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Friday, Dec 13th

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Judge rejects DOJ effort to delay House lawsuit against Barr, Ross

Judge rejects DOJ effort to delay House lawsuitA federal judge on Friday rejected the Trump administration's request to delay a lawsuit against Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross for defying congressional subpoenas as part of a probe into officials' handling of the 2020 census.

U.S. District Judge Randolph Moss in Washington, D.C., said in a status conference that with the census approaching he recognizes the urgency of the case from the House Oversight and Reform Committee and has set an expedited schedule for both sides to brief the court.
"I think it's important to get going with the process," said Moss, who was appointed by former President Obama.

For 3rd time in US history, full House to vote on impeachment of a president

mpeachment vote imminentFor the third time U.S. history, the House of Representatives will vote on the impeachment of a president after the House Judiciary Committee approved two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Friday.

The committee voted along party lines to approve both impeachment articles following a marathon hearing that went late into Thursday evening.

The articles – one on President Donald Trump's alleged abuse of power and the other on obstruction of Congress during the impeachment inquiry -- were both approved in separate votes by a 23-17 margin with Democrats for and Republicans against.

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House passes sweeping Pelosi bill to lower drug prices

Prescription drugsThe House on Thursday passed a sweeping bill aimed at lowering prescription drug prices, a step toward a long-held Democratic goal that was met with sharp Republican resistance.

The bill passed on a largely party-line vote of 230-192. The measure, which would allow the government to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs, is one of House Democrats’ top priorities and is expected to be touted by vulnerable Democrats up for reelection next year.

The party is also looking to show that it is focused on kitchen table issues like lowering drug costs even as lawmakers prepare for an impeachment vote against President Trump.

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Senate recognizes Armenian genocide over objections of Trump and Turkish government

Armenian genocide recognized by Senate– In a stinging rebuke to Turkey, the Senate on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution recognizing the Armenian genocide – marking a shift in U.S. policy despite repeated objections from the Trump administration.

The Senate's action is historic, and it will almost certainly exacerbate U.S.-Turkey tensions. The genocide measure officially recognizes the systematic killing of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1923.

For decades, Turkey had deployed an army of lobbyists to stop the measure. But that effort fell short on Thursday, when Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., pressed for its adoption and no senator objected.

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Senate committee passes bipartisan bill to stop Trump withdrawing from Nato

Senat Foreign Relations Committee NATO resolution

Legislation to stop Donald Trump from withdrawing the US from Nato has been approved for a Senate vote, amid uncertainty over the president’s intentions towards the alliance.

The Senate foreign relations committee on Wednesday voted unanimously for the bipartisan bill which will now await a slot to go to the Senate. Senator Tim Kaine, the draft legislation’s lead Democratic sponsor, said it was a response to fears that the Trump administration is actively considering withdrawal.

“We’re aware that it has been seriously debated and seriously considered in the White House at the highest levels,” Kaine told the Guardian. Trump’s former national security adviser, John Bolton, reportedly warned last month that, if re-elected in 2020, Trump could go “full isolationist” and withdraw from the 70-year-old North Atlantic alliance.

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Horowitz pushes back at Barr over basis for Trump-Russia probe

Horowitz pushes back at Barr

The Justice Department’s top watchdog on Wednesday reaffirmed that the FBI’s investigation into Russian influence on Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign was adequately justified, despite Attorney General William Barr’s comments expressing doubts about that conclusion.

“We stand by our finding,” Inspector General Michael Horowitz said during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing focusing on the long-awaited report Horowitz released Monday about key aspects of the counterintelligence investigation.

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The 2 articles of impeachment against President Trump explained – and what happens next

Trump articles of impeachmentThe House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday unveiled two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.

The articles – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – are charges of wrongdoing that lay out specific assertions of how the president violated the U.S. Constitution and the oath of his office.

Each of the articles will be voted on separately by the Judiciary Committee later this week, possibly Thursday. Those the panel approves will go to the full House for a vote, probably with a simple majority in the Democratic-controlled body on each article.

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