Jan 5, 2018

Another Republican calling for Sessions to step aside

Attorney General Jeff Sessions before the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill. Alex Brandon / AP

GOP Rep. Chris Stewart told CNN on Friday that Attorney General Jeff Sessions should resign, joining two other conservative lawmakers who said a day before that the former Alabama Senator should step aside.

"We have been weakened in our investigation into very important concerns at the Department of Justice and the FBI because Jeff Sessions isn't able to take the reins and direct that investigation. ... We need a director there who can take the reins and be assertive in that. He can't do that when he is recused. I believe it may be time for him to step aside," Stewart told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

The backdrop: Republican Reps. Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, the chairman and former chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, respectively, wrote a Washington Examiner op-ed that Sessions should step down, citing intelligence leaks to the media from the Justice Department and the agency's handling of the probe into President Trump's campaign ties to Russian operatives.

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Coronavirus dashboard

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 1 p.m. ET: 1,381,014— Total deaths: 78,269 — Total recoveries: 292,973Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 1 p.m. ET: 378,289 — Total deaths: 11,830 — Total recoveries: 20,003Map.
  3. Trump administration latest: Trump removes watchdog overseeing rollout of $2 trillion coronavirus bill
  4. Federal government latest: Senate looks to increase coronavirus relief for small businesses this week — Testing capacity is still lagging far behind demand.
  5. States update: New York death toll surged to its highest one-day total as state predicts a plateau in hospitalizations.
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Trump removes watchdog overseeing rollout of $2 trillion coronavirus bill

Glenn Fine, acting Pentagon watchdog

President Trump on Monday replaced the Pentagon's acting Inspector General Glenn Fine, who had been selected to chair the panel overseeing the rollout of the $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill passed last month, Politico first reported.

Why it matters: A group of independent federal watchdogs selected Fine to lead the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, but Fine's removal from his Pentagon job prevents him from being able to serve in that position — since the law only allows sitting inspectors general to fill the role.

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What a post-pandemic space industry might look like

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic could spell major trouble for dozens of small companies working to break into the space industry.

The big picture: SpaceX, United Launch Alliance and other companies are well-established with strong customer bases and robust portfolios, but the prospects for the industry's growth hinge on smaller companies.

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