LISTEN: GOP Lawmaker Trolls Schiff With Tape Of Him Fishing For Ukraine Dirt On Trump
Florida GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz has uncovered an old prank phone call in which House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff tells two Russian radio hosts posing as a Ukranian politician that he’d gladly accept anti-Trump dirt from them.
“So, you have recordings of both [Russian journalist Ksenia] Sobchak and [Russian model and singer Olga] Buzova where they’re discussing the compromising material on Mr. Trump?” Schiff asked the callers, who were pretending to be Andriy Parubiy, the former speaker of Ukraine’s parliament.
“Absolutely,” one of the pranksters says.
“Well, obviously we would welcome a chance to get copies of those recordings,” Schiff said later in the call after he and the fake “Parubiy” go on to discuss more details of the bogus allegations.
In the call, which took place two years ago, Schiff has no idea he’s talking to pranksters.
— Rep. Matt Gaetz (@RepMattGaetz) September 29, 2019
The radio hosts, Vladimir “Vovan” Kuznetzov and Alexey “Lexus” Stolyarov, told Schiff the Kremlin had naked photos of Trump, Fox News reported. They also told the California Democrat that former Trump national security advisor Michael Flynn “had met with another Russian to talk about how to prevent the photos from going public.”
Gaetz accused Schiff of hypocrisy for appearing willing to accept information from the Ukranian government as his committee investigates Trump for advocating that Ukraine pursue an investigation that would have likely been politically beneficial to the president’s reelection campaign.
This comes as Schiff and the House Intelligence Committee take center stage in the impeachment fight as the committee is set to question intelligence community Inspector General Mike Atkinson on Friday. The committee also reached a deal for testimony from the whistleblower whose complaint set off scrutiny on Trump’s call with Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky, shortly before which he put a hold on $400 million in military aid to Ukraine. Democrats have said the combination of the withheld aid and the requests for an investigation into the Biden family amounted to a proposed quid-pro-quo by Trump. …
While Schiff does not appear to question the veracity of the prank callers’ assumed identity on the January 2018 call, his office said they did not simply take the pranksters at their word.
“Before agreeing to take the call, and immediately following it, the committee informed appropriate law enforcement and security personnel of the conversation, and of our belief that it was probably bogus,” a Schiff spokesman told The Atlantic.
In the tweet posted by Gaetz, he shows a clip of Schiff saying this: “It is illegal, improper, a violation of oath, a violation of his duty to defend our elections and our Constitution for the president to merely ask for foreign interefence.”