In The Past 24 Hours Or So

Your Daily Dose of Trump and His Administration News

  • Texts of one of Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani’s associates, Lev Parnas, and Robert Hyde, a Republican congressional candidate, hint at a possible attack on the then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch. In an interview with Rachel Maddow, Parnas dismissed the texts as Hyde being “drunk all the time” and never considered Ambassador Yovanovitch to be in any danger. 
  • A federal judge in Maryland temporarily blocked an executive order signed by President Trump that would allow state and local governments to refuse to accept refugees. Judge Peter J. Messitte of the Maryland District Court granted a motion from refugee groups to temporarily stay the order while their legal challenge against the president plays out.
  • The House of Representatives voted to formally transmit the articles of impeachment against Trump to the Senate for trial.
  • The U.S. House took the final step toward sending impeachment charges against President Trump to the Senate, voting to approve impeachment managers to prosecute the case.
  • The Department of Housing and Urban Development will allow Puerto Rico to access more than $8 billion in blocked disaster aid funding, ending a monthslong hold by the Trump administration. Puerto Rico, which suffered devastating losses from Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017, has received just $1.5 billion of the roughly $20 billion in congressionally authorized disaster funds that HUD is supposed to administer. The delay in receiving the additional funds had incensed both U.S. lawmakers and commonwealth officials.
  • President Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He signed phase one of a hard-fought trade deal Wednesday, capping a bitter 18-month battle between the world’s two largest economies that has roiled markets and slowed economic growth worldwide. Specific details of the 86-page document have yet to be disclosed.
  • Rudy Giuliani’s associate Lev Parnas just said in an interview that “President Trump knew exactly what was going on” with the efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden. “I wouldn’t do anything without the consent of Rudy Giuliani or the president.”
  • The police in Ukraine have opened a criminal investigation into whether allies of Trump had the United States ambassador to the country under surveillance while she was stationed in Kyiv, the Ukrainian government said.
  • President Donald Trump repeatedly and vigorously denied knowing Lev Parnas, one day after the associate of Rudy Giuliani made the explosive claim that the president was fully aware of his actions in Ukraine.
  • The Trump administration’s decision to freeze the release of security assistance to Ukraine last year violated federal law, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) said in a report Thursday. The independent, non-partisan watchdog said the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) withheld the appropriated funds last summer, not as a programmatic delay but in order to advance the president’s own agenda. In doing so, the watchdog concluded, violates the Impoundment Control Act, a law that governs Congress’s role in the federal budget process.
  • President Trump just informed FEMA’s administrator that he will sign the major disaster declaration request made by Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced to aid the emergency response/recovery due to damaging earthquakes.
  • US intelligence officials have asked the Senate and House Intelligence Committees not to hold public hearings on this year’s World Wide Threats Assessment after testimony from agency chiefs last year prompted an angry response from Trump. 
  • A coalition of 14 states and two major cities have filed a lawsuit in an effort to block the Trump administration from eliminating food stamp benefits for hundreds of thousands of unemployed Americans.

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