Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today's Headlines and Commentary

By Gordon Ahl
Wednesday, November 6, 2019, 2:18 PM

House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff announced that the first open public hearings for the impeachment inquiry are set for next week, reports CNN. Ambassadors Bill Taylor and George Kent are scheduled to publicly testify next Wednesday, followed by former ambassador Marie Yovanovitch next Friday.

The chairmen of the three House committees leading the closed-door depositions of the impeachment inquiry released the transcript of Bill Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, reports the Washington Post.

David Hale, the State Department’s third-ranking official, is providing closed-door testimony before the three House committees handling impeachment depositions on Wednesday, reports the Post.

Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, provided a “supplemental declaration” to his impeachment inquiry deposition, reports the Post. Sondland’s revision included a claim that he had initially forgotten a conversation had with a Ukrainian official in which Sondland relayed that security assistance to Ukraine would likely resume only after Ukrainian officials publicly stated that they had opened investigations sought by President Trump.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is planning to shift the Republican members of the House Intelligence Committee in order to potentially add Reps. Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows, both currently members of the Oversight Committee, according to NPR. The change would enable these lawmakers to participate in the upcoming public impeachment hearings.

House impeachment investigators requested that acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney provide closed-door testimony later this week, reports the New York Times. Mulvaney has already ignored a subpoena for documents issued last month and is unlikely to cooperate this time around.

Opening statements in the trial of Roger Stone, a long-time friend and adviser to President Trump, began on Wednesday. A notable moment came when a federal prosecutor claimed that Stone lied to Congress “because the truth looked bad for Donald Trump,” according to the Post.

The Yemeni government and a group of separatists signed an agreement on Tuesday to end a power struggle in southern Yemen, reports the Times. Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, said the deal was a positive step on the path toward resolving the multifaceted conflict in Yemen.

Following an ambush in Mexico that left nine U.S. citizens dead, President Trump called for a war on Mexican drug cartels and offered U.S. military support. Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador appeared to dismiss Trump’s offer, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Apple and TikTok received criticism from Republican Senator Josh Hawley after both companies skipped a Senate hearing on Tuesday meant to explore the tech industry and its ties to China, according to the Post.

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Jen Patja Howell shared the latest episode of The Lawfare Podcast, featuring a live panel discussion of Brookings senior fellows including Lawfare’s editor-in-chief Benjamin Wittes on the topic of impeachment and election security.

Jacob Schulz posted the transcripts from closed-door impeachment inquiry depositions of Gordon Sondland and Kurt Volker.

Nicholas Weaver discussed the key takeaways from the emerging dispute between Facebook and NSO Group.

Alan Z. Rozenshtein also commented on the suit against NSO Group and how it could signal the end of lawful hacking as a tool available to law enforcement officials.

Susan Landau highlighted a letter from Rep. Anna Eshoo and Sen. Ron Wyden to Attorney General William Barr on encryption and the need for law enforcement to use available investigative capabilities.

Stewart Baker shared this week’s episode of The Cyberlaw Podcast, in which David Kris comments on the CFIUS investigation of TikTok.

Robert Chesney announced a call for teams for the Atlantic Council’s “Cyber 9/12 