Rep. Elijah Cummings. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The House Oversight Committee on Tuesday threatened to withhold the salaries of officials at the departments of the Interior and Commerce if anyone "prohibits or prevents" interviews involved in 2 ongoing investigations.

"The Department does not appear to recognize that Congress is an independent and co-equal branch of government that will determine its own investigative steps without undue interference or delay by the Department."
— House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings letter to Cole Rojewski, DOI's director of congressional and legislative affairs

Details: Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings sent letters requesting transcribed interviews with 8 current and former officials. In his letter to Cole Rojewski, director of congressional and legislative affairs at the Interior Department, Cummings detailed the numerous times the House committee has requested documents and interviews from the DOI. The requests have gone unanswered or arbitrary unrequested documents were sent instead.


  • There has been an ethical investigation looking into alleged complaints about "conflicts of interest and other violations" in regard to Interior Department Secretary David Bernhardt, a former oil lobbyist.
  • House Democrats are investigating the citizenship question the Department of Justice wants added to the 2020 Census, with opponents citing anti-immigration sentiments and political motivations from the Trump administration.

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Federal judge blocks DOJ from defending Trump in Carroll rape defamation case

E. Jean Carroll in Warwick, New York. Photo: Eva Deitch for The Washington Post via Getty Images

A federal judge on Tuesday dismissed the Justice Department's attempted intervention on behalf of President Trump in writer E. Jean Carroll's defamation lawsuit against him, after she accused him of raping her in a dressing room in the mid-1990s.

Catch up quick: The agency argued that Trump was "acting within the scope of his office" as president when he said in 2019 that Carroll was "lying" about her claim.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Axios-Ipsos poll: Federal response has only gotten worse — The swing states where the pandemic is raging.
  2. Health: The coronavirus is starting to crush some hospitals — 13 states set single-day case records last week.
  3. Business: Where stimulus is needed most.
  4. Education: The dangerous instability of school re-openings.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota COVID cases traced to 3 Trump campaign events.
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.
  7. Media: Fox News president and several hosts advised to quarantine.

Pre-bunking rises ahead of the 2020 election

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Tech platforms are no longer satisfied with debunking falsehoods — now they're starting to invest in efforts that preemptively show users accurate information to help them counter falsehoods later on.

Why it matters: Experts argue that pre-bunking can be a more effective strategy for combating misinformation than fact-checking. It's also a less polarizing way to address misinformation than trying to apply judgements to posts after they've been shared.