Rudy Giuliani raises eyebrows after calling himself ‘Former Attorney General of the United States’ on Facebook page

closeGiuliani admits to forcing out YovanovitchVideo

Giuliani admits to forcing out Yovanovitch

Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s personal attorney, reveals why he was in Ukraine on ‘The Ingraham Angle.’

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani had critics scratching their heads on Tuesday after publicizing his Facebook page, where he referred to himself as a "Former Attorney General of the United States."

Giuliani, who has made headlines in recent months over his involvement with the Ukraine scandal as President Trump's personal attorney, plugged his Facebook page on Tuesday and teased users about findings from his "investigation."

"Connect with me on my Facebook Page. More to come on my investigation, soon!" Giuliani tweeted with a link to the page, which was created in October.

In addition to the erroneous listing, Giuliani is also described as a "government official" despite his current role as the president's personal lawyer.

Giuliani makes key admissionVideo

Giuliani's LinkedIn page correctly states that he was a U.S. Associate Attorney General between February 1981 and June 1983 under former President Ronald Reagan. He then spent five-and-a-half years as the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, leaving that position on New Year's Day, 1989.

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Giuliani made headlines earlier this month when he traveled to Ukraine in the hope of gathering evidence against former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden over their ties to natural gas company Burisma Holdings.

In a recent interview, Giuliani admitted to playing a key role in the ousting of ex-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, insisting she was "corrupt."

Original Article

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas tried hiding $1M Russia payment, prosecutors allege

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Fox News Flash top headlines for Dec. 11

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U.S. prosecutors on Wednesday accused Rudy Giuliani's associate Lev Parnas of receiving and trying to hide a $1 million payment from Russia just one month before he was charged with campaign finance violations.

Prosecutors are now asking a judge to jail Parnas for underreporting his assets, according to Bloomberg.

“Parnas failed to disclose, in describing his income to the government and pretrial services, the fact that in September 2019, he received $1 million from a bank account in Russia into Account-1,” the court filing stated.

The court filing reportedly gave little explanation as to where the $1 million came from or what it was intended for. Prosecutors claim the money was deposited into an account overseen by Parnas' wife, Svetlana, in an attempt to shield it from suspicion.

Parnas was arrested in October with his associate Igor Fruman as they attempted to board a one-way international flight out of Dulles Aiport near Washington, D.C. He was then charged less than 24 hours later with violating a ban on foreign donations and contributions in connection with federal and state elections.

GIULIANI ASSOCIATE LEV PARNAS WILLING TO COMPLY WITH IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY

In November, Parnas' lawyer Josephy Bondy said his client would be willing to cooperate with the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, despite denying previous House committee requests for specific documents.

“He will answer the subpoena to the best of his ability,” Bondy said. "Parnas was deeply disturbed to learn in jail while awaiting bail that the president was disavowing and claiming not to know him."

Parnas and Fruman pleaded not guilty to the campaign finance charges connected to political donations to a pro-Trump super PAC. They are accused of using the company Global Energy Producers (GEP) to funnel money into American elections.

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Federal Election Commission (FEC) records show GEP made $325,000 in donations to the pro-Trump super PAC America First Action in May 2018.

Fox News' Marta Dhanis and Louis Casiano contributed to this report

Original Article

Trump tries shucking Giuliani

closePerson claiming to be 'Anonymous' promises to reveal identity: 'Trump has not heard the last of me'Video

Person claiming to be 'Anonymous' promises to reveal identity: 'Trump has not heard the last of me'

The person claiming to be the 'Anonymous' senior Trump administration official behind the now famous New York Times op-ed and new tell-all books says their identity will not be secret forever.

