Politics

Sondland Testifies He Had Not Been Told Trump Linked Ukraine Aid to Biden Investigations

Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland confirmed that no one told him President Donald Trump tied foreign aid to the investigations he had requested of the Ukrainians.

Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) asked about Sondlands answers regarding the $400 million in military aid to Ukraine during his testimony at Thursdays House Intelligence Committee hearing. Democrats allege that Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and Hunter Biden in return for military aid. Trump, Ukranian officials, and other White House officials have categorically denied the claim.

“After you testified, Chairman Schiff ran out and gave a press conference and said he gets to impeach the president of the United States because of your testimony,” Turner told Sondland. “If you pull up CNN today, right now their banner says, Sondland ties Trump to withholding aid. Is that your testimony today, Ambassador Sondland? That you have evidence that Donald Trump tied the investigations to the aid? Because I dont think youre saying that.”

Sondland responded that he was “presuming” such allegations.

“No one told you?” Turner then asked him. “Not just the president, Giuliani didnt tell you, Mulvaney didnt tell you, nobody, Pompeo didnt tell you? Nobody else on this planet told you that Donald Trump was tying aid to these investigations. Is that correct?”

He continued, “No one on this planet told you that Donald Trump was tying this aid to the investigations? If your answer is yes, then the chairman is wrong, and the headline on CNN is wrong. No one on this planet told you that President Trump was tying aid to investigations. Yes or no?”

Schiff and Nunes
Schiff and Nunes
Democratic Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Adam Schiff (L) and Ranking Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Devin Nunes (R) during the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence public hearing on the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington on Nov. 19, 2019. (Shawn Thew/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

To those questions, Sondland replied with “yes” and said he has no testimony “other than my own presumption.”

Sondland said that he received no direct orders or much communication from Trump himself, but that he was acting on behalf of Rudy Giuliani, Trumps personal attorney. Giuliani has denied his assertion.

Earlier, Sondland testified that “it was abundantly clear that there was a link” between the actions Ukraine that desired and an announcement on investigations on behalf of Kyiv. He didnt specifically make a link to the military aid.

“Was there a quid pro quo?” Sondland rhetorically asked himself. “The answer is yes.”

Amid Sondlands testimony, the White House, Vice President Mike Pences office, and Giuliani denied some of his claims.

“Ambassador Sondland previously testified that the president told him directly that he was not interested in a quid pro qRead More – Source