The mainstream press held their collective breath as Ambassador Gordon Sondland, EU Ambassador, said the magic words: “There was a quid pro quo.” Yes, President Trump told the Ukrainians that if they wanted favorable treatment from the U.S. government there were going to have to do…uh…something.
Was that something an investigation of Hunter Biden, and would the quid pro quo include a $1 billion “bribe” in military aid? The answers were along the lines of “I never heard about the Hunter Biden deal,” and “I assume so, even though the President told me otherwise.”
Like every witness so far, Sondland had no firsthand knowledge of the quid pro quo he described in his opening testimony.
Yes, he testified, “There were a lot of rumors swirling around as to why the aid had been held up, including they wanted a review, they wanted Europe to do more. There were all kinds of rumors.”
Clearly, in the psycho world of Adam Shift, that had to amount to an impeachable offense. On the other hand, it could mean that the President wanted to make sure that the aid money wasn’t being spent on corrupt Ukrainians, who like to hire the son of a sitting vice president to do exactly nothing.
And then, Sondland testified about his September 9, 2019, call. He wanted to find out what the President wanted: “[The President] said, ‘I want nothing. I want no quid pro quo. I want [the Ukrainian President] to do the right thing.’ And then he said, ‘I want him to do what he ran on.’ And that was the end of the conversation.”
Republican Mark Meadows summed up the testimony nicely: “Folks, if someone tells you Gordon Sondland affirmed quid pro quo, you’re being lied to.” Sondland said he didn’t know what happened, but be began to *assume* it was tied to an anti-corruption statement. His phone call with the President should have cleared up that misconception.
Once again the Republicans restored order to the muddled thinking and subterfuge:
GOP rep. Mike Turner: No one on this planet told you that this aid was tied to investigations. Yes or no?”
Ambassador Sondland: “Yes.”
Sondland countered that he was presuming that is what Trump meant.
GOP rep. Jim Jordan: (Referring to Amb. Sondland’s opening remarks) When did President Zelensky announce that the investigation was going to happen?
Amb. Sondland: Never did.
Rep. Jordan: Never did! They got the call on July 25. They got the meeting…They got the money on September 11…I mean you got all three of them wrong…It’s not two plus two, it’s 0 for 3.
Then Rep. Jordan asked pointedly, “Why didn’t you put all that in your opening statement? You couldn’t fit it in, is that right?”
Rep. Jordan clearly astonished and disgusted over Sondland’s grandstanding and waffling testimony remarked, “You know what a quid pro quo is? This for that…Looks to me that Ukraine got “that” three times. There was no ‘this’ and we didn’t do anything.”
Nevertheless, Adam Schiff and his crew rejoiced that Sondland’s lame testimony “went to the heart” of the matter.
For normal folks in the heartland who use their heads, what the testimony showed was yet another deer-in-the-headlights witness who knew nothing firsthand, and what he did know described a President doing his job and putting America first.