Speed Reads

Trump impeachment hearings

Ken Starr on the Sondland testimony: 'It's over'

Ken Starr, the former solicitor general who headed the investigation that led to the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton, called Wednesday's testimony by U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland "obviously ... one of those bombshell days."

Speaking on Fox News, Starr agreed with the hosts that things now do not "look good for the president substantively." Sondland's testimony, Starr said, confirmed that there was a quid pro quo between Trump's administration and the Ukrainian government — which would be "bribery," in the jargon of impeachment. Sondland also said that the orders to push Kyiv to open an investigation into Trump's political rivals had come directly from the Oval Office.

Starr focused specifically on the question of Trump's alleged contempt, noting that Sondland had spoken "vehemently and bitterly about his lack of access to records to help him." Additionally, the Democrats' line of questioning made clear that Sondland's attempts to refresh his memory for the testimony had been denied by the administration, which could build the Democrats' case for obstruction.

"There will be articles of impeachment," Starr said. "I think we've known that, it was just confirmed today. Substantively, what we heard from the chairman just now is: It's over. We now know — this is his position — we now know that the president in fact committed the crime of bribery." Watch below. Jeva Lange