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Jacquelyn Martin / AP

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats told the Senate Armed Services Committee this morning that he doesn't "feel it's appropriate to characterize [his] discussions with the president" after being asked about yesterday's reports that President Trump had asked him to publicly refute the possibility of the Trump campaign's collusion with Russia.

What he did say: Coats stated that he "made clear" to the White House that any "political shaping" of his position would be inappropriate. Additionally, he stated that he was unaware of the Trump administration reaching out to any other intel officials.

Another thing: Coats told the committee that he's been traveling and hasn't had a chance to discuss Trump's apparent disclosure of Israeli intel to Russian officials directly with the president yet.

The real purpose of the hearing was for Coats to provide an update on worldwide threats to the United States.

  • Manchester: "ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack in Manchester…we have not verified, yet, the connection." Coats also referred to yesterday's bombing as a "suicide attack."
  • North Korea: The nation is nuclear but has "demonstrated capabilities short of an ICBM at this point in time."
  • Iran: The nuclear deal has "extended" its development time for a nuclear bomb "from a few months to about a year."
  • Russia and the U.S.: It will be "more unpredictable in its approach to the United States" as it continues to attempt to undermine democratic institutions around the world.
  • Russia and the Middle East: It wants to use its presence in Syria and the worldwide fear of ISIS to expand its influence across the Middle East.

Go deeper

AP: Justice Dept. rescinds "zero tolerance" policy

A young girl waves to onlookers through the fence at the US-Mexico border wall at Friendship Park in San Ysidro, California in Nov. 2018. Photo: Sandy Huffaker/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden's acting Attorney General Monty Wilkinson issued a memo on Tuesday to revoke the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, which separated thousands of migrant children from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border, AP first reported.

Driving the news: A recent report by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz emphasized the internal chaos at the agency over the implementation of the policy, which resulted in 545 parents separated from their children as of October 2020.

Biden picks up his pen to change the tone on racial equity

Vice President Harris looks on as President Biden signs executives orders related to his racial equity agenda. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

President Biden is making a down payment on racial equity in a series of executive orders dealing with everything from private prisons to housing discrimination, treatment of Asian Americans and relations with indigenous tribes.

The big picture: Police reform and voting rights legislation will take time to pass in Congress. But with the stroke of his pen, one week into the job Biden is taking steps within his power as he seeks to change the tone on racial justice from former President Trump.

Most Senate Republicans join Rand Paul effort to dismiss Trump's 2nd impeachment trial

Photo: Joshua Roberts-Pool/Getty Images

Forty-five Senate Republicans, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, supported an effort to dismiss former President Trump's second impeachment trial.

Why it matters: The vote serves as a precursor to how senators will approach next month's impeachment trial, making it highly unlikely the Senate will vote to convict. The House impeached Trump for a second time for "incitement of insurrection" following events from Jan 6. when a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol.