Pompeo dismisses impeachment inquiry as 'noise' ahead of diplomats' testimony

Pompeo dismisses impeachment inquiry as 'noise' ahead of diplomats' testimony
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Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoPompeo says he and Pentagon warned Russia against bounties on US troops in Afghanistan US blocking private charter flights to Cuba China's Confucius Institute designated as a foreign mission of Beijing MORE on Wednesday dismissed the House’s impeachment investigation as “noise” as multiple current and former State Department officials are slated to testify in the probe in the coming days.

“Look, there’s a lot of noise. There’ll be noise today. There’ll be noise for the rest of this week,” Pompeo said on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show. “I’ve told the team to stay focused. There’s all this chatter, but then there’s challenges and opportunities for America around the world.” 

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Pompeo hinted that the impeachment investigation could even put America “at risk” by shifting focus away from legislation such as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). 

“This is where we actually began about what of this noise in Washington, D.C., puts America at risk. It is absolutely the case that if we don’t pass an NDAA, if we don’t pass Defense appropriation bills, we put the world on notice that we’re not serious about confronting these challenges,” Pompeo said.

“And I hope, I hope the House of Representatives will begin to take these measures up. They’ve got just a handful of weeks in session here before the year ends. This needs to get done.”

Pompeo’s remarks come as testimony from several current and former State Department officials is expected to be presented in public in the coming days.

William Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat to Ukraine, and George Kent, a top State Department official, were on Capitol Hill to testify Wednesday, while former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch is expected to testify Friday.

Kurt VolkerKurt VolkerGOP senators request details on Hunter Biden's travel for probe Yovanovitch retires from State Department: reports Live coverage: Senators enter second day of questions in impeachment trial MORE, the former special envoy to Ukraine, is expected to testify next week, as well as several other officials from the White House’s National Security Council.

House Democrats launched their impeachment probe in September over concerns that President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE leveraged $400 million in military aid to Ukraine to pressure Kyiv to publicly launch an inquiry into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHarris to host virtual Hollywood campaign event co-chaired by Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling Trump plans to accept Republican nomination from White House lawn US seizes four vessels loaded with Iranian fuel MORE and 2016 election meddling.

Several witnesses have testified privately that they were uncomfortable with Trump’s request and that they believed there was a quid pro quo surrounding the president’s dealings with Ukraine.