Gordon Sondland SUDDENLY REMEMBERS Quid Pro Quo He Personally Delivered To Ukraine
Sondlandly Sees More. (I'm sorry.)
For the 50th time in three days, it's TRANSCRIPT-THIRTY, MOTHERFUCKERS! Tuesday, the House released delicious impeachment inquiry transcripts from EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland and former Ukraine special envoy Kurt Volker. We will read all the way through them in their entirety when we have time, like maybe once we are sleeping in the grave hopefully more than 50 years from now.
This time, though, Adam Schiff was nice enough to do us the solid of releasing the excerpts he thought were important. And we'll get to those highlights from Sondland's October 17 testimony in a minute! First, though, Sondland would like to "amend" (change) his testimony for the umpteenth time, because he now suddenly remembers A BUNCH MORE of the details of the Ukraine quid pro quo he openly and shamelessly participated in and personally delivered to the Ukrainians. Yes, it's all coming back to him now like a common Celine Dion, now that he has heard that literally everybody else remembers the quid pro quo he did and can describe exactly what it was wearing.
And people have been wondering why Schiff and pals have been doing these initial depositions behind closed doors, PFFFFFT. It's so Sondlands can't check their testimonies against the testimonies of people who tell the truth.
Gonna be real hard for Donald Trump to call this dork, who literally bought his ambassadorship with a million dollar donation to the Trump inauguration, a Never-Trumper Deep Stater.
Gordon Sondland Does Hereby Solemnly Swear The Following Things Are True Unless He Suddenly Discovers Some More True Things At Which Point He Will Amend His Testimony Accordingly, Again.
A Wonkette treason summary of Sondland's amendment to his testimony:
1. Sondland read the opening statements from (acting) Ambassador to Ukraine Bill Taylor and recently quit-fired White House Russia adviser Tim Morrison, and they have made him remember all sorts of things!
2. He says he "always believed that suspending aid to Ukraine was ill-advised," but ...
3. But ... well ... he does now suddenly remember a conversation with Ukrainian official Andriy Yermak in Warsaw on September 1, 2019, wherein he told Yermak that "resumption of US aid would likely not occur until Ukraine provided the public anti-corruption statement that we had been discussing for many weeks." Quid pro who what now?
4. "Mr. Zelensky had raised the issue of the suspension of US aid to Ukraine directly with Vice President Pence," in a meeting just before Sondland told Yermak that. Golly, the memories have just come rushing back! And as they flow like waterfalls, they steamroll over Mike Pence, like steamroller!
5. Sondland is still playing dumb and saying he really didn't know that the "public anti-corruption" statement meant they were demanding the president of Ukraine make an announcement on CNN that he was investigating the Bidens and the conspiracy theories that live in Donald Trump's butt that absolve Russia of guilt for helping him steal the election, and place all the blame on Ukraine, which was allegedly helping HILLARY.
6. Sondland now remembers that yes, at some point he found out that "the public statement would need to come directly from President Zelensky himself." He doesn't know how he found this out, but maybe it was from Rudy Giuliani.
Sondland Still Full Of Shit?
So ... we're gonna go with YES, as Sondland still seems to be pretending -- despite all evidence to the contrary, including from Bill Taylor's testimony and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman's testimony -- that he had NO EARTHLY IDEA that calling for investigations into "Burisma" meant investigating the Bidens, or that Trump was specifically demanding an announcement of investigations into the Bidens and the 2016 election. Maybe "Burisma" is some kind of a spiked seltzer, like Truly or White Claw!
Gordon Sondland just can't be sure.
From Vindman's testimony about that Ukraine meeting at the White House on July 10, and the debrief that happened afterward:
Following this meeting, there was a scheduled debriefing during which Amb. Sondland emphasized the importance that Ukraine deliver the investigations into the 2016 election, the Bidens, and Burisma. I stated to Amb. Sondland that his statements were inappropriate, that the request to investigate Biden and his son had nothing to do with national security, and that such investigations were not something the NSC was going to get involved in or push. Dr. [Fiona] Hill then entered the room and asserted to Amb. Sondland that his statements were inappropriate.
But whatever, Sondland now admits the quid pro quo, the one he participated in BY DELIVERING THE MESSAGE PERSONALLY TO THE UKRAINIANS, so that's cool. Maybe if he amends 10 or 19 more times, he'll get it perfect .
And Now Let's Read Some Of That Transcript!
Golly, how many more interesting Trump crimes we learn about from Sondland's testimony, even the partial treason excerpts (which are different from treason paraphrases ) Adam Schiff released! (Again, for the idiot kids in the back, we have the full transcript, we just haven't read it yet, because we don't have time right now because TRUMP MELTED IT.)
The excerpts start with this quote from Sondland, from his testimony:
You know, this whole thing was sort of a continuum, starting at the May 23rd meeting, ending up at the end of the line when the transcript of the call came out. And as I said to counsel, it started as talk to Rudy, then others talk to Rudy. Corruption was mentioned. Then, as time went on -- and, again, I can't nail down the dates -- then let's get the Ukrainians to give a statement about corruption. And then, no, corruption isn't enough, we need to talk about the 2016 election and the Burisma investigations. And it was always described to me as ongoing investigations that had been stopped by the previous administration and they wanted them started up again. That's how it was always described. And then finally at some point I made the Biden-Burisma connection, and then the transcript was released. So I can't tell you on that continuum when, what dates, but that's kind of what happened.
