Trump Ousts Gordon Sondland, the EU Ambassador Who Testified There Was a Quid Pro Quo

Just hours after the White House dismissed National Security Council aide Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and his twin brother, Yevgeny.

Andrew Harnik/AP

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones' newsletters.

On Friday, the White House dismissed yet another impeachment witness, Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, as President Donald Trump continued his apparent retaliation campaign to oust members of his administration who testified against him. 

Sondland’s ouster comes just hours after the White House dismissed National Security Council aide Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and his twin brother, Yevgeny, and reassigned them to Pentagon roles.

Sondland’s congressional testimony reinforced a core part of the House investigators’ case for impeaching Trump. The investigation centered on whether the president abused his power and obstructed justice when he withheld military aid from Ukraine in exchange for investigations into political opponents.

“As I testified previously, Mr. Giuliani’s requests were a quid pro quo for arranging a White House visit for President Zelensky,” Sondland said in testimony in November, referring to Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani, who helped with the pressure campaign. “Mr. Giuliani was expressing the desires of the President of the United States, and we knew that these investigations were important to the President.”

The House later voted to impeach the president on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. But the Senate voted this week to acquit the president, with Sen. Mitt Romney as the lone Republican to break party ranks and vote to remove Trump from office. On Thursday, during a rambling speech, Trump railed against his so-called political enemies, condemned the impeachment process as “evil,” referred to Romney as a “failed presidential candidate,” and lambasted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former FBI director James Comey. 

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.