A Republican congressional candidate who was implicated in the Ukraine scandal claims to be involved in distributing millions of face masks to doctors and nurses fighting the coronavirus pandemic.
Robert Hyde, who was accused of stalking former Ukraine ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, boasted in an email to reporters that he could get 10 million N95 medical masks, and he told the Washingtonian that he’d already brokered a deal to send 15 million masks to a FEMA supply hub in New York.
“Three days ago, I didn’t even know about face masks. Now here I am, facilitating for hospitals,” Hyde told the magazine. “I’m getting contact from first responders, cops, fire departments — lots of fire departments. I didn’t know a f*cking thing about face masks. Here I am, just trying to help, and it’s exploded.”
Hyde produced a letter of intent signed by Sean Carrol, the chief procurement officer at New York’s Office of General Services, and a purchase order for $82.5 million for the masks to be sent to FEMA.
A spokesperson for the Office of General Services confirmed the documents were valid but was unable to say whether Hyde was involved in the deal.
“There are a lot of showboaters out there,” the spokesperson said.
A site manager at the FEMA warehouse had not yet received the documents, and he also said he hadn’t gotten the 15 million masks Hyde claimed.
Hyde made a series of phone calls over an hour as the reporter listened in, but he refused to identify them as anything more specific than his “sources” or his “guys.”
He also insisted that his work was entirely pro bono, and he claimed to be losing money on endeavors, but he blew up when the reporter asked for evidence that he was actually involved in these transactions.
“What are you trying to validate?” Hyde shouted. “You’re on the phone with these f*ckers! You don’t see that, in the sh*t you’ve been getting and seeing? The f*cking email chains, bro? It’s pretty straightforward.”
Hyde finally put the reporter in touch with an official with the Yale-New Haven Health System, who confirmed that he had been negotiating a proposal with Hyde after seeing his Facebook post promising to deliver masks — but admitted he knew nothing about his candidacy or his role in the impeachment saga.
“I didn’t even know he was a Congressional candidate,” said hospital official Ron Sherman. “I don’t really follow much of the political stuff.”