WATCH: Impeachment Proceedings LIVE Now (VIDEO)

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This Wednesday morning, House impeachment investigators got their first public hearing going with their inaugural witnesses including top Ukraine diplomat Bill Taylor and State Department official George Kent. Besides Taylor and Kent, there are nine more witnesses already set for coming days into next week, as the Democratic House majority continues to accumulate their compelling evidence of President Donald Trump’s brazen abuse of power in attempting to get Ukraine to produce dirt on the Bidens. Panicking Republicans have yet to come up with any systematic defense on the actual substance of the case.

House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) got the morning Taylor hearing going by noting some of the issues at the center of the case, including whether there’s evidence to support the narrative of an apparent abuse of power and how compatible — or not — that is with the basics of the office of the presidency.

He said:

‘The matter is as simple and as terrible as that. Our answer to these questions will affect not only the future of this presidency but the future of the presidency itself and what kind of conduct or misconduct the American people may come to expect from their commander-in-chief. There are few matters as consequential as the impeachment of a president… Our Founders… made impeachment a Constitutional process that the Congress must utilize as necessary. The facts in this inquiry are not seriously contested.’

Indeed — for the majority of the initial period of the impeachment inquiry, Republicans focused on attacking the process, which they baselessly claimed was unfair. Now, they’ve attempted to develop some kind of affront against the substance of the situation — and some of the best they’ve got is saying, “Well, Trump said he didn’t do it!”

Watch the hearing: