WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on Sunday joined CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper to discuss the first public hearings in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump last week. Murphy also discussed the extraordinary circumstances that called for the impeachment inquiry, the importance of Gordon Sondland’s upcoming testimony, and Murphy’s September 5th meeting in Kyiv with President Zelensky.

“The crimes and the offenses that have been detailed in this testimony are absolutely damning,” said Murphy. “It's now absolutely clear what happened: the president was using taxpayer dollars, security aid to Ukraine, and a White House meeting in order to extort the Ukrainian president into trying to interfere in the 2020 election, trying to help the president destroy the Bidens and the Clintons.”

“...The White House is going to rely on this idea that the people who were getting the direct orders from the president, who were talking to the president directly, are largely not testifying before the committee. And, of course, there's a reason for that: the White House isn't allowing them to testify before the committee.”

Murphy added: “I think we are going to learn that Gordon Sondland, as we already know, was pretty regularly talking to the president. And, in addition, Rudy Giuliani and Mick Mulvaney were talking to the president. And they, in turn, were telling [Kurt Volker] and [Bill Taylor] and others to carry out those orders.”

“Mr. Sondland has to decide whether his primary loyalty is to America or whether his primary loyalty is to the President of the United States, because it seems clear that he was, in fact, talking pretty regularly, potentially, with the president directly.”

Click here to view the entirety of Murphy’s interview with Jake Tapper.