Trump impeachment inquiry: Live updates and the latest news
The second week of hearings is scheduled to include testimony from key figures in impeachment inquiry, including E.U. Amb. Gordon Sondland, ex-Ukraine special envoy Kurt Volker and top Ukraine expert Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.
Chelsea Stahl / NBC News
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The fast-moving impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, stemming from the president's dealings with Ukraine, involves numerous hearings, depositions and subpoenas of present and former top administration officials and other figures — and more than a few presidential tweets.
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Trump says he will 'strongly consider' testifying
The tweet came in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's remarks that he can "come right before the committee and talk, speak all the truth that he wants."
Trump's ire turns on Pompeo amid diplomats' starring roles
The president has fumed that his secretary of state is responsible for hiring officials whose testimony threatens to bring down his presidency.
5 things we learned from Yovanovitch's public testimony
Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, requested the whistleblower, the younger Biden and his business partner Devon Archer testify before House investigators in a letter Saturday to Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the committee's chairman. Later Saturday, Schiff poured cold water on that request, saying the impeachment probe would not serve "to carry out the same sham investigations into the Bidens or debunked conspiracies about 2016 U.S. election interference" Trump asked Ukraine to conduct.
GOP senator: Trump advisers had to 'convince' Trump to release Ukraine aid
Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., said Sunday that "most" of President Donald Trump's advisers were trying to figure out "some way" to get him to release a hold on roughly $400 million in Ukrainian military aid, an effort at the center of Democrats' impeachment inquiry.
"I understand that most of President Trump's advisers wanted the military aid released," Johnson, who had personally pushed Trump to release the aid, told CNN's "State of the Union." "And they were trying to figure out some way, shape or form to convince President Trump to approve that release. It's certainly what I was trying to do in my phone call to him on Aug. 31. So I don't have a problem with advisers trying to figure out some way shape or form to convince the boss to do this."
John Bolton — the former Trump national security adviser who has emerged as a key figure in the impeachment inquiry — has inked a book deal with Simon & Schuster, a source with direct knowledge tells NBC News.
Bolton was represented by the Javelin literary agency, whose clients include former FBI director James Comey and the anonymous Trump administration official whose book, "A Warning,” comes out next week.
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13d ago / 10:20 PM UTC
Trump trashes 'sinister' impeachment effort during Atlanta event
President Donald Trump on Friday called the impeachment inquiry a "deranged, hyper-partisan impeachment witch hunt, a sinister effort to nullify the ballots of 63 million patriotic Americans."
He made the remarks in Atlanta at an event to announce the African American outreach effort by his re-election campaign.
"Not happening, by the way," he said of the impeachment effort. "It's failing, it's failing fast, it's all a hoax."
On Wednesday, Democrats hold the first in a series of public hearings in their impeachment inquiry; several witnesses plan to testify next week.
'Absent yourself': What Schiff told Gaetz when he crashed a secure hearing
The House committees leading the impeachment inquiry released transcripts on Friday detailing the moment Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., was spotted in a secure room when a deposition was taking place.
Gaetz was in the room, called a SCIF, during testimony by Fiona Hill, a former top adviser to President Donald Trump on Russia and Europe. In the transcript, Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., is quoted as saying: "Mr. Gaetz, you're not permitted to be in the room. Please leave." At another point, Schiff tell Gaetz to "absent yourself" from the SCIF.
Former Trump adviser who testified to Ukraine pressure campaign said she was victim of harassment
Fiona Hill, President Donald Trump's former top adviser on Russia and Europe, told House investigators that her time in the Trump administration was marked by death threats, “hateful calls” and “conspiracy theories,” a harassment campaign she said was revived after it was learned she would cooperate with the impeachment inquiry, according to a transcript of her deposition released Friday.
"I received, I just have to tell you, death threats, calls at my home. My neighbors reported somebody coming and hammering on my door," she told investigators in closed-door testimony of her time in the White House. "Now, I'm not easily intimidated, but that made me mad."
The transcript confirmed NBC News’ reporting that Hill told Congress that Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal attorney, and Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, sidestepped the National Security Council and typical White House process to advocate for a shadow policy on Ukraine. Hill also revealed new details about how Giuliani's work undercut and derailed the diplomats charged with overseeing Ukrainian-U.S. relations.
Trump says of his EU ambassador, 'I hardly know the gentleman'
Gordon Sondland is President Trump's ambassador to the European Union and donated $1 million to his inaugural committee, but Trump told reporters at the White House on Friday that "I hardly know the gentleman."
Sondland has become a key witness in the House impeachment inquiry. He told investigators that Trump told him there was "no quid pro quo" calling for Ukraine to say it was investigating Joe and Hunter Biden in order to get military aid, and that he wasn't sure why the money was frozen. He updated his testimony this week to acknowledge that he'd told a top aide to Ukraine's president that the country wouldn't get the aid until it committed to investigating the 2016 elections and the Bidens.
Sondland and other witnesses have testified about conversations he'd had with Trump. One witness, former White House adviser Fiona Hill, told investigators that Trump had put Sondland "in charge of Ukraine" earlier this year.
Trump distanced himself from his diplomat on the White House lawn on Friday.
"Let me just tell you, I hardly know the gentleman, but this is the man who said there was no quid pro quo, and he still says that," Trump told reporters. "And he said that I said that, and he hasn't changed that testimony. So this is a man that said — as far as the president is concerned — there was no quid pro quo. Everybody that's testified — even the ones that are Trump-haters, they've all been fine. They don't have anything."
The president had warmer words for Sondland before he testified, however, tweeting that he's "a really good man and great American."
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13d ago / 5:59 PM UTC
Whistleblower's lawyer sends cease-and-desist letter over Trump's 'reckless' attacks
A lawyer for the whistleblower whose complaint prompted the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump has sent a cease-and-desist letter to the White House urging the president to stop attacking his client.
“I am writing out of deep concern that your client, the president of the United States, is engaging in rhetoric and activity that places my client, the intelligence community whistleblower, and their family in physical danger,” the lawyer, Andrew Bakaj, wrote in a letter to White House counsel Pat Cipollone on Thursday.
“I am writing to respectfully request that you counsel your client on the legal and ethical peril in which he is placing himself should anyone be physically harmed as a result of his, or his surrogates’, behavior,” he wrote.
Bakaj alleged Trump's attacks constituted witness tampering and had succeeded in intimidating his client, saying "as a direct consequence of the President’s irresponsible rhetoric and behavior, my client’s physical safety became a significant concern," prompting them to opt out of giving lawmakers a closed-door deposition in favor of written answers to questions.