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Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Trump sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday accusing Democrats of "perversion of justice" and condemning them for their handling of impeachment, at one point writing: “More due process was afforded to those accused in the Salem Witch Trials."

The big picture: Written on White House letterhead, the letter memorializes Trump's defense on the eve of his expected impeachment. The House is set to approve articles of impeachment on Wednesday, sending them to the Senate for what is likely to be a speedy trial that ends with Trump's acquittal.

What he's saying: Trump rehashed his usual arguments against impeachment, including that Democrats are seeking revenge over their 2016 election loss and that his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was "perfect."

  • "There is nothing I would rather do than stop referring to your party as the Do-Nothing Democrats. Unfortunately, I don't know that you will ever give me a chance to do so," Trump wrote.
  • "You are the ones interfering in America's elections. You are the ones subverting America's Democracy. You are the ones Obstructing Justice. You are the ones bringing pain and suffering to our Republic for your own selfish, personal, political and partisan gain," he added.

Trump also argued the impeachment has affected him on a personal level, writing: "Few people in high position could have endured or passed this test. You do not know, nor do you care, the great damage and hurt you have inflicted upon wonderful and loving members of my family."

Flashback: The White House dared Pelosi in October to hold a vote on an impeachment inquiry.

  • White House lawyers carefully reviewed the language in that October letter, expecting that it could find its way before a judge, Axios' Alayna Treene and Margaret Talev reported.
  • The lawyers weren’t steering the bus on today’s letter, according to two sources familiar with its drafting.

Between the lines: Trump's tweets and "Fox & Friends" appearances could be losing their shock value, incentivizing him to turn to the imprimatur of the White House.

Read the letter.

Go deeper: McConnell rejects Schumer's call for new witnesses in Senate trial

Go deeper

Updated 8 hours ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 10 hours ago - Science

This powerful new accelerator looks for keys to the center of atoms

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Nuclear physicists trying to piece together how atoms are built are about to get a powerful new tool.

Why it matters: When the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams begins experiments later this spring, physicists from around the world will use the particle accelerator to better understand the inner workings of atoms that make up all the matter that can be seen in the universe.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: FDA OKs antiviral drug remdesivir for non-hospitalized COVID patients — Walensky: CDC language "pivoting" on "fully vaccinated" — Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Teens and adults missed 37 million vaccinations during COVID — Team USA 100% vaccinated against COVID ahead of Beijing Olympics — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America — Annual COVID vaccine preferable to boosters, says Pfizer CEO.
  3. Politics: Arizona governor sues Biden administration over COVID funds tied to mandates — Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults — Beijing officials urge COVID-19 "emergency mode" before Winter Olympics.
  5. Variant tracker