Completely Unofficial Summary of Impeachment Hearings Day 2

Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch testifying.

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33 mins read
"Impeach Trump Rally Mt. Prospect Illinois 6-15-19" by Charles Edward Miller. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Full(ish) Transcript here

Full Video here:

Schiff Opening Statement

Interpretive Summary:

Ambassador Yovanovitch is amazing and was fighting corruption in the Ukraine and so Trump wanted her gone.

Direct quotes:

[Ambassador Yovanovitch] is an exemplary officer who is widely praised and respected by her colleagues. She is known as an anti-corruption champion whose tour in Kiev was viewed as very successful. 

Ambassador Yovanovitch did not just piss off corrupt Ukrainians, like the corrupt former prosecutor general Yuriy Lutsenko, but also certain Americans like Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump’s personal attorney, and two individuals – now indicted – who worked with him.

The American people expect their president to use the authority they grant him in the service of the nation—not to destroy others to advance his personal or political interests.

> Full Transcript here

Full video:

Video:

Nunes Opening Statement

Interpretive Summary:

Somewhere there are nude pictures of Trump and so I think this entire process is keeping us from doing whatever it is we’re actually supposed to be doing here in Congress. Now I will read from the transcript of the first and almost entirely irrelevant phone call between Presidents Trump & Zelensky. (Reads it.) 

Now I’d like to turn the remainder of my time – even though it’s completely against Committee Rules (H Res 660) over to Rep Stefanik so she can be dramatic and confrontational. What? How DARE you stop me from doing that, Chairman Schiff!

> Full Transcript here

Full Video:

**Note: About now there were a bunch of clearly not-really-points-of-order points-of-order attempted by the GOP. Chairman Schiff did not “recognize” them. (Including from Stefanik, Conaway & Jordan)

Ambassador Yovanovitch Opening Statement

Interpretive Summary:

[Honestly, you just need to watch, hear or read the whole thing. This woman is a brave patriot who has been through a lot and should have all her words known.]

Direct Quotes:

How could our system fail like this? How is it that foreign corrupt interests could manipulate our gov’t?

Our leadership depends on the power of our example and the consistency of our purpose. Both have now been opened to question.

> Full Transcript here

Full Video:

Also here:

Video clip:

House Intel tweet with video clip

Democratic lead counsel, Daniel Goldman, then questioned Ambassador Yovanovitch

Interpretive Summary:

There is just soooo much that’s been done wrong here.

> Transcript here

Video

**Note: During Goldman’s questioning, Trump started attacking Yovanovitch on Twitter, so Chairman Schiff took a moment to let her respond.

Video

RECESS

Nunes questions:

Interpretive Summary:

I don’t even know why the Ambassador is here. We should all not be doing this and should instead be doing the job Congress is supposed to be doing. Though, I’m not entirely sure what that is.

[Yields remainder of time to Elise Stefanik]

Rep Elise Stefanik (R-NY21)

Interpretive Summary:

Adam Schiff is being super mean today and keeps interrupting my attempted diatribes and that’s totally unfair.

So, Ambassador, the President can fire anyone he wants.

And Ukraine is corrupt.

And Burisma-Biden and this is all Obama’s fault.

Republican lead counsel Steven Castor questions:

Interpretive Summary:

I’m pretty much just going through the motions here because what they want me to say would probably cost me my law license. I’m thinking about other things and my happy place while questions. Yah, so the President can fire who he wants. That’s about all I got.

Direct Quote:

Thank you Mr. Nunes. Ambassador welcome. Thank you for — thank your service 33 years an extraordinary career it really has been a remarkable tenure for you at the State Department. I also would like to thank you for participating here today. This is a crazy environment; this hearing room has turned into a television studio.

[Questions]

Then (pleadingly before his time was up):

My time is coming to an end, Mr. Chairman?

Full Video:

REPRESENTATIVES QUESTIONING FOR 5 MINUTES EACH

Rep Jim Himes 

Interpretive Summary:

So, maybe the President does have a right to fire you – but it was not in the interest of our country – it was for his own purposes. And that’s not ok.

Video clips: 

Direct quote:

I’m angry that a woman like you would be not just dismissed, but humiliated and attacked by the president of the United States. And I’m not just angry for you. I’m angry for every single Foreign Service Officer, for every single military officer, for every intelligence officer who right now might believe that a lifetime of service, and sacrifice, and excellence might be ignored by the president of the United States, or worse yet, attacked in language that would embarrass a mob boss.

Mike Conaway (R-TX11)

Interpretive Summary:

So, sure you got fired for no good reason, but now you have a cushy job at Georgetown where you get to hang out with young people, so boo hoo whatever. 

 Yields rest of his time to Jim Jordan.

