During the first recess in Wednesday’s public impeachment hearing, Fox News anchor Chris Wallace noted that top Ukraine diplomat Bill Taylor was a “very impressive witness” and that his testimony was “very damaging” to President Donald Trump.
In his lengthy opening statement on Wednesday, Taylor revealed for the first time that Trump’s interest in Ukraine investigating former Vice President Joe Biden and his son went even further than originally known.
According to Taylor, U.S. Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland called Trump from Ukraine and the president pressed him on “the investigations.” Following the call, Sondland told a Taylor staffer that Trump “cares more about the investigations of Biden” than Ukraine.
“Well, as somebody who has covered a lot of trials, and I know Judge [Kenneth] Starr has probably been on a lot more than I have, when you listen to direct examination and the prosecutor for—is talking to the plaintiff and the plaintiff is getting a chance to tell his story, it usually is pretty devastating,” Wallace said during Fox News’ hearing coverage. “And then when you get cross-examination by the defense attorney, sometimes it turns out not to be quite as effective.”
Noting that observers had yet to hear from the Republicans or their minority counsel, Wallace emphasized how compelling Taylor’s testimony was. “Having said that, I think that William Taylor was a very impressive witness and was very damaging to the president,” the anchor declared.
Wallace further said that it helped that Taylor had kept copious notes throughout and that he “has a voice like Edward R. Murrow,” adding that the ambassador was a “pretty impressive presence” and “very nonpolitical.”
Starr, who was also on the panel, agreed with Wallace that Taylor was impressive but claimed that all of his testimony was “hearsay” and wouldn’t be admissible in a court of law. After Starr noted that military aid to Ukraine was eventually released on Sept. 11, suggesting that this meant there was no quid pro quo tied to Ukrainian investigations, Wallace offered a counterpoint.
“Can I just say as a point? It was released two days after the whistleblower complaint went to the Intelligence Committee,” the Fox News Sunday host retorted.