The Impeachment Hearings Revealed a Lot

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Michelle Cottie, NYT Editorial: After two weeks of public testimony, Americans should have a good sense of why an impeachment inquiry was needed.

Some good stuff. Below are selected quotes:

Despite Mr. Nunes’s fantasyland contentions that the testimony of the past two weeks has served only to expose Democrats’ “asinine,” “pitiful” attempts to “overthrow a president,” in reality the proceedings have produced a number of startling revelations, none of them exonerating the president.

The biggest bombshell came Wednesday, with the appearance of Gordon Sondland, Key takeaway: There was a quid pro quo.

Thursday brought only more grief for Mr. Nunes and other Trump defenders. As their closing witnesses, House Democrats called Fiona Hill, formerly the National Security Council’s top expert on Russia, and David Holmes, a political officer at the American Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine.

Mr. Holmes is the official who overheard the July 26 phone call between Mr. Trump and Mr. Sondland in which the president quizzed the ambassador about the status of the investigations he was seeking. Mr. Holmes also recalled Mr. Sondland telling him after the call that the president didn’t give a fig about Ukraine except for the “big stuff” that directly affected him, such as the “Biden investigation.”

Dr. Hill was even more pointed with her message, which boiled down to: Republican lawmakers need to stop behaving like Russian stooges.

[Dr Hill] Based on questions and statements I have heard, some of you on the committee appear to believe that Russia and its security services did not conduct a campaign against our country — and that perhaps, somehow, for some reason, Ukraine did. This is a fictional narrative that has been perpetrated and propagated by the Russian security services themselves.