Key Moments from the Impeachment Hearings - Marie Yovanovitch
Does today's hearing change your mind about impeachment?
by Countable's Trump Impeachment Coverage | 11.15.19
Countable will continue to update this story throughout the day.
- Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, is testifying Friday in the House’s second public impeachment hearing. She's a career diplomat who previously served as the ambassador to Armenia and Kyrgyzstan under the administrations of George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
- Yovanovitch was ousted in her position following a Rudy Giuliani-led smear campaign that accused her of working to subvert Trump’s Ukraine policy and being close to former Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko.
- The 30-second recap: On July 25, President Donald Trump had a phone call with Ukrainian President Voldymyr Zelensky where he asked Zelensky to "do us a favor" and work with Attorney General William Barr and Trump's personal attorney, Rudolph Giuliani, to "look into" former Vice President Joe Biden and his family. (Hunter Biden was on the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma.) Trump also asked Zelensky to investigate a debunked conspiracy theory that it was Ukraine, not Russia, that interfered in the 2016 election to benefit Hillary Clinton.
Here are some of the key moments from the hearing:
- Trump attacked Yovanovitch on Twitter as she testified:
- House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) read the tweets in the hearing about 20 minutes after Trump posted them, adding that "some of us here take witness intimidation very seriously."
- Yovanovitch responded: "It's very intimidating. ... I mean, I can't speak to what the president is trying to do, but I think the effect is trying to be intimidating."
- White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham defended Trump's tweet, saying it "was not witness intimidation."
“The tweet was not witness intimidation, it was simply the President’s opinion, which he is entitled to. This is not a trial, it is a partisan political process — or to put it more accurately, a totally illegitimate, charade stacked against the President. There is less due process in this hearing than any such event in the history of our country. It’s a true disgrace."
- Trump also defended his tweet, saying later in the day:
“You know what? I have the right to speak. I have freedom of speech just as other people do, but they’ve taken away the Republicans rights."
- Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) asked Yovanovitch if it's possible that additional "irregular channels" of diplomacy could be occurring in other countries. He was referencing Trump's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, and his work is Ukraine.
- Yovanovitch said she has "no knowledge of that" but added:
"I think it's a possibility."
- Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York used her five minutes to rail against Chairman Adam Schiff's refusal to allow the whistleblower to testify.
"I keep can going but the chairman refused to allow us put these into the record as unanimous consent. It's important to prevent whistleblower from retaliation and firing and want to make sure whistleblowers are able to come forward but in this case the fact we are getting criticized by Chairman Adam Schiff for statements he made early on in the process shows the due duplicity and just the abuse of power that we are continuing to see."
- Republicans on the committee have repeatedly asked Yovanovitch to confirm that ambassadors serve at the president's discretion. The former ambassador acknowledged this, but added:
"What I'd like to say is, while I obviously don't dispute that the president has the right to withdraw an ambassador at any time for any reason, but what I do wonder is why it was necessary to smear my reputation also?"
- Republican counsel Steve Castor suggested "that there are elements of the Ukrainian establishment that are advocating against" the president.
- Yovanovitch responded she didn't have "any information to suggest" that Trump was being targeted.
- Yovanovitch said she felt threatened when Trump said she would "go through some things" during his July 25 call with Zelensky.
"It was a terrible moment, a person who saw me actually reading the transcript said that the color drained from my face. I think I even had a physical reaction. I — I think, you know, even now — words kind of fail me."
- In the memo of the call, Trump called Yovanovitch "the woman" and said she was "bad news," adding that she would "go through some things."
- The former ambassador defended the State Department's current work while criticizing corrupt conduct that "undermines the U.S., exposes our friends, and widens the playing field for autocrats like [Russian] President Putin."
This is an ongoing story and will be updated.
Trump Delivers ‘Victory’ Speech After Acquittal: ‘It Was All Bulls**t!’, Democrats 'Vicious as Hell'President Donald Trump railed against Democrats and praised his GOP supporters in Congress in a fiery speech at the White
by Countable's Trump Impeachment Coverage | 2.6.20
Senate Votes to Acquit President Trump on Two Articles of ImpeachmentThe U.S. Senate has voted to acquit President Donald Trump on both House-passed impeachment articles. Article 1: Abuse of
by Countable's Trump Impeachment Coverage | 2.5.20
Watch Live: Senate Votes to Acquit Trump on Abuse of PowerWhat’s the story? The impeachment trial of President Donald Trump will conclude around 4 p.m. ET today with an expected vote to
by Countable's Trump Impeachment Coverage | 2.5.20