IN BRIEF:

  • Amb Taylor said he only learned of “overheard” Sondland-Trump call last Friday;
  • U.S.-Ukraine Embassy staffer said in deposition he told Taylor and others in August;
  • Inconsistencies raise questions over who’s lying and the entire story’s veracity.

FULL EXPLAINER:

On Wednesday November 13th, Ambassador William Taylor appeared in front of the House Intelligence Committee to drop what the media called a “bombshell“.

Taylor claimed:

Last Friday, a member of my staff told me of events that occurred on July 26. While Ambassador Volker and I visited the front, this member of my staff accompanied Ambassador Sondland. Ambassador Sondland met with Mr. Yermak.

“Following that meeting, in the presence of my staff at a restaurant, Ambassador Sondland called President Trump and told him of his meetings in Kyiv. The member of my staff could hear President Trump on the phone, asking Ambassador Sondland about “the investigations.” Ambassador Sondland told President Trump that the Ukrainians were ready to move forward.

But the eavesdropper’s testimony was leaked to CNN last night, and seems to contradict Taylor’s sequence of events. So who’s lying?

In David Holmes’ leaked opening statement, he reveals details about the call he “overheard”, and goes on to admit he told everyone who would listen:

“Upon returning to the Embassy, I immediately told the Deputy Chief of Mission and others at the Embassy about the call with the President and my conversation with Ambassador Sondland.

“July 26 was my last day in the office ahead of a planned vacation that ended on August 6. After returning to the Embassy, I told Ambassador Taylor about the July 26 call. I also repeatedly referred to the call and conversation with Ambassador Sondland in meetings and conversations where the issue of the President’s interest in Ukraine was potentially relevant.”

Did Taylor really only learn about the so-called overheard call last Friday? Or was he told previously, as Holmes claims?

Whether or not Taylor or Holmes are lying is critical to the veracity of the information pertaining to the call, and their reliability as witnesses.

You can read Taylor’s testimony here, and Holmes’s opening statement here.

LISTEN TO THE FULL EPISODE NOW.

by Raheem Kassam