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House Dems subpoena nine major banks as part of deep dive into Trump’s finances

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Democrats in the House of Representatives have leveled subpoenas against nine different major banks as part of their investigation into President Donald Trump’s finances.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Democrats have subpoenaed American banks JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America as well as foreign banks Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Canada and Toronto-Dominion Bank.

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Deutsche Bank figures to be the bank of most interest to investigators, as it was the only major bank by the late 1990s that was willing to make major loans to Trump after a string of bankruptcies made him toxic to most of Wall Street.

“Since 1998, the bank has led or participated in loans of at least $2.5 billion to companies affiliated with Mr. Trump,” the Journal notes.

Additionally, Deutsche Bank has found itself caught up in a massive Russian money-laundering scandal — and a leaked internal memo obtained by The Guardian this week showed that the bank is concerned that regulators in the United States and the United Kingdom could bring the hammer down for helping Kremlin-linked Russian criminals move dirty money into the global financial system.

“The potential use of the U.S. financial system for illicit purposes is a very serious concern,” House Financial Services Committee chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) said this week. “The Financial Services Committee is exploring these matters, including as they may involve the President and his associates, as thoroughly as possible pursuant to its oversight authority, and will follow the facts wherever they may lead us.”

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Mitch McConnell may let Republicans write Senate impeachment rules without Democratic votes

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is plotting to shut out Democrats on impeachment if a bipartisan compromise on rules for the trial can't be reached.

The Kentucky Republican said this week that he hopes to reach an agreement on rules for the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, but he's also readying a "backup plan" in case he can't reach an agreement with Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, reported Vanity Fair.

“The first thing Sen. Schumer and I will do is see if there’s a possibility of agreement on a procedure,” McConnell said. “That failing, I would probably come back to my own members and say, ‘Okay, can 51 of us agree how we’re going to handle this?’”

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Fresno Bee burns Nunes to the ground in scathing editorial

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The editorial board of the Fresno Bee has written a scathing takedown of Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) for his extraordinary fealty to President Donald Trump, which the editors say is harming the country.

Specifically, the editorial accuses Nunes of forsaking his oath of office as a congressman to serve as Trump's most loyal toady on the House Intelligence Committee.

"As has been true for nearly all of Trump’s first term, Nunes has relinquished his proper role as an independent representative of Congress and has instead acted like a member of the Trump 2020 re-election team," the editorial states.

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Republicans blundered badly as their own impeachment expert witness wrecked their defenses of Trump: columnist

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Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee pinned their hopes on George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, their sole expert witness on the panel at the hearing on Wednesday, to discredit the impeachment probe into President Donald Trump.

But as anti-Trump conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin wrote for the Washington Post, even Turley's testimony ended up damaging the GOP more than Democrats, because he undercut one of the GOP's most solid narratives in defense of the president: that trying to extort Ukraine with military aid would not be impeachable even if it was proven.

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