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Ukrainian journalist throws down gauntlet after Giuliani smear: ‘I express my readiness to testify’

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A Ukrainian journalist said on Sunday that he would be willing to testify to Congress against President Donald Trump’s attorney, Rudy Giuliani.

After Giuliani unleashed a bizarre rant on CNN accusing Democrats of trying to get help from Ukraine in the 2016 election, Ukrainian journalist Serhiy Leshchenko wrote an op-ed exposing the accusation as a lie.

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In his op-ed, Leshchenko explains:

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the Manafort revelations would become fodder for the U.S. elections in 2020. President Trump’s lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, the mouthpiece of this campaign, is not only attempting to rehabilitate Manafort but is also working to undermine U.S. relations with Ukraine, which has been confronting Russian aggression on its own for more than five years. Giuliani and his associates are trying to drag our newly elected president, Volodymyr Zelensky, into a conflict between two foreign political parties, drastically limiting Ukraine’s room for maneuver in respect to the United States, perhaps its most important international partner.

[…]

Giuliani’s entire approach is built on disinformation and the manipulation of facts. Giuliani has developed a conspiracy theory in which he depicts my revelations about Manafort as an intervention in the 2016 U.S. election in favor of the Democratic Party. In his May interview on Fox, Giuliani even claimed that I was convicted of a corresponding crime.

The facts do not support this allegation. Here’s the truth: The administrative court — which has long had a reputation as the most corrupt in Ukraine — ruled in December 2018 that I had acted illegally by disclosing the payments to Manafort. We appealed, and the verdict was suspended. And in the summer of this year, we won the appeal and the court’s decision was completely annulled. The appeal concluded that all the charges against me were unfounded, and even obliged my opponents to reimburse me for $100 in legal costs.

Additionally, Leshchenko wrote that he would be willing to testify to Congress. He followed up the op-ed with a tweet reiterating his desire to appear before Congress.

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RNC blew nearly $100,000 to help put Trump Jr’s book on the bestseller list

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A new Federal Elections Commission filing unearthed by New York Times reporter Nick Confessore shows that the Republican National Committee blew nearly $100,000 to help promote Donald Trump Jr.'s book "Triggered."

According to the filing, the RNC made a $94,800 payment to bookseller Books-a-Million on October 29th this year, which was just days before Trump Jr.'s "Triggered" was released on November 5th.

An RNC spokesman confirmed to Confessore that "the expenditure was connected to their promotion of Don Trump Jr.'s book."

The RNC had previously claimed that it didn't make a bulk purchase but had only been "ordering copies to keep up with demand" of the book. When asked by Confessore how they could claim they weren't making bulk purchases when they bought roughly $100,000 worth of books, the RNC simply replied, "We stand by our statement."

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David Holmes blows up one of Trump’s key defenses in Ukraine extortion scheme

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David Holmes blew up one of the central arguments in the impeachment defense of President Donald Trump.

The president's Republican allies have argued that Ukraine was not aware that congressionally approved aid had been held up by the White House as Trump demanded an investigation of Joe Biden, but Holmes explained why that's wrong, reported the Washington Post.

Holmes, a political counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, told congressional investigators that Ukrainian officials seemed to have figured out that the pause, which had been reported in late August by Politico, was related to Trump's call for an investigation.

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The GOP wanted Sondland to be Trump’s Ukraine ‘fall guy’ — then it blew up in their faces: NYT columnist

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According to New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg, Republican hopes that they could turn E.U. Ambassador Gordon Sondland into "fall guy" for Donald Trump's Ukraine scandal ended up being a disastrous miscalculation.

Following testimony given by the millionaire Trump appointee that was televised nationally where he clearly stated that the president was using foreign aid to get political dirt on possible 2020 presidential election foe Joe Biden, the NYT columnist claims the GOP now has a "Gordon problem."

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