Ambassador William Taylor’s testimony to House investigators on Tuesday didn’t answer every question about the Ukraine scandal, but it answered the big one: Will President Donald Trump be impeached?
Impeachment is now effectively inevitable. Taylor’s testimony fleshed out the biggest open questions, including whether there was a quid pro quo with Ukraine (there was), what it involved (military aid), and what Trump wanted (investigations of the Biden family and the 2016 election.) Congress has now heard from career civil servants and from political appointees, all telling a similar story, and Taylor removed the last scintilla of doubt. With that, it’s all but impossible to imagine a scenario in which House Democrats don’t vote to impeach the president.
The remaining questions are how much broader the scandal gets, how much worse the details become, and how many—if any—Republicans get on board with impeachment. All of these in turn bear on the ultimate question: whether the Senate might vote to remove Trump.
Though Taylor’s account aligned closely with what was already known, he offered more damning detail than had been available in any previous publicly revealed testimony. Taylor, whom Secretary of State Mike Pompeo appointed as America’s top diplomat in Kiev earlier this year, offered an account of how the administration held up military aid while pressuring Ukraine’s president to mount investigations of a natural-gas company on whose board Vice President Joe Biden’s son sat, and of alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election.