Republicans Lose Their ‘No Quid Pro Quo’ Talking Point

Trump and Republicans manufactured a variety of excuses for his gross abuse of power in Ukraine. They doubled down on their frequently used claim — “no quid pro quo” — after  the release of Ambassador Sondland’s text message, which they cited repeatedly as proof that no extortion occurred. According to them, that means Trump is off the hook!

But in revised testimony released yesterday, Sondland admitted to a quid pro quo. Inquiring minds want to know: What will happen to Republicans’ favorite talking point now?

Donald Trump…

TRUMP:  “— the text message that I saw from Ambassador Sondland — who’s highly respected — was: There’s ‘no quid pro quo.’  He said that. He said, by the way — it almost sounded like in general — he said, by the way, there’s ‘no quid pro quo.’  And there isn’t. Now, for Biden there would be.  But listen to this:

TRUMP: There is no pro quo.  And that was the text message that I saw.  And that nullified everything.”

TRUMP: “‘The Ambassador to the European Union has already testified, he said there was no quid pro quo. He said the President had told him that.’ @kilmeade  @foxandfriends”

Kellyanne Conway….

CONWAY: “There’s been other testimony, I believe, that Ambassador Sondland–and I’m getting this from public reports, including your own–Ambassador Sondland made very clear to text the Ambassador Taylor that there–that was not the President’s intent. There was no quid pro quo intended.”

Rep. Jim Jordan…

JORDAN: “Ambassador Sondland, made his statement, where he said it’s crystal-clear… there is no quid pro quo of any kind… you guys don’t — you never highlight that one.”

Rep. Matt Gaetz…

GAETZ: “But they forget to tell you is that, when Taylor texted that to Ambassador Sondland, Ambassador Sondland expressly refuted that contention in real time. He said no, this is not a quid pro quo. The president has been very clear but there’s this linkage of aid to any future election activity.”

Rep. Mark Green…

BARTIROMO: “And so — I mean there are some congressmen who we have spoken with like Devin Nunes who were among those questioning people like Ambassador Volker and Ambassador Sondland…. these testimonies are just knocking down the whole idea of any quid pro quo.”

GREEN: “And then Sondland comes back and said no, there absolutely was no quid pro quo. I mean the President insisted there not be.” [Mornings with Maria, Fox Business, 10/22/19]