Trump was happy about Republican sit-in: Impeachment update

Kasia Klimasinska

The three committees investigating President Donald Trump aren’t hearing from witnesses Thursday and Friday because the House is adjourned for ceremonies honoring the late Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings.

On Saturday, Philip Reeker, the acting assistant secretary of state of European and Eurasian affairs, is scheduled to appear.

Here are the latest developments:

Trump Was Happy About Republican Sit-In (9:01 a.m.)

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., flanked by Rep. Russ Fulcher, R-Idaho, left, and Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, right, the ranking member of the Committee on Oversight Reform, and other conservative House Republicans, complain to reporters about how House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., is conducting the impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump, at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019.

Trump was happy to see House Republicans protesting the impeachment probe, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham told Fox News on Thursday.

“He was very supportive of it,” Grisham said, adding it was “about time somebody made a very bold stand.”

About two dozen House Republicans crashed a secure room at the Capitol Wednesday in protest of closed-door testimonies – which are, in fact, open to both Republicans and Democrats on three different committees. Depositions are being taken in the probe, which is focused on whether Trump improperly pressured Ukraine to help with a politically motivated investigation of 2020 rival Joe Biden.

Democrats expect the public part of probe to start in about two weeks.

Key Events

  • Trump had advance knowledge and supported a protest by Republicans who barged into the secure hearing room and delayed Wednesday’s witness testimony by about five hours, according to four people familiar with the matter.
  • The House committees will hold public hearings after another week or two of closed-door witness statements, according to panel members Jackie Speier of California and Lacy Clay of Missouri.
  • Laura Cooper, a deputy assistant secretary of defense, testified behind closed doors Wednesday under subpoena after the Defense Department directed her not to appear, according to an official briefed on the issue. The committees have issued so-called friendly subpoenas in such cases.

With assistance from Billy House.