READ: Testimony By Kurt Volker, Ex-Ukraine Envoy, In Impeachment Inquiry

Al Drago  Bloomberg via Getty Images Robert Blair is a senior adviser to acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney

In testimony on Oct 17, Sondland did not acknowledge a link between the frozen USA aid to Ukraine and the request to investigate one of Trump's Democratic political rivals.

White House congressional liaison Eric Ueland told reporters that President Donald Trump would sign another short-term stopgap spending bill to prevent a shutdown, so long as Democrats don't try to tie Trump's hands on funding for the U.S. -Mexico border wall. This statement seems to effectively undercut the Democrats' whole argument for claiming that Trump engaged in an impeachable offense.

House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff, Oversight Committee acting Chair Carolyn Maloney and Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Eliot Engel penned a letter to Mulvaney on Tuesday, requesting his appearance at a deposition as part of the impeachment inquiry this Friday at 9 a.m.

Schiff plans to release two more transcripts today. "We now know that the call was just one piece of a larger operation to redirect our foreign policy to benefit Donald Trump's personal and political interests, not the national interest".

An anonymous person filed a complaint accusing Trump of the abuse, triggering the inquiry and prompting the White House to release a transcript of the call.

Text messages from the two men, along with another diplomat, William Taylor, who also testified in the impeachment inquiry, revealed in striking detail the administration's actions toward Ukraine.

On Tuesday, Republicans said they were considering installing Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, a boisterous Trump supporter, on the House Intelligence Committee as it prepares to hold public hearings.

However, Democrats allege that Trump removed Yovanovitch in May 2019 because she was proving to be an obstacle to Rudy Giuliani's investigation into Joe and Hunter Biden and Ukraine's involvement in 2016 election interference. "It doesn't sound good".

Sondland, who refused to acknowledge the apparent quid pro quo in his initial testimony, said he had "refreshed [his] recollection" after reading testimony by top diplomat William Taylor and Timothy Morrison, the senior director for Europe and Russian Federation at the National Security Council. Sondland noted that the conversation came after a meeting involving Vice President Mike Pence and Zelensky where the military aid was raised.

In his new testimony, Mr. Sondland said he believed that withholding the aid - a package of $391 million in security assistance that had been approved by Congress - was "ill-advised", although he did not know "when, why or by whom the aid was suspended".

[9/9/19, 12:47:11 AM] Bill Taylor: As I said on the phone, I think it's insane to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign.

After conducting closed-door depositions for several weeks, House Democrats have started to release transcripts of those interviews as they move toward the next phase of the inquiry. All refused to appear in a victory for the White House, which has otherwise failed to keep administration officials from being deposed.

In Volker's opening statement released last month, he told House lawmakers that "at no time" did he take part in an effort to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, who is running for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

The White House's excuse for total non-cooperation was that the House had not voted to authorize the impeachment inquiry or offered the president certain procedural rights.

Mulvaney is not expected to honor the request.

"I can not stress just how wrong this is", Schumer said.

Volker and Sondland both testified they were disappointed after briefing Trump at the White House upon their return from Zelenskiy's inauguration in May as a new leader of the young democracy vowing to fight corruption.

A key witness in the Donald Trump impeachment inquiry has reversed his evidence, indicating he did believe there was a quid pro quo in which United States military aid would be denied to Ukraine unless it publicly launched a corruption investigation into Joe Biden.



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