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On the roster: Trump tries shucking Giuliani – Warren reeling – Time out: The Halftime report dressing recipe – Trump’s Florida first strategy – Look out Kermit!
TRUMP TRIES SHUCKING GIULIANI
CBS News: “President Trump tried to distance himself from his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani's efforts related to Ukraine on Tuesday in an interview with radio host Bill O'Reilly. …O'Reilly asked the president what Giuliani was, ‘doing in Ukraine on your behalf.’ ‘Well, you have to ask that to Rudy, but Rudy, I don't, I don't even know,’ said Mr. Trump. … Mr. Trump then denied that he had ever directed Giuliani to go to Ukraine on his behalf. However, in May the New York Times reported that Giuliani had planned to go to Ukraine that month, to urge the government there to open several investigations that could aid the president. … The president made it sound as though he did not necessarily have firsthand information about Giuliani's work in Ukraine, that he had ‘heard’ about it or ‘read that someplace.’”
Trump knew about whistleblower complaint before Ukraine aid released WSJ: “President Trump was briefed about the whistleblower complaint prompted by his dealings with Kiev before the White House lifted a hold on more than $391 million in aid to Ukraine, according to people familiar with the matter. The president was briefed about the complaint in August by White House counsel Pat Cipollone and John Eisenberg, an attorney with the White House National Security Council, the people said. The complaint triggered the impeachment inquiry by Democrats in the House, which Trump has dismissed as a hoax. … The White House has defended the president’s actions, in part by saying there was no link between suspending the aid and the president’s request for investigations because the hold on the money was lifted in September.”
Like Clinton, Trump turns to Penn for impeachment advice WaPo: “As President Trump’s White House battles impeachment, he turned to a familiar face last week: Mark Penn, one of President Bill Clinton’s top strategists. Penn visited the Oval Office for more than an hour last Monday, three people familiar with the meeting said, and provided polling data and impeachment advice for the president. Penn reassured Trump that he would not be removed from office, according to people familiar with the meeting, and encouraged him to travel the country as Clinton did when he was fighting impeachment over 20 years ago, officials said.”
Voters aren’t budging – Quinnipiac University: “Two weeks of public impeachment hearings in the news haven't hurt President Trump's popularity among American voters. While 40 percent of all registered voters approve of the job President Trump is doing, 54 percent disapprove. … The country remains closely divided on whether to impeach and remove President Trump from office. While 45 percent of American voters think President Trump should be impeached and removed from office, 48 percent don't think he should be. … Voter opinion on impeachment will be difficult to move as 86 percent say their mind is made up, while only 13 percent say they might change their mind.”
Dems see next week hearings as last chance to gain public support – Politico: “House Democrats have one final shot to drive up public support for impeachment, with a slate of hearings in the House Judiciary Committee beginning next week. But even Democratic lawmakers acknowledge public sentiment might be impossible to move in the weeks before an anticipated historic House vote on impeaching President Donald Trump. ‘I think people have made up their minds on this in a lot of ways,’ said Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), a member of the House Judiciary Committee. ‘But I think, frankly, what should drive us is the evidence and the facts and our oath of office.’ Many Democrats are skeptical that anything they do or say can further tick up backing for impeachment, keenly aware of polling this week showing that support has plateaued in the wake of an explosive set of House Intelligence Committee hearings that unearthed evidence suggesting an abuse of power by Trump.”
WARREN REELING
Quinnipiac University: “Former Vice President Joe Biden has retaken the lead in the Democratic primary race for president as Senator Elizabeth Warren's numbers have plummeted, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released [Tuesday]. Biden receives 24 percent of the vote among Democratic voters and independent voters who lean Democratic, while South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg gets 16 percent, Warren receives 14 percent, and Sen. Bernie Sanders gets 13 percent. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who just entered the race, receives 3 percent as do Sen. Kamala Harris and Sen. Amy Klobuchar. Sen. Cory Booker, businessman Andrew Yang, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, and Sen. Michael Bennet each receive 2 percent. No other candidate tops one percent. Eleven percent are undecided. In an October 24 poll, Warren received 28 percent, Biden had 21 percent, Sanders was at 15 percent, and Buttigieg got 10 percent.”
Buttigieg continues to rise – CNN: “Former Vice President Joe Biden continues to lead the newly expanded field of contenders for the Democratic nomination for president, with Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont behind him in a close battle for second, according to a new CNN Poll conducted by SSRS. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg joins them in double digits for the first time. Biden holds 28% support among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents who are registered to vote, followed by Sanders at 17%, Warren at 14% and Buttigieg at 11%. No other candidate reaches 4%, meaning the poll does not result in any changes to the lineup for the Democratic National Committee's December debate. A cluster of four candidates stand at 3%, including the latest entrant to the race, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He is joined by Sen. Kamala Harris of California and businessmen Tom Steyer and Andrew Yang. Sens. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Cory Booker of New Jersey have 2% each in the poll.”
Sean Trende: What is Bloomy doing? – Politico: “Will this work? Probably not. But Bloomberg can easily drop $500 million on this race and still live out the rest of his years quite comfortably. And there’s a chance that the stars will align and he becomes the next president of the United States. It isn’t a bad bet to make. Regardless, his best shot of making that happen is exactly the shot he is taking: Float above the fray by avoiding the debates and early states, define himself through ad buys elsewhere, and hope for a few lucky breaks in who his Super Tuesday opponents turn out to be.”
Meet the swingiest swing voters – NYT: “Midterm victories in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin gave Democrats hope of retaking the Rust Belt battleground states that handed the presidency to Donald J. Trump in 2016. Yet success in the midterms might not mean as much for Democratic presidential candidates as the party might think. Nearly two-thirds of voters in six battleground states who voted for President Trump in 2016 — but for Democratic congressional candidates in 2018 — say they intend to back the president against each of his top rivals, according to recent polling by The New York Times Upshot/Siena College. The results suggest that the party’s winning formula in last year’s midterms may not be so easy to replicate in a presidential election.”
THE RULEBOOK: DO OR DO NOT
“The question, therefore, whether this amount of power shall be granted or not, resolves itself into another question, whether or not a government commensurate to the exigencies of the Union shall be established; or, in other words, whether the Union itself shall be preserved.” – James Madison, Federalist No. 44
TIME OUT: THE HALFTIME REPORT DRESSING RECIPE
The best part about Thanksgiving dinner is the dressing and the best dressing is simple. Sausage, oysters, mushrooms, nuts and berries can only distract from what is a perfectly elegant American bread dish. So here’s how you do it. Cut a loaf of really good white bread into ½ inch cubes. Bake it in a 225-degree oven for about a 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until dry and crunchy. Place it in a large mixing bowl. Add ½ cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley, two tablespoons of finely chopped sage and a tables poon of finely (are you sensing a trend?) chopped thyme. Melt 10 tablespoons of the fattiest butter in a big skillet and then sauté until lightly browned 2 cups of small-diced sweet onion and 1½ cups of small-diced celery. Drizzle this deliciousness over your bread and herbs. Toss it well, adding two teaspoons of kosher salt and a teaspoon of finely ground pepper as you go. Then gradually add 1½ cups of broth, again tossing lightly. (I prefer to use turkey stock made from gizzards and giblets, but any good poultry stock will do.) Adjust the seasoning. In a small bowl, whisk together two large eggs and another cup of cool or room-temperature stock. Fold that gently but thoroughly into your bread bowl. Place the mixture into a well-buttered 13’x9’ dish, cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for ~40 minutes and save the sausage for breakfast.
[Ed. note: If I think about what I would do for our republic if I had three wishes to employ, one of them surely would be used for a great awakening of local and regional news coverage. Maybe nothing so afflicts us today as a replacement of local concerns with national matters. Our attention rightly belongs where we live, work and love. We should care much more about the nature of our local government than the distant considerations of the federal leviathan. The government in Washington is a large, blunt instrument and national politics reflect those characteristics. Dealing with each other on the local level increases the chances that we will see our fellow citizens as individuals with complicated, varied views rather than faceless partisan enemies. Part of the reason for our retreat into dunderheaded national partisan politics has been the long slow death of local news coverage. The internet tipped over the huge, over-leveraged newspaper industry in a seeming flash, leaving behind a terrible void that national news coverage can never and should never fill. One of my favorite newspaper traditions has been for decades my hometown newspaper, the Wheeling [W. Va.] Intelligencer’s annual republishing of the same perfect Thanksgiving column by the late Adam Kelly, known to his readers as “the country editor.” I was privileged to have his son, Bob, a truly great newsman in his own right, as my mentor when I later learned my way around the press and politics in Charleston, W. Va. 20 years ago or so. We’ve kept that Thanksgiving tradition alive here in this note and encourage you to spend some time with Adam Kelly’s words. But the essence is in this paragraph: “Family and freedom are ordinary words … except for those who cannot now experience those blessings, and so, Lord, this day I give You thanks for the priceless privileges which are mine as an American citizen … The freedom to speak, to write, to think, without government interference or control; the right to worship You in any way I choose.” We need now to raise up and sustain a new army of Adam Kellys in newsrooms across the country, in big cities and little towns, to remind us of our blessings and to focus our attention on what needs to be put right where we live. If you count a free press as one of the blessings worth celebrating this Thanksgiving, make sure you’re backing it up. Support local news outlets with your time and money. We need to know each other better, and that’s a great place to start. Fox News Halftime Report is pausing for the holiday and will resume publication on Dec. 2. In the meantime, Brianna and I wish you and your families bounty and blessings, but most of all, the gift of gratitude, especially those facing adversity.]
Flag on the play? – Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM with your tips, comments or questions.
SCOREBOARD
DEMOCRATIC 2020 POWER RANKING
Biden: 26 points (↓ 1.6 points from last wk.)
Warren: 19.4 points (↓ 3.2 points from last wk.)
Sanders: 17.2 points (↓ 0.4 points from last wk.)
Buttigieg: 10.2 points (↑ 2.6 points from last wk.)
Harris: 3.4 points (↑ 0.2 points from last wk.)
[Averages include: Quinnipiac University, CNN, Monmouth University, NBC News/WSJ and ABC News/WaPo.]
TRUMP JOB PERFORMANCE
Average approval: 43 percent
Average disapproval: 52.8 percent
Net Score: -9.8 percent
Change from one week ago: ↑ 1.6 points
[Average includes: Quinnipiac University: 40% approve – 54% disapprove; CNN: 43% approve – 53% disapprove; NPR/PBS/Marist: 44% approve – 51% disapprove; Gallup: 43% approve – 54% disapprove; Monmouth University: 45% approve – 52% disapprove.]
WANT MORE HALFTIME REPORT?
You can join Chris and Brianna every day on Fox Nation. Go behind-the-scenes of your favorite political note as they go through the must-read headlines of the day right from their office – with plenty of personality. Click here to sign up and watch!
TRUMP’S FLORIDA FIRST STRATEGY
WaPo: “President Trump’s raucous Tuesday night rally near Miami, billed by his campaign as a ‘homecoming’ extravaganza, followed his recent decision to move his formal residence from New York to Florida — and underscored the state’s importance to his reelection efforts as he grapples with the impeachment proceedings that threaten his presidency. Florida is now not only Trump’s home but also what Republicans hope is an emerging GOP bastion. His strategy in the state reflects his broader push to galvanize his core voters ahead of next year’s election by unleashing an incendiary defense of his conduct, be it on Twitter, cable news or in front of thousands. By rallying a capacity crowd at the 20,000-seat BB&T Center on Tuesday night, Trump tried to demonstrate broad and determined opposition to his impeachment.”
Set to rake bucks in Britain – Axios: “When President Trump visits London next week for the NATO summit, he'll also use his brief time on the ground there to raise big bucks for his 2020 campaign, according to an invitation reviewed by Axios and conversations with people familiar with the event. Details: The Dec. 3 fundraiser, which hasn't previously been reported, will be hosted by Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, co-chairman Tommy Hicks Jr., national finance chairman Todd Ricketts, and Trump's campaign manager Brad Parscale, according to the invitation. The Trump team expects to raise $3 million from the event, according to a source familiar with the planning.”
PLAY-BY-PLAY
Trade ministers to meet in Washington on Wednesday to discuss NAFTA dealPolitico
McConnell will have chance to lobby Pompeo for Kansas Senate run in personMcClatchy
The raccoon sent to Calvin Coolidge for Thanksgiving dinner that became a White House pet – WaPo
Thanksgiving advice from Dana Perino: Yoga for social anxietyYouTube
AUDIBLE: THE LEFTOVERS ARE THE BEST
“The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.” – President Abraham Lincoln in the 1863 proclamation establishing the precedent for the Thanksgiving
FROM THE BLEACHERS
“‘American citizenship demands discernment and attentiveness.’ Truer words were never written. I suggest one other essential quality, honest self evaluation. For example, suppose a member opposing your side says or does something that rankles you. Ask yourself, if a member of my side said or did the same thing, would I respond the same way? One should also do the same exercise in reverse to evaluate speech and actions by members of one’s own side. I’ll call this the political Golden Rule.” – Bill Ciao, Bellingham, Wash.
[Ed. note: Boy-howdy, Mr. Ciao! Honest self-appraisal – that more-demanding cousin of gratitude – really is the thing. I hereby grant you the rank of brevet colonel in the army of the level-headed, Pacific Command. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.]
Share your color commentary: Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT@FOXNEWS.COM and please make sure to include your name and hometown.
LOOK OUT KERMIT!
CNN: “What should have been a normal day at work took a turn for the surreal for one TV journalist, when he was relentlessly pursued by a pig — live on air. Lazos Mantikos was in the Greek town of Kineta Tuesday to report on flood damage, but he ended up becoming the story himself when the female pig seemed to take a liking to him. ‘Good morning, we have an issue,’ said Mantikos on the ‘Good Morning Greece’ show from CNN affiliate ANT1. ‘Giorgos, can you hear me? We have a pig here that has been chasing us since this morning … folks, sorry, I can't stand (still) because it's biting me.’ The segment begins with studio journalist Giorgos Papadakis introducing the reporter.”
AND NOW, A WORD FROM CHARLES…
“We ask ourselves, why do we do this to ourselves? Because dogs make us better people.” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) in a conversation with Dana Perino in 2012 after her dog Henry passed away. Dana was reminiscing with Daniel Krauthammer, son of Charles Krauthammer, on her Fox Nation show “Dana Perino's Book Club” this week.
Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.

