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House Democrats could penalize those who won’t comply with subpoena by cutting their department’s funding

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President Donald Trump has ordered his top aides and department chiefs to refuse to comply with any subpoenas from House members seeking to do additional investigations in wake of the special counsel’s report. The Democrats are thinking of issuing a penalty for Trump team members who defy the law.

An Axios report said that Democrats are thinking of withholding funding to departments of subpoenaed witnesses who refuse to cooperate.

Congress’ greatest power is using the budget to do the people’s business.

“Democrats on the House Appropriations Committee are writing the bills that will fund the federal government for the next fiscal year — including the ones that will fund the Justice Department and the Treasury Department, two of the departments that have been resisting subpoenas,” wrote Axios.

A different House committee could ask for the Appropriations Committee to include a clause that would exclude funding to departments that are refusing to comply with subpoenas.

Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) blasted Democratic chairmen Jerry Nadler (D-NY) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) for refusing to impeach when it could “help him have access to all kinds of documents.” Indeed a Congressional subpoena is also supposed to give you access to all kinds of documents. It’s that Trump is refusing to comply with the subpoenas. If Trump were to be impeached, it can be assumed that he would continue to comply with subpoenas.

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Discussions for the plot are preliminary according to officials and their staff, but it’s part of the conversation.

“We look at it as, ‘Okay, what’s our recourse?’ This is one of them. We also have contempt orders and fines,” one aide to a senior Democrat said.

Given how long it takes to approve appropriations bills, the budget plan might not work for a quick option, one House appropriations aide said.

Read the full report at Axios.

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2020 Election

A number of Democrats running for president are kind of weird about food

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The New York Times has posted a series of short videos of the Democratic candidates for president answering important questions, like what they propose to do about our broken health care system and just how crooked Donald Trump is. Because campaign coverage demands candidates be allowed “human” (debatable!) moments, the Times also asked the participating candidates about their go-to comfort foods on the campaign trail.

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Reparations, concentration camps and racial slurs: Republicans want to turn all discussion of race into pointless culture war debats

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It wasn’t slavery. They are concentration camps. Racial slurs are not a youthful indiscretion.

This week has seen a series of culture-war debates dominate the discourse only to be derailed by bad faith arguments about semantics.

First, on Monday, nearly all of the right-wing ecosystem was engaged to defend the honor of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School senior and gun rights activists Kyle Kashuv after he revealed that his admission to Harvard had been rescinded. At least one of Kashuv’s classmates in Parkland, Florida, released a number of text messages from him which included racist and misogynistic attacks on fellow students, including the description of black athletes as “niggerjocks.”

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Pentagon gives senators classified briefing on UFOs reported by the Navy

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While it might sound like something out of "The X-Files," Navy pilots have been seeing UFOs, and U.S. Senators now want to know what's happening.

According to Politico, three more senators met with Pentagon officials for a classified briefing Wednesday about encounters pilots are having with unidentified aircraft. It seems the Pentagon is getting more and more requests by officials with high clearances to figure out what's happening.

The crafts are, at their most basic, nothing more than "unidentified aircraft," and while it isn't likely they're little green men, there are some senators who might have concerns about whether these UFOs are actually a foreign adversary.

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