The House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday is holding its fourth public hearing as part of the House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
Congressional investigators are hearing testimony from Kurt Volker, the former U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine, and Tim Morrison, who briefly served as the National Security Council’s top official for Europe and Russia. Volker gave a closed-door deposition before the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight committees on October 3, testifying that President Trump did not want Ukraine to “dig up dirt” on former Vice President and current presidential candidate Joe Biden, nor did he ever reference the 2020 election to him. “I was never asked to do anything that I thought was wrong” by President Trump, he told lawmakers.
On October 31, Morrison testified privately that he believed nothing improper took place during President Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Nonetheless, a CIA analyst’s mischaracterization of the call formed the basis of a “whistleblower” complaint, sparking the House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry.
Earlier Tuesday, Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a National Security Council official, and Jennifer Williams, a Russia adviser for Vice President Mike Pence, testified publically before the House intel panel. Read Breitbart News’ livewire coverage of this morning’s hearing here.
**Follow live updates on this event from Breitbart News. All times in eastern.**
9:54 P.M. — Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY) on why he doesn’t see impeachment happening:
9:35 P.M. — Fox News host Sean Hannity slams the impeachment probe: “I have never seen this much madness or insanity in my life.”
9:32 P.M. — Donald Trump Jr. reacts to today’s hearings on Fox News’ Hannity:
9:31 P.M. — Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY) tells CNN’s Christopher Cuomo that House Democrats are putting the country through “hell” with their impeachment probe.
9:25 P.M. — President Trump quotes Democrat Rep. Jeff Van Drew (NJ), who opposes the impeachment inquiry.
9:15 P.M. — Earlier Tuesday, Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) tweeted that the House Democrats’ “impeachment is just a bad reality show that won’t be getting a second season.”
9:15 P.M. — Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI) claims Volker and Morrison’s testimonies were “probably the worst yet” for President Trump, despite the fact both testified that they believe no quid pro quo, bribery, or extortion was committed by the president regarding Ukraine.
9:05 P.M. — White House issues a celebratory statement following today’s hearings:
8:58 P.M. — MSNBC is still talking about former special counsel Robert Mueller if you were wondering what coverage is like over there after today’s hearings.
8:53 P.M. — Former President Nixon White House counsel John Dean with a bad take about impeachment on CNN: “This is not a successor of Watergate. This is a whole new breed of impeachment inquiry. That was very clear to me today.”
8:42 P.M. — A breakdown of today’s hearings by the numbers:
8:40 P.M. — Jordan speaks at the House intel panel’s press conference following today’s hearings.
8:37 P.M. — Meadows congratulates House intel panel Republicans for today’s performance:
8:31 P.M. — The hearing has adjourned.
8:27 P.M. —
8:26 P.M. —
8:22 P.M. — Schiff says in his closing statement: “I appreciate that you were able to debunk, I hope for the last time, the idea that Joe Biden did something wrong.”
8:22 P.M. — Nunes rips the ongoing impeachment probe as “salacious.”
8:18 P.M. — Volker disagrees with President Trump’s criticism of the late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), calls him a war hero.
8:17 P.M. — Volker states President Trump’s tweet about Ambassador Maria Yavonavitch was “not appropriate.”
“I believe that even if you feel like you need to criticize, criticism is private, praise is public,” he adds.
8:11 P.M. —
8:06 P.M. — President Trump tweets:
8:05 P.M. —
7:50 P.M. — Volker to Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA): “I agree with you completely that we are not pushing back hard enough on Russia.”
7:46 P.M. — Morrison once again confirms he didn’t hear anything wrong during the Trump-Zelensky call.
7:45 P.M. — Morrison confirms each time Sondland told him he had spoken with President Trump, he checked the call logs to see it occurred.
7:40 P.M. — Volker: “Ambassador Sondland is a big personality and sometimes he says things that might be a bit bigger than life.”
7:35 P.M. — Volker on Sondland: “He cared about Ukraine. He wanted to see U.S. support to Ukraine increased.”
7:30 P.M. — Morrison: “I did not understand [investigating the Biden family] as a policy objective.”
7:26 P.M. — Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) is now questioning the witnesses.
7:25 P.M. —
Schiff: “Is it fair to say you have not fixed the ‘Giuliani problem’?”
Volker: “That’s correct”
7:16 P.M. — Rep. Chris Stewart (R-UT) calls the ongoing effort to remove President Trump the “Impeachmentpalooza 2019” and says Democrats are trying to impeach using “boredom.”
