House Dems Hope Former Diplo’s Defiance Will Be Contagious squib

Olivier Douliery/AFP/Getty

House Democrats’ impeachment investigators left a nine-hour interview on Friday with the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovich, empowered—an elusive feeling for them so far—and optimistic they will get the witnesses and documents they need to build a case for impeaching President Trump in the face of stonewalling from his administration.

The State Department had issued strict orders blocking Yovanovich from testifying before lawmakers. She defied that order on Friday, given a bit of cover thanks to a last-minute subpoena from Democrats. That has Democrats hopeful her stand will be contagious, spreading to the numerous other witnesses who have been asked to testify in the impeachment inquiry. 

Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.), himself a former State Department official, left the briefing saying that Yovanovich was a person of “rare” integrity. “Her appearance here is very important and establishes that legally binding subpoenas not only should be but can be respected,” he said.

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