Speed Reads

parnas talks

Donald Trump Jr. makes a cameo in Lev Parnas' Ukraine documents

Lev Parnas torched his bridges Wednesday. He told The New York Times he's eager to cooperate with federal prosecutors investigating his former associate Rudy Giuliani, and on MSNBC he implicated President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr, and Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) in the Giuliani-led effort to dig up dirt on Joe Biden in Ukraine. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Energy Secretary Rick Perry are apparently on the menu in the upcoming second part of Parnas' interview with MSNBC's Rachel Maddow.

But Parnas also released a trove of documents through the House Intelligence Committee, and Donald Trump Jr. made a small appearance in a text message exchange between Parnas and Joseph Ahearn, a GOP fundraiser then affiliated with the pro-Trump super PAC America First Action.

At the time, in early 2019, Parnas and Giuliani were working on a stealth campaign to oust U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch. Parnas first texted Tom Hicks Jr., a Trump family friend then chairman of America First Action, that he "should retweet" a Sean Hannity link critical of Yovanovitch. Hicks replied: "I should probably keep my hands clean on that!"

Later that day, Ahearn asked Parnas over text message: "What should I send Don to tweet?" Parnas sent him back articles critical of Yovanovitch, saying, "Have jr. retweet it." Ahearn replied: "Sent." It's "unclear" if Ahearn actually sent the request to Don Jr., the Times notes, but Don Jr. did retweet a GOP strategist slamming Yovanovitch and, a few days later, posted his own criticism of Yovanovitch.

Parnas sent an image of Don Jr.'s tweet to Ahearn. Ivanka Trump also merited a mention in the Parnas texts.

Maybe Eric Trump will make a cameo in the next batch.