Nov 5, 2019

Lindsey Graham says he won't read House deposition transcripts

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that he will not read any of the transcripts released Tuesday by the House committees conducting the impeachment inquiry, telling CBS News: '"I've written the whole process off. ... I think this is a bunch of B.S."

Why it matters: In a revision to his Oct. 17 testimony, U.S. Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland acknowledged that he told a Ukrainian official that the release of military aid to Ukraine would "likely not occur" unless President Volodymyr Zelensky announced an investigation into a gas company with ties to Joe Biden's son.

  • Graham, a fierce Trump defender, told reporters on Sept. 25: "If you're looking for a circumstance where the president of the United States was threatening the Ukraine with cutting off aid unless they investigated his political opponent, you'd be very disappointed. That does not exist."
  • Graham was also pressed on what it would take to change his mind on impeachment in an interview with "Axios on HBO" last month. He told Axios' Jonathan Swan: "If you could show me that, you know, Trump actually was engaging in a quid pro quo, outside the phone call, that would be very disturbing."

Go deeper: Donald Trump's Senate red wall against impeachment

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Sondland says Ukraine quid pro quo "reflected Trump's desires and requirements"

EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland testified Wednesday that a quid pro quo conditioning a White House meeting for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on a Ukrainian investigation into the Biden family's business dealings "reflected President Trump's desires and requirements."

Why it matters: This key point in Sondland's impeachment testimony could potentially be a turning point for Trump's support among Senate Republicans. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told Axios' Jonathan Swan last month: "If you could show me that, you know, Trump actually was engaging in a quid pro quo, outside the phone call, that would be very disturbing."

Go deeper: Live updates on Sondland's impeachment testimony

Keep ReadingArrowNov 20, 2019

What Lindsey Graham said about a quid pro quo in October

Sen. Lindsey Graham told "Axios on HBO" last month that he'd be open to changing his mind on impeachment if he was shown Trump was engaged in a quid pro quo with Ukraine outside of the July 25 phone call.

Why it matters: Today, EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland publicly testified in an impeachment hearing that a quid pro quo preconditioning a White House meeting in exchange for an investigation into the Biden family's business dealings in Ukraine took place and "reflected President Trump's desires and requirements."

Go deeperArrowNov 20, 2019

Highlights from Gordon Sondland's impeachment testimony

Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland testified Wednesday in one of the week's most-anticipated impeachment hearings.

Driving the news: In his opening statement, Sondland said that he worked with Rudy Giuliani "at the express direction" of President Trump on matters involving Ukraine.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Nov 20, 2019