Gordon Sondland doesn't know how he ended up with this gun in his hand, or why his underpants are covered in blood, HONEST!
Sondland testified that it really did start out with "corruption," just in general, but that Trump's and Rudy Giuliani's demands just got more "insidious" as time went on, especially in negotiations over whether President Volodymyr Zelenskiy would be granted a White House meeting:
Q.There were demands, weren't there, that an investigation take place of 2016 or Burisma? Ultimately those were demands, were they not?
A: Ultimately, yes. [...]
Q: But I think you said, Ambassador, that over time things got more and more insidious. I think those were your words. It started out with no condition, and then there was a condition for investigation into the corruption, and then there was a condition of an investigation into 2016 and Burisma, and then on the call itself it became clear the condition was investigation of 2016 and the Bidens. I think you described that as becoming more and more insidious, correct?
A: That's correct.
Q: And isn't it also fair to say that because there were added conditions to this meeting that Ukraine desperately wanted and that you wanted to make happen, that that meeting wasn't going to happen unless Ukraine played ball in meeting the demands of the President and Mr. Giuliani? Isn't that a fair use of that colloquial expression? [...]
A: If you mean that those conditions would have to be complied with prior to getting a meeting, that was my understanding.
Sondland moreover testified affirmatively that "whatever the Ukrainians were going to promise in any context, [Trump] wanted it public." ( He wanted it on CNN! )
And did Gordon Sondland think this was OK ? Or did he think it was, in legal terms, real bad ? Well, he's not a lawyer, but ...
Q.When you said in your statement [...] you did not understand until much later that Mr. Giuliani's agenda might have also included an effort to prompt the Ukrainians to investigate Vice President Biden or his son or to involve Ukrainians directly in the President's 2020 reelection campaign, why did you [...] think that either of those activities are problematic?
A.Because I believe I testified that it would be improper to do that.
Q.And illegal, right?
A.I'm not a lawyer, but I assume so.
Q.Sir, one last question, which is: Do you believe that, with regard to Burisma, that the effort by Giuliani to investigate Burisma, now that we know that it was actually intended to go after Mr. Biden's son Hunter, was ever a proper inquiry?
A.I mean, I think I testified to that at the beginning, that it would not be proper.
Q.And illegal, correct?
A.Again, I'm not a lawyer. I don't know the law exactly. It doesn't sound good.
We are not a lawyer, either, Gordon. SPOILER, it's a crime.
Sondland's testimony confirms that on September 9, 2019, the day Ambassador Bill Taylor texted him like THE FUCK, WHY ARE WE TYING MILITARY AID TO UKRAINE GIVING TRUMP POLITICAL REACHAROUNDS, Sondland called Donald Trump before responding to Taylor. Trump was "in a very bad mood," and he said NO QUID PRO QUO, because Trump thinks that if you say "NO COLLUSION," you didn't do collusion, and if you say "NO QUID PRO QUO," you didn't do quid pro quo. Applies to all crimes equally, we are pretty sure. And of course, after that, Sondland texted Taylor back five hours later to say Trump said NO QUID PRO QUO, because Sondland is an idiot.
He does not remember telling former ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, before she was unceremoniously fired, that she should send out #MAGA tweets, to say how much she adores Donald Trump's glorious mane and genius brain.
He does not remember when he figured out that "Burisma" was not the brand of a new anti-herpes inflammatory medication that according to the commercials allows folks to bike through the Grand Canyon without causing a breakout, but rather was code for investigate the Bidens.
And he definitely does not recall that July 10 meeting we referenced above, at which Lt. Col. Alex Vindman testified that both he and former White House Russia adviser Fiona Hill yelled at Sondland for saying if Ukraine wanted a White House meeting, they'd better investigate the 2016 election and the Bidens. In fact, he does not recall Fiona Hill ever uttering a cross word to him. They talked two weeks later and it was "just great." Maybe it is a repressed memory!
Oh yeah, and he's pretty sure the word "Burisma" never came up there, except maybe it did, who knows, maybe he said it, maybe he wrote it on his nipples like a frat boy at a college football game, golly, who can recall.
THE POINT IS HE CANNOT RECALL.
How Rude Of Wonkette To Leave Out All The Parts That TOTALLY EXONERATE Donald Trump!
We probably should read the whole transcript, because there's probably a lot Adam Schiff left out where Gordon Sondland TOTALLY EXONERATED Donald Trump and just made the president look really good and honest and non-crimey. But we are sure that Republican congressmen will find those parts, if so, and tweet them out TOOT SWEET.
Oh wait, what?
Follow Evan Hurst on Twitter RIGHT HERE, DO IT RIGHT HERE!
Wonkette is fully funded by readers like YOU. If you love Wonkette, SUPPORT WONKETTE FINANCIALLY.