President Donald Trump on Tuesday, Oct. 8, defended his administration’s decision to block a U.S. envoy from testifying before the “kangaroo court” as part of the House impeachment inquiry.
“I would love to send Ambassador Sondland, a really good man and great American, to testify, but unfortunately he would be testifying before a totally compromised kangaroo court, where Republican’s rights have been taken away, and true facts are not allowed out for the public to see,” Trump tweeted.
“Importantly, Ambassador Sondland’s tweet, which few report, stated, “I believe you are incorrect about President Trump’s intentions. The President has been crystal clear: no quid pro quo’s of any kind.” That says it ALL!” he added.
….to see. Importantly, Ambassador Sondland’s tweet, which few report, stated, “I believe you are incorrect about President Trump’s intentions. The President has been crystal clear: no quid pro quo’s of any kind.” That says it ALL!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 8, 2019
The State Department has barred Gordon Sondland, the U.S. European Union ambassador, from appearing Tuesday before a House panel conducting the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump, his lawyer said.
On Tuesday, Sondland had been scheduled to face questions about the episode, the second time in as many weeks that lawmakers would have privately interviewed the ambassador about the Ukraine case.
Text messages released by House Democrats show Sondland working with another of Trump’s envoys to get Ukraine to agree to investigate any potential interference in the 2016 U.S. election and also probe the energy company that appointed Biden’s son Hunter to its board.
The messages also show Sondland trying to reassure a third diplomat that their actions were appropriate.
“The President has been crystal clear no quid pro quo’s of any kind. The President is trying to evaluate whether Ukraine is truly going to adopt the transparency and reforms that President Zelenskiy promise during his campaign,” he wrote, adding, “I suggest we stop the back and forth by text.”
On Monday, House Democrats issued a fresh round of subpoenas to the Pentagon and the White House Office of Management and Budget for documents relating to reports that Trump ordered then-acting OMB Chief Mick Mulvaney to freeze aid to Ukraine.
Last week, former U.S. Special Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker and Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) Michael Atkinson provided their testimony behind closed doors.
The Democrat-led House committees on Oversight and Reform, Intelligence, and Foreign Affairs pursuing the impeachment inquiry are refusing to release the full transcripts of the testimony provided by the first two witnesses.
Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) on Saturday urged Democrats to release Volker’s testimony—which lasted more than eight hours—“so all can read it.”
“He candidly [and] professionally obliterated the bogus charge” by Democrats that President Trump made a quid pro quo offer to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.
House Dems should IMMEDIATELY release Amb Volker’s several hour long transcribed interview so ALL can read it. He candidly & professionally OBLITERATED the bogus charge POTUS made a quid pro quo offer to Zelensky connecting aid to Ukraine with an investigation into Bidens. https://t.co/8zFSIoRHjX
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) October 6, 2019
Includes reporting from the Associated Press