Nov 13, 2019

Impeachment hearings: House Democrats announce next witnesses

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The House Intelligence Committee has scheduled eight witnesses for public hearings next week as part of the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) announced in a news release Tuesday.

The latest: Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the National Security Council's top Ukraine expert, and Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the EU, are among those scheduled to appear.

  • Three witnesses requested by the committee's Republican minority are slated to testify: Kurt Volker, the former special envoy to Ukraine; White House aide Tim Morrison; and State Department official David Hale.
The schedule

Tuesday, Nov. 19:

  • Scheduled for morning hearing:
    • Jennifer Williams, an aide to Vice President Mike Pence.
    • Vindman, who serves as the director for European Affairs at the National Security Council.
  • Scheduled for afternoon hearing:
    • Volker.
    • Morrison, a White House aide with the National Security Council focusing on Europe and Russia policy.

Wednesday, Nov. 20:

  • Scheduled for morning hearing:
    • Sondland.
  • Scheduled for afternoon hearing:
    • Laura Cooper, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for Russian, Ukrainian, and Eurasian Affairs.
    • David Hale, the undersecretary of state for Political Affairs.

Thursday, Nov. 21:

  • Scheduled for morning hearing:
    • Fiona Hill, former National Security Council senior director for Europe and Russia.

Of note: Schiff states in the news release that the Democratic majority had accepted all of their Republican counterparts' "requests that are within the scope of the impeachment inquiry."

Between the lines: The announcement is the clearest sign that the public phase of impeachment will be completed next week, per Axios' Alayna Treene.

Go deeper: Impeachment during a not normal presidency

Go deeper

RNC expands convention search across the Sun Belt

Donald Trump, Mike Pence and their families on the last night of the Republican National Convention in Ohio in 2016. Photo: David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images.

The Republican National Committee is planning site visits over the next 10 days to more than a half-dozen cities — across the South and into Texas and Arizona — as it scrambles for a new convention host, people familiar with the internal discussions tell Axios.

Driving the news: The RNC's executive committee voted Wednesday night to allow most of the convention to move — with only a smaller, official portion remaining in Charlotte — after North Carolina's governor said the coronavirus pandemic would mean a scaled-back event with social distancing and face coverings.

Oil faces tough road back from coronavirus

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Oil companies in the battered shale patch are starting to bring back some production as prices climb, but a new report underscores how the pandemic is taking a heavy financial toll despite signs of revival.

Driving the news: Fourteen North American producers have filed for bankruptcy thus far during the second quarter, per a tally from the law firm Haynes and Boone, which closely tracks the sector's finances.

2 hours ago - World

Hong Kong legislature bans insults to Chinese national anthem

Activists holding a candlelit remembrance outside Victoria Park in Hong Kong on June 4, 2020, to mark the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown. Photo: Anthony Wallace/AFP via Getty Images

Hong Kong’s legislature approved a bill Thursday that makes insulting the "March of the Volunteers," the Chinese national anthem, illegal, AP reports.

Why it matters: It did so on the 31st anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests, when Chinese troops opened fire on pro-democracy activists in 1989. The death toll has never been released, but estimates vary between hundreds and thousands.