Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) questioned Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, during her testimony to Congress on Friday.
House Democrats called Yovanovitch to testify, alleging that President Donald Trump abused his power by withholding military aid in exchange for an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden, which Trump has denied and transcripts released from the two phone calls between Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky and Trump don’t show evidence of.
Stewart, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, received direct and clear answers from the former ambassador regarding her knowledge of any criminal activity that the POTUS allegedly engaged in.
He asked, “Do you have any information regarding the president of the United States accepting any bribes?”
“No,” Yovanovitch answered.
Stewart asked a second question: “Do you have any information regarding any criminal activity that the president of the United States has been involved with at all?”
“No,” Yovanovitch answered.
Stewart then thanked the former ambassador and added, “The American people know this is nonsense, the American people know this is unfair.”
“I think that public support for impeachment is actually going to be less when these hearings are over than it is when the hearings began, because finally the American people are going to be able to see the evidence and they’re going to be able to make their own determination regarding that,” Stewart said.
The White House said Stewart dismantled the Yovanovitch’s testimony in less than a minute, writing on Twitter: “In 30 seconds, @RepChrisStewart got the answers that House Democrats have spent 7 hours trying to avoid,” adding, “7 hours that Congress could’ve spent working for you—on drug price legislation, USMCA, immigration reform, or infrastructure—instead of for their own political careers.”
In 30 seconds, @RepChrisStewart got the answers that House Democrats have spent 7 hours trying to avoid.
7 hours that Congress could’ve spent working for you—on drug price legislation, USMCA, immigration reform, or infrastructure—instead of for their own political careers. https://t.co/dRhvjp7NWq pic.twitter.com/PkuyG8m4H0
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) November 15, 2019
Other Republican lawmakers also said they thought the hearing was a waste of time.
“It’s unfortunate that today, and for most of next week, we will continue engaging in the Democrats’ day-long TV spectacles instead of solving the problems we were all sent to Washington to address,” House Intelligence Committee ranking member Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) wrote on Twitter.
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) concluded on Twitter that the Democrats’ impeachment inquiry has “no case.”
The Democrats second day impeachment witness, Ambassador Yovanovitch, has no information on any of the relevant questions.
They have no case. This is not serious. pic.twitter.com/dHTtLAnoI5
— Mark Meadows (@RepMarkMeadows) November 15, 2019
“Zero evidence of wrongdoing by the President was presented,” White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement. “In fact, Ambassador Yovanovitch testified under oath that she was unaware of any criminal activity involving President Trump.”