Reporters covering the House impeachment inquiry were mystified after most of the Republican lawmakers left the room during EU ambassador Gordon Sondland’s testimony.
Sondland directly implicated President Donald Trump, as well as Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, in the scheme to withhold military aid from Ukraine until its president agreed to announce an investigation of Joe Biden.
Almost all of the GOP minority on the House Intelligence Committee left the hearing room as each party’s counsel questioned Sondland in 45-minute sessions.
“Unusual that most Rs left room during this round of Dem questions,” tweeted John Parkison, of ABC News. “Only Jordan, Ratcliffe with GOP counsel Steve Castor – and now Nunes returns to dais. No lawmakers seated in viewing area either.”
Unusual that most Rs left room during this round of Dem questions. Only Jordan, Ratcliffe with GOP counsel Steve Castor – and now Nunes returns to dais. No lawmakers seated in viewing area either. pic.twitter.com/q0yzALRcFf
— John R Parkinson (@jparkABC) November 20, 2019
The Republican minority appeared to be caught off guard by Sondland’s decision to turn on senior administration officials.
“Sondland’s testimony appears to have deflated Republicans,” said Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank. “The GOP members’ cheering squad has left the room.”
Sondland’s testimony appears to have deflated Republicans. The GOP members’ cheering squad has left the room. pic.twitter.com/ojKOFDwnKy
— Dana Milbank (@Milbank) November 20, 2019
Republicans appear to have left the room to figure out what the hell they’re supposed to do next, since we’re in another 45/45 round of questioning, only @DevinNunes and counsel Steve Castor will be able to question Sondland. pic.twitter.com/W4tqFBfZen
— Andrew Feinberg (@AndrewFeinberg) November 20, 2019
Castor and Jordan have spent a lot of this hearing with their heads down; it looks like Castor is marking something up. Meanwhile almost all the other Republicans on the committee have left the room pic.twitter.com/FcfClnN4Ck
— Tierney Sneed (@Tierney_Megan) November 20, 2019
Lot of empty seats on side of House Intel Republicans in this Sondland hearing.
Reps. Nunes, Jordan and Ratcliffe are only members left. pic.twitter.com/K68OBxVvZY
— Olivia Beavers (@Olivia_Beavers) November 20, 2019
Fox News host: Teachers practicing COVID safety are like ‘George Wallace standing in the school door’
Fox News host Mark Levin on Sunday accused teachers who want COVID-19 safety measures of re-enacting Jim Crow-era segregation rules.
Levin made the remarks during a rant about President Donald Trump's executive action on COVID-19 financial relief.
"Democrat governors have shut down this economy from sea to shining sea," Levin opined. "And they like it both ways, the Democrats. They want to lock up everybody like we're lamb in cages and then they want to complain about the economic consequences."
"And then they say, this president, look what he's doing," he continued. "Let me tell you, payback is a bitch. You remember Obama with his phone and his pen. Well, apparently he left his phone and his pen and President Trump picked it up."
Mnuchin threatens to make taxpayers pay back COVID money unless Trump is reelected
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin suggested on Sunday that Americans will have to pay the government back for any payroll tax reduction unless President Donald Trump is reelected.
In an interview on FOX, host Chris Wallace noted that the president's latest executive action on COVID-19 financial relief is "not a tax cut."
"It's a payroll tax suspension," Wallace explained. "Isn't there a danger that a lot of businesses won't pass these saving through to workers because they're going to hold on to the money because at some point, according to this executive action by the end of the year, those payroll taxes are going to be have to be paid anyway?"
‘We need a reality check here’: CNN’s Bash cuts off Kudlow’s rambling spin on Trump’s unemployment plans
An alternately amused and baffled Dana Bash was forced to cut off Donald Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow on CNN Sunday morning as he attempted to spin the president's plans to help out the unemployed with income supplements, changing his numbers from $400 to $800 to $1,200 all within three to four sentences.
Pressed about the president's executive order calling for a $400 supplement -- with $100 coming from the states at Trump's demand -- the State of the Union fill-in host tried to cut through Kudlow's veering from dollar amount to dollar amount to get a clearer understanding of what the president is proposing.