawyers, introduced him to Parnas as a facilitator and interpreter in early March. "Parnas was very helpful to me in getting Ukraine officials on the record," Solomon told CNN. "I only gradually realized Lev was working for other people, including Rudy Giuliani."
Solomon insists he was only reporting on a story as it unfolded. "Any suggestion that I was involved in any campaign to pressure Ukraine or the United States government to take any actions is categorically false," Solomon said.
UH HUH. And speaking of Dmitry Firtash -- who's been holed up in Vienna for years, the city where Nunes took his field trip and was also Parnas and Fruman's destination when they got arrested at Dulles airport -- he's the one who paid for the Shokin affidavits accusing Biden of getting him fired to protect Hunter Biden's business interests. The same affidavits published by Solomon and circulated around the State Department by Rudy Giuliani.
Oh, hey, look who keeps bringing up Firtash in answer to a question NOBODY ASKED.
Ummmm, Dr. Hill never accused Giuliani of working with Firtash. And when the Daily Beast asked him if he'd dispatched Parnas and Fruman to Kiev to tell Andriy Yermak -- the aide to Ukraine's then-president-elect Volodymyr Zelenskyy -- that Vice President Mike Pence wouldn't attend Zelenskyy's inauguration without a commitment to investigation the Bidens, Giuliani said, "Just another attempt to attack me over bull and not focus on Democrat Pay for Play pattern of corruption. Just tell them Firtash had nothing to do with this. I've never met him and don't know him."
Again, NO ONE was talking about Firtash.
Derek Harvey declined to comment and quietly failed to return CNN's calls, like a normal, not insane person with something to hide. But our Devin has a touch of the Mad Cow ALLEGEDLY, so he made sure that his refusal to answer the charges was colorful enough to make it into the story.
"I don't talk to you in this lifetime or the next lifetime. At any time. On any question," Nunes barked when asked for comment by CNN on November 14 (which means he knew this story was coming before the first public impeachment hearings). He repeated the same dribbledick phrasing when CNN sought comment on Thursday. Which may present a legal problem for him if he follows through on his threat to sue CNN and the Daily Beast.
No doubt his bonkers libelslander attorney Steven Biss is preparing to draft yet another complaint in rural Virginia alleging that CNN and the Beast have defamed poor Devin's good name. But his own refusal to correct the record on multiple occasions likely defeats any claim that the outlets recklessly or knowingly printed false information -- he's a public figure, he had a chance to give his version of events, he told the reporters to get bent, and they printed what their sources told them. Lotsa luck, pal.
It's an open question whether we'll get to hear Parnas's testimony on record. His attorney is clearly shopping for an immunity deal, but that might well bollix up his case in the Southern District of New York. Will Schiff want to keep Parnas, who is shady AF, as far away from the impeachment as possible? Who the hell knows! We'll keep you posted, EVEN ON A WEEKEND.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.