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Committees Release Holmes and Hale Transcripts as Part of Impeachment Inquiry

Washington, November 18, 2019

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 from joint depositions of Foreign Service Officer David Holmes and Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale.

The Chairs issued the following statement announcing today’s release:

“Today, the Committees released the transcripts of depositions with Mr. David Holmes and Mr. David Hale, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs.

“Mr. Holmes, a nonpartisan career Foreign Service officer, testified that he was present when Ambassador Gordon Sondland spoke directly with President Trump on July 26—the day after President Trump’s call with Ukrainian President Zelensky.

“Mr. Holmes overheard President Trump asking Ambassador Sondland whether President Zelensky committed to ‘do the investigation’ into the Bidens and the 2016 election, which Trump pressed Zelensky for in his call the previous day. Sondland responded to President Trump stating, ‘Oh yeah, he’s going to do it’ and added that President Zelensky will ‘do anything you ask him to.’ Following the conversation between President Trump and Ambassador Sondland, Mr. Holmes asked Sondland whether it was true that President Trump ‘did not give a [expletive] about Ukraine,’ to which Sondland agreed that Trump did not, and that he only cared about the ‘big stuff’ like ‘this Biden investigation that Giuliani is pushing.’

“Mr. Holmes testified that he felt obligated to come forward to rebut the unfounded claim by the President and his allies that ‘certain senior officials may have been acting without the President’s knowledge in their dealings with Ukraine.’

“We look forward to their public testimony.” 

The testimony of Mr. Holmes can be found here.

Key excerpts of Holmes’ testimony can be found here.

The testimony of Mr. Hale can be found here.

Key excerpts of Hale’s testimony 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.

*** NOTE:  The Committee has released all but two remaining deposition transcripts. On Saturday, November 16, the Committees conducted a deposition with Mark Sandy from the Office of Management and Budget.  The transcript of this deposition is being processed on an expedited basis, and Mr. Sandy is being afforded the opportunity to review his transcripts, as all witnesses have.  The Minority was informed after the November 16 deposition that if they would like to use any specific excerpts from Mr. Sandy’s deposition transcript during public hearings this week, they may submit those excerpts to the Chairman for expedited security review and approval in advance of the public release of the fully processed transcript. Additionally, Philip Reeker, the Acting Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, has not completed a review of his transcript – and the Minority similarly may submit to the Chairman for expedited security review any specific excerpts from his deposition they may wish to use during the public hearings.

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