7:14 P.M. —
7:11 P.M. — Volker says Giuliani brought Lev Parnas to breakfast with him at the Trump Hotel.
7:10 P.M. — President Trump responds to Rev. Frankin Graham’s comments on impeachment:
7:09 P.M. —
7:06 P.M. —
6:58 P.M. — Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) praises Volker and Morrison: “You did your job. Here is one of the saddest things: you stepped out of our government because of what these guys are doing.”
6:50 P.M. — “Mostly it seems too dense to explain easily on TV” aka not good for Schiff and the Democrats.
6:48 P.M. —
6:43 P.M. —
Rep Jim Himes (D-CT): “You testified that you were troubled once you read the record of the president’s July 25th call. You call this ‘unacceptable.’ What specifically in that call to the Ukraine president do you find ‘unacceptable?'”
Volker: “It is the reference to Vice President Biden.”
6:40 P.M. — Turner asks Morrison if he believed President Trump demanded Zelensky to probe into the Bidens. “No,” he replies.
6:39 P.M. —
6:38 P.M. — Key point from Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH):
6:31 P.M. — Meadows cuts through the fog about Schiff’s questions:
6:30 P.M. —
Schiff: “My colleagues asked about ‘well, doesn’t aid get held up for all kinds of reasons?’ Ambassador Volker, have you ever seen military aid held up because the president wanted his rival investigated?”
Volker: “No, I have not seen that.”
Morrison: “No, Chairman.”
6:25 P.M. — Volker says Sondland’s remarks about “investigations” during a meeting with the Ukrainians was “an eye roll moment.”
6:23 P.M. —
6:19 P.M. — Nunes slams the impeachment process as a “drug deal.”
6:18 P.M. — Nunes objects Schiff to providing giving Democrats and Republicans an additional 15 minutes to have their counsels question Morrison and Volker, mocks the move as a “magical” rule.
6:15 P.M. — Morrison says Fiona Hills discussed with him Gordon Sondland. “She might have coined it ‘the Gordon problem,’” he says.
6:05 P.M. —
5:56 P.M. — Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) says today’s hearings have done nothing to damage President Trump’s support among Republicans with respect to impeachment.
5:43 P.M. —
5:42 P.M. — The hearing is now in recess.
5:40 P.M. — Morrison says Vindman was upset he was cut out from some matters regarding Ukraine.
5:39 P.M. — Morrison says that he had concerns that Vindman leaked information to the media.
5:38 P.M. — Morrison’s attorney interjects, says her client should not answer questions about Vindman’s judgement, claiming it falls outside the scope relevant time period.
5:37 P.M. — Morrison says Fiona Hill conveyed to him that she had concerns about Vindman’s judgment. Morrison also states he would have preferred that Vindman went to him first, instead of going to the NSC lawyers, about the Trump-Zelensky call.
5:35 P.M. —
5:32 P.M. — Morrison says there was no malicious intent in placing the transcript of the Trump-Zelensky call into a secret server.
5:30 P.M. — Morrison says nothing about the Trump-Zelensky call concerned him.
5:26 P.M. — Volker affirms none of his actions amounted to quid pro quo, bribery or extortion.
5:25 P.M. —
5:24 P.M. — Volker says “I was never involved in anything that I considered to be bribery at all.”
5:21 P.M. — Volker says when he spoke to Zelensky, he mentioned corruption in general, rather than specifically discussing the Biden family or Burisma.
5:18 P.M. —
5:17 P.M. — Volker on when he first learned about the hold on Ukraine’s security aid on July 18th: “I thought this was a bad decision or a bad hold. I wanted to make sure all the arguments were marshaled to get it lifted.”
5:14 P.M. —
Goldman: “What did [Sondland] tell you that he told [Yermak]?”
Morrison: “The Ukrainians would have to have the prosecutor general make a statement with respect to the investigations as a condition of having the aid lifted.”
5:07 P.M. — Volker agrees that it’s a “reasonable position,” for President Trump to be skeptical about Ukraine.
5:00 P.M. — Very important answers from Volker and Morrison:
4:49 P.M. — Morrison states that U.S. Ambassador to the E.U. Gordon Sondland conveyed to him after the 9/1 conversation with the Ukrainian aide Yermak that “the Ukrainians would have to have the prosecutor general make a statement with respect to the investigations as a condition of having the aid released.”
4:46 P.M. —
4:35 P.M. —
Morrison on the Trump-Zelensky call: “I recommended we restrict access to the package.”
