The Democrats have a major issue on their hands as their star impeachment witness just had his credibility shattered on a national stage.
Gordon Sondland, the European Union ambassador who testified against President Trump last week in the House impeachment inquiry, has been credibly accused of sexual misconduct by three women, Pro Publica reported.
Three women say they faced sexual misconduct by Gordon Sondland before he was the U.S. ambassador to the European Union and at the center of the presidential impeachment inquiry. They say he retaliated against them professionally after they rejected his advances.
In one case, a potential business partner recalls that Sondland took her to tour a room in a hotel he owns, only to then grab her face and try to kiss her. After she rejected him, Sondland backtracked on investing in her business.
Another woman, a work associate at the time, says Sondland exposed himself to her during a business interaction. She also recalls falling over the back of a couch trying to get away from him. After she made her lack of interest clear, she says Sondland called her, screaming about her job performance.
A third woman, 27 years Sondland’s junior, met him to discuss a potential job. She says he pushed himself against her and kissed her. She shoved him away. She says his job help stopped.
All three women have agreed to be named in this story. In all the cases, friends, family members or colleagues of the women recall being told about the encounters at the time. The cases span a seven-year period, ending less than a decade ago. Sondland denies the allegations.
For his part Sondland, like anyone would do in this situation, is denying the allegations made against him by the three women.
“In decades of my career in business and civic affairs, my conduct can be affirmed by hundreds of employees and colleagues with whom I have worked in countless circumstances,” he said. “These untrue claims of unwanted touching and kissing are concocted and, I believe, coordinated for political purposes. They have no basis in fact, and I categorically deny them.”
“Notably, what each of these three women share in common is that they pursued Ambassador Sondland for financial and personal gain — an investment, a job, and insurance brokerage work — and he declined their proposals,” Sondland’s attorney Jim McDermott said.
“Given the timing of your intended story, a reasonable conclusion to be drawn is that you are attempting to affect Ambassador Sondland’s credibility as a fact witness in the pending impeachment inquiry,” he said. “Given the politically charged climate in which current events are unfolding, some might consider this to be veiled witness tampering.”
But that makes no sense because the reporting on the story started in October when Sondland was backing the president. Which further derides his credibility as his story has changed in the months since as he has gone against President Trump.
“There were a lot of indecent proposals when I was raising capital, but none as brazen as his,” Vogel recalls. She encountered Sondland 16 years ago when she was trying to raise money to start her magazine. “I have nothing to say about what he did or didn’t do [involving Ukraine]. But if people are asking what his moral character is, I have one more piece of evidence for them.”
The women had kept their stories to their own circles, even after Sondland was nominated and vetted for an ambassadorship by a president who himself has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than 20 women. The women say they were not contacted by the government for any background checks.