Committees Release Sondland and Volker Transcripts as Part of Impeachment Inquiry

Nov 5, 2019
Press Release
New Text Messages Also Released

Washington, D.C.— Today, Rep. Adam B. Schiff, the Chairman of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Rep. Eliot L. Engel, the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Acting Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, released the transcripts of Gordon Sondland, the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union, and Kurt Volker, the former United States Representative for Ukraine Negotiations.

The Committees also released additional text messages previously produced by Ambassador Volker that provide context to the transcripts and new information relevant to the inquiry.

The three Chairs issued the following statement announcing today’s releases:

“The testimony of Ambassadors Volker and Sondland shows the progression of efforts by the President and his agent, Rudy Giuliani, to use the State Department to press Ukraine to announce investigations beneficial to the President’s personal and political interests.

“As early as May 2019, President Trump directed the Ambassadors to work with Giuliani on Ukraine policy, and over the course of the summer, an effort was made to extract a public statement from the new Ukrainian president that the Ukrainian government was investigating Burisma or the Biden family and a debunked conspiracy theory about the 2016 U.S. elections.

“It is clear from their testimony that, in exchange for the statement, President Trump would award the Ukrainian president with a highly coveted White House meeting and, later, with millions of dollars in critical military aid being withheld.  Ambassador Sondland called this changing U.S. policy toward Ukraine a ‘continuum’ that became ever more ‘insidious’ over time.

“Finally, with the release of the full production of text messages provided to the Committees by Ambassador Volker, and an additional declaration by Ambassador Sondland, the President’s scheme comes into clearer focus. 

“In an effort to prevent further incriminating information from coming to light, the State Department is continuing to obstruct our investigation by refusing to provide subpoenaed records, including additional text messages provided to the Department by Ambassador Sondland.  This blanket stonewalling will only continue to build the case against the President for obstruction of Congress, especially in light of the damning evidentiary record the Committees have already gathered.”

The testimony of Ambassador Sondland can be found here, including an addendum he filed on November 4, 2019. 

Key excerpts from Ambassador Sondland’s testimony can be found here.

The testimony of Ambassador Volker can be found here

Key excerpts from Ambassador Volker’s testimony can be found here.

In addition, the Committees released all additional Volker text messages received by the Committees, which can be found here.

Key excerpts from these additional text messages can be found here.

The Committees first released excerpts of text messages produced by Ambassador Volker on October 2, 2019, which can be found here.

Background:

H. Res. 660, which was passed by the House of Representatives on October 31, 2019, authorizes the Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence “to make publicly available in electronic form the transcripts of depositions” with “appropriate redactions for classified and other sensitive information.”

Pursuant to this resolution, and consistent with the Committee’s rules and longstanding bipartisan practice, the Committee has begun preparing transcripts from the impeachment inquiry for public release, which includes a thorough, nonpartisan security review to protect classified and other sensitive information.

As part of this process, the Committee is redacting (1) personally identifiable information; (2) the names of non-senior Executive Branch personnel and Intelligence Community employees; (3) the names of committee staff who did not ask questions or make on-the-record statements; and (4) classified or potentially classified information or other sensitive information not pertinent to the subject of the impeachment inquiry.

In addition, consistent with the Committee’s rules, each transcript has been made available to the witness for inspection, including to identify technical, grammatical, and typographical corrections.  The Committee has also taken into consideration requested redactions from witnesses, if they fall within the parameters above.

Although the transcripts list Members of the three Committees who were present at the outset of a deposition, they do not necessarily reflect the attendance of all Members who may have joined or departed a deposition at different points.

The Committee will release individual transcripts on a rolling basis as this process is completed.

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