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Acting Homeland Security Secretary, Kevin McAleenan. Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday requested information following reports that President Trump told acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan that he would grant him a pardon if he broke immigration law by blocking asylum seekers from entering the U.S.

Details: Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), chairman of the panel, and Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.), the subcommittee chairman on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, told McAleenan to turn over information related to Trump’s alleged promise and "make himself" and other department officials available to testify before the committee.

The backdrop: Frustrated by the spike in migrant border crossings, Trump threatened to close the border if Mexico failed to restrict the flow of asylum seekers trying to come into the U.S.

  • CNN and the New York Times reported last week that Trump privately made the request to McAleenan — who was then the commissioner of Customs and Border Patrol — during a border visit in Calexico, Calif., earlier this month.

Trump denied the reports on Twitter, saying: "Of course this is not true. Mainstream Media is corrupt and getting worse, if that is possible, every day!"

"These allegations, if true, would represent a grave breach of duties of the president. Congress has an independent constitutional duty to provide oversight of the administration of government by the executive branch."
— Nadler and Cohen wrote

The Democrats also added that this follows what they called a "troubling pattern of conduct that has emerged over the past two years that appears to demonstrate that President Trump views the pardon power as a political tool, or even worse, as an expedient mechanism for circumventing the law or avoiding the consequences of his own conduct."

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  2. Politics: Biden readies massive shifts in policy for his first days in office.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
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  6. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
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Navalny and his wife shortly before he was detained. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was detained upon his return to Moscow on Sunday, which came five months after he was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok. He returned despite being warned that he would be arrested.

The latest: Navalny was stopped at a customs checkpoint and led away alone by officers. He appeared to hug his wife goodbye, and his spokesman reports that his lawyer was not allowed to accompany him.

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Biden's "overwhelming force" doctrine

President-elect Biden arrives to introduce his science team in Wilmington yesterday. Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

President-elect Biden has ordered up a shock-and-awe campaign for his first days in office to signal, as dramatically as possible, the radical shift coming to America and global affairs, his advisers tell us. 

The plan, Part 1 ... Biden, as detailed in a "First Ten Days" memo from incoming chief of staff Ron Klain, plans to unleash executive orders, federal powers and speeches to shift to a stark, national plan for "100 million shots" in three months.