Original Article

Giuliani-Pompeo contacts before Yovanovitch ouster are seen in newly released State Dept. documents

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Fox News Flash top headlines for Nov. 23

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The State Department late Friday released 100 pages of court-ordered documents that show President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke on the phone at least twice in late March within the same time frame of events currently under investigation in a House impeachment inquiry.

The released records seemed to confirm testimony from several key witnesses, including U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, who testified this week that senior Trump administration officials were involved in the president’s efforts to convince Ukraine to launch a probe into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden’s business dealings in the country. The 100 pages also included information related to House Democrats’ claims that Giuliani launched a so-called “smear campaign” against then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, leading to her ouster.

POMPEO DEFENDS ADMINISTRATION AMID UKRAINE CONTROVERSY: ‘IT IS OUR DUTY TO INVESTIGATE’

The documents were published by American Oversight, a nonprofit ethics watchdog investigating the Trump administration, which filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act for information related to the Trump administration’s dealings in Ukraine. The group seemed to find a loophole in the White House’s objections to cooperating in House impeachment hearings after Congress issued a subpoena for similar information.

“That American Oversight could obtain these documents establishes that there is no legal basis for the administration to withhold them from Congress,” American Oversight Executive Director Austin Evers said in a statement. “That conclusively shows that the administration is engaged in obstruction of justice. The president and his allies should ask themselves if impeachment for obstruction is worth it if the strategy isn’t even going to be effective.

Trump administration officials declining to testify on Capitol Hill have included acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney; John Eisenberg, the lead attorney for the National Security Council; Robert Blair, a top aide to Mulvaney; Michael Ellis, a National Security Council aide; and Brian McCormack, an Office of Management and Budget aide.

Included in the documents were records of a March 27 email exchange in which Trump’s former assistant Madeleine Westerhout helped put Giuliani’s team in touch with Pompeo after Giuliani’s assistant said she had "been trying and getting nowhere through regular channels," according to a copy of the documents supplied to Fox News after the nonprofit’s website crashed. Westerhout emailed an unnamed State Department official for contact information for “S,” a reference to Pompeo. She eventually sent the phone number to Giuliani’s assistant after the State Department official responded.

The emails seemed to back up Sondland’s claims that many top officials were involved, at the “express direction” of the president, in his request for the Biden probe, as well as information about the hacking of the DNC server in 2016. During his hearing Wednesday, the ambassador reneged in his original testimony and, instead, affirmed that there was an explicit trade of U.S. military aid to Ukraine tied in exchange for political favors.

“Was there a ‘quid pro quo?’ Sondland said. “The answer is yes.”

“Everyone was in the loop. It was no secret," he added.

The documents also supported testimony from U.S. diplomat David Hale who told the House Intelligence Committee that Pompeo and Giuliani spoke on the phone twice in late March. The records showed that Giuliani and Pompeo were scheduled to speak on the phone once on March 26, before the email exchange, and again on March 29. The topics of conversation were not listed. Pompeo also was scheduled to speak with Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., on April 1. The ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee has sharply defended Trump throughout impeachment hearings.

“It was designed to produce a specific storyline to be pushed forward by the Democrats and their supporters in the media,” Nunes said Thursday about the hearings.

These conversations occurred around the same time Yovanovitch was called back to Washington in early April before she was eventually fired in May. The career diplomat, who has served both Republican and Democratic presidents, testified last week that she was “kneecapped” by the Trump administration in her efforts to fight corruption in Ukraine. She also said she believed Giuliani played a key role in telling people she was not sufficiently supportive of the president.

Friday’s statement from American Oversight also tied the documents to what they called Giuliani’s “smear campaign” against the ambassador.

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“We can see why Mike Pompeo has refused to release this information to Congress. It reveals a clear paper trail from Rudy Giuliani to the Oval Office to Secretary Pompeo to facilitate Giuliani’s smear campaign against a U.S. ambassador,” the statement said.

Also included in the documents was an April 5 letter penned by six former U.S. ambassadors to Ukraine – including impeachment witness Bill Taylor – expressing concern over “recent uncorroborated allegations” questioning Yovanovitch’s work at the U.S. Embassy in Kiev. The ambassadors said the claims against Yovanovitch stemmed from a letter written by Pompeo and sent to Trump last May.

Fox News’ Rich Edson, Adam Shaw, Alex Pappas and Andrew O’Reilly contributed to this report.

Original Article

Giuliani defends ‘innocent’ phone call between Trump and Ukrainian president in WSJ op-ed

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What to expect as impeachment inquiry moves into public phase

Washington awaits high-stakes public hearings in impeachment inquiry; reaction and analysis from the 'Special Report' All-Stars.

Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s personal lawyer, penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal Tuesday defending the president against allegations of wrongdoing in a July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that led to an impeachment inquiry in the House of Representatives.

HERE'S WHAT TO EXPECT DURING PUBLIC HEARING

Giuliani wrote that Trump’s call with Zelensky was “innocent” and “proper,” and Trump was simply asking him to investigate “allegations of corruption at the highest levels of both governments” when he suggested Zelensky to look into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden's activities in the country.

GIULIANI ASSOCIATE TOLD UKRAINIANS TO INVESTIGATE BIDENS, LAWYER SAYS

He said the push for Zelensky to investigate was simply an “exercise of Mr. Trump’s responsibility as U.S. president.”

Giuliani wrote that Trump and Zelensky discussed alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election, including documents related to Paul Manafort released by a Ukrainian lawmaker and the National Anti-Corruption Bureau that were purportedly meant to hurt Trump’s candidacy.

He added that Trump “briefly” brought up the Bidens’ conduct regarding the Ukrainian oil company Burisma, where Hunter Biden served on the board, and said he thinks the former vice president should be investigated for bribery over allegations of a $900,000 transfer from Burisma to a lobbying firm owned by Hunter Biden “and at the very least both Bidens’ behavior deserves serious scrutiny.”

Giuliani said Trump’s words during the phone call were free of “threat or coercion” and noted that Zelensky said publicly that he didn’t feel any pressure to investigate the Bidens.

“[O]ut of a five-page transcript Mr. Trump spent only six lines on Joe Biden,” Giuliani added.

He wrote that the left’s inability to accept Trump's 2016 win and "fear" of his policies have pushed Democrats into a “frenzy” and the "double standard" of the impeachment inquiry.

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“[I]f the allegations against Joe and Hunter Biden aren’t fully investigated, we won’t have equal justice under the law,” Giuliani concluded.

The first public impeachment hearings will begin Wednesday morning.

Original Article

Giuliani associate told Ukrainians to investigate Bidens, lawyer says

closeTwo men linked to Rudy Giuliani plead not guilty to federal campaign finance violationsVideo

Two men linked to Rudy Giuliani plead not guilty to federal campaign finance violations

Feds say Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman funneled foreign money into a pro-Trump super PAC and U.S. campaigns; Rick Leventhal reports from Manhattan.

An attorney for Lev Parnas, an associate of Rudy Giuliani, is claiming his client traveled to Kiev shortly before the inauguration of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky this year to demand the new administration publicly announce an investigation into 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son.

Parnas' lawyer confirmed to Fox News that his client told Ukrainian officials that Vice President Mike Pence would not attend the swearing-in of the new president and the United States would freeze aid to the Eastern European nation if the demands were not met.

The claim by Parnas, who has been preparing to testify in the House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment inquiry into President Trump, directly challenged the accounts by Trump and Ukrainian officials that have been at the heart of the congressional probe. Parnas’ claim also directly tied Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, to threats of retribution if Ukrainian officials did not comply with the demands – something Giuliani steadfastly has denied.

BUSINESSMEN PLEAD NOT GUILTY TO CONSPIRING WITH GIULIANI ASSOCIATES

Parnas’ story, however, has been contradicted by a number of people, including his business partner Igor Fruman, who also was present at a meeting with the Ukrainians and claimed neither the issue of foreign aid nor the vice president’s attendance at the inauguration was raised.

Bolton reportedly labeled Giuliani a 'hand grenade'Video

Both Parnas and Fruman pleaded not guilty two weeks ago to campaign-finance charges connected to political donations to a pro-Trump super PAC. They were accused of using a limited liability company, Global Energy Producers (GEP), to make donations in American elections to advance the political interests of at least one Ukrainian government official.

Giuliani had hired Parnas and Furman to try persuading Ukrainian officials to investigate Biden and his son Hunter for possible corruption. That relationship has now become another arm of the growing impeachment inquiry against Trump, as three House committees have been looking into whether Trump tried to persuade Zelensky to investigate the Bidens by withholding U.S. military aid during a July 25 phone call between the two leaders.

