Following the latest confirmation from President Donald Trump himself that yes, he sent personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to Ukraine in an effort to procure baselessly alleged politically damaging intel on the Bidens, government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has filed a criminal complaint against Giuliani with the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York (SDNY), requesting an investigation. The group alleges that Trump’s admission confirms that Giuliani violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits the use of government resources for private political purposes. Past prosecutions under the law include Richard Nixon’s personal attorney, of all people! How fitting.
That attorney had tried to “trade an ambassadorship appointment for contributions” to Nixon’s campaign. In this case, Giuliani participated with Trump’s scheme to use Congressionally approved military aid for Ukraine as leverage to try and pressure the country into producing that Biden dirt.
CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder commented:
‘Rudy Giuliani’s efforts in Ukraine to advance the political interests of President Trump led to the President’s impeachment, but they also violated our country’s criminal laws. Holding up hundreds of millions of dollars in money Congress appropriated to keep America safe in order to advance a partisan political agenda is not only dangerous and anti-democratic, it also violates a key federal law meant to prevent the powers of the federal government from being used for political gain.’
Bookbinder added that Giuliani and co-conspirators like Igor Fruman and Lev Parnas “may have threatened the democratic foundations and national security interests of the United States” with their participation in the bribery scheme.
The Government Accountability Office has already concluded that the aid delay, which coincided with Trump and Giuliani’s pressure for the investigation, violated the law against a president contradicting the will of Congress when dishing out funds. That conclusion was unveiled before the conclusion of Trump’s Senate impeachment trial focusing on the bribery scheme, but only a single Republican Senator — Mitt Romney — voted to convict him of the impeachment case charge of abuse of power.
Giuliani has already been reported to be under federal investigation covering his overseas “consulting” work, which could have amounted to illegal secret advocacy for foreign interests in the United States. Some of the goals that he and his cronies pushed, like the firing of then-Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, were the apparent direct wishes of interests in Ukraine.
He’s tried to defend himself by saying that his work to dig up political dirt in Ukraine was just meant to benefit his client, meaning Trump. The problem is that no level of attorney-client privilege, executive privilege, or whatever else can magically whisk away the dangerous ramifications of what Trump, Giuliani, and the rest of them have done. Besides — they’re operating on completely false information. There remains no evidence of any actual wrongdoing involving the Bidens in Ukraine, where former VP Joe’s son Hunter briefly served on the board of a corrupt energy company, although by all appearances, Giuliani is still feverishly pursuing that idea anyway.