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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Michael Atkinson testifies to House Intelligence Committee on October 4, 2019. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call, Inc. via Getty Images

Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson told lawmakers last week that the whistleblower whose complaint about President Trump and Ukraine has set off an impeachment inquiry previously had "some type of professional relationship" with one of the 2020 Democratic candidates, the Washington Examiner first reported and Axios' Jonathan Swan has confirmed.

The big picture: Atkinson wrote in an Aug. 26 letter that the whistleblower demonstrated "some indicia of an arguable political bias ... in favor of a rival political candidate." CNN later reported that the whistleblower is a registered Democrat, which Trump allies have used in an effort to undermine their credibility. Much of the information laid out in the whistleblower's original complaint has since been substantiated.

Atkinson did not say which Democratic candidate or in what capacity the whistleblower worked. A source tells Axios that it was unclear whether the working relationship was in the course of government service or more political.

Go deeper ... Trump-Ukraine scandal: The key players, dates and documents

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Health

Treasury begins dispersing $350 billion in COVID relief funding to states and localities

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/UPI/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The U.S. Treasury on Monday began giving state and local governments access to $350 billion in emergency funding from the American Rescue Plan, the department announced Monday.

Why it matters: Though the money is aimed at helping state, local, territorial and tribal governments recover from the pandemic's economic fallout, the administration will generally give them wide latitude on how they can use the funds.

Game developers break silence around salaries

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Developers are sharing their salaries on Twitter under the hashtag #GameDevPaidMe to encourage pay transparency in their industry.

The big picture: The hashtag started circulating last year, but has returned periodically as developers fight for better working conditions. Salary sharing is a way to equalize the field. By removing the secrecy, as well as the stigma, around discussing pay, workers have more power to advocate for themselves when negotiating salaries and raises.

2 hours ago - World

Jerusalem crisis: Hamas fires rockets, Israel begins military campaign

Palestinian protesters and an Israeli police officer near the Damascus Gate. Photo: Amir Levy/Getty Images

Days of tension in Jerusalem escalated into an exchange of fire on Monday, as Hamas fired dozens of rockets toward Israel and the Israeli military responded with strikes of its own and said it was preparing for a military operation that could last several days.

Why it matters: This is the first time Hamas has fired rockets at Jerusalem since 2014, and it's the most serious escalation between the Israelis and Palestinians in many months. It comes during the most sensitive days on the calendar — the last days of Ramadan and the Jerusalem Day commemoration on Monday — and as political crises roil both the Israeli and Palestinian governments.

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