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
Lev Parnas’s lawyer declared ‘open war’ on AG Bill Barr during Maddow interview: attorney
The attorney for Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas appears to be using a novel legal strategy, attorney Luppe Luppen explained on Friday.
Joseph Bondy, the attorney for Parnas, was interviewed Friday evening by Rachel Maddow, following the day's end of the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
Luppen, who offers legal analysis on his popular @nycsouthpaw Twitter account, came to a conclusion that seemed to surprise him after watching the interview.
"I’ve never seen a lawyer sit on a cable panel show and make that much news," Luppen wrote.
Democratic prosecutors wrap up case against Trump
Democratic prosecutors on Friday wrapped up three days of arguments for seeking Donald Trump's removal from office, as the US president's lawyers prepared to take their turn presenting his defense in the Senate's historic impeachment trial.
For a final eight-hour stretch, the 100 senators listened as Democrats argued that Trump abused the power of the presidency in pressuring Ukraine to launch investigations that would help him politically and then sought to block efforts by Congress to investigate.
Democrats said they had met the burden of proof as they warned Republicans that Trump would remain a grave danger to the nation if left in office.
‘Give me a break’: Internet unleashes on ‘snowflakes’ Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski for complaint about Schiff
CNN's Manu Raju revealed after the Senate adjourned that Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) audibly disputed Rep. Adam Schiff's (D-CA) quotation of a CBS News report threatening senators.
"She shook her head and said, 'No they didn't. No, that's not true,'" Raju reported.
Sens. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Jim Risch (R-ID) Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and John Barrasso also said that the report was false.