WASHINGTON (WFLA) – Another day, another impeachment hearing on Capitol Hill. On Wednesday, one of the most anticipated witnesses in the public hearings will face tough questions from lawmakers.
Here’s the latest from the hearings (Latest updates will appear at top, all times are ET):
9:15 a.m. – Ambassador Gordon Sondland has arrived on Capitol Hill for the first half of Wednesday’s public impeachment hearings.
Sondland, the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union, gave closed-door testimony in October. He later submitted a three-page amendment to his testimony after reviewing statements from two other witnesses – Ambassador William Taylor and Tim Morrison.
Sondland said he personally told a top aide that the release of United State aid to Ukraine was linked to investigations.
In his opening statement, Sondland reportedly says, “Was there a ‘quid pro quo?’ As I testified previously, with regard to the requested White House call and White House meeting, the answer is yes.”
9 a.m. – Ambassador Gordon Sondland’s opening statement was released online just before Wednesday’s testimony was set to begin.
According to the statement, obtained by NBC News, Sondland will testify that, “Secretary Perry, Ambassador Volker and I worked with Mr. Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine matters at the express direction of the President of the United States.”
“We did not want to work with Mr. Giuliani,” the statement continues. “Simply put, we played the hand we were dealt.”
Join host J.B. Biunno and political reporter Evan Donovan beginning at 8:30 a.m. ET for step-by-step analysis and expertise during the impeachment inquiry today and Thursday.
Gordon Sondland is the U.S. ambassador to the European Union and Democrats are hoping to grill Sondland on new details that emerged from the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine William Taylor last week about a critical phone call between Sondland and President Donald Trump about Ukraine.
Sondland told House investigators that he delivered a key message to a Ukrainian official this year: Trump would not unfreeze more than $390 million in assistance for Ukraine unless Ukraine made a public statement committing to investigations Trump believed might help him in the 2020 election, NPR reported. That was revealed after he gave closed-door testimony in October and then submitted a three-page amendment in November after reviewing statements from Ambassador William Taylor and Tim Morrison.
Sondland is expected to testify beginning at 9 a.m. ET.
Lawmakers will also hear from Laura Cooper, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for Russian, Ukrainian, and Eurasian Affairs, and David Hale, the undersecretary of state for political affairs. Afternoon testimony is expect at 2:30 ET.
Our experts will break down the latest developments and what it all means throughout the day’s testimony.