Committees release first transcripts in Trump impeachment inquiry — live updates

House Democrats have released the transcripts of closed-door testimony by the former ambassador to Ukraine and a former top State Department official.

The Justice Department concluded senior White House advisers have “absolute immunity” from congressional subpoenas for their testimony, according to a letter obtained by CBS News.

The Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs panels released transcripts of hours-long hearings they held with former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Michael McKinley, a former top aide to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The top Democrats on the committees leading the inquiry said the testimony of both diplomats highlighted the “contamination” of American foreign policy by allies of the president who sought to create an “irregular back channel” to accomplish Mr. Trump’s personal and political objectives.

“As we move towards this new public phase of the impeachment inquiry, the American public will begin to see for themselves the evidence that the committees have collected,” Representatives Adam Schiff, Eliot Engel and Carolyn Maloney said in a statement. “With each new interview, we learn more about the President’s attempt to manipulate the levers of power to his personal political benefit.”

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