In explosive written testimony, European Union ambassador Gordon Sondland told House impeachment investigators that he was just following orders when he pressured Ukraine to investigate the Bidens and the Crowdstrike conspiracy in exchange for the release of hundreds of millions in U.S. funding for Ukraine’s defense.
In his testimony, Sondland insists he was acting at the direction of the president of the United States:
Trump Made Me Do It:
Secretary Perry, Ambassador Volker and I worked with Mr. Rudy Giuliani on Ukraine matters at the express direction of the president of the United States. We did not want to work with Mr. Giuliani. Simply put, we played the hand we were dealt. We all understood that if we refused to work with Mr. Giuliani, we would lose an important opportunity to cement relations between the United States and Ukraine. So we followed the president’s orders….
As a presidential appointee, I followed the directions of the president. We worked with Mr. Giuliani because the president directed us to do so.
The Quid Pro Quo Was Real:
Mr. Giuliani’s requests were a quid pro quo for arranging a White House visit for President Zelensky. Mr. Giuliani demanded that Ukraine make a public statement announcing investigations of the 2016 election/DNC server and Burisma. Mr. Giuliani was expressing the desires of the president of the United States, and we knew that these investigations were important to the president.
“Everyone Was in the Loop”:
Everyone was in the loop. It was no secret.
Vice President Mike Pence Knew:
I mentioned to Vice President Pence before the meetings with the Ukrainians that I had concerns that the delay in aid had become tied to the issue of investigations.
And So Did Secretary of State Mike Pompeo:
We kept the leadership of the State Department and the NSC informed of our activities. That included communications with Secretary of State Pompeo,
Read the full testimony below:
This is a breaking news story and will be updated.