Excerpts from new testimony given by Gordon Sondland, the US Ambassador to the European Union were released on Tuesday.
Sondland ‘s testimony was revised after his ‘memory was refreshed’ from reading other testimony to reflect what he described as a ‘quid pro quo message’ delivered to Andriy Yermak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The Democrats harassed Sondland last month during his closed-door interview and accused him of being an agent of shadow foreign policy on Ukraine, and now he’s changing his story?
“I said that resumption of the U.S. aid would likely not occur until Ukraine provided the public anti-corruption statement that we had been discussing for many weeks,” Sondland said in the document.
Sondland said in his new testimony that he believed that withholding a $391 million aid package from Ukraine was “ill-advised” but admitted that he didn’t know “when, why or by whom the aid was suspended.”
“I presumed that the aid suspension had become linked to the proposed anticorruption statement,” Sondland said.
So Sondland PRESUMED the aid suspension was linked to Trump’s discussion with Zelensky about the Biden crime family.
A text exchange in early September between Sondland and the Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine Bill Taylor show Sondland defending Trump and making it clear there was no quid pro quo in Trump’s communications with Zelensky.
Before sending the text message, Gordon Sondland had a phone call with President Trump.
Sondland asked Trump, “what do you want from Ukraine?”
Trump responded, “I want nothing I want no quid pro quo. I want Zelensky to do the right thing…to do what he ran on.” (screenshot of excerpt below):
Congressman Jim Jordan, a member of the House Oversight Committee said very clearly this week that the fundamental facts have never changed.
“No quid pro quo, no kind of conditions were ever in play,” Jordan said. “The two individuals on the call have been very clear that there was no pressure, no pushing, no quid pro quo. The Ukrainians didn’t even know the aid had been held up at the time of the phone call and they took no actions to release the aid.”
“The aid was released 7 and a half weeks later and there was never any actions taken by President Zelensky or anyone else in Ukraine,” Jordan added.
If the military aid was released to Ukraine without any actions taken by Zelensky, then there was zero quid pro quo.
— Oversight Committee (@GOPoversight) November 4, 2019
Mark Meadows has a different take — NO Quid Pro Quo.
Democrats and the media are seizing on paragraph five of Sondland's update, where he tells Mr. Yermak the aid may not be released without an anti-corruption statement.
Even *if* you think this is nefarious… Sondland admits in paragraph FOUR this was based on an assumption! https://t.co/OA7MRn5aGf
— Mark Meadows (@MarkMeadows) November 5, 2019