[Democratic Candidate running in for the seat Conaway is vacating: Jon Mark Hogg @jonmarkhogg www.jonmarkhogg.com/]

(*Rep Turner interrupts to ask to enter into the record 6 articles about how the Whistleblower should testify soon and uses up the rest of the time.)

Rep Terri Sewell

Interpretive Summary:

You have amazing qualifications and experience. You are impartial and nonpartisan. You and your family have suffered. And, although it may not technically be against the law for the president to drag your name through the mud – it sure should be.

Video clip:

Mike Turner (R-OH10)

Interpretive Summary:

I can’t find any way off the top of my head to discredit you, so instead I’m going to go through elaborate backbends and roundabouts to get to a point where I can claim that Sondland – even though he is Ambassador to the European Union – has every right to totally stick his nose into Ukraine’s business.

Video clip: 

Republican Rep. Mike Turner interrupts Ambassador Yovanovitch, and when she tries to finish her answer says: “Not on my time, you’re done.”

Video clip:

[Democratic candidate running for #OH10 is: Desiree Tims @TimsDesiree, Lawyer, Former Congressional Aide & Progressive Activist, https://www.timsforcongress.com/]

Andre Carson

Interpretive Summary:

So, the corrupt lead prosecutor of the Ukraine was leading the charge against you and Giuliani & his cronies – which include the President – were helping.

Direct quote:

So, let me get this straight. You are effective at fighting corruption in Ukraine. Fighting that corruption was important to the national security of the United States. And you were punished for that, ultimately being removed from your post by the president of the United States.

Video clip:

Brad Wenstrup (R-OH2)

Interpretive Summary:

I’m a doctor and a veteran. I’m going to talk about myself for a bit. Did I mention that I’m a doctor and a veteran? So, anywho, Trump gave the Ukrainians missiles and Obama didn’t. And the President has the right to make his own foreign policies – that are better than Obama’s – and to fire you.

*Note: There was also this interchange.

Yovanovitch

So I want to thank you for your service as well. But what I would like to say is while I — I obviously don’t dispute that the President has the right to — to withdraw and ambassador add in the time for any reason but what I do wonder is why it was necessary to smear my reputation.

Wenstrup

Well I wasn’t asking about that but thank you very much, ma’am.

[*Note: There is currently no democratic candidate for this seat. Filing deadline is December 18, 2019. #NoSafeSeats]

Jackie Speier

Interpretive Summary:

The President is a crook. You are a Shero.

Direct Quote:

Let me just say to conclude that you have endured and orchestrated character assassination, but it was hatched over a year and a half ago and that it is laced with enormous campaign contributions to the President’s reelection campaign and you deserve more from the American people and you deserve more from Congress in supporting you.

Direct Quote: (via Twitter after the testimony) 

Chris Stewart (R-UT2)

Interpretive Summary:

This whole Russia thing is a hoax so this Ukraine thing is, too. Biden-Burisma-Obama. And the President has the right to fire you.

[Democratic Candidate for #UT2 is: Randy Hopkins www.randyhopkinsforcongress.org]

Mike Quigley

Interpretive Summary:

The GOP are all trying to make it sound like everything is super duper with you and no harm, no foul – when in fact you’ve been pretty metaphorically beaten up.

Direct Quote:

It’s not the end of a Hallmark movie. It’s the end of a really bad reality tv show brought to you by someone who knows a lot about that.

Video clip:

Elise Stefanik 

Interpretive Summary:

It’s totally unfair that Schiff hasn’t let me speak so I am going to spend my entire insisting that we get the Whistleblower to testify even though whistleblowers are supposed to be protected. Did I mention Schiff is being mean to me?

I yield to Jim Jordan.

[Democratic Candidate running against Stefanik in 2020: Tedra Cobb @TedraCobb, https://www.tedracobb.com/]

JIM JORDAN:

NO CONSPIRACY HERE. EXCEPT YOUR CONSPIRACY. YOU’RE THE ONE’S WHO ARE CONSPIRACYING. 

Eric Swalwell

Interpretive Summary:

The Whistleblower has the right to anonymity. The President was most certainly not trying to fight corruption. And the defense that just because he didn’t manage to commit the offense he was trying to commit means he didn’t do anything wrong is just ludicrous.

Direct Quote:

While my GOP colleagues complain about our refusal to expose a whistleblower whose complaint is already corroborated, the president keeps smearing & intimidating a brave, patriotic career public servant. 

Video clips:

Also: 

Swalwell: “Are the president’s smears going to stop you from fighting corruption?” 

Yovanovitch: “I will continue with my work.” 

