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Trump impeachment accelerates as the House prepares for 8 witnesses in 3 days this week

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Last week saw several crucial developments in the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, including the public testimony of diplomats William Taylor, George Kent, and Marie Yovanovitch, and the private testimony of State Department official David Holmes.

But as Sam Brodey wrote for The Daily Beast, this week’s schedule could be even more consequential, with eight witnesses scheduled to testify in a three-day period.

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“Set to testify are several witnesses with firsthand knowledge of Trump’s July 25 call with President Zelensky, and their accounts will test Republicans’ central defense that the impeachment case is based on hearsay,” wrote Brodey. “The public will also hear from several officials who are poised to fill in key gaps in the story of exactly how and why security aid to Ukraine was held up as Trump sought to secure promises from the new government.”

The schedule begins on Tuesday, with the testimony of Soviet-born war hero and national security strategist Alexander Vindman and foreign service aide and Mike Pence official Jennifer Williams, who directly heard the phone call between Trump and Zelensky. Republicans also plan to call Ukrainian special envoy Kurt Volker and National Security Council official Tim Morrison, whom they believe will exonerate the president.

Then on Wednesday, the committee will call EU Ambassador and Trump campaign donor Gordon Sondland, who has come under fire for repeatedly changing his story about his knowledge of Trump’s delay of military aid to Ukraine, and Defense Department official Laura Cooper, who alleges the Ukrainians knew the aid had been delayed. Republicans will also be calling Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale.

Finally, on Thursday, the House will hear from national security official Fiona Hill, who, prior to being succeeded by Morrison, raised concerns with the foreign policy backchannel set up by President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. She spoke about the issue to former National Security Adviser John Bolton, who also opposed the arrangement.

This enormous parade of witnesses will likely change the political equation once again — and the public will learn more about how the Ukraine affair went down.

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Woman who became infamous for racist rants and alleged attacks gets hit by a fire truck

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A woman who's made a name for herself by being caught on video spewing racism has been hit by a fire truck and critically injured, according to a report from the Citizen Times.

Rachel Dawn Ruit suffered life-threatening injuries after being struck by the fire truck on July 13 in Asheville, North Carolina. Earlier this month, Ruit made headlines after she allegedly attacked a 14-year-old girl and ripped off a woman's hijab during a Black Lives Matter protest.

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The coronavirus outlook is ‘grim’ in the US — and will only ‘get worse’ thanks to Trump and his sycophants: Paul Krugman

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Liberal economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman has not hesitated to lambast President Donald Trump and his sycophants for their response to the coronavirus pandemic — a response that, according to Krugman, has made the crisis much worse than it has to be in the United States. And in his July 13 column, Krugman points to recent GOP “opposition research” against Dr. Anthony Fauci as a prime example of the type of insanity that is making the U.S. #1 in COVID-19 infections.

Krugman opens his column by offering a “brief history of the past four months in America.” While health experts like Fauci have warned, “Don’t rush to reopen, this isn’t over,” Trump’s message has been “LIBERATE!” — and the response of COVID-19 is “Wheee!” And the boneheaded mentality of Trump officials, according to Krugman, has been “Here’s our opposition research on Anthony Fauci.”

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2020 Election

Trump-loving network OAN caught only releasing polls favorable to the president — and ignoring bad ones

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One America News, the Trump-loving network that President Donald Trump has pitched to his fans as an alternative to Fox News, has been caught red-handed only releasing polls it commissions if they happen to be good news for the president.

FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver on Tuesday found a strange discrepancy in new polls released by Gravis Marketing, which happens to be OAN's official pollster.

In particular, Silver noted that OAN only sponsored Gravis polls showing Trump holding leads in states such as North Carolina, Georgia, and Arizona -- while declining to sponsor new Gravis polls showing the president getting blown out in both Florida and Minnesota.

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