Your Daily Dose of Trump and His Administration News
- John Sullivan, the deputy secretary of state and Trump’s nominee as ambassador to Russia, said Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani was involved in a smear campaign to oust the ambassador to Ukraine, publicly confirming a key part of the saga behind the impeachment inquiry.
- Mr. Sullivan, testifying under oath and on camera before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, corroborated private testimony from one of House Democrats’ central impeachment witnesses, Marie L. Yovanovitch, the former ambassador to Ukraine.
- Giuliani hit back at Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan in a pair of tweets, claiming Sullivan “doesn’t know what he’s talking about and shouldn’t be incorrectly speculating.”
Giuliani Tweeted, “This is an orchestrated attempt to harass and hinder me in my role as @realdonaldtrump’s attorney.” “All of the information I obtained came from interviews conducted as private defense counsel to POTUS, to defend him against false allegations.”
- Two environmental groups, the Sierra Club and the Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration’s Bureau of Land Management over a plan to open over 700,000 acres of land in California to oil and gas drilling.
- Lt. Col. Vindman told John Eisenberg, the NSC’s lead counsel, about his concerns over Trump’s call with Zelensky. Eisenberg then proposed moving a transcript of the call to a highly classified server and restricting access to it.
- Tim Morrison, Trump’s top adviser for Russian and European affairs, is leaving his job at the White House, a day before he’s scheduled to testify before the House impeachment investigators, a senior administration official said Wednesday.
- Trump says US and China will pick new site to sign partial trade deal after Chile calls off summit.
- In a Tweet, Trump congratulated Fox News on their ratings.
- Agriculture Department predicts farm incomes will reach $88B. But, nearly $33B of that will be from Federal Aid and insurance.
- The House voted 232-196 along party lines to pass a resolution that sets the rules for the next phase of the impeachment inquiry.
- American Bar Association’s assessment of Lawrence VanDyke, nominated by Trump to be a federal judge. Based on interviews, the ABA wrote VanDyke is “arrogant, lazy, an ideologue, and lacking in knowledge of day-to-day practice.”
- NSC’s Senior Director for European Affairs Tim Morrison told impeachment investigators that the account offered by Bill Taylor, the acting ambassador to Ukraine, is accurate. He said that he alerted Taylor to a push by Trump and his deputies to withhold both security aid and a White House visit for the Ukrainian president until Ukraine agreed to investigate the Bidens and interference in the 2016 presidential election.
- A leak in the Keystone pipeline system spilled about 383,000 gallons of crude oil in North Dakota, covering an estimated half-acre of wetland, state environmental regulators said. The spill has been contained.
- Trump is rewarding senators who have his back on impeachment with promises of cash for their campaigns.
NOTE: Richard Painter, chief White House ethics lawyer in the George W. Bush administration, warned Trump appeared to be committing “felony bribery” by giving Republican senators fundraising cash ahead of an increasingly likely impeachment trial in the Senate.