Lev Parnas’s interview on @maddow tonight is damning. He’s an associate of Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and implicated Trump in a criminal extortion scheme. How can any Senator argue that we don’t need a real trial, with witnesses and documents? https://t.co/dG1KK1pUun
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) January 16, 2020
.@maddow: Do you know if Mr. Giuliani was ever in contact with Mr. Barr, specifically … that he was trying to get Ukraine to announce these investigations into Joe Biden?
Parnas: Oh, absolutely.
Maddow: Mr. Barr knew about that?
Parnas: Mr. Barr had to have known everything.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 16, 2020
Bill Barr is gonna regret not summarizing this Lev Parnas interview before it happened.
— Daily Trix (@DailyTrix) January 16, 2020
.@maddow: "Did Rudy Giuliani tell you he'd spoken to the AG specifically about Ukraine?"
Lev Parnas: "Not only Rudy Giuliani, I mean Victoria and Joe, they were all best friends. I mean Barr, Attorney General Barr, was basically on the team."
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 16, 2020
If Trump & his allies want to prove Parnas is lying there’s a Senate trial coming up where they could rebut him on national TV.
— Dana Houle (@DanaHoule) January 16, 2020
One thing with the Parnas interview: one political/media dynamic in impeachment was that testimony’s impact kept depending not just on whether it was damning but whether it was seen as “new” (thus exciting/shocking).
Well, this is new.
— James Poniewozik (@poniewozik) January 16, 2020
There it is.
“President Trump knew exactly what was going on. He was aware of all my movements. I wouldn’t do anything without the consent of Rudy Giuliani or the President.”
Parnas isn’t going to get leniency from the court if he lies—truth telling now is what’ll help him. pic.twitter.com/oVpApVevCL
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) January 16, 2020
If what Parnas is saying is true, and, while working for the president’s lawyer, he offered to help end Firtash’s extradition in exchange for Firtash’s help undermining Mueller, that should be a giant scandal in its own right
— Michelle Goldberg (@michelleinbklyn) January 16, 2020
Parnas is an unreliable narrator, but many criminal conspiracies fold when one scumbag rats out other scumbags in the hopes of saving himself.
— Lindsay Beyerstein (@beyerstein) January 16, 2020
Parnas is counting on a grateful President Biden, right?
— Schooley (@Rschooley) January 16, 2020
Asked for comment as Lev Parnas was speaking on msnbc on Wednesday night, Rudy Giuliani responded at first, “Are you kidding?” When asked for further elaboration, the Trump attorney messaged, “Very sad situation,” & “He’s desperate and badly represented.” https://t.co/2Xed408FgD
— Asawin Suebsaeng (@swin24) January 16, 2020
Imagine how mad Glenn Greenwald will be if the Trump presidency crumbles because of testimony on Maddow lmao
— The Occupation is Bad (@MenshevikM) January 16, 2020
David ??Merry Christmas?? Koch
Does Griftwald hate Rachel? I know Taibbi does.
well, as has been mentioned, Lev is just a foot soldier in all of this, but quite possibly an aware one. I have no problem believing his story when there are texts and noted and corroborating statements.
If all of these happy asshats are “in the loop”, I’d be very interested to know, just how many GOP senators and congresspeople are also in “putin’s loop” and perhaps this is another step in unraveling just how deep the corruption in the GOP is…
As much as I want this to be true, I look at the transcript of his answers and see some waffling (eg, “he had to have known”) where I wish Rachel had probed for more detail.
I have this strange feeling in the back of my mind that this is entirely part of Vlad’s scam in the first place. Work it until it runs it’s course, then use someone to expose everyone. If Vlad is done with this circus then what would he do to put a bow around the whole thing, all the while laughing his ass off? Expose everyone, he knows he’s not going to pay a price for this and if it’s already worked to his advantage, maybe as much as he’s ever going to get out of it, why not show how easy it was to completely fuck over the country which is his biggest enemy?
Uh, I doubt it. Vladi would want the chaos to go on as long as possible, right? And there’s no way a Trump-infested government is less chaotic than a Trump-less government.
@Ruckus: Vlad hasn’t got half of what he wants yet. First off, he really really wants the sanctions lifted. They’re costing him plenty.
Adam Schiff is correct about wanting the documents. Parnas turned over enough information, his testimony isn’t really needed. We now know that our president pals around with crooks.