The first public hearings in the impeachment inquiry are scheduled to be held this Wednesday and Friday, featuring current and former officials with knowledge of the Ukraine controversy.

Giuliani associates tied to Ukraine probe face campaign finance violation chargesVideo

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The first public hearing is to feature Bill Taylor, the acting U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, who already testified behind closed doors to congressional investigators that the president pushed Ukraine to investigate election interference, Biden and his son and their Ukraine dealings.

George Kent, the deputy assistant Secretary of State, is also scheduled to appear with Taylor. Kent testified behind closed doors last month; he told the committees he had concerns about Hunter Biden’s role on the board of Ukrainian natural-gas firm Burisma Holdings in 2015 but was rebuffed by the former vice president’s staff, which said the office was preoccupied with Beau Biden’s cancer battle.

Original Article

Giuliani hires lawyers, Trump adds to communications team amid impeachment inquiry

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President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, has himself hired a trio of attorneys to represent him amid the House impeachment inquiry.

“I am represented and assisted by Robert Costello and the Pierce Bainbridge firm in particular, Eric Creizman and Melissa Madrigal,” Giuliani tweeted on Wednesday afternoon.

Giuliani's interactions with Ukrainian officials, including purported efforts to seek the removal of the U.S. ambassador, have been entangled in the ongoing impeachment inquiry.

He tweeted earlier Wednesday "that the evidence, when revealed fully, will show that this present farce is as much a frame-up and hoax as Russian collusion, maybe worse, and will prove the President is innocent."

Costello, one of the attorneys Giuliani says represents him, had his name surface earlier this year when Trump's former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, said Costello had dangled the possibility of a pardon from Trump. Costello denied that.

Along with Giuliani hiring lawyers, Pam Bondi and Tony Sayegh are expected to join the White House communications team to work on proactive impeachment messaging and other special projects as they arise. The roles within the White House will be temporary and they will work as Special Government Employees.

TRANSCRIPT OF BILL TAYLOR'S TESTIMONY TO IMPEACHMENT PANEL RELEASED

The announcement that Bondi, the former attorney general of Florida, and Tony Sayegh, a former Treasury Department spokesman, will be joining the communications team comes as the impeachment inquiry enters a new, public phase. Earlier Wednesday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff announced that the first round of public, televised hearings will begin next Wednesday. Meanwhile, transcripts of closed-door interviews already conducted with top administration officials are being released.

The White House has been torn over how best to respond to the quickly moving investigation as officials try to defend a president who has always believed that he is his best spokesman.

Two men linked to Rudy Giuliani plead not guilty to federal campaign finance violationsVideo

The first round of public testimony will come from a trio of officials: Top Ukraine diplomat William Taylor, career diplomat George Kent and former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch. All three have previously testified behind closed doors.

Democrats are investigating Trump's dealings with Ukraine and whether his requests for investigations into Democratic political rivals as the U.S. was withholding several hundred million dollars in military aid constitute an abuse of power.

TRUMP-UKRAINE HOUSE IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY TO START 'OPEN HEARINGS' ON NOV. 13, SCHIFF SAYS

House Republicans are considering adding two stalwart Trump allies to the Intelligence Committee in an effort to combat the Democrats' probe.

Public hearings set to begin on Trump impeachment inquiryVideo

Multiple sources close to the impeachment probe confirm House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., is considering adding Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan to the House Intelligence Committee temporarily. The other names sources believe McCarthy is considering as potential short-term members of House Intelligence are North Carolina congressman Mark Meadows, and New York congressman Lee Zeldin.

“If Democrats are going to turn Intel into the impeachment committee, I am going to make adjustments to that committee accordingly, for a short period of time,” McCarthy first told POLITICO. His office says the quote is accurate.

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What is not certain is which Republican lawmakers McCarthy would remove from the committee to make room for one, two, or three temporary GOP members. Some have suggested Ohio’s Mike Turner, and from Texas, Will Hurd and Mike Conaway. Both Hurd and Conaway are retiring from Congress at the end of this current term. Those calls appear to be up to McCarthy at this stage.

Fox News’ John Roberts, Mike Emanuel and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Article

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas willing to comply with impeachment inquiry

closePolitical contributors linked to Giuliani probe in Ukraine arrested on campaign finance violationsVideo

Political contributors linked to Giuliani probe in Ukraine arrested on campaign finance violations

Federal authorities were waiting for Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman at a Washington, DC area to arrest the pair for illegal political contributions. Both men have been linked to Rudy Giuliani's investigations of the Bidens in Ukraine.

NEW YORK CITY – Lev Parnas, an associate of Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, said Monday he is willing to comply with the Democrat-led impeachment inquiry into the president, his attorney told Fox News.

“He will answer the subpoena to the best of his ability,” Joseph Bondy said, calling this a “stark deviation” from his previous position.

Bondy added that his client could possibly invoke his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination.

Parnas previously rejected requests for documents and testimony last month from three House committees looking into impeachment proceedings. It was not clear when Parnas would meet with impeachment investigators, who are looking into whether President Trump pressured Ukraine to investigate his political rivals, leveraging hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid.

BUSINESSMEN PLEAD NOT GUILTY TO CONSPIRING WITH GIULIANI ASSOCIATES

Lev Parnas makes a statement to the media following his arraignment in New York last month According to his attorney, Parnas is willing to cooperate with Congress in its impeachment inquiry. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Lev Parnas makes a statement to the media following his arraignment in New York last month According to his attorney, Parnas is willing to cooperate with Congress in its impeachment inquiry. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Parnas and Igor Fruman pleaded not guilty last week to campaign finance charges connected to political donations to a pro-Trump super PAC. They are accused of using a limited liability company, Global Energy Producers (GEP), to make donations in American elections to advance the political interests of at least one Ukrainian government official.

Federal Election Commission records show GEP made $325,000 in donations to the pro-Trump super PAC America First Action in May 2018. Parnas, a Ukrainian-born American citizen, was a key figure in Giuliani's efforts to get dirt on Trump's rivals Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

BIDEN RAMPS UP ATTACKS ON WARREN, DISMISSES HER AS A FELLOW FRONT-RUNNER

Parnas and Furman were hired by Giuliani to try and persuade Ukrainian officials to investigate former Vice President and 2020 Democratic candidate Joe Biden and Hunter for possible corruption.

Bondy told Fox News he doesn't expect his client's cooperation to impact the federal charges against him in New York but hopes the government moves quickly.

Rudy Giuliani says he has no reason to believe that his dealings with Parnas and Fruman are under scrutinyVideo

“We are willing to comply with the subpoena to the extent that it does not violate any appropriate privilege that Mr. Parnas may properly invoke,” Bondy, who along with Edward B. MacMahon, Jr. has represented Parnas, told The New York Times.

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Parnas' change of heart occurred after Trump denied knowing him or Fruman when they were arrested.

“Mr. Parnas was very upset by President Trump’s plainly false statement that he did not know him,” said Bondy, whose client has maintained that he has had extensive dealings with the president.

Fox News' Ron Blitzer contributed to this report.

Original Article

Giuliani associates plead not guilty to campaign finance charges

closeFox News Flash top headlines for Oct. 23Video

Fox News Flash top headlines for Oct. 23

Fox News Flash top headlines for Oct. 23 are here. Check out what's clicking on Foxnews.com

Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, two associates of President Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to campaign finance charges tied to political contributions, including hundreds of thousands of dollars to a pro-Trump super PAC.

An indictment filed in Manhattan federal court alleged that Parnas and Fruman used a limited liability company to make donations related to American elections, “to advance their personal financial interests and the political interests of at least one Ukrainian government official with whom they were working.” The indictment alleges the two men were in violation of restrictions against straw donors.

BUSINESSMEN PLEAD NOT GUILTY TO CONSPIRING WITH GIULIANI ASSOCIATES

Parnas and Fruman created Global Energy Producers (GEP) and allegedly funneled money through the company to a political committee “to obtain access to exclusive policital events and gain influence with politicians,” the indictment says. They allegedly incorporated GEP around the time the contributions were made.

According to Federal Election Commission records, GEP contributed $325,000 in May 2018 to pro-Trump super PAC America First Action.

In a statement, a spokesperson for America First Action noted that a complaint was filed with the FEC in July 2018 over this contribution, as well as separate litigation in Florida. The statement said that the money was placed "in a segregated bank account," was not used, and "will remain in this segregated account until these matters are resolved."

"We take our legal obligations seriously and scrupulously comply with the law and any suggestion otherwise is false," the statement said.

Parnas and Furman were hired by Giuliani to try and persuade Ukrainian officials to investigate former vice president and 2020 Democratic candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden for possible corruption. That relationship has now become another arm of the growing impeachment inquiry against President Trump, as Democrat-led House committees probe whether Trump tried to persuade Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate the Bidens by withholding U.S. military aid during a July 25 phone call between the two leaders.

