First, Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman of the National Security Council got the boot. And now diplomat Gordon Sondland, ambassador to the European Union, is gone. The White House on Friday removed Sondland from his post, making him the second official who testified in the House impeachment inquiry to lose his job in a matter of hours, reports the Hill. In his opening statement during the inquiry, Sondland memorably said this: “Was there a quid pro quo? With regard to the requested White House call and White House meeting, the answer is yes.” He also revised his testimony after the fact in a way that displeased the White House.
"I was advised today that the president intends to recall me effective immediately as United States Ambassador to the European Union,” Sondland said in a statement. "I am proud of our accomplishments," he added, thanking Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. "Our work here has been the highlight of my career.” The development is seen as part of a push by the Trump administration to remove those who went against the president during the inquiry. As Politico puts it, the promise of a "payback" appears to be taking shape. "The purge of impeachment witnesses has begun." (Read more Gordon Sondland stories.)