Trump said Thursday that he doesn’t understand Parnas at all, and dismissed the existence of images of him and Parnas together, saying he takes images with “thousands of individuals including today that I didn’t fulfill.”
He implicated Parnas, who was arraigned in October over an alleged project financing plan, of trying to “make a deal for himself.”
“I don’t understand who this guy is,” Trump stated. “Usually I’ll be taking an image with someone and state, I wonder what paper that a person will appear in. I don’t understand him. Possibly he’s a great man. Maybe he’s not. I understand nothing about him.”
Trump has made an effort to distance himself from Parnas in the past. In October, after Parnas and his Florida-based partner, Igor Fruman, were prosecuted, the president rejected understanding either of Giuliani’s associates.
Trump on Thursday likewise stated he had no knowledge of a May 2019 letter from Giuliani to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that belonged to a trove of files that was turned over by Parnas and released by lawmakers this week.
In the letter, which was gotten from Parnas’ cell phone, Giuliani requested for a half-hour conference with Zelensky as he was looking for investigations that might increase Trump’s domestic political interests. And Giuliani explained that he was showing Trump’s “understanding and approval” and in his capability as a “personal” attorney for the president.
The sentiment ran counter to Trump’s recent claims that he pushed for the probes on behalf of the U.S. government.
” I didn’t know about his specific letter, but if he composed a letter, it would not have actually been a huge deal,” Trump stated on Thursday.