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National Govt & Politics
Heading for NATO summit, Trump slams impeachment effort
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Heading for NATO summit, Trump slams impeachment effort

Heading for NATO summit, Trump slams impeachment effort

Heading for NATO summit, Trump slams impeachment effort

With Democrats in Congress returning from a Thanksgiving break ready to continue their push on a historic impeachment investigation, President Donald Trump on Monday once more blasted the work of House Democrats, saying impeachment undermines him during his foreign travel.

"For them to be doing this, and saying this, and putting an impeachment on the table," the President told reporters as he left the White House for a NATO summit in England, "it's an absolute disgrace what they're doing to our country."

The President's criticism of Democrats for scheduling an impeachment hearing on Wednesday - which White House lawyers refused to attend - was echoed by other Republicans and top Administration officials, part of a broader effort to push back against Democrats in the House.

"I regret that they've chosen to hold these hearings at the same time as the President and our entire national security team will be traveling to Europe," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told "Fox and Friends," as Pompeo accused Democrats of trying to 'distract' the President at the NATO Summit in London.

The criticism from the President came a day after the White House Counsel sent a scorching letter to House Democrats, refusing their invitation to send legal representatives to a Wednesday impeachment hearing, where constitutional scholars will testify about impeachment.

It's thought that hearing is just a prelude to work by the House Judiciary Committee to draft, debate, and vote on actual articles of impeachment against President Trump.

The House Judiciary Committee has also set a deadline for this Friday for the White House to determine if it will send lawyers to participate in that process.

Democrats say they're convinced the answer will be 'no.'

"The President and GOP allies demanded testimony, then refused to read it," said Rep. Don Beyer. "They said Trump lawyers must be at hearings, then refused to send them."

"The only constant is that they can’t defend Trump’s abuses of power," Beyer added on Twitter.

During a visit to a climate change gathering in Madrid, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about the impeachment proceedings against the President - but at a news conference, she refused to comment.

Impeachment proceedings will resume on Tuesday evening, when the House Intelligence Committee is expected to vote to approve a report on the Ukraine investigation, sending that to the House Judiciary Committee.

That panel will then begin its impeachment work on Wednesday morning.

Read More

News

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  • Atlanta police released a new video and surveillance photos from its investigation into the shooting death of an 8-year-old girl. According to WSB-TV, Secoriea Turner was shot while riding in a car with her mother and her mother’s friend Saturday night. The shooting happened not far from the Wendy’s on University Avenue where Rayshard Brooks was shot and killed last month. The video shows a Black man in a white shirt carrying what police identified as an AR-15. Lt. Pete Malecki said the man is just one of several persons of interest in the case. “We believe there is going to be a minimum of three additional suspects. That number could change,” he said. “Although we have a lot of work to identify the remaining individuals responsible, this is the first step in that process.” Investigators said Secoriea Turner was riding in a Jeep Cherokee Saturday night when the driver tried to get around a “makeshift roadblock that was manned by numerous armed individuals.” Malecki said they believe the shots were fired intentionally into the car. At a news conference Sunday, Secoriea Turner’s mother said that her daughter died in her arms. “She was only 8 years old,” Charmaine Turner said. “She would have been on Tik Tok dancing on her phone, just got done eating. We understand the frustration of Rayshard Brooks. We didn’t have anything to do with that. We’re innocent. My baby didn’t mean no harm.” Secoriya Williamson, Secoriea Turner’s father, also spoke out. “They say Black lives matter,” Williamson said. “You killed your own this time. You killed a child. She didn’t do nothing to nobody.” Police are offering a $20,000 reward for information leading to Secoriea Turner’s killers. Information can be submitted anonymously to the Crime Stoppers Atlanta tip line at 404-577-TIPS (8477) or online at www.StopCrimeATL.com. Hours following the police news conference, the community came together for a prayer vigil.
  • A 17-month-old girl was killed in a pit bull attack last weekend during a Fourth of July party in Illinois, authorities said. According to The Associated Press and WMAQ-TV, the incident occurred early Sunday in the bedroom of a family friend's Joliet home. The toddler, whose parents were attending a holiday gathering at the residence, was in a playpen when two dogs somehow got free from the basement, Joliet police said. After hearing a noise, the homeowner went into the bedroom to find one of the two dogs – both pit bull mixes – biting the child, the AP reported. Authorities responded to the home shortly before 1:30 a.m. and found the girl unresponsive with multiple bite wounds, the Herald-News reported. Crews rushed her to a nearby hospital, where she later died. The Will County Coroner's Office identified the victim as Marley Wilander, according to the newspaper. The dog is now in the custody of Animal Control, police said.  – The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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  • Mary Kay Letourneau, a Washington state teacher convicted of having sex with her 12-year-old student 23 years ago and later marrying him, died of cancer Monday, her attorney said. Attorney David Gehrke said Letourneau was 58. Letourneau was teaching at Shorewood Elementary School in Burien when she raped her sixth-grade student, Vili Fualaau, in June 1996, KIRO-TV reported. Police discovered Letourneau and Fualaau, then 12, in a minivan parked at the Des Moines Marina. Letourneau said the boy was 18. The two were taken to a police station and later released. At that time, Letourneau was a married 34-year-old mother of four. On Feb. 25, 1997, following a tip, police interviewed Fualaau. Letourneau was pulled out of a teacher’s meeting and arrested for statutory rape. In August 1997, in an agreement with prosecutors, Letourneau pleaded guilty to child rape in exchange for a 3-month jail sentence and probation. Judge Linda Lau accepted the deal on condition that Letourneau have no contact with Fualaau. By that time, Letourneau had given birth to a girl fathered by Fualaau. Letourneau and Fualaau were married in Woodinville on May 20, 2005. after she was released from prison. At that time, Letourneau was 43 and Fualaau was 22. Fualaau filed for separation in 2017, and a divorce was finalized last year. The couple had two children together.
  • A Kentucky man, apparently frustrated by losing to his son in an arm-wrestling contest, is in jail after the defeats led to a shooting and an eight-hour standoff with police, authorities said. Curtis Zimmerman, 55, was intoxicated when he challenged his son to an arm-wrestling contest, the Boone County Sheriff’s Office said. After losing several times to his son, the man became “agitated” and got into a fight, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported. The man grabbed a gun and fired two shots into the ceiling as his son was going upstairs in the house, Sgt. Philip Ridgell of the Boone County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release. After two people left the house safely, Zimmerman refused to come out of the house when asked by deputies, WKYT reported. According to Ridgell, an eight-hour standoff ensued between Zimmerman and deputies and members of the Florence Police Department SWAT team. Finally, around 8:30 a.m., Zimmerman surrendered and was taken into custody around 830 a.m., the Herald-Leader reported. After a hospital evaluation, Zimmerman is expected to be charged with one count of wanton endangerment, a first-degree, Class D felony, the Sheriff’s Office said. Zimmerman’s arrest warrant lists a $5,000 cash bond, according to the Sheriff’s Office.