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J. David Ake / AP

The White House reportedly attempted to block former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who was fired early on in the Trump administration, from testifying about ties between Trump campaign officials and Russia, the Washington Post reports.

Recently obtained letters reveal that the Department of Justice told Yates earlier this month that the administration was invoking its "presidential communication privilege" to prevent her from testifying before the House Intelligence Committee. The move came after Yates' attorney sent a letter stating that she was willing to testify, and would avoid discussing classified information that could compromise investigations. The letter was shared with the Intel Committee. The next day committee chairman Devin Nunes canceled the hearing altogether.

Earlier this year, reports surfaced that Yates had warned the White House that former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn could be subject to Russian blackmail due to his false accounts of his contact with the Russian ambassador.

Sean Spicer has called the report "entirely false": "The White House has taken no action to prevent Sally Yates from testifying and the Department of Justice specifically told her that it would not stop her and to suggest otherwise is completely irresponsible."

Go deeper

Buffett eyes slow U.S. progress, but says "never bet against America"

Warren Buffett in New York City in 2017. Photo: Daniel Zuchnik/WireImage

Warren Buffett called progress in America "slow, uneven and often discouraging," but retained his long-term optimism in the country, in his closely watched annual shareholder letter released Saturday morning.

Why it matters: It breaks months of uncharacteristic silence from the 90-year-old billionaire Berkshire Hathaway CEO — as the fragile economy coped with the pandemic and the U.S. saw a contentious presidential election.

Restaurant software meets the pandemic moment

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Food delivery companies have predictably done well during the pandemic. But restaurant software providers are also having a moment as eateries race to handle the avalanche of online orders resulting from severe in-person dining restrictions.

Driving the news: Olo filed last week for an IPO and Toast is rumored to be preparing to do the same very soon.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
4 hours ago - Technology

How the automation economy can turn human workers into robots

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

More than outright destroying jobs, automation is changing employment in ways that will weigh on workers.

The big picture: Right now, we should be less worried about robots taking human jobs than people in low-skilled positions being forced to work like robots.

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