Ryan Goodman via Anne Laurie @ Top:
Are we sure Parnas knows that? Parnas seems like someone from a world where telling people what they want to hear is what he thinks works best. Let’s see what happens when we follow up on his assertions.
“Are you kidding?” When asked for further elaboration, the Trump attorney messaged, “Very sad situation,” & “He’s desperate and badly represented.”
Classic non-denial, denial.
To be fair, we’ve known that Trump hangs around with crooks since the 1970’s, or the 1980’s at the latest. Hell, we’ve known that Trump IS a crook for that long.
And by we, I mean, at minimum: New Yorkers, New Jerseyans, Connecticans, the New York State government, the Feds, and anyone who regularly read Spy, New York magazine, the Daily News, the Village Voice, Long Island Newsday and so on.
Trump’s criminality has never been a secret, at least not in the tri-state area and law enforcement circles.
@JGabriel: The problem was that “everybody knew” was the Greater New York area and nobody else. Nobody really outside the NYC area read Spy or any of those other publications. But because “everybody knew” nobody took the time or effort outside there to investigate because “well, we all know he’s a crook” and didn’t realize how parochial that outlook really was. To the rest of America, and the non-crook world, Trump was that wacky billionaire who flirted with fame because real estate was boring, and being an heir was also boring.
And the New York press with national reach partied with him and protected his reputation outside the NYC bubble.
@John Revolta: Agreed. Sanctions #1, US chaos is on the list (achieved just by getting tRump elected, no further pressure really needed on that score), the Biiiiigg Prize a severe weakening or even breakup of NATO (which for Putin would be on the level of, pls excuse the tragic analogy, the Twin Towers coming down as a result of bin Laden’s attack)
I clicked on the top Warren tweet to give her an upvote. The Bernie stans and GRU bots are filling her every tweet thread with snake emojis and gifs, plus demands she apologize for “lying about” their saint. A Topher Spiro tweet stating that all D’s and anyone who wants tRump out of office needs to vote for whoever wins the D mom is also filled with B stan fuck you’s. Social media is a traffickers dream come true.
You don’t bring down John Gotti without the testimony of a sociopath like Sammy “The Bull” Gravano.
@JGabriel: He’s been an affiliate of the Genovese crime family his entire life.
Agree with every word. It also doesn’t explain why “everyone knew” in NY and yet he was never prosecuted or even seriously investigated. If we were talking about a local celebrity in Fort Wayne, Indiana there would be questions on how he operated for 50 years in Fort Wayne without a serious investigation into his crooked empire. We would assume they were protecting their own, and we should assume the same here.
And you don’t have to connect that many dots to explain why he wasn’t investigated or prosecuted- you just have to connect two dots- Trump and Rudolph Guiliani, the former mayor and federal prosecutor.
The Trump NY corruption story predates the Trump national corruption story and to get to the bottom of it you probably have to start there. All roads lead back there, including Barr.
Maddow did a brilliant job, IMO. She’s not a cop, and her job wasn’t to interrogate a suspect. She’s a news analyst and political commentator, and she used the interview to provide the subject’s first-hand account of the Ukraine shake-down scheme. We got new details about how it went down. Parnas provided damning new information while largely corroborating the sworn testimony of the witnesses in the House hearings. The interview fleshed out what we already knew/suspected. Bravo.
I don’t have any problem with her work but in my view it is a shame he went to her rather than one of the media gatekeepers because that shouldn’t matter, but it does. The NYTimes is hopeless – the black hole of Trump- but it would have more impact if he had gone to the WSJ, for example.
You know how this goes. They all follow the lead of the NYTimes. The reason they all flogged the emails story beyond all bounds of reason was because the NYTimes led the flogging. In a pinch they’ll take the WSJ.
The WSJ is doing verifying reporting though, so maybe that gives the stamp of approval they need.
It was always ridiculous to believe they didn’t know. What was the working theory there? The President’s lawyer “went rogue”? The State Department didn’t know Trump’s sleazy hires were running around manipulating this? So the State Department didn’t know what US actors were doing in these countries? It’s their job to know what’s going on. That’s why they are there.
I mean, all of Congress knew. They started intervening to get the aid released last summer. There are letters. Of course they all knew. Literally everyone knew except the public and the public never would have found out but for a single whistleblower.
Well, Putin walks a fine line here. Sure, fuck with the stupid Americans, but if he goes too far and exposes too much, the blowback would make things more difficult for him. The last thing he wants is President Biden, AG Adam Schiff and SecState Ben Rhodes coming down on Russia like a ton of bricks.