Goldman: “Had you ever asked the NSC legal adviser to restrict access before?”
4:30 P.M. — Asked whether he took the president saying he should talk to Guiliani about Ukraine as a directive, Volker responds he understood it as something that “seemed to be part of the dialogue.”
4:27 P.M. — Volker on the Trump-Zelensky July 25 call: “I don’t think that raising the 2016 election or Vice President Biden or these things that I consider to be conspiracy theories circulated by the Ukrainians — they’re not things we should be pursuing as our national security strategy with Ukraine.”
4:26 P.M. — Morrison described the “irregular channel” as a “parallel process” regarding Ukraine.
4:25 P.M. — Morrison says President Trump’s references to the Bidens and Crowdstrike during his call with Zelensky weren’t part of his talking points put together by the NSC.
4:23 P.M. — Biggs weighs in on Volker’s remarks regarding Hunter Biden and Burisma:
4:18 P.M. — Democrat general counsel Daniel Goldman asks Volker if he knew about the relationship between Hunter Biden and Burisma. “I knew he had been a board member of the company, yes,” Volker replies, before adding he believed the distinction between the two was so important.
4:17 P.M. —
4:16 P.M. —
4:12 P.M. — Volker: “Mayor Giuliani raised, and I rejected, the conspiracy theory that Vice President Biden would have been influenced in his duties as Vice President by money paid to his son.”
4:10 P.M. — Schiff starts with questions for Volker by asking why he believed former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuri Lutsenko had credibility issues.
4:07 P.M. — Volker calls Biden an “honorable man” and says he holds him in the “highest regard.”
4:06 P.M. —
4:03 P.M. — Volker: “As a professional diplomat, I was comfortable exploring whether there was a statement Ukraine could make about its own intentions to investigate possible corruption that would be helpful in convincing Mr. Giuliani to convey to President Trump a more positive assessment”
4:02 P.M. —
3:55 P.M. — Volker says President Trump held a “deeply rooted negative view on Ukraine” due to former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
3:53 P.M. — Volker says the “three amigos” term makes him “cringe” and associates it with the late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT).
3:52 P.M. —
3:51 P.M. — Volker: “My work was not part of some irregular channel, but the official channel.
3:50 P.M. — Volker describes Ukraine as “the cradle of Slavic civilization, predating Moscow.”
3:49 P.M. — Volker: “For over two years, as U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, my singular focus was advancing the foreign policy and national security interests of the United States. In particular, that meant pushing back on Russian aggression.”
3:48 P.M. — Volker: “I am here today voluntarily, and I remain committed to cooperating fully and truthfully with this Committee. All I can do is provide the facts as I understood them at the time.”
3:46 P.M. —
3:47 P.M. — Morrison: “As I stared during my deposition, I feared at the time of the call on July 25, how its disclosure would play in Washington. My fears have been realized.”
3:46 P.M. — Morrison: “The United States aids Ukraine and her people so they can fight Russia over there and we don’t have to fight Russia here.”
3:45 P.M. —
3:44 P.M. — Morrison: “I left the NSC completely of my own volition. I felt no pressure to resign nor have I feared any retaliation for my testimony.”
3:43 P.M. — Volker and Morrison are being sworn in.
3:40 P.M. — Read Nunes’s full opening statement below:
3:37 P.M. — Nunes: “It’s obvious the Democrats are trying to topple the president solely because they despise him.”
3:35 P.M. — Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) calls today’s hearings “act two of today’s circus” in his opening statement.
3:34 P.M. — Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) mocks Schiff’s opening statement:
3:33 P.M. —
3:30 P.M. — Republican Reps. Mark Meadows (NC), Matt Gaetz (FL), Andy Biggs (R-AZ), and others are in the house.
3:26 P.M. —Schiff gavels this afternoon’s hearings into order and begins his opening statement:
3:13 P.M. —
2:51 P.M. — Scene from inside the hearing room ahead of Volker and Morrison’s testimony:
2:43 P.M. — The Hill reports: “Opposition by independents to the House’s ongoing impeachment inquiry jumped 10 percentage points in the last week, according to a Politico–Morning Consult poll released Tuesday.”
2:42 P.M. — Even CNN is on to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff’s (D-CA) moving of the goalpost on impeachment:
2:40 P.M. — The cause of the delay:
2:37 P.M. — This afternoon’s hearing is delayed, could begin around 3:15, according to Fox News.
2:06 P.M. — Volker is on the Hill for his testimony.