Lev Parnas has suspect motivations, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said in reaction to allegations made from the associate of President Donald Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani.
"He's desperate, and it looks like he's facing some serious criminal charges."
Referencing media outlets promoting former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and disgraced lawyer Michael Avenatti as solid sources, Conway told reporters to resist pushing unverified claims.
"I would caution people, it's always [that] if they're against Donald Trump, they're credible, they're legitimate. It doesn't matter if they've been indicted, if they're about to be indicted, 'We'll put them on TV, we'll quote them, we'll give them accolades, attention,'" she said.
"I would just caution against that, because being against Donald Trump doesn't mean you are honest or trustworthy."
Conway said that the Trump administration is looking into past statements made by the media about Parnas.
"Think of what you're doing, folks—honestly, you're respectable people—think of what you're doing," she said. "Where it's constantly, you've been berating and denigrating Rudy Giuliani for years now—that's questionable itself. But now one of his associates, who I assume you would have had the same opinion about, and probably have expressed it—we're researching that now, that should be delicious once completed—now, all of a sudden, he's the second coming. So be a little careful."
House Democrats said the documents are additional evidence “to be included as part of the official record that will be transmitted to the Senate along with the Articles of Impeachment.” The documents include phone records, texts, and flash drives.
Parnas is clearly “a fraudster and a hustle,” Nunes's lawsuit stated.
House leaders also talked about Parnas in dueling press conferences Thursday morning. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said "This man lacks all credibility."
"This is the same pattern I've seen before with Cohen, with Avenatti," McCarthy added. "The media tries to building something into it. Just to show that he went on and on and the nature of what he spoke, this is the same man that said Devin Nunes was in Vienna when he was not. So he doesn't have any credibility."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), though, said that "under other circumstances, if somebody like Parnas came forward and there was evidence—there was reason to believe that some of that was factual—there would be a special prosecutor appointed."
But Attorney General William Barr, Pelosi said, would not appoint a special prosecutor "because he's implicated in all of this."
Still, even Pelosi sounded a note of caution with regard to the veracity of the claims.
"There seems to be documentation that would validate what Parnas is saying," she added, "but that all has to be subjected to scrutiny."