Schiff announces first public impeachment hearings next week with Taylor, Yovanovitch

Democrats are continuing what they call the public phase of their probe.

November 06, 2019, 2:48 PM

Rep. Adam Schiff, the Democrat leading the House impeachment probe, announced Wednesday that the first open hearings will be held next week as Democrats continue with the public phase of their investigation.

The move marks a significant ramping up of the impeachment inquiry.

PHOTO: Representative Adam Schiff, walks in Capitol Hill after witnesses failed to show up for closed door testimony during the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump on Nov. 5, 2019, in Washington, D.C.
Representative Adam Schiff, walks in Capitol Hill after witnesses failed to show up for closed door testimony during the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump on Nov. 5, 2019, in Washington, D.C.
Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

"Those open hearings will be an opportunity for the American people to evaluate the witnesses for themselves, to make their own determinations about the credibility of the witnesses, but also to learn firsthand about the facts of the president's misconduct," Schiff told reporters.

PHOTO: Former Ambassador William Taylor leaves a closed door meeting after testifying as part of the House impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Oct. 22, 2019.
Former Ambassador William Taylor leaves a closed door meeting after testifying as part of the House impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Oct. 22, 2019.
Andrew Harnik/AP, FILE

Schiff said the House Intelligence Committee would hear from the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, Ambassador William Taylor on Wednesday Nov. 13, as well as from Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George Kent.

PHOTO: Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, accompanied by lawyers, aides and journalists, arrives at the U.S. Capitol, Oct. 11, 2019, in Washington.
Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, accompanied by lawyers, aides and journalists, arrives at the U.S. Capitol, Oct. 11, 2019, in Washington.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, FILE

Then, on Friday Nov. 15, the committee is scheduled to hear from former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch.

White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley, in an interview on Fox News, mocked Schiff's announcement, saying "... every time I look up he's on television spewing more nonsense and telling more lies. it happens time and time again because he's sure not working for the American people. What he's putting forward here is more proof that this is an illegitimate impeachment scam.

"He's not going to allow us to put forth any witnesses. He's not going to allow us any cross examination. So, this furthers the problem that he's doing everything to try and hurt the president and nothing for the American people," he said.

ABC News' Alisa Wiersema, Lauren Lantry and Ben Gittleson contributed to this report.

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