Mark Meadows

Impeachment deposition bickering offers preview of brinkmanship to come in public hearings
Jordan, Schiff exchanges on process illustrate distrust between the parties

Rep. Jim Jordan has questioned the process, such as members' ability to ask questions, during depositions. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

The first closed-door deposition in the House’s impeachment inquiry opened with a partisan squabble about whether members would be able to question witnesses. The bickering showed a distrust between Democrats and Republicans that has consumed the deliberations ever since. 

That is unlikely to go away anytime soon as lawmakers prepare for public hearings that are expected to begin later this month. Some of the process questions Republicans raised that led to partisan disputes in the depositions have seemingly been put to bed, while others may spill into public hearings. 

Most Republicans on impeachment committees aren’t showing up, transcripts reveal
Freedom Caucus members have taken lead role in questioning, foreshadowing public hearings

House Republicans hold a news conference in the Capitol Visitor Center to call for more access to the impeachment depositions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Republicans have for weeks blasted the closed-door impeachment process, but transcripts released this week of private depositions show most GOP lawmakers on the three panels at the center of the probe have simply not shown up.

The low attendance for most committee Republicans paints a very different picture of a party that recently stormed the secure room where the depositions have been conducted, demanding to participate in the process. Republican questioning during these private interviews have been driven by a handful of President Donald Trump’s allies and GOP staff.

Impeachment news roundup: Nov. 5
Sondland reverses himself on Ukraine quid pro quo; investigators want to hear from Mulvaney

Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the European Union, arrives at the Capitol for his deposition on Oct. 17. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, revised his initial testimony significantly, amending it to say he told a top Ukrainian official that the country would “likely” not receive military aid unless it announced investigations into President Donald Trump’s political rivals, according to a transcript released Tuesday by the committees conducting the impeachment inquiry.

In an amendment to his transcribed testimony, Sondland said his recollections were “refreshed” after reviewing opening statements from diplomats William Taylor and Tim Morrison.

Impeachment testimony details Republicans’ process fight, in public and behind closed doors
State Department lawyers passed on chance to set boundaries, says Yovanovitch's counsel

Rep. Mark Meadows speaks to reporters outside a scheduled deposition related to the House's impeachment inquiry in the Capitol Visitor Center on Monday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The first release of transcripts of closed-door testimony in the impeachment probe of President Donald Trump on Monday brought into stark relief the procedures governing the depositions — a significant turning point in the inquiry because House Republicans have made questioning the process a cornerstone of their defense of the president.

The arguments Republicans have aired outside of the secure facility in the Capitol basement — that Trump administration lawyers should be present, that the impeachment inquiry is not valid and lacks due process for the president — were clearly represented as a boiling over of frustrations from behind closed doors in the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility.

Nunes to move from supporting to leading role in Trump impeachment defense
Top Republican on Intelligence panel will be in spotlight during public hearings after taking back seat in closed depositions

House Intelligence ranking member Devin Nunes leaves a closed-door deposition related to the House’s impeachment inquiry on Oct. 16. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Intelligence ranking member Devin Nunes will soon shift from the passenger to the driver’s seat in the Republican defense of President Donald Trump as the House enters the public hearing portion of its impeachment inquiry next month.

Nunes, a nine-term California Republican who’s developed a distaste for the media in recent years as he’s become a staunch defender of the president, has taken a low-key role in the impeachment inquiry compared to House Oversight ranking member Jim Jordan, a Trump ally who is more friendly with the press.

Impeachment news roundup: Oct. 28
Ex-White House security adviser skips testimony for impeachment probe despite House subpoena

House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff wrote to a former top Trump aide’s lawyer that he must comply with a House subpoena to testify in its impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call file photo)

House Democrats are drawing up a measure in the House Rules Committee to ensure transparency and provide next steps for the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. The move comes as lawmakers prepare to move from the current closed-door investigative stage to a more public forum to review witness allegations of the president’s misconduct.

Charles Kupperman, former deputy assistant to the president for national security affairs, did not appear for his impeachment deposition Monday, setting up the latest showdown between the legislative and executive branches over fundamental constitutional powers.

Raja Krishnamoorthi steps up to impeachment role
Illinois Democrat brings unique background, portfolio to tough task

Illinois Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi listens as the acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire testifies before the House Intelligence Committee on the Capitol on Sept. 26. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Raja Krishnamoorthi never stops.

It’s a Tuesday afternoon in mid-October and Congress is back to work for the first time in more than two weeks. But as a member of two committees tasked with advancing the House’s impeachment inquiry, the Illinois Democrat spent most of the early October recess toiling in the Capitol and then flying home to the Chicago suburbs to explain that work to his constituents — including some impeachment skeptics.

Setting partisanship aside, colleagues gather to honor Cummings
Leaders from both parties praise Baltimore lawmaker's hometown commitment

Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, widow of the late Rep. Elijah Cummings, pauses at his casket in Statuary Hall during his memorial service on Thursday, October 24, 2019. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Lawmakers joined in bipartisan unity Thursday to remember their colleague, friend and confidante Elijah E. Cummings at a memorial service in the Capitol.

Members of Congress from both chambers and both parties shed tears together as they honored the Maryland Democrat's life and legacy. House votes and impeachment depositions were canceled so that Congress could gather to mourn the African-American lawmaker in a ceremony in Statuary Hall.

Photos: Rep. Elijah Cummings memorialized in the Capitol
Longtime Maryland lawmaker remembered in Washington ahead of Friday funeral in Baltimore

An honor guard carries Cummings’ casket through the Capitol Rotunda on its way to the memorial service in Statuary Hall. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Pool)

Amid the rancor of the impeachment investigation into President Donald Trump, Capitol Hill paused Thursday to pay respects to Maryland Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings, who died last week.

Votes and congressional business were canceled in the House as Cummings’ body lay in state in the Capitol’s Statuary Hall after a private ceremony. The Capitol was to be open for the public to pay its respects in the afternoon.

Impeachment news roundup: Oct. 18
Cleaning up after Mulvaney; Perry won't comply with subpoena; former ambassador blames Giuliani

Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney answers questions from reporters at the White House on Thursday. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

After weeks of “no quid pro quo” with Ukraine replacing “no collusion” with the Russians in President Donald Trump’s responses to the investigations into his administration, Mick Mulvaney, his acting chief of staff, said there was a quid pro quo.

Then he and the White House spent the following hours Thursday trying to put that genie back in the bottle. But, in true Trump-style, his 2020 campaign decided to capitalize on the press conference by selling a T-shirt emblazoned with one of the more memorable lines from Mulvaney’s press conference.