Videos:

Will Hurd (R-TX23)

Interpretive Summary:

I got nothing so I’m just going to run through as much history of the Ukraine as I just memorized from Wikipedia just to sound like I know what I’m talking about and that it is relevant to this hearing.

[Four Democratic Candidates for #TX23: Rosey Abuabara @Rosey_for_TX23; Jamie Escuder @JaimeEscuder; Gina Ortiz Jones @GinaOrtizJones; Liz Wahl @lizwahl]

Joaquin Castro

Interpretive Summary:

All the President’s Men. Secretary Perry, Rudy Giuliani, Ambassador Sondland were all smearing you and trying to get rid of you so they could do corrupt things.

Direct Quote:

Employers can’t fire workers for being disabled, female, or black. And a President can’t fire or recall an Ambassador for nothing else but standing in his way of doing a corrupt act.

Video:

John Ratcliffe

Interpretive Summary:

Biden-Burisma-Obama. Biden-Burisma. Let’s get Hunter Biden in here to testify to distract from all of this!

[Democratic Candidate for #TX4 is: Russell Foster @RussellFosterTX, www.foster4Texas.com]

Denny Heck

Interpretive Summary:

President Trump trash talks everybody but I’m especially angry that he besmirched your he’s-not-good-enough-to-shine-your-shoes self.

Direct Quote:

In fact, I’m very angry about how it is the most powerful person on the face of the earth would remove you from office after your stellar service and somehow feel compelled to characterize you as bad news, and then to ominously threaten that you’re going to go through some things. So I am angry, but I’m not surprised. After all, as was suggested earlier, he said the whistleblower may have committed treason, a crime punishable by death, even though the whistleblower strictly adhered to the letter of the law as independently attested to by both the Trump appointed inspector general and the acting DNI.

Video Clip :

Jim Jordan (R-OH4)

Interpretive Summary:

YOUR PREDECESSOR SAID NOT-NICE THINGS ABOUT THEN CANDIDATE TRUMP WHICH I’M GOING TO TRY AND MAKE PEOPLE BELIEVE DIRECTLY REFLECTS ON YOUR CHARACTER.

HILLARY CLINTON. FUSION GPS. CLINTON UKRAINE CLINTON!

[3 Democratic Candidates for #OH4 are: Shannon Freshour @shannonfreshour; Mike Larsen; Jeffrey Sites @Sites4Congress]

Peter Welch

Interpretive Summary:

Trump trash talks lots of really good people, of which you are one. And, maybe he can fire an ambassador if he wants – but not for his personal gain.

Direct Quote:

You’re aware now, but I don’t know if you were then, that July 25th phone call occurred the day after Director Mueller reported that the interference in our 2016 campaign was not from Ukraine. It was active, concerted, energetic, and by the Russians, correct?

Video clip:

Sean Patrick Maloney

Interpretive Summary:

Lord have mercy – the very night you were fired, you were hosting a posthumous award event for someone who was horribly killed by acid for fighting corruption just like you were fighting corruption. And then you get a threat from the President of the United States.

Direct quote:

You know the first time we met it wasn’t clear and so I just want to start with a quick comment but you know your testimony in this inquiry broke the dam. You were the first one through that stone wall that the President was trying to set up and I just want to thank you for that because others have followed your example in there is an old expression that the first person through the wall gets a little bit bloodied and I think you must understand that expression in a new way.

Video:

Video:

Val Butler Demings

Interpretive Summary:

The President has been telling all kinds of lies about you. He often does that about women. In fact, about everyone and everything. And, not being supported by your own State Department – that is bad for everyone – especially the State Department and therefore the American people.

Direct Quote:

Policies change, but U.S. interests don’t, not for those who are seeking to do the work of protecting our nation, the work you have done for decades. The president, his Chief of Staff, and his allies seem to want nothing more than to spear the — smear the good people trying to protect this country and to hijack our institutions for their personal and political gain.

Video:

Raja Krishnamoorthi 

Interpretive Summary:

The current occupant of The White House is trying to be a dictator.

Direct quotes: 

In your personal life, your parents fled the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany and they became familiar with despots and dictators as well, correct?

Indeed, you are an authority — authority on authoritarianism, right?

Is it a feature of authoritarianism to allow corrupt interest to hijack foreign policy?

Is it a feature of authoritarianism for the rulers there to claim absolute rights

And it is it a hallmark of authoritarianism for those rulers to smear their opponents?

Video clips:

> Relevant article re Natural gas profit by Rudy?? Suit filed today during Yovanovitch testimony

Concluding Remarks by Ranking Member Nunes:

Interpretive Summary:

…if there is anyone else out there watching television ratings, but they must be plummeting right now.”
[Oh no, my bad – that’s a direct quote!]

Direct Quote:

I hate to break into my colleagues, if there is anyone else out there watching television ratings, but they must be plummeting right now.