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The indictment also lays out allegations of a separate "foreign national donor scheme" involving the two men and two other defendants, American David Correia and Ukrainian national Andrey Kukushkin, where they allegedly engaged in a conspiracy to make political contributions funded by an unnamed Russian national to obtain influence with political candidates regarding policies to benefit a recreational marijuana business venture, and to help obtain retail marijuana licenses.

Correia and Kukushkin pleaded not guilty last week.

Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran, Marta Dhanis and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Article

Businessmen plead not guilty to conspiring with Giuliani associates

closeGiuliani associates tied to Ukraine probe face campaign finance violation chargesVideo

Giuliani associates tied to Ukraine probe face campaign finance violation charges

Two associates of Rudy Giuliani in court; David Lee Miller reports.

Two businessmen pleaded not guilty Thursday to federal charges that they conspired with two associates of Rudy Giuliani to make illegal campaign contributions to prominent Republican politicians they thought could boost their political and business interests.

David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin appeared in Manhattan federal court to face charges of conspiracy to violate bans on foreign donations and contributions in federal and state elections. Each man faces up to five years in prison if convicted of the charge against him.

Prosecutors allege that Correia and Kukushkin worked to conceal political donations from an unnamed foreign national who was funneling the money through a shell company, Global Energy Producers (GEP). The company was created by Giuliani's associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, to support a recreational marijuana business venture, according to the 21-page indictment filed in the Southern District of New York.

GIULIANI, PENCE, ESPER REBUFF DEMOCRATS AMID SUBPOENA, DOCUMENT DEMANDS

Bolton reportedly labeled Giuliani a 'hand grenade'Video

Parnas and Furman were hired by Giuliani to try and persuade Ukrainian officials to investigate former vice president and 2020 Democratic candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden for possible corruption. That relationship has now become another arm of the growing impeachment inquiry against President Trump, as three Democratic-led House committees probe whether Trump tried to persuade Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate the Bidens by withholding U.S. military aid during a July 25 phone call between the two leaders.

The foreign national referred to in the indictment also allegedly wired $500,000 to Parnas and Fruman, both U.S. citizens born in the former Soviet Union, from a foreign bank account to be used to support candidates in state and national elections in Nevada, New York and elsewhere.

Andrey Kukushkin, second from left, and David Correia, far right, appear at a court hearing for conspiracy charges Thursday in New York. (Elizabeth Williams via AP)

Andrey Kukushkin, second from left, and David Correia, far right, appear at a court hearing for conspiracy charges Thursday in New York. (Elizabeth Williams via AP)

Federal prosecutors say that Parnas donated $20,000 to an unidentified congressman in exchange for the politician's support for ousting then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovich at the behest of Ukrainian government officials.

The indictment against the four men does not mention the politician by name, simply referring to the person as "Congressman 1," but donations made by Parnas and Fruman match campaign finance reports for Pete Sessions, R-TX, who has since contributed his donations to local charities.

Feds allege Rudy Giuliani associates lobbied congressman to advocate removal of US ambassador to UkraineVideo

Sessions, who is not believed to be a target of the investigation, Parnas and Fruman have all been subpoenaed by a grand jury to turn over documents related to their dealings with Giuliani.

GEP also allegedly contributed $325,000 and $15,000 to separate committees in May 2018, “to obtain access to exclusive political events and gain influence with politicians,” the indictment says. They allegedly incorporated GEP around the time the contributions were made.

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According to FEC records, GEP contributed $325,000 in May 2018 to pro-Trump super PAC America First Action. In a statement, a spokesperson for America First Action noted that a complaint was filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) in July 2018 over this contribution in addition to separate litigation in Florida. The statement said that the money was placed "in a segregated bank account," was not used, and "will remain in this segregated account until these matters are resolved.

Parnas and Furman are expected to be arraigned in a New York courthouse next week.

The next court date for Correia and Kukushkin was set for Dec. 2, though U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken granted a request from Kukushkin to remain in California, where a $1 million bail package limits where he can go beyond home to work, legal visits and medical appointments.

Fox News' Ronn Blitzer and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Article

Sondland says he was ‘disappointed’ Trump involved Giuliani in Ukraine

closeEU Amb. Gordon Sondland arrives for closed deposition in impeachment inquiryVideo

EU Amb. Gordon Sondland arrives for closed deposition in impeachment inquiry

U.S. Ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland has defended President Trump against Ukraine allegations in a series of text messages; Catherine Herridge reports from Capitol Hill on the key testimony.

U.S. Ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland said behind closed doors Thursday that he was “disappointed” that President Trump told him to work with attorney Rudy Giuliani in dealings with the Ukrainian government.

Sondland is speaking to investigators as part of House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry. That inquiry is focusing on circumstances surrounding President Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, in which Trump urged Zelensky to “look into” concerns about former Vice President Joe Biden’s conduct in the country, as well as Ukraine’s activities in the 2016 election.

US ENVOY SONDLAND WORKED WITH GIULIANI ON UKRAINE CORRUPTION STATEMENT, VOLKER TESTIFIED: SOURCES

The State Department had initially blocked Sondland from speaking at a scheduled deposition earlier this month, but Sondland subsequently agreed to appear Thursday after House Democrats issued a subpoena.

According to his prepared remarks, the wealthy hotelier and philanthropist said how in May, he and the rest of the U.S. delegation that had attended the Zelensky inauguration a few days earlier debriefed Trump and White House aides on the new Ukrainian government.

“We asked the White House to arrange a working phone call from President Trump and a working Oval Office visit,” Sondland said. “However, President Trump was skeptical that Ukraine was serious about reforms and anti-corruption, and he directed those of us present at the meeting to talk to Mr. Giuliani, his personal attorney, about his concerns.”

According to Sondland, “it was apparent to all of us that the key to changing the president’s mind on Ukraine was Mr. Giuliani.”

Sondland says that he, Energy Secretary Rick Perry and U.S. envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker were “disappointed” by the debriefing and the directive that they involve Giuliani: “Our view was that the men and women of the State Department, not the President’s personal lawyer, should take responsibility for all aspects of U.S. foreign policy towards Ukraine."

He went on to say that, facing a choice of either abandoning the goal of a Zelensky White House meeting or involving Giuliani, they chose the latter.

In talks with Giuliani, Sondland claims that the former New York City mayor mentioned both concerns about the 2016 election, and also Burisma Holdings — a Ukrainian gas company where Biden’s son Hunter sat on the board.

“But I did not understand, until much later, that Mr. Giuliani’s agenda might have also included an effort to prompt the Ukrainians to investigate Vice President Biden or his son or to involve Ukrainians, directly or indirectly, in the President’s 2020 reelection campaign,” he says, adding that while Giuliani mentioned Burisma, he did not know the connection to the Bidens.

“Again, I recall no discussions with any State Department or White House official about Former Vice President Biden or his son, nor do I recall taking part in any effort to encourage an investigation into the Bidens,” he will say.

Why did Democrats give Biden a pass with Ukraine scandal during the 4th debate?Video

Democrats have claimed that Trump used the withholding of military aid as a quid pro quo to pressure Zelensky to investigate Biden. Trump has denied a quid pro quo, saying he has only ever been concerned about corruption. Sondland is connected to that denial as he had texted with Bill Taylor, a top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, arguing over allegations of a quid pro quo.

GIULIANI 'DISAPPOINTED' IN BOLTON AMID CLAIM HE TOLD AIDE TO ALERT LAWYER TO UKRAINE PROBE

“The President has been crystal clear: no quid pro quo’s of any kind,” Sondland texted Taylor in September. “The President is trying to evaluate whether Ukraine is truly going to adopt the transparency and reforms that President Zelensky promised during his campaign.”

In his remarks Thursday, Sondland said that that came after a call with Trump, where the president had said there was no quid pro quo “multiple times” after Sondland pressed him on it.

The ambassador was expected to address media reports that Fiona Hill, a former senior director to Russian and Eurasian affairs, told lawmakers on Monday that then-National Security Adviser John Bolton told her to notify a lawyer at the National Security Council about concerns over an alleged effort involving Sondland to pressure Ukraine on the investigations.

“I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and [acting White House chief of staff Mick] Mulvaney are cooking up,” Bolton allegedly told Hill, according to The New York Times.

In his remarks, Sondland says that he kept the NSC up to date with efforts regarding Ukraine and “nothing was ever raised to me about any concerns regarding our Ukrainian policy.”

Bolton reportedly labeled Giuliani a 'hand grenade'Video

“To put it clearly: Neither [Hill] nor Ambassador Bolton shared any critical comments with me, even after our July 10, 2019 White House meeting,” he said. “And so, I have to view her testimony — if the media reports are accurate — as the product of hindsight and in the context of the widely known tensions between the NSC, on the one hand, and the State Department, on the other hand, which had ultimate responsibility for executing U.S. policy overseas.”

