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White House budget official agrees to testify to Congress about his department’s role in Ukraine military aid delay: report

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On Thursday, the Washington Post reported that Mark Sandy, a career official at the Office of Management and Budget, will testify to Congress as part of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump’s apparent scheme to extort Ukraine with military aid.

This comes after three political appointees at OMB, including acting Director Russel Vought, defied congressional subpoenas to appear, in accordance with the president’s directive to refuse to cooperate with the probe.

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The role of OMB in delaying military funding to Ukraine has become a crucial focus of the impeachment investigation, and Mick Mulvaney, who has managed the agency, has come under suspicion.

Sandy, who has worked at OMB for over a decade, is not a political appointee, and his testimony — like that of several career diplomats and national security officials who have agreed to speak so far, could fill in unknown details about how the freeze on military aid was ordered and carried out.


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Trump’s undermining of efforts to fight Putin detailed in ex-CIA agent’s disturbing new column

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A recently retired CIA agent reveals that President Donald Trump was a "wild card" that prevented a full-scale effort to combat Russian aggression against the U.S. and its allies.

Marc Polymeropoulos, who retired from the agency in June, said in column posted at Just Security that the CIA issued an informal "call to arms" in the wake of Kremlin interference in the 2016 election, but those efforts were hampered by Trump's relationship with Russia's president Vladimir Putin.

"The Call to Arms required a whole-of-agency effort to counter the Kremlin," Polymeropoulos wrote. "It involved moving resources and personnel inside CIA. Most importantly, it required a change in mindset, similar to what occurred within the Intelligence Community after 9/11, that an 'all-hands-on-deck' approach was required."

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Trump’s ‘illegal payments’ under scrutiny as House conducts second probe running parallel to impeachment

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According to a report from Politico, some House Democrats are disappointed that Donald Trump's violations of the emoluments clause does not appear to have a future as part of the articles of impeachment against the president, so they are continuing on with their own ongoing investigation with the hope it may be added at a later time.

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What would the GOP do if Trump actually shot someone? A former government ethics chief explains

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President Donald Trump infamously said in 2016 that his supporters were so loyal that he could shoot someone in broad daylight and not lose any support.

Walter Shaub, who served as chief of the Government Ethics Office under former President Barack Obama, hilariously imagined how elected Republicans would react if Trump actually did shoot someone on 5th Avenue.

"It was indecorous of the president to shoot someone on Fifth Avenue," Shaub said, imagining a scripted GOP response. "I would have preferred he not do that. In the strongest possible terms, I add that I find it to be generally inconsistent with the higher aims of responsible governance. And you can quote me on that."

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