Giuliani Consulted With Manafort In Fruitless Effort To Connect Clinton With Ukraine
President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, in his pursuit of information related to conspiracy theories linking Ukraine and Hillary Clinton, sought out Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chair who was convicted last year and is presently serving out the early parts of his prison sentence.
The Washington Post reported that Giuliani has consulted in recent months with the former campaign chair, who has remained loyal to Trump during the entire process of an investigation and conviction, which came about during the Mueller investigation. Giuliani acknowledged his attempts to reach out to Manafort, which proved to be fruitless, it appears.
He attempted to explain himself to the Post:
“It was that I believed there was a lot of evidence that the [Democratic National Committee] and the Clinton campaign had a close connection to Ukrainian officials,” Giuliani said.
The personal lawyer for Trump said his correspondences, which have taken place over recent months, weren’t directly with Manafort, but rather through his legal counsel. Giuliani claims he hasn’t seen Manafort face-to-face for two years.
His inquiries with the former campaign chair centered around a conspiracy theory that held Manafort had kept a ledger of information detailing financial or other connections that the former Ukraine government had with 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Manafort ended up telling Giuliani that such a ledger doesn’t exist.
I’m running out of shocked faces:
“Giuliani in recent months has consulted several times with Manafort through the federal prisoner’s lawyer.”https://t.co/8BSZTVPCyd
— Amy Siskind 🏳️🌈 (@Amy_Siskind) October 3, 2019
“I said, ‘Was there really a black book? If there wasn’t, I really need to know. Please tell him I’ve got to know.’ He came back and said there wasn’t a black book,” Giuliani explained.
Giuliani has reportedly been conducting his own pseudo-investigation of alleged connections between Clinton and Ukraine.
As NBC News reported, Trump himself has peddled the conspiracy theory, directly to the current leadership in that nation, as evidenced by a memo where he asked President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate whether Ukraine could find a supposedly missing email server belonging to Clinton.
“The server, they say Ukraine has it,” Trump said to Zelensky during a phone call in July. There is no evidence to support the theory put forward by Trump.
The consultation with Manafort itself is iffy, given that he’s not necessarily the most reliable of individuals. Manafort had crafted a plea bargain with the Mueller investigation, only to renege on terms of the deal by continuing to make contact with the Trump administration, which he had agreed not to do.
A judge ruled in February that Manafort had lied to investigators, the Associated Press reported.