Sondland’s appearance comes amid back-to-back witnesses' testimonies as part of the impeachment probe. On Wednesday, Michael McKinley, a career foreign service officer and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s de facto chief of staff, reportedly told investigators behind closed doors that he could no longer look the other way amid the Trump administration’s dealings with Ukraine, which were among the reasons he ended his 37-year career last week.

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On Friday, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch told lawmakers that she had been recalled after “unfounded and false claims by people with clearly questionable motives” and said that she did not know why she had apparently been targeted by Giuliani.

“But individuals who may have been named in the press as contacts of Mr. Giuliani may well have believed that their personal financial ambitions were stymied by our anti-corruption policy in Ukraine,” she said.

Fox News' Rich Edson and Gregg Re contributed to this report.

Original Article

US envoy Sondland worked with Giuliani on Ukraine corruption statement, Volker testified: sources

closeKurt Volker returns to Capitol Hill to review impeachment interview transcriptVideo

Kurt Volker returns to Capitol Hill to review impeachment interview transcript

President Trump's Former special envoy to Ukraine finalizes the October 3 record of his closed-door interview; chief intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge reports from Washington.

Sources with firsthand knowledge of former U.S. envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker's testimony to House investigators told Fox News that he said he consulted with U.S. envoy to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, and President Trump's attorney, Rudy Giuliani, in August regarding a draft statement from Ukraine on corruption.

The revelation came as Sondland prepared to testify Thursday in House Democrats' impeachment inquiry, which has revolved around a whistleblower’s complaint that Trump was pushing Ukraine’s leader into opening an investigation into Joe and Hunter Biden's business dealings in the country.

Volker told House investigators at his Oct. 3 closed-door interview that Giuliani was involved in conversations concerning the draft statement "because the Ukrainians asked to be connected to him" and "that information flow would reach the president," according to the sources. The diplomat said it was in the "U.S.' interest for the information that was reaching the president to be accurate and fresh and coming from the right people."

Sondland and Giuliani worked with Andriy Yermak, a senior aide to Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, Volker testified. Giuliani remarked that the statement would need to include a reference to alleged 2016 election interference involving Ukraine and the Biden-linked Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma Holdings, according to Volker, or else "it’s not credible, because what are they hiding?”

SONDLAND TO TESTIFY TRUMP TOLD HIM — 'NO QUID PRO QUO'

"I then discussed that with Mr. Yermak after that conversation, and he did not want to include Burisma and 2016, and I agreed with him," Volker told House investigators, per the sources. Hunter Biden sat on the board of Burisma Holdings while his father handled Ukraine policy as vice president.

Democrats to subpoena Amb. Sondland after State Department blocks diplomat's testimonyVideo

The draft statement was never released. Volker insisted in his testimony that he "was never asked to do anything that I thought was wrong," the sources said.

Separately, in a contentious exchange with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., Volker said he believed Ukrainians did not know that the U.S. had suspended military aid to the country until a month after the July 25 call between Trump and Zelensky. During that call, Trump asked if Ukraine could "look into" Joe Biden's actions involving the country.

Democrats have alleged that Trump held up the aid as part of a quid pro quo to kickstart a probe into the Bidens, which Trump has denied. Volker said the Ukrainians were not immediately aware the aid was suspended, and shortly after the call secured a meeting with then-National Security Adviser John Bolton.

WHY DID PELOSI ANNOUNCE DEMS WON'T VOTE ON BEGINNING AN IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY?

"In that context, I think the Ukrainians felt like things are going the right direction, and they had not done anything… on a [Biden] investigation," Volker was said to have testified.

When Democrats pressed Volker on why Hunter Biden was invited to serve on the board of Burisma Holdings, Volker said he suspected Burisma was concerned about its reputation for corruption and was looking to "spruce up its image" by having "prominent-named people on the board."

Sondland's planned testimony comes amid back-to-back witnesses in the Democrats' impeachment probe. On Wednesday, Michael McKinley, a career foreign service officer and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s de facto chief of staff, reportedly told investigators behind closed doors that he could no longer look the other way amid the Trump administration’s dealings with Ukraine, which were among the reasons he ended his 37-year career last week.

Among McKinley’s concerns, according to reports: the administration’s failure to support then-Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, who was ousted in March on orders from Trump.

McKinley, who as a Latin America expert was not specifically involved in Ukraine, also was said to have been frustrated that there had been no response to an August inspector general’s report that found significant evidence of leadership and management problems, including allegations from career employees that Assistant Secretary of State Kevin Moley and his former senior adviser Mari Stull retaliated or tried to retaliate against them as holdovers from the Obama administration.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., told reporters outside the closed-door hearing that McKinley was complimentary about Pompeo’s role but did raise other issues.

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"I think most of this is a concern by a colleague for an ambassador that he held in high regard," Meadows said, declining to provide more details from the closed session.

Trump, meanwhile, tweeted on the eve of Sondland's testimony late Wednesday that the House should vote to "censure" Schiff.

Original Article

Rick Perry says Trump directed him to Giuliani about allege Ukraine corruption

closeHouse Democrats subpoena Energy Secretary Rick Perry in impeachment inquiryVideo

House Democrats subpoena Energy Secretary Rick Perry in impeachment inquiry

Rebecca Walser, Stef Kight and Dave Dodson weigh in on House Democrats' push for President Trump's impeachment.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry, whose name has been mentioned in connection with President Trump’s Ukraine dealings, said in an interview published late Wednesday that the president told him to seek out Rudy Giuliani earlier this year to look into possible Ukrainian corruption.

JUDE NAP: TRUMP SAID IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY IS UNFAIR, IS HE RIGHT?

The Wall Street Journal sat down with Perry for an extensive interview and reported that the spring conversation was a sign of how closely Giuliani — a personal lawyer for Trump — worked on Ukraine policy. Giuliani's business dealings with the country were reportedly looked at by federal investigators. He denied any wrongdoing.

Did ousted US ambassador to Ukraine unlawfully monitor Laura Ingraham?Video

"Visit with Rudy," Perry recalled Trump telling him. He told the paper that Trump was not convinced that Kiev "straightened up" its act. Perry told the paper he never heard Trump or Giuliani talk about an investigation into the Bidens.

RICK PERRY DENIES DISCUSSING BIDENS WITH TRUMP OR UKRAINE OFFICIALS: REPORTS

Perry said he remembered the phone call with Giuliani. He said the former mayor of New York city told him the president was “really concerned that there are people in Ukraine that tried to beat him during this presidential election. He thinks they’re corrupt and … that there are still people over there engaged that are absolutely corrupt.”

He said Giuliani did not make any specific demands during the phone call.

Earlier this week, Fiona Hill, a former senior director for Russian and Eurasian affairs talked about Giuliani’s perceived influence over Trump Cabinet members on Ukraine. She testified that on July 10, top U.S. officials and Ukrainians had a meeting that touched on investigations into the Bidens. She reportedly said that John Bolton, a former national security adviser for Trump, instructed her to inform a National Security Council lawyer about the meeting.

Trump has denied any wrongdoing and said Democrats are desperate to hurt his presidency.

The New York Times reported that during the meeting, Bolton got into a heated exchange with Gordon D. Sondland, the European Union ambassador. The paper reported that Sondland worked with Giuliani to pressure the Ukrainians to investigate the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Hill reportedly said Bolton likened Giuliani to a “hand grenade who’s going to blow everybody up.” She said it appeared Giuliani was not working in coordination with the normal foreign policy channels when dealing with Ukraine.

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Giuliani has said in the past that he worked in conjunction with the State Department, the Journal reported. He confirmed his conversation with Perry and said there was nothing there that wasn’t already reported on “fifty times.”

Original Article

Giuliani says he won’t comply with congressional subpoena

closeRudy Giuliani to Fox News: Will not comply with subpoenaVideo

Rudy Giuliani to Fox News: Will not comply with subpoena

Another key witness appears for deposition in impeachment inquiry; chief intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge reports.

President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, told Fox News he will not comply with a congressional subpoena to turn over all documents related to the phone call between Trump and Ukraine central to impeachment hearings against the president, as the deadline for cooperating expires Tuesday.

Giuliani's attorney, Jon Sale, who he retained to represent him in matters relating to impeachment said his client would not abide by the subpoena "because this appears to be an unconstitutional, baseless, and illegitimate, "impeachment inquiry."" according to a letter sent to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Tuesday.

"The subpoena is overbroad, unduly burdensome, and seeks documents beyond the scope of legitimate inquiry. Moreover, documents sought in the subpoena are protected by attorney-client, attorney work-product, and executive privileges," Sale wrote.

Giuliani also told Fox News he is parting ways with Sale, a former Watergate prosecutor, stating that unless Congress tries to enforce the subpoena, he will not be needing an attorney.