Concluding Remarks by Chairman Schiff:

Full Video:

I want to thank you for your decades of service. I want to thank you, as Mr. Maloney said, for being the first one through the gap. What you did in coming forward and answering a lawful subpoena was to give courage to others that also witnessed wrongdoing, that they too could show the same courage that you have, that they could stand up, speak out, answer questions, they could endure whatever threats, insults may come their way. 

And so, in your long and distinguished career, you have done another great public service in answering the call of our subpoena and testifying before us today. I think you gathered from our comments that we not only grieve up for what you went through about what damage is being done to the State Department, to career federal — foreign service officers all over the country. 

I am profoundly grateful to you and Mr. Kent and Ambassador Taylor, who have done so much in the last two days or three days to show the American people the face of our diplomatic corps, the extraordinary public servants who work all around the world in very dangerous places, as you have. 

And also, I’m glad they’ve got to see you, because you’re often vilified as bureaucrats or diplomacy is — is diminished as — as unimportant, anything other than the military doesn’t really matter, when it’s your efforts that often prevent us from going to war. Sometimes you are disparaged as the deep state, but what you are is what holds this country together, what holds our foreign policy together, what makes it seamless, what makes it work. And I’m glad America gets to see that. I will just emphasize once again about the importance of your testimony. Mr. Kent and Ambassador Taylor gave us the broad outlines of this story. [04:16:14.400 – 04:16:46.960] This is a story about an effort to coerce, condition, or bribe a foreign country into doing the dirty work of the president, investigations of his political rival, by conditioning U.S. taxpayer money, by conditioning a meeting that President Zelensky desperately wanted and needed to establish that relationship with the most powerful patron of Ukraine, the United States of America. 

The fact that they failed in this solicitation of bribery doesn’t make it any less bribery. It doesn’t make it any less immoral or corrupt. It just means it was unsuccessful. And to that, we owe other dedicated public servants who blew the whistle. Had they not blown the whistle, we wouldn’t be here. And I think it is appalling that my colleagues continue to want to out this whistleblower so that he or she can be punished by this president. 

But let’s underscore once again, while you are the beginning of this story, you’re not the end of it. But nonetheless, the beginning is important because the beginning of this story is an effort to get you out of the way, an effort by Rudy Giuliani and Fruman and Parnas and corrupt Ukrainians like Lutsenko, to get you out of the way because they felt you were an impediment to these political investigations the president so desperately wanted.

 Giuliani has made it abundantly clear he was in Ukraine on a mission for his client, for the president, to investigate the Bidens. And you were viewed as an obstacle that had to go, not just by Giuliani but by the president of the United States. And if people had any doubt about it, they should do what the president asks, read the transcript. [04:18:19.480 – 04:18:42.720] And what they’ll see in the transcript is the president praises a corrupt. He praises the corrupt Lutsenko. He condemns the just, you. And then he asks for an investigation of the Bidens. There is no camouflaging that corrupt intent. We are adjourned.

OTHER SOURCES & VIDEO CLIPS:

The Moscow Project (https://themoscowproject.org/) did live commentary with inserted video in a Thread on Twitter. Here’s the link:

Yovanovitch on her ouster: “How could our system fail like this? How is it that foreign corrupt interests could manipulate our government?”

Video:

Pizzazz:

We saw today witness intimidation in real time by [Trump]…Going after this dedicated…career public servant in an effort to not only chill her but to chill others who may come forward. We take this kind of witness intimidation…very seriously.” @RepAdamSchiff

GOLDMAN: Did you feel threatened? YOVANOVITCH: I did. 

Asked if Giuliani, Parnas, and Fruman were “seeking a different type of ambassador that would allow them to achieve some of their objectives,” Yovanovitch answered: “I don’t know what other reason there would be.” 

Yovanovitch explains why she reached out to the State Department about the smear campaign against her: “That undermined not only my position, but our U.S. position.”

“I would just remind again that our own U.S. intelligence community has conclusively determined that those who interfered in the [2016] election were in Russia.” Ambassador Yovanovitch debunks another GOP conspiracy theory.”

Schiff: “But what if the president could put into place someone who was not a career diplomat? What if he could put in place a substantial donor? With no diplomatic experience? Someone whose portfolio doesn’t even include Ukraine? “That’s exactly what happened wasn’t it?” “Yes.”

Video Clips of various parts of Testimony from Now This News

Rep. Nunes lied about Democrats trying to obtain ‘nude photos’ of Pres. Trump in his impeachment hearing opening statement this morning

Video

‘The State Department is being hollowed out from within’-Yovanovitch

Video

Nunes cow

Yovanovitch received a standing ovation when she finished testifying

From:


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