What Now?! – Giuliani Subpoenaed, Pompeo on Call, Barr in trouble

“House Democrats investigating whether to impeach President Trump issued a subpoena on Monday demanding that Rudolph W. Giuliani, his private lawyer, produce communications and other records related to his attempts to pressure Ukraine to investigate the president’s Democratic rivals,” the New York Times reports.

“The new demands of Mr. Giuliani and separate requests sent to three of his associates said to be involved in the Ukraine matter suggest that Democrats are moving quickly to stand up their investigation. On Friday, the issued a subpoena to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for documents and demanded that he make five department officials available for depositions.”

“Attorney General William Barr has held private meetings overseas with foreign intelligence officials seeking their help in a Justice Department inquiry that President Trump hopes will discredit U.S. intelligence agencies’ examination of Russian interference in the 2016 election,” the Washington Post reports.

“Barr’s personal involvement is likely to stoke further criticism from Democrats pursuing impeachment that he is helping the Trump administration use executive branch powers to augment investigations aimed primarily at the president’s adversaries.”

“President Trump pushed the Australian prime minister during a recent telephone call to help Attorney General William Barr gather information for a Justice Department inquiry that Mr. Trump hopes will discredit the Mueller investigation,” the New York Times reports.

“The White House restricted access to the call’s transcript to a small group of the president’s aides, an unusual decision that is similar to the handling of a July call with the Ukrainian president that is at the heart of House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry into Mr. Trump. Like that call, the discussion with Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia shows the extent to which Mr. Trump sees the attorney general as a critical partner in his goal to show that the Mueller investigation had corrupt and partisan origins, and the extent that Mr. Trump sees the Justice Department inquiry as a potential way to gain leverage over America’s closest allies.”

“And like the call with the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, the discussion with Mr. Morrison shows the president using high-level diplomacy to advance his personal political interests.”

“Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was among administration officials who listened in on the July 25 phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, a disclosure that ties the State Department more closely to the House impeachment inquiry,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

“Mr. Pompeo’s participation on the call hasn’t been previously reported.”

The whistleblower responsible for revealing President Trump’s call to Ukraine was within their rights to do so, the Office of the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community said in a statement. Trump falsely claimed the whistleblower was able to do so due to a recent rule change.

President Trump said that the White House is “trying to find out” the identity of the intelligence community whistleblower who filed a complaint about the president’s interactions with Ukraine, The Hill reports. If Trump or anyone acting on his behalf identifies the whistleblower, that too would be a crime and another article of impeachment.

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton was at odds with President Trump over his July phone call with the president of Ukraine, NBC Newsreports.

“Three officials said Bolton argued against Trump calling Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on July 25 because he was concerned the president wasn’t coordinating with advisers on what to say and might air personal grievances.”

Politico: “During the Clinton impeachment, the dot com boom was making Americans exuberant about the economy. Today, the economy is slowing, consumer confidence is dipping and corporate America faces a gauntlet of worries … And now investors, consumers and corporate executives face the prospect of a Washington consumed for months by impeachment drama and the uncertain reactions of a volatile president with a penchant for lashing out under stress.”

“This complex stew could damage an economy already showing signs of flagging. That in turn could further erode Trump’s standing on the economy, up to now his strongest issue.”

Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) has resigned from office, WGRZ reports. Collins is set to change his not-guilty plea on federal insider trading charges to guilty this afternoon, CNBC reports. “Shortly after his arrest, Collins had suspended his reelection campaign for New York’s 27th congressional district. But just over a month later, Collins restarted the campaign — and won in the 2018 midterms.”

Washington Post: “Poor people in Michigan with asthma and diabetes were admitted to the hospital less often after they joined Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. More than 25,000 Ohio smokers got help through the state’s Medicaid expansion that led them to quit. And around the country, patients with advanced kidney disease who went on dialysis were more likely to be alive a year later if they lived in a Medicaid-expansion state.”

“Such findings are part of an emerging mosaic of evidence that, nearly a decade after it became one of the most polarizing health-care laws in U.S. history, the ACA is making some Americans healthier — and less likely to die.”

The Daily reports that before the whistleblower filed a formal complaint with inspector general for the Intelligence Community, he or she tried to do it through the CIA’s internal watchdog system. But the White House found out and quashed it. So the whistleblower escalated.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed to CNBC that the Senate would have to take up impeachment of President Trump if the House effectively votes to charge the president.

Said McConnell: “I would have no choice but to take it up. How long you are on it is a different matter, but I would have no choice but to take it up based on a Senate rule on impeachment.”

Washington Post: “On a conference call with House Democrats on Sunday afternoon, Pelosi told her colleagues that public sentiment — something she had frequently cited as an obstacle to pursuing impeachment — had begun to swing around.” Said Pelosi: “The polls have changed drastically about this… Our tone must be prayerful, respectful, solemn, worthy of the Constitution.”

“The Kremlin said on Monday that Washington would need Russian consent to publish transcripts of phone calls between President Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin,” Reuters reports.

“Congress is determined to get access to Trump’s calls with Putin and other world leaders, the House Intelligence Committee’s chairman said on Sunday, citing concerns that the Republican president may have jeopardized national security.”

I missed the part in the Constitution were the Kremlin gets a veto over what we do here in the United States. Hey Putin, go fuck yourself. We will be getting the transcripts and releasing them.

“Congress is determined to get access to Donald Trump’s calls with Russian President Vladimir Putin and other world leaders, the U.S. House Intelligence Committee’s chairman said on Sunday, citing concerns that the Republican president may have jeopardized national security,” Reuters  reports.

A Ukrainian ex-prosecutor general told the BBC there is no reason for his country to investigate President Trump’s political rival Joe Biden. Yuriy Lutsenko said any investigation into Biden and his son would have to start in the U.S.: “I don’t know any reason to investigate Joe Biden or Hunter Biden according to Ukrainian law.”

Jeff Flake: “In my case, I had not supported the president’s election. One year into his presidency, I knew that I could not support his reelection. While I had hoped that I could still run for reelection to the Senate in 2018 as someone who would help to provide a check on the president’s worst impulses, it soon became apparent that this was not what Republican primary voters in my state were looking for. Whatever reservations they might have had when they voted for Donald Trump, one year into his presidency they wanted a senator who was all in…”

“Our country will have more presidents. But principles, well, we get just one crack at those. For those who want to put America first, it is critically important at this moment in the life of our country that we all, here and now, do just that.”

“Trust me when I say that you can go elsewhere for a job. But you cannot go elsewhere for a soul.”

Axios: “Do a quick search for health insurance, and you’ll find plenty of ads for ‘Trumpcare’ plans that cost $59 or less per month. But there’s a catch: Trumpcare doesn’t exist, and many of these advertised plans offer bare-bones coverage.”

“For people who buy health insurance on their own instead of receiving it through an employer, searching for a plan is already challenging. And deceptive marketing only makes it harder, especially when these plans will leave consumers on the hook for potentially ruinous medical bills.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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