The three House committees conducting depositions this week to move the impeachment inquiry forward — which include the Foreign Affairs, Intelligence and Oversight and Reform committees — allege that Giuliani "pressed the Ukrainian government to pursue two politically motivated investigations” against the former vice president and 2020 hopeful Joe Biden and his son Hunter in exchange for foreign aid.

In addition, the House also subpoenaed the Pentagon and the White House Office of Management and Budget, as well as Vice President Pence, for documents that explain why military aid to Ukraine was withheld.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper said he will comply with the subpoena, despite protests from the White House. Pence, meanwhile, has rebuffed Congress' efforts.

Congressional Democrats are in their fourth week of impeachment hearings against Trump which center around whether or not he attempted to persuade Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate the Biden family for possible corruption in exchange for U.S. aid

During a July 25 phone call between Trump said: “There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great.”

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Trump's reference to Biden and his son relates to the former vice president's insistence that Ukraine fired its top prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating the natural gas firm Burisma Holdings, where Hunter Biden was on the board. Biden has maintained that corruption concerns prompted his intervention.

Original Article

Giuliani ‘disappointed’ in Bolton amid claim he told aide to alert lawyer to Ukraine probe

closeGiuliani 'disappointed' in John Bolton after testimony reveals his concerns about Ukraine meetingVideo

Giuliani 'disappointed' in John Bolton after testimony reveals his concerns about Ukraine meeting

President Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani releases a statement to Fox News after former Russia adviser Fiona Hill testifies that John Bolton instructed her to alert the NSC after a meeting with White House officials and Ukraine; Catherine Herridge reports.

President Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani on Tuesday said he was “disappointed” in former National Security Adviser John Bolton, after reports emerged that he had called Giuliani a “hand grenade” over his Ukraine investigations — and told a top aide to alert a lawyer in the National Security Council.

“I am disappointed in John,” Giuliani said in a statement to Fox News. “I’m not sure he realizes I received all this evidence as part of my representation of the president. It was all part of the evidence, and suppression of evidence, involving Ukrainian collusion and the origin of some of the false information against the president.”

BOLTON INSTRUCTED FORMER RUSSIA ADVISER TO ALERT NSC LAWYER OVER UKRAINE, ADVISER TESTIFIES

Giuliani’s comments come after it emerged that Fiona Hill, a former senior director to Russian and Eurasian affairs, told lawmakers Monday that a meeting between Ukrainian and U.S. officials left her and Bolton so concerned that he told her to alert John Eisenberg, a lawyer at the NSC.

According to the New York Times, Hill said Bolton told her to notify Eisenberg about the effort by Giuliani, acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and E.U. Ambassador Gordon Sondland to press Ukraine to investigate Democrats.

“I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and Mulvaney are cooking up,” Bolton allegedly told Hill, according to the Times.

Hill said Bolton had previously called Giuliani a “hand grenade who’s going to blow everyone up.”

The dramatic testimony gave an insight into how divisive Giuliani and others’ efforts to investigate activity, particularly that of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter in Ukraine, was inside the White House.

Giuliani reportedly being investigated for work in Ukraine; McAleenan resigns as acting homeland security secretaryVideo

House Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry last month after the emergence of a whistleblower complaint that alerted officials to a July 25 phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. In that call, of which the transcript was later released by the White House, Trump urges Zelensky to “look into” Biden’s family’s conduct and allegations of Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election.

Democrats allege that Trump withheld U.S. military aid to the country to force the Ukrainians into investigating his political opponent — specifically Biden’s role in the firing of a top prosecutor who had been investigating a Ukrainian gas company, where Hunter Biden sat on the board.

TRUMP BACKS 'LEGENDARY' GIULIANI AMID REPORTS OF INVESTIGATION INTO POSSIBLY LOBBYING VIOLATIONS

Trump has denied any quid pro quo, and claimed instead that he was only looking to crack down on corruption. He has instead attempted to direct attention to Hunter Biden’s activities in both Ukraine and China.

As the impeachment inquiry has heated up, it has also brought more scrutiny to Giuliani’s role in spearheading a separate investigation into Ukraine. The New York Times reported Friday that prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether the former New York City mayor broke lobbying laws in his own dealings with Ukraine. On Monday, Reuters first reported that Giuliani's firm had been paid $500,000 in 2018 by one of the two Ukrainian-American businessmen arrested last week on campaign finance charges.

"Although this has already been publicly discussed in the past, Giuliani Partners was retained by Fraud Guarantee in or about August, 2018," he said in a statement to Fox News. "We were referred by a prominent attorney as our firm is particularly suited for this engagement because of its 17 years of experience in this area of work and our past experience with this type of business."

CLICK HERE FOR THE ALL-NEW FOXBUSINESS.COM

He said that most of the work was completed in 2018, and payment was received as a retainer paid in two installments, "but there is a continuing obligation to advise with regard to follow-up questions." He also said that the source of the payments was domestic.

Trump gave his backing to Giuliani on Saturday, tweeting that he was a “great guy and wonderful lawyer.”

“So now they are after the legendary “crime buster” and greatest Mayor in the history of NYC, Rudy Giuliani. He may seem a little rough around the edges sometimes, but he is also a great guy and wonderful lawyer,” he tweeted. “Such a one sided Witch Hunt going on in USA. Deep State. Shameful!”

Fox News’ Edmund DeMarche and Chad Pergram contributed to this report.

Original Article

Federal prosecutors scrutinize Giuliani’s Ukraine business dealings

closeRudy Giuliani says he has no reason to believe that his dealings with Parnas and Fruman are under scrutinyVideo

Rudy Giuliani says he has no reason to believe that his dealings with Parnas and Fruman are under scrutiny

President Trump's personal attorney says he gave Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman legal advice and advice on business and security matters; chief White House correspondent John Roberts reports.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are examining Rudy Giuliani’s business dealings in Ukraine, including his finances, meetings and work for a city mayor there, according to people familiar with the matter.

BOLTON TOLD AIDE TO INFORM NSC LAWYER ABOUT UKRAINE MEETING: TESTIMONY

Investigators also have examined Giuliani’s bank records, according to the people.

Witnesses have been questioned about Giuliani since at least August by investigators, who also want to know more about Giuliani’s role in an alleged conspiracy involving two of his business associates, the people said. The investigation is being led by the U.S. attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York.

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Giuliani has denied wrongdoing and on Monday said he hadn’t been informed of any investigation. “They can look at my Ukraine business all they want,” he said.

It couldn’t be determined how far along the investigation stands. The scope of the inquiry also isn’t known. Since April 2018, Mr. Giuliani has been President Trump’s personal lawyer, work for which he isn’t paid.

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Trump backs ‘legendary’ Giuliani amid reports of investigation into possible lobbying violations

closeGiuliani reportedly being investigated for work in Ukraine; McAleenan resigns as acting homeland security secretaryVideo

Giuliani reportedly being investigated for work in Ukraine; McAleenan resigns as acting homeland security secretary

NYT reports Rudy Giuliani is being investigated for potentially violating lobbying laws; acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan resigns.

President Trump on Saturday gave his backing to Rudy Giuliani, his personal attorney, after reports that the former New York City mayor is being investigated by federal prosecutors for possibly lobbying violations in relation to his work in Ukraine.

“So now they are after the legendary ‘crime buster’ and greatest Mayor in the history of NYC, Rudy Giuliani,” Trump tweeted. “He may seem a little rough around the edges sometimes, but he is also a great guy and wonderful lawyer.”

TWO GIULIANI ASSOCIATES LINKED TO UKRAINE INVESTIGATIONS INDICTED ON CAMPAIGN FINANCE CHARGES

The New York Times reported Friday night that prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether Giuliani broke lobbying laws in his dealings with Ukraine. They are reportedly examining Giuliani’s efforts to oust then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

Earlier this week, two associates of Giuliani were indicted for campaign finance violations. Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman are accused of using a limited liability company to make political contributions related to American elections, in violation of FEC prohibitions against contributions from foreign nationals.

Both men have been linked to Giuliani’s efforts to conduct investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden’s, and his son Hunter’s, dealings in the country — particularly connected to Hunter’s ties to a Ukrainian gas company. Giuliani has acknowledged that both men "logistically helped" in his collection of evidence against Hunter Biden, and that they helped connect him with former Ukrainian top prosecutors Viktor Shokin and Yuriy Lutsenko.

The arrests came amid a growing impeachment inquiry related to President Trump’s July 25 phone call with Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. In that call, Trump asked the premier to “look into” the allegations about Biden. Opponents have accused Trump of withholding military aid to pressure the Ukrainians into investigating a political rival — something Trump denies.

EX-GOP CONGRESSMAN SAYS HE'LL DONATE CONTRIBUTIONS FROM ARRESTED GIULIANI ASSOCIATES

WARNING GRAPHIC LANGUAGE: Trump calls Democrats' impeachment inquiry 'bull s---'Video

Yovanovitch, the former Ukraine ambassador who was recalled in May, told lawmakers on Friday that she was removed after “unfounded and false claims” were made against her as well as continued pressure from Trump on the State Department to remove her.

She said, as for Giuliani, she was in contact with him three times as she can recall, none related to the controversy at hand — and said that she did not know Giuliani’s motives for going after her.

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“But individuals who may have been named in the press as contacts of Mr. Giuliani may well have believed that their personal financial ambitions were stymied by our anti-corruption policy in Ukraine,” she said

On Saturday, Trump appeared to dismiss the claims against Giuliani, as well as the impeachment inquiry as a whole — as he has done so multiple times before.

“Such a one sided Witch Hunt going on in USA. Deep State. Shameful!” he tweeted.

Fox News' Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

Original Article

Report: Giuliani under investigation for lobbying violations

closeGiuliani reportedly being investigated for work in Ukraine; McAleenan resigns as acting homeland security secretaryVideo

Giuliani reportedly being investigated for work in Ukraine; McAleenan resigns as acting homeland security secretary

NYT reports Rudy Giuliani is being investigated for potentially violating lobbying laws; acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan resigns.

WASHINGTON — Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, is being investigated by federal prosecutors in New York for possible lobbying violations.

That's according to a report Friday in The New York Times, citing two anonymous people familiar with the inquiry.

EX-GOP CONGRESSMAN SAYS HE'LL DONATE CONTRIBUTIONS FROM ARRESTED GIULIANI ASSOCIATES

One of the Times' sources says the investigation is related to Giuliani's efforts to undermine former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

Two Florida businessmen tied to Giuliani were charged Thursday with federal campaign finance violations. The men had key roles in Giuliani's efforts to launch a Ukrainian corruption investigation against Democratic presidential contender Joe Biden and his son Hunter. A whistleblower complaint about Trump's involvement with Ukraine has led to an impeachment investigation.

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The U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan declined to comment Friday night on the Times report.

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Ex-GOP congressman says he’ll donate contributions from arrested Giuliani associates

closeRudy Giuliani says he has no reason to believe that his dealings with Parnas and Fruman are under scrutinyVideo

Rudy Giuliani says he has no reason to believe that his dealings with Parnas and Fruman are under scrutiny

President Trump's personal attorney says he gave Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman legal advice and advice on business and security matters; chief White House correspondent John Roberts reports.

A former Texas congressman who received at least $20,000 in campaign contributions from two associates of Rudy Giuliani who were arrested Thursday for campaign finance violations, has said he will donate the funds to local charities.

"Yesterday, I learned that two contributors to my 2018 campaign are being charged for not following campaign contribution laws," Pete Sessions said in a statement Friday. "Their deception cannot, and should not, be tolerated. Therefore, I am contributing the amount of their contributions to charities that serve abused women and children and the elderly in Central Texas."

TWO GIULIANI ASSOCIATES LINKED TO UKRAINE INVESTIGATIONS INDICTED ON CAMPAIGN FINANCE CHARGES

Federal prosecutors say that one of the arrested men, Lev Parnas, urged an unidentified congressman to seek the ouster of U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovich at the behest of Ukrainian government officials. That happened about the same time that Parnas and his co-defendant Igor Fruman committed to raising more than $20,000 for the politician.

An indictment against Parnas and Fruman filed in the Southern District of New York does not accuse Sessions of wrongdoing or mention him by name, simply referring to the person as "Congressman 1." But donations made by Parnas and Fruman match campaign finance reports for Sessions.

Sessions, who served in the House of Representatives for 11 terms before losing his seat to Democrat Colin Allred in 2018, announced recently that he will be throwing his hat in the ring for Texas' 17th congressional district seat after GOP incumbent Rep. Bill Flores announced he'd be retiring ahead of the 2020 election cycle.

Parnas and Fruman's shell company Global Energy Producers (GEP) allegedly contributed $325,000 and $15,000 to separate committees in May 2018, “to obtain access to exclusive political events and gain influence with politicians,” the indictment says. They allegedly incorporated GEP around the time the contributions were made.

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According to FEC records, GEP contributed $325,000 in May 2018 to pro-Trump super PAC America First Action. In a statement, a spokesperson for America First Action noted that a complaint was filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) in July 2018 over this contribution in addition to separate litigation in Florida. The statement said that the money was placed "in a segregated bank account," was not used, and "will remain in this segregated account until these matters are resolved.

Fox News' Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.

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Giuliani associates arrested while trying to board international flight with one-way tickets, prosecutors say

closePolitical contributors linked to Giuliani probe in Ukraine arrested on campaign finance violationsVideo

Political contributors linked to Giuliani probe in Ukraine arrested on campaign finance violations

Federal authorities were waiting for Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman at a Washington, DC area to arrest the pair for illegal political contributions. Both men have been linked to Rudy Giuliani's investigations of the Bidens in Ukraine.

Two associates of Rudy Giuliani made their initial appearance before a federal judge on Thursday, less than 24 hours after they were arrested on campaign finance violations while trying to board an international flight with one-way tickets at Dulles International Airport outside of Washington D.C.

Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman appeared in federal court in Alexandria, Va. to face a four-count indictment alleging that they, along with two other co-defendants, conspired to violate a ban on foreign donations and contributions in connection with federal and state elections.

The two men remained mostly silent during their appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Nachmanoff. They did not enter a plea, but both are expected back in court tomorrow for a detention hearing.

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“Protecting the integrity of our elections and protecting our elections from unlawful foreign influence are core functions of our campaign finance laws,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said at a press conference on Thursday. Parnas and Fruman are being charged in New York’s Southern District.

Berman added: “As this office has made clear, we will not hesitate to investigate or prosecute those who engage in criminal conduct that draws into question the integrity of our political process. And I want to add that this investigation is continuing.”

Feds allege Rudy Giuliani associates lobbied congressman to advocate removal of US ambassador to UkraineVideo

Parnas, 47, and Fruman, 53, created Global Energy Producers (GEP), and allegedly funneled money through the company. This included contributions of $325,000 and $15,000 to committees in May 2018, “to obtain access to exclusive political events and gain influence with politicians,” the indictment says. They allegedly incorporated GEP around the time the contributions were made.

According to Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, GEP contributed $325,000 in May 2018 to pro-Trump super PAC America First Action. In a statement, a spokesperson for America First Action noted that a complaint was filed with the FEC in July 2018 over this contribution, as well as separate litigation in Florida. The statement said that the money was placed "in a segregated bank account," was not used, and "will remain in this segregated account until these matters are resolved."

Both men are accused of making false statements related to the nature of GEP and the contribution in response to the FEC complaint.

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Additionally, contributions from Fruman were allegedly made in Parnas’ name to get around federal contribution limits, and several contributions were made under the name "Igor Furman" instead of "Fruman," allegedly "to conceal the source of the funds and to evade federal reporting requirements."

The indictment also claims that Parnas and Fruman “committed to raise $20,000 or more for a then-sitting U.S. Congressman” whom they had met at a political event. The congressman wasn't identified by name in court papers, but the donations to "Congressman 1" in the indictment match campaign finance reports for former Rep. Pete Sessions, a Texas Republican who lost his re-election bid in November 2018.

Rudy Giuliani finds timing of clients' arrest and indictment suspiciousVideo

At approximately the same time that they made that commitment, Parnas and the Congressman discussed the Congressman's assistance in securing the removal of the then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, and this was done "at least in part, at the request of one or more Ukrainian government officials," the indictment alleges.

The indictment also lays out allegations of a separate "foreign national donor scheme" involving the two men and two other defendants, American David Correia, and Ukrainian national Andrey Kukushkin. The foursome allegedly engaged in a conspiracy to make political contributions funded by an unnamed Russian national to obtain influence with political candidates regarding policies to benefit a recreational marijuana business venture, and to help obtain retail marijuana licenses.

House Democrats on Thursday subpoenaed Parnas and Fruman as part of the impeachment inquiry into Trump. The subpoenas are for documents that the men have so far failed to provide to Congress.

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Parnas and Fruman were involved in Giuliani's efforts to urge Ukrainian officials to investigate Trump's political rival Joe Biden and his family. That effort was also discussed by Trump in a July call with Ukraine's president and is at the heart of the impeachment probe.

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Giuliani told Fox News that he represents Parnas and Fruman on a separate matter and called the timing of their arrest and indictment "suspect." He added that he "will reveal relevant facts very very shortly."

Giuliani, an attorney for President Trump, said he finds it "extremely suspicious" that the arrest was made in connection with an FEC matter that has yet to be resolved, and which Giuliani said is a civil matter. He acknowledged, however, that both men "logistically helped" in his collection of evidence against Hunter Biden, and that they helped connect him with Viktor Shokin and Yuriy Lutsenko former Prosecutors General of Ukraine.

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer, Jake Gibson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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