White House Won’t Comply – In a sharply-worded letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the White House said they will not comply with Congressional demands for documents related to the Ukraine scandal until the House holds an official impeachment vote. Additionally, White House Counsel Pat Cipollone wrote that no officials or staff from the White House will be permitted to testify in front of House committees until the vote takes place.
Trump Suffers Legal Setback – In a 2-1 ruling, the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit upheld the ruling by a lower court that accounting firm Mazars USA must provide President Trump’s tax records to House investigators, who have subpoenaed the documents. The ruling means that eight years of Trump’s tax records will be turned over to House Democrats, unless a further challenge to the ruling is filed by Trump’s accountants.
Second Whistleblower Comes Forward – A second whistleblower, who reportedly has firsthand knowledge of what happened on Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian president Zelensky, has come forward. Not much is known about either whistleblower, and federal whistleblower law says that their identities cannot be revealed without their consent. But Trump allies contend that the whistleblowers and their lawyers are essentially Democrat operatives working to unseat President Trump.
US Abandons Kurds – The Trump White House pulled US troops out of Syria this week who were keeping the Kurdish population, who lost 11,000 from their community in the fight against ISIS, safe from Turkish attack and an ISIS resurgence. Immediately after the announcement, Turkey announced an incursion into Syria, and began attacking Kurdish positions. The move by the US was roundly criticized by Republicans and Democrats alike, with lawmakers saying that the US was abandoning its allies in the Middle East. But President Trump said that the US should have never been in Syria and that he is fulfilling a campaign promise by bringing the troops back home. The White House announced Friday that they will be sending more troops to the Middle East in light of Turkey’s operation in Syria.
Giuliani Allies Arrested – Two men with extensive connections to Rudy Giuliani, who acts as President Trump’s personal lawyer, have been arrested on federal campaign finance charges. Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman were arrested as they attempted to board a one-way flight out of the US to Vienna. Besides for the campaign finance charges, authorities say the two urged Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas to get the US ambassador to Ukraine fired.