It’s clear the morning testimony didn’t go as well as Republicans had wanted. The concern was evident on the face of House Minority Leader Devin Nunes (R-CA), who exchanged glances with the GOP counsel.
Republican Scott Jennings is quick to defend the White House and the GOP, but Wednesday even he was forced to concede his party wasn’t prepared for what EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland testified.
CNN host John King noted that the Republican counsel brought up Rudy Giuliani and his business relationships in Ukraine, outside of his work for President Donald Trump.
“Watch that for the beginning of an effort to say, ‘This was Rudy Giuliani not the president,'” King predicted.
Jennings agreed, saying, “there’s nowhere else to go” with the president’s defense.
“I mean, Sondland is dropping him in. The president clearly won’t want to take responsibility for it,” Jennings continued. “Rudy’s not coming to the committee as I understand so he’s not going to show up and refute it.”
After the huge panel began talking over themselves, Jennings cut in again, saying the Republicans need “something here.”
“Obviously Sondland has come in — Nunes, by the way, was caught, totally flat-footed by his opening statement,” Jennings said.
CNN host Jake Tapper said that it was clear Nunes thought Sondland was there to help the GOP. Clearly, that did not turn out to be the case.
“They were caught flat-footed this morning,” Jennings agreed. “They need to have something now. And the only possible way to do this — do what they should have done a month ago; and that’s to say, ‘Having Giuliani in the middle of this at the beginning was galactically bad judgment and a dumb idea. That’s not impeachable.'”
Former federal prosecutor and legal analyst Laura Coates explained that even with Giuliani as the fall-guy, there is no way to refute that the president abused the power of his office.
Watch the full clip below:
‘It’s all distractions’: CNN panel obliterates GOP for totally refusing to discuss Trump’s conduct
A CNN panel on Thursday obliterated House Republicans for once again completely ignoring the substance of allegations against President Donald Trump and instead throwing out numerous distractions intended to deflect attention from the president's actions.
"It's been distractions about the Bidens, it's been distractions about conspiracy theories about Ukraine's involvement in the election," said CNN legal analyst Carrie Cordero. "Yesterday, it was distractions about FISA and FISA so-called abuse. It was distractions from Congressman Gohmert reading calls from 1943! It's been all distractions and they won't wrestle with the actual conduct."
CNN’s Jake Tapper does line-by-line fact check of Jim Jordan’s nonstop misleading statements during impeachment hearing
Host Jake Tapper did a special web fact-check for CNN.com where he looked line-by-line into Rep. Jim Jordan's (R-OH) claims about the impeachment proceedings.
He had four specific talking points that were disingenuous and outright false.
1. Jordan: "There was no quid pro quo in the transcript"
There absolutely was evidence in the summary of the transcript. Tapper began by explaining that Americans still haven't seen the full transcript or a recording of the July 25 phone call between President Donald Trump and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky.
"If you read the summary of the transcript it clearly shows that after a discussion of U.S. military support for Ukraine, President Trump said the relationship is not 'reciprocal' and he asks Zelensky for 'a favor,'" Tapper said. "The favor? To investigate a conspiracy theory into the 2016 election and later in the call he says, 'one other thing,' he wants Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter."
‘I am not yielding!’ Rep. Pramila Jayapal shuts down Jim Jordan’s attempt to hijack impeachment hearing
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) stood her ground at an impeachment hearing on Thursday after Republicans tried to derail her arguments in favor of removing President Donald Trump.
Jayapal began her remarks by pointing out that Florida Republican Matt Gaetz was wrong to suggest that President Donald Trump was invested in Ukraine's fight against Russia.
"Why then did he decide he was so concerned about 'corruption' that he was not going to release military aid?" Jayapal said, prompting Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio to demand that she yield the floor.
"I am not yielding!" Jayapal exclaimed. "I am not yielding. I am not yielding."