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Sondland has a ‘sword of Damocles’ hanging over him thanks to his ever-changing testimony: CNN legal analyst

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On Monday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” CNN legal analyst Laura Coates walked through the precarious legal situation of President Donald Trump’s EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland, who will testify before the House Intelligence Committee on Wednesday amid accusations he has lied to Congress in his previous depositions.

“He omitted some crucial information in his earlier sworn deposition. He revised it once,” said anchor Wolf Blitzer. “What do you anticipate?”

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“The idea that he had one of these epiphanies is precisely why you have closed-door hearings to begin with,” said Coates. “One of the tactics and strategies involved here for members of the House was to make sure you couldn’t coordinate your testimony, you actually must present what you tell, have a full and complete accounting of what you’ve done. And you’ve seen over time, that when you have other witnesses come in, suddenly, he realized, oh, you meant the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me Congress. And in this role he has failed time and time again. It’ll be interesting to see whether he will have additional epiphanies in his opening statements, or if he waits until there are questions. If he waits until that moment, it might be too late for him to correct his testimony.”

“Because hovering over this is the Roger Stone conviction on all seven counts last week, including lying to Congress,” agreed Blitzer. “Do you expect Ambassador Sondland, potentially, to plead the Fifth?”

“I think he’s considering it right now,” said Coates. “I mean, the Sword of Damocles is hanging over his head right now. When you see Roger Stone involved in behavior, the underlying conduct itself wasn’t the legal problem, it was the lying to Congress and not giving a full accounting of information, that is hovering over him right now, thinking, here I have not given the information the first time or the second time, I have forgotten a phone call in which I held the phone away from my ear in a crowded restaurant in Ukraine, potentially making vulnerable the president’s own conversation with a number of his advisers.”

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