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Wednesday, Jun 28th

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Nunes steps aside from Russia probe

Intel Com. in House of RepresentativesHouse Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) will temporarily step aside from an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, including interactions between Moscow and the Trump campaign.

The move comes as the House Ethics Committee announced that it is investigating allegations that Nunes may have mishandled classified information. With the Ethics Committee now formally involved in the dispute, Nunes could no longer oversee the Russia probe, although he will remain in place as chairman of the Intelligence Committee.

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The Latest: Ethics panel to probe complaints against Nunes

Devon NunesThe House Ethics Committee is investigating allegations that intelligence committee Chairman Devin Nunes (NOO'-nehs) may have made unauthorized disclosures of classified information.

The full 10-member committee is investigating the allegations, a departure from the usual procedure of having a smaller subcommittee handle a probe, and an indication of the seriousness of the claims.

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Dems reach magic number to block Supreme Court nominee

Dems reach magic number to block GorsuchSenate Democrats have clinched enough support to block Neil Gorsuch's nomination to the Supreme Court, setting up a "nuclear" showdown over Senate rules later this week.

Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) announced on Monday that he will oppose President Trump's pick on a procedural vote where he will need the support of eight Democrats to cross a 60-vote threshold. Coons is the 41st Democrat to back the filibuster.

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Report: Senate Intelligence Committee Rejects Immunity Deal With Michael Flynn

Michael FLynnThe Senate Intelligence Committee has rejected Michael Flynn's request for immunity from prosecution in exchange for his testimony into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, congressional sources told NBC News.

President Donald Trump's former national security advisor's lawyer was told the move was "wildly preliminary" and "not on the table" at this point, a senior congressional official told NBC. It does not necessarily rule out immunity at a later date, since the Senate investigation is ongoing.

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Pence casts tiebreaking Senate procedural vote on funding for abortion providers

Pence breaks Senate tie in fight agaisnt funding PPVice President Pence on Thursday cast a tie-breaking procedural vote that allowed the Senate to move forward with an effort to nix an Obama-era rule that blocked states from defunding healthcare providers for political reasons.

Pence appeared on the floor after a procedural vote stalled in a 50-50 tie, casting the 51st vote in favor.

Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Susan Collins (Maine) joined all Democrats in voting against ending debate on the bill.

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2 White House Officials Helped Give Nunes Intelligence Reports

White House aides assisted NunesA pair of White House officials played a role in providing Representative Devin Nunes of California, a Republican and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, with the intelligence reports that showed that President Trump and his associates were incidentally swept up in foreign surveillance by American spy agencies.

The revelation that White House officials assisted in the disclosure of the intelligence reports — which Mr. Nunes then discussed with President Trump — is likely to fuel criticism that the intelligence chairman has been too eager to do the bidding of the Trump administration while his committee is supposed to be conducting an independent investigation of Russia’s meddling in the last presidential election.

Mr. Nunes has also been faulted by his congressional colleagues for sharing the information with President Trump before consulting with other members of the intelligence committee.

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Rep. Elijah Cummings Suggests Trump May Have Fired Preet Bharara To Block Investigation

Elijah CummingsRep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, questioned on Sunday President Donald Trump’s motives in firing U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, suggesting that he might have been acting in his own self-interest to stop a potential corruption investigation.

On Friday, the Trump administration asked 46 U.S. attorneys appointed by former President Barack Obama to resign. While it’s not unusual for presidents to put their own people in these positions, it’s normally not quite so abrupt and sudden.

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