GOP senator implicated in Rudy Giuliani plot to smear Biden with help from Russian spy
September 10, 2020
The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned one of Rudy Giuliani's contacts in Ukraine for allegedly trying to interfere in the U.S. election, possibly with the help of a Republican senator.
President Donald Trump's personal attorney worked closely with Ukrainian parliamentarian Andriy Derkach, who the Treasury Department described as an active Russian agent for over a decade, to push allegations of misconduct involving Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.
“Andrii Derkach and other Russian agents employ manipulation and deceit to attempt to influence elections in the United States and elsewhere around the world,” said Secretary Steven Mnuchin. “The United States will continue to use all the tools at its disposal to counter these Russian disinformation campaigns and uphold the integrity of our election system.”
Derkach had also been supplying documents to Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) and other Republican lawmakers and worked with Giuliani on broadcasts by the pro-Trump One America News Network aimed at undermining impeachment.
"Between May and July 2020, Derkach released edited audio tapes and other unsupported information with the intent to discredit U.S. officials, and he levied unsubstantiated allegations against U.S. and international political figures," the Treasury Department said in a statement. "Derkach almost certainly targeted the U.S. voting populace, prominent U.S. persons, and members of the U.S. government, based on his reliance on U.S. platforms, English-language documents and videos, and pro-Russian lobbyists in the United States used to propagate his claims."
Johnson, chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs, is investigating the origins of special counsel Robert Mueller's probe of Trump's ties to Russia, in addition to Biden's dealings in Ukraine -- which formed the basis of the House impeachment trial.
"The more that we expose of the corruption of the transition process between [Barack] Obama and Trump, the more we expose of the corruption within those agencies," Johnson said last month, "I would think it would certainly help Donald Trump win re-election and certainly be pretty good, I would say, evidence about not voting for Vice President Biden."
A whistleblower claims that acting Homeland Security secretary Chad Wolf instructed career officials to downplay Russian efforts to interfere with the election and instead focus on similar efforts by China and Iran.