Burisma-linked firm 'pitched' Ukrainian prosecutor 'access' to 2016 Clinton camp, Obama officials' emails show

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  • Source: Fox News
  • 06/04/2021
EXCLUSIVE: Former Ukrainian prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko told former Obama State Department official George Kent he had been "pitched" by a Hunter Biden and Burisma-linked lobbying firm to give him "access" to "high levels" of the Clinton campaign in the weeks leading up to the 2016 presidential election, according to emails between former Obama State Department officials obtained by Fox News. 

The lobbying firm, Blue Star Strategies, is reportedly under federal investigation for potential illegal lobbying. Politico first reported the investigation, which allegedly comes as the Justice Department is ramping up enforcement of foreign governments’ efforts to influence U.S. politics. Those efforts have been linked to work by Republicans, but the probe into Blue Star also puts firms and operatives connected to the Democratic Party under the microscope.

In an email released to Citizens United on Thursday as part of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filing, and obtained by Fox News, former deputy assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eastern Europe George Kent wrote to a number of Obama administration officials about a meeting he had with Ukrainian prosecutor Yuriy Lutsenko in September 2016 about Blue Star Strategies. 

The email, with the subject line "Lutsenko now likely not to go to DC with Blue Star, other Ukr issue comments," was sent by Kent to the former assistant secretary for fossil energy Christopher Smith, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Alan Purcell, the chief political officer at the Kiev embassy from 2014 to 2017.

In the email, dated Sept. 4, 2016, Kent writes that he met with Lutsenko "one on one after I’d SMSed him regarding stories that he was using a third party lobbyist to pull together a planned trip to DC turned into a chat over Thai food at the DCR." 

Kent, a key witness in the first impeachment proceedings against former President Trump in 2019, said the two discussed options of a trip Lutsenko had been planning to the U.S., and "confirmed he has been pitched by Blue Star, not sought them out." 

"He said he honestly didn’t know how Blue Star was to get paid — he didn’t have funds — and that some BPP MP that we probably didn’t know ‘and that’s good’ (Truhubenko??) had introduced them to him," Kent wrote. It is unclear who "Truhubenko" is. 

"Blue Star CEO [Karen] Tramantano’s pitch was that she could gain him access to high levels of the Clinton campaign (GPK note: she was Podesta’s deputy as deputy COS the last year of Bill Clinton’s tenure), and that was appealing—to meet the possible next Presidential Chief of Staff," Kent wrote. 
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