The theme of indicted former Giulian “henchman” Lev Parnas seemingly having photographs of him posing with literally everyone in Trump’s orbit that you can think of — from his kids to his staffers to the members of Congress who most loudly support him — has almost taken on a life of its own on social media. It seems that every time someone says in an interview that they’ve never met him, his lawyer posts a picture of them together. Every time someone denies they know him very well, boom, a picture.
But pictures, whether they’re worth a thousand words figuratively or not, just don’t have any words in them. You know what DOES have words? Tapes. Videotapes, audiotapes, digital recordings, you name it. Give me that stuff as a lawyer and I’m much happier than just being presented with photos that largely lack context, can be easily manipulated, and can be trickled out the way that Joseph Bondy, Parnas’ lawyer, has been doing.
Give me that stuff as a member of a Congressional committee, and it just might add impeachment charges to Trump’s already loaded plate.
The meat and potatoes of Trump’s defense thus far has been, “if there was anything illegal going on, someone else was doing it without my knowledge or approval.” But Parnas’s appearance on Rachel Maddow’s program a few days ago strains the credibility of that notion, since he basically told the world that Trump and everyone inside Trump’s circle — including Vice President Mike Pence — knew exactly what was going on during the Ukraine cover-up and that a hundred percent of it was at the direction and for the direct benefit of Donald Trump.
But what Parnas said on a cable news channel to a partisan host really isn’t testimony, per se. The tapes that he handed over to the House Intelligence Committee… Now that’s testimony. And if those tapes, containing recordings of Trump and his personal lawyer Giuliani presumably discussing this whole affair, back up what Parnas has now told investigators and the audience of Maddow’s show, there will be a lot more people reckoning with the law over this affair than just Rudy or his boss.
Featured image via composite
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