Diplomat says aide heard Trump ask about "investigations" day after Ukraine call — live updates

Latest updates on the impeachment hearings

The House is holding the first public hearings of the impeachment probe, with two key diplomatic officials testifying before the Intelligence Committee.

Bill Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, told the committee he recently learned a member of his staff overheard President Trump asking about "the investigations" the day after his July 25 call with the president of Ukraine.
In that call, Mr. Trump urged the Ukrainian leader to investigate a company that had employed Joe Biden's son.

The top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine revealed new information about the events at the center of the House impeachment inquiry as the first open hearings before the House Intelligence Committee got underway Wednesday.

Bill Taylor, the chargé d'affaires at the U.S. embassy in Kiev, said in his opening statement that he recently learned about a conversation a member of his staff overheard between President Trump and Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the E.U. The conversation supposedly took place on July 26, the day after the president's now-infamous call with the Ukrainian president.

Taylor said the aide overheard the president ask Sondland about "the investigations." He also said Sondland told the aide that the president "cares more about the investigations of Biden" than U.S. policy toward Ukraine.

The staffer who overheard the conversation is David Holmes, a political officer in the U.S. embassy in Ukraine, three sources familiar with the matter told CBS News. Holmes is now expected to appear for a closed-door deposition on Capitol Hill on Friday.

Taylor is appearing alongside George Kent, the deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian Affairs. Both officials raised concerns about the central allegation in the impeachment inquiry -- that the Trump administration used U.S. military aid to Ukraine and the prospect of a White House visit to pressure the country to investigate the Biden family and events surrounding the 2016 election.

Democratic Chairman Adam Schiff opened the hearing by laying out the case against the president and saying the inquiry will "affect not only the future of this presidency but the future of the presidency itself."

Devin Nunes, the Republican ranking member, decried the proceedings as a "carefully orchestrated media smear campaign." Early in the hearing, Republican lawmakers tried to raise procedural questions to delay the proceedings and demand testimony from the whistleblower whose complaint sparked the inquiry.

The rapidly escalating investigation is just the fourth time in U.S. history that Congress has seriously considered impeaching a president. -- Stefan Becket

Diplomat says aide heard Trump ask about "investigations" day after Ukraine call — live updates Diplomat says aide heard Trump ask about "investigations" day after Ukraine call — live updates Reviewed by Chimezie Ozofor on November 13, 2019 Rating: 5

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