Oct 16, 2019

Rudy finds himself at center of House impeachment inquiry

Photo: William B. Plowman/NBC/NBC Newswire/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Republicans and Democrats familiar with the closed-door testimony in the House impeachment inquiry tell Axios that Rudy Giuliani and his Ukraine activity has been a unifying thread for the witnesses.

The other side: White House sources say that they're increasingly pulling their hair out because of him.

Our big takeaway: While Democrats say that everything they’ve heard so far has only helped them, nothing in the depositions so far appears to have moved any Republicans closer to impeachment.

  • What to watch: How much longer can the committees sustain this pace? Fatigue is appearing on both sides.

Pelosi quote du jour: "We were sending that military assistance because of Ukraine needing that vis-à-vis Russia. All roads seem to lead to Putin with the president though, isn’t it so?"

  • What we're watching: House Dems began discussing the possibility of summoning acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and former national security adviser John Bolton, per the WashPost.

🇺🇦 "Three amigos": Career State Department official George Kent testified that he was told by administration officials to "lay low" on Ukraine as "three amigos" tied to the White House took over U.S. foreign policy toward the Eastern European ally, AP reports.

  • Kent described the results of a May 23 meeting at the White House, organized by Mulvaney, where three administration officials — EU ambassador Gordon Sondland, special envoy Kurt Volker and Energy Secretary Rick Perry — declared themselves the people responsible for Ukraine policy.

Go deeper: The coming appearances in House Democrats' impeachment probe

Go deeper

Trump walks to historic St. John's Church outside White House as protests rage

President Trump walked to the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church, located just steps away from the White House across Lafayette Park, on Monday night as protests linked to the murder of George Floyd raged across the capital and cities around the country.

What we're seeing: Military police and park rangers used physical force and tear gas on peaceful protestors to clear the area so that Trump could "pay respects" to the church that was damaged by a fire on Sunday.

Trump threatens to deploy military amid national unrest

President Trump announced from the White House Rose Garden Monday evening that he is "mobilizing all available federal resources, civilian and military" to stop violent protests across the country, decrying "professional anarchists, looters, criminals, antifa and others" whose actions have "gripped" the nation.

The backdrop: Trump's announcement came as police clashed with protesters just outside of the White House, using tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse crowds chanting, "Hands up, don't shoot," and other slogans. Flash bangs used outside the White House could be heard from the Rose Garden.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Autopsies say George Floyd's death was homicide

Police watch as demonstrators block a roadway while protesting the death of George Floyd in Miami. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Preliminary results from an independent autopsy commissioned by George Floyd's family found that his death in the custody of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was "homicide caused by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain," according to a statement from the family's attorney.

The latest: An updated official autopsy released by the Hennepin County medical examiner also determined that the manner of Floyd's death was "homicide," ruling it was caused by "cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdued, restraint, and neck compression."