Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are asking Congress to add $300 million to the proposed budget "to respond to the inevitable Russian efforts to influence the upcoming 2018 elections," per the Democrats' letter.

Why it matters: The White House has not laid out a plan for preventing election interference in the future, even as CIA Director Mike Pompeo has warned that Russians are already attempting to do so this year.

The details:

  • This comes less than a week after Bob Mueller indicted 13 Russian nationals and 3 Russian entities for interfering in the 2016 election.
  • Nita Lowey (D-NY) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) also signed the letter.
  • The financial increase would help the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and the Election Assistance Commission in their efforts to improve election infrastructure.
  • The Congressional group suggests that these departments work together to help "replace outdated registration and voting systems; and ensure procedures are in place to accurately count every ballot."
  • Paul Ryan's spokeswoman AshLee Strong told Axios: “The bipartisan House Intel Committee has conducted a year-long review into Russia meddling in the 2016 elections. This review, along with the Senate Intel and FBI investigations, will inform lawmakers on ways to protect the 2018 election."

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Why it matters: More Americans are expressing doubt about a first-generation vaccine, despite President Trump's efforts to push an unrealistic timeline that conflicts with medical experts in his administration.

CEO confidence rises for the first time in over 2 years

Data: Business Roundtable; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

A closely-watched CEO economic confidence index rose for the first time after declining for nine straight quarters, according to a survey of 150 chief executives of the biggest U.S. companies by trade group Business Roundtable.

Why it matters: The index, which still remains at a decade low, reflects corporate America's expectations for sales, hiring and spending — which plummeted amid uncertainty when the pandemic hit.

Official says White House political appointees "commandeered" Bolton book review

John Bolton's book "The Room Where it Happened." Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

A former career official at the National Security Council claims her pre-publication review of former national security adviser John Bolton's explosive book on President Trump was "commandeered by political appointees for a seemingly political purpose," according to a letter from her lawyers filed in court on Tuesday.

Why it matters: The White House fought against the publication of Bolton's book for most of the year on the grounds that it contained harmful and "significant amounts of classified information."

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