We’re hindered just a tad in our crime-fighting efforts by the fact that the Attorney General of the United States is corrupt, and also implicated in the crime(s). They’re inside.
@Kay: Cyrus Vance, the Manhattan DA, also has a lot to answer for when it comes to letting the Trumps off the hook for their shady business dealings. Everyone in NY knew Trump was crooked, and inept, but prosecutors and LEAs didn’t want to put up with the media shitstorms he was capable of whipping up when he was pissed at someone. Trump wouldn’t have you whacked, but he’d have allegations that you were having an affair with a hooker or something splashed all over the front page of the National Enquirer or NY Post.
@Kay: Good point about the media gatekeepers. Maddow said she’d been trying to get the story for months and that Parnas and his lawyer said they picked yesterday because the House has all the documents now, so that info can’t be disappeared. They probably figured MSNBC would be the most likely outfit to let them get their story out as completely as possible. Maybe they’ll do interviews with other media outlets now, but like you noted, the MSM has to cover this now, and they are, if my morning spin through the dailies and networks is any indication. Even Fox News had to address it.
This quote from Giuliani bolsters Parnas’s credibility and suggests that the rats are squirming:
LOL! I hope the role of sleazy Fox News attorneys Toensing and diGenova get more exposure in this scandal. They deserve their turn in the barrel.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
That’s easy, Trump is a Republican so it’s okay.
It says a lot of how far gone these clowns are they would fess up on National TV like that.
As the HSCI testimony last year showed, the folks on the ground in Ukraine didn’t really understand fully what was going on until later in the summer, when Yonanovich was fired and it became clear that Giuliani was running some scheme on behalf of the president to get the Ukranians to announce an investigation of Biden. The question is, what did Pompeo know and when did he know it. He’s not only close to Trump, he’s close to all the movement conservatives in Trump’s orbit who knew what Giuliani was doing.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
@Ruckus: Consider Baron Harkonan’s comment in the book Dune “Never trust a traitor”
Idiots who are easily manipulated by other are exactly that. idiots. Everything suggests that the Russians control these people indirectly threw internet trolls and the like. That’s pretty damn stupid to sell one’s own country out and do illegal acts, because of something one read in the internet.
hells littlest angel
@Kay: … it would have more impact if he had gone to the WSJ …
Pardon my glibness, but LOL.
BREAKING NEWS: Ukraine Announces Investigation!…into potential stalking/threats against former Ambassador Yovanovich.
@jonas: Zelensky and the Ukrainian government are in such a tough spot. They’re still dependent on the U.S., so it would be dangerous to alienate the Putin-loving lunatic in charge. My guess is they’ll conclude that the CT landscaper is an unhinged liar who didn’t have any contacts in Ukraine, which might very well be true. I don’t think we’ll get the goods on Trump’s scheme from the Ukrainian perspective until he’s out of office.
@jonas: I hope they announce it on CNN. The irony would be mad.
@Kay: Because he had friends in the media. Perhaps they were afraid of his associates. Maybe they thought someone else would do it from out of town. The bottom line was that everybody passed the buck on this and never thought he had national ambitions anyway
And out of NYC, that image led Americans to let their guard down. They figured we would have at worst, a lazy playboy who would serve his one term (if he won) and go away. Even I was fooled into thinking it was just a stunt, that he would never actually take the Presidency and all of its heavy and sometimes boring responsibilities and the financial exposure.
Who knew he was the bigoted, nasty Gramps you never wanted to visit?
@jonas: But Putin is in trouble at home. I can only see this ‘entire government resigns’ thing as a sign of weakness and overreach: something went badly wrong if he had to pull a move so brazen.
Might have something to do with being overextended here. And I agree with Ruckus: it’s never been about building up the power of Trump or Republicans in any serious way, it’s about hobbling the United States so that when we DO figure this shit out (collectively), we are too torn and damaged and harmed on the global stage to do anything about it.
Which is also why the Russian trolls are in overdrive over things like trying to make sure they’re running against Biden (whom they have fake evidence against) rather than say Warren (who has not been as dumb or as vulnerable, for which I’d thank Hillary Clinton who has doubtless warned her).
I blame pretty much all the frothing anti-Warren ‘leftist’ stuff on Russia. I’m convinced Russia is desperately trying to make sure we don’t go with Warren, because that could mean rebuilding and that could mean good plans and a certain amount of America coming together and getting back to our basic decency. And Putin can’t have that, obviously.
Putin is term limited as President. Putin is term limited as Prime Minister. The Russians have already changed the Constitution so Putin could be President again. They can’t do it again.
So Putin and his cronys are going to rearrange the “Halls of Power” to shift functional control of Russia, out of the Office of President, to various Dumas Councils, Cabinets and Commitees, where in the future, Putin and his cronys will sit as MP’s, and still run Russia, with the Prime Minister and President positions turned into mere puppets.
The problem that Putin faces, is that as this shift of power takes place, he has to ensure that the “current” Chair, Commitee, Cabinet positions are filled with his lackeys, but only those content to ride his coattails, and have no ambitions of their own.
Thus, the “fire sale” of the current Russian Government, soon to be completely restocked, by hook and by crook.
If he’s only trying to spread chaos and show that a democracy doesn’t work, and basically destroy the government of one, his expectations would not necessarily all that high and look what it’s taken to get where we are. A major line of totally flawed logic had to be, if not prevalent, at least pretty strong and that’s this countries racism and our two political parties who are complete opposites.
I’d bet he’s succeeded better than he anticipated, mainly because so many of his “subjects” were so easily and cheaply bought. Having a massive misinformation machine, the republican party and a large part of the MSM, didn’t hurt.
From his perspective this cheap campaign that didn’t cost him one bit of military anything has gotten more and weakened his lifelong opponent rather more than could be imagined.
That’s not true.
I’ve known for decades and I was born and lived in socal. I no I didn’t read any of the mentioned press. I did read the WSJ and Forbes because my father got them at work. Most of the articles were not all that flattering to trump. You had to actually read them to the ends but it was obvious that the people writing them didn’t see him as some financial wizard. He was always failing at everything.
If the world turned hard against him he’d be toast. His military is third rate at best, and him and his cronies stealing all the money keeps it from becoming a lot better. He’s not stupid and he’s lived his entire life in the shadow of failure with his country in the bigger world. For an egomaniac like vlad that’s a tough road and stealing all that money wouldn’t make up for it.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
You said it yourself. They are fucking idiots. And cheap fucking idiots. How much does anyone think this cost vlad? He’s somewhere in the vicinity of the wealthiest man in the world, 2-5 billion? Pocket change and his government probably picked up half.
Who knew he was the bigoted, nasty Gramps you never wanted to visit?
You can’t see it but I’m typing one handed, madly waving the other one.
Villago Delenda Est
Finally, some pizazz! Are you happy now, Chuckles and Cillizza?
@Ruckus: But I’m not talking about you and your folks, who had access to those mags. I’m talking about exhausted America, the people who read the daily paper at best, People magazine, and sometimes the Enquirer, who got their information about Trump mostly from TV-the Apprentice, his affairs, maybe his flashy lifestyle. The people who most needed this stuff never got it.
@CarolDuhart2: There was a vast middle of America who got nothing. You had a father who read Forbes. Most Americans didn’t-and don’t get that mag. A lot of America only saw a copy of Forbes in a bank office or while in a boss’s office-and even the boss only skimmed the articles. And a lot of magazine articles tried to be flattering at best because they too wanted access. Trump could threaten them if they got too deep into the woods.
I keep getting the feeling that the entire administration, and their Republican enablers are so completely corrupt that the Dems are just going to have to stop the game, refuse to play anymore, period. When one side does nothing but cheat, it’s not a game anymore. When it becomes clear that the whole system is rotten, and when the umpires (McConnell, Barr) are clearly on the side of the crooks and are a big part of the problem, then what is to be done? How do the Dems keep expecting the system to function when half the gears are missing?
Villago Delenda Est
@jc: Don’t leave out the vermin of the Village. They’re utterly corrupt as well, whoring themselves out for clicks, doing nothing but stenography, constantly bashing Democrats.
Wipe them out. All of them.
And likely they never will.
An informed citizenry is one with all the real information, not made up bullshit, intended misinformation and wild speculation. And even then a high percentage has no real way to do anything with that information, so they don’t. Too many people work far too many hours just to eat and stay reasonably dry, they have nothing left to be concerned citizens.
I’m actually not disagreeing with you. Just saying the info was out there.
@CarolDuhart2: I loved Spy magazine. Still have every issue in my NM garage.