Trump's lawyer is accused of being a "central figure" in efforts to get Ukraine's president to investigate Joe Biden in a whistleblower complaint.
- Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, has given a wild interview in which he said he would "be the hero" of the Ukraine scandal.
- Giuliani was reacting to a whistleblower complaint that frames him as a central figure in Trump's efforts to get Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, who is one of Trump's 2020 election rivals.
- The former New York City mayor told The Atlantic that it was "impossible that the whistleblower is a hero and I'm not" and said that "if this guy is a whistleblower, then I'm a whistleblower too."
- Giuliani alleges that Biden was corrupt as vice president in his actions with Ukraine, but there is no evidence of this.
- Some White House officials have reportedly said they blame Giuliani for the scandal, which has led to impeachment proceedings against Trump. Giuliani called such officials "a bunch of cowards."
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President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said he "will be the hero" of the Ukraine scandal that has led to a formal impeachment inquiry against Trump.
In an interview with The Atlantic's Elaina Plott published Thursday, Giuliani commented on an explosive whistleblower complaint that revealed Trump asked Ukraine's president to investigate Trump's 2020 election rival Joe Biden. The complaint also characterized Giuliani as a "central figure" in what it described as Trump "pressuring a foreign president to investigate one of the President's main domestic political rivals."
Giuliani said in the interview: "It is impossible that the whistleblower is a hero and I'm not. And I will be the hero!"
"These morons — when this is over, I will be the hero."
Plott, who was speaking with Giuliani by phone, said Giuliani was "very angry" and sounded "out of breath" during moments of the call.
Giuliani alleges the Bidens were corrupt in Ukraine, but the country's top prosecutor said there was no evidence of wrongdoing
Giuliani said he would be recognized for uncovering what he says is corrupt action from the time when Biden was vice president and his son Hunter Biden was on the board of a Ukrainian gas-extraction company. No evidence of such corruption has been found.
"If this guy is a whistleblower, then I'm a whistleblower too," Giuliani told The Atlantic. "You should be happy for your country that I uncovered this."
Giuliani and Trump accuse Biden of trying to push out Ukraine's top prosecutor in 2016 over an investigation of Bursima Holdings, which Hunter was then on the board of.
But government officials and Ukrainian anticorruption advocates say the prosecutor had actually hampered the investigation into the company and did so long before Biden was involved. Biden has said he was trying to lessen corruption in Ukraine by seeking the prosecutor's removal.
Ukraine's prosecutor general also said this week that there was no evidence of any wrongdoing on behalf of the Bidens.
Giuliani told The Atlantic that "all his facts" about Biden were "true."
Giuliani said he was contacting Ukrainian officials at the State Department's request, but the agency hasn't commented
Giuliani told Fox News on Tuesday that he had been dealing with Ukrainian officials at the request of the State Department. The State Department has not commented on these claims.
He was responding to a Washington Post report that Giuliani had been dealing with Ukrainian officials in an unusual situation that cut out national security personnel, who were left learning about Giuliani's actions through media reports.
Giuliani told The Atlantic that he was looking forward to seeing the State Department "sink themselves" by trying to distance itself from him.
He also dismissed part of the whistleblower complaint that alleged US ambassadors were trying to help Ukraine "understand and respond to the differing messages they were receiving from official US channels on the one hand, and from Mr. Giuliani on the other."
"The State Department is concerned about my activities?" he said. "I gotta believe [the whistleblower] is totally out of the loop, or just a liar."
The complaint also alleged that State Department officials — including the US special representative for Ukraine negotiations, Kurt Volker, and the US ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland — spoke with Giuliani to try to "contain the damage" to US national security caused by his dealings with Ukraine.
But Giuliani said he had "bunch of friendly text messages reaching out for my help" from State Department officials.
"If they were so concerned about my activities, why did they ask for my help?" he said.
On Thursday, Giuliani tweeted what he claimed was a message from Volker putting him in touch with someone "very close to President Zelensky."
—Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) September 26, 2019
"Why does this text and date render the hearsay so-called whistleblower useless and not credible?" he tweeted. "If you get even one reason I might recommend you for Law School."
White House officials reportedly blame Giuliani for the scandal
The whistleblower painted a picture of Giuliani trying to gain influence in Ukraine, including trying to contact Zelensky's team after Zelensky won the presidency and meeting with at least one of Zelensky's advisers.
The Atlantic reported that some White House officials were turning against Giuliani, who is Trump's personal lawyer and not a government official.
One former senior White House official said the "entire thing" — the fallout from the call with Ukraine — was "Rudy putting s--- in Trump's head."
A senior House Republican aide also called Giuliani a "moron" to The Atlantic.
Giuliani called them "bunch of cowards" in response during the interview.
"I didn't do anything wrong," he said. "The president knows they're a bunch of cowards."
A US official also blamed Giuliani for the scandal earlier this week. "Rudy — he did all of this," the person told The Washington Post. "This s---show that we're in — it's him injecting himself into the process."