Kevin McCarthy Defends Nunes Contacts With Giuliani’s Indicted Associate: ‘I Don’t Have a Problem With That”
Following the release of the impeachment inquiry report by the House Intel Committee, which includes the revelation that Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) was in contact with Rudy Giuliani’s indicted associate Lev Parnas, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy defended Nunes, saying he has “a right to talk to anybody.”
“I don’t have a problem with Devin talking to individuals,” McCarthy told reporters, according to Mediaite.
When asked if Nunes should discuss what happened on the calls, which were highlighted in a report released by the Intelligence panel earlier Tuesday, McCarthy said that is a decision that should be left up to Nunes.
“That’s a question for Devin, but Devin has the right to talk to people,” he said. “There’s nothing wrong with what Devin has done, except once again, try to get accused of something, it is a simple smokescreen.”
McCarthy weighed as the Intelligence Committee report showed phone logs indicating that Nunes and a member of his staff was in contact with Giuliani and the lawyer’s associate Lev Parnas in April and May, amid efforts by Trump’s attorney to get Ukraine to launch politically charged probes involving the Bidens and the 2016 presidential election.
Giuliani, who has been a central figure in the impeachment inquiry, is reportedly under investigation by federal prosecutors, while Parnas was indicted this year on allegations of campaign finance law violations.
Democrats, including House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), stated they found the contacts uncovered in the report Tuesday “deeply concerning.”
The Intelligence Committee voted along party lines Tuesday evening to advance its impeachment report to the Judiciary panel, which is charged with weighing whether actions detailed in the report rise to the level of impeaching the president.
The Judiciary panel is slated to hold its first impeachment hearing on Wednesday.
Nunes did not return a request for comment on the report.