The latest on the Trump impeachment inquiry

By Meg Wagner, Fernando Alfonso III and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 10:23 p.m. ET, November 14, 2019
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3:39 p.m. ET, November 14, 2019

What Trump did "makes what Nixon did look almost small," Pelosi says

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said President Trump has "admitted" to bribery, and compared his actions to that of former President Richard Nixon.

Nixon faced impeachment amid the Watergate scandal, but resigned before the House could vote.

"By the way, what President Trump has done on the record in terms of acting to advantage his — a foreign power to help him in his own election, and of the obstruction of information about that — the cover-up — makes what Nixon did look almost small, almost small," Pelosi said.
11:27 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

Pelosi: Trump said the call was perfect. It's "perfectly wrong."

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said the House has not yet made a decision on whether to impeach President Trump, but added that what he has "admitted to" is bribery.

She was just asked if the House is currently looking at articles of impeachment, which would be the crux of any vote to indict Trump 

"I don't know that. We haven't even made a decision to impeach. That's what the inquiry is about. And when the committees decide that, then they will decide what the articles are," she said.

Pelosi then added that Trump's phone call with Ukraine's president — which he has repeatedly called "perfect" —  is "bribery."

"But I am saying that what is: The President has admitted to and says it's 'perfect.' I say it's perfectly wrong. It's bribery," she said.

11:10 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

Pelosi: Yesterday "was a successful day for truth"

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said yesterday's public impeachment inquiry hearing a "successful day for truth."

Diplomats Bill Taylor and George Kent testified together on Capitol Hill, and Taylor mentioned a previously unknown call conversation in which Trump asked about Ukraine opening investigations that would help him politically.

“I thought it was a successful day for truth," Pelosi said, adding that the House is approaching the impeachment inquiry "prayerfully."

"We must be defenders of out democracy," she said. "We go forward sadly, prayerfully."

10:58 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

SOON: Nancy Pelsoi takes questions

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will soon hold her weekly news conference.

Reporters will likely ask her questions about the impeachment inquiry process and the public hearings. We'll be covering it live here.

10:36 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

Lindsey Graham says he "will not allow" possible impeachment trial to go forward without the whistleblower

Sen. Lindsey Graham, speaking to reporters said, "I will not allow a trial to go forward with my vote unless the whistleblower comes forward."

He added: "It's over. It's done for me."

Graham did not provide any specifics about what he plans to do next or what his options are to block proceeding from going forward.

Graham walked away and did not answer a question from a reporter asking if he would introduce a motion to dismiss in an effort to halt the trial in the Senate.

9:38 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

House Judiciary chair: Yesterday’s testimony was "pretty damning"

From CNN's Manu Raju

House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler said yesterday’s testimony was "pretty damning."

When asked if he has enough to draft articles of impeachment, Nadler said: “I’ll keep my mind open at the moment.”

Democrats are making clear this morning that Bill Taylor’s testimony – discussing Gordon Sondland’s conversations with Trump about investigations — shows that Sondland appears to have misled Congress in his closed deposition since he did not disclose those talks and often didn’t recall key details.

Rep. Jackie Speier, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, said Sondland is going to have to “pay” for his lack of candor and said he wasn’t truthful, adding he’s on “thin ice” and will have to clarify next week.

Rep. Harley Rouda, who also took part in the depositions, said Sondland was “not fully truthful.”

9:27 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

GOP plans to argue that tomorrow's witness had no knowledge of matters central to impeachment inquiry

From CNN's Manu Raju

Former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch leaves the US Capitol October 11, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Former US Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch leaves the US Capitol October 11, 2019 in Washington, DC. OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images

Ahead of tomorrow’s public hearing, Republicans plan to argue that President Trump was within his rights to recall Marie Yovanovitch from her post, saying he has the power to appoint and remove ambassadors as he wishes.

They also plan to make clear that after she left her position in May, she had no direct knowledge of the central issues at stake in the impeachment inquiry, according to a GOP source involved in the planning.

Remember: Yovanovitch, the former top US diplomat in Ukraine, was called "bad news" by President Trump and unexpectedly removed from her post in Kyiv in May.

She was accused without evidence by Rudy Giuliani — a former New York mayor and Trump's personal attorney — and others of trying to undermine the President and blocking efforts to investigate Democrats like former Vice President Joe Biden.

About tomorrow: At her public hearing in the House, Yovanovitch is expected to detail the efforts by Rudy Giuliani to smear her as well as to knock down the conspiracy theories he was pushing.

9:00 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

Kellyanne Conway says “nothing new” came out of yesterday’s hearing. That’s not true.

Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway said Trump was "placid" as yesterday's public impeachment inquiry hearing played out, adding that "nothing new" was presented during the testimony.

"The President was very placid," she said on CNN this morning.

She said that Trump did not watch the televised hearing, but when asked about how he reacted to news from it, Conway answered, "Pretty well."

"I'll tell you why. There was nothing new yesterday," she said,

Some background: Yesterday, Bill Taylor, top US diplomat in Ukraine told Congress of a previously unknown conversation President Trump had the day after his phone call with the Ukrainian President, in which Trump asked the US ambassador to the European Union about Ukraine opening investigations that would help him politically.

Taylor testified that Gordon Sondland, the EU ambassador, told an aide that Trump's interest in Ukraine was the "investigations of Biden," and that he cared more about an investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden than he did about Ukraine.

Today, Conway said that testimony should not be considered evidence:

"You're calling that evidence, respectfully. In a real court of law we'd not be referring to something as evidence that is, oh, someone on my staff recalled overhearing a conversation between someone else and the President where they think they heard the president use the word investigations. This is not what due process and the rule of law in our great democracy allows," she said.
8:32 a.m. ET, November 14, 2019

5 things we're watching today

The House Intelligence Committee held its first impeachment inquiry hearing yesterday, and they'll hold a second tomorrow.

Here's what we're watching today:

  • 10:45 a.m. ET: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi holds her weekly news conference. Reporters will likely ask her questions about the impeachment inquiry process and the public hearings.
  • 11:30 a.m. ET: House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy holds his weekly news conference. Impeachment inquiry questions will likely come up.
  • 4:10 p.m. ET: President Trump leaves the White House as he travels to Louisiana for a rally. Trump often stops to speak to reporters when he's on the White House lawn, although it's unclear if he'll do so today.
  • 8 p.m. ET: Trump holds a rally in Bossier City, Louisiana.
  • Timing unknown: Trump yesterday said he plans to release a transcript of a second call with his Ukrainian counterpart today. The President has been promising to release the transcript of his call all week. The call took place in April — before the July conversation which is at the heart of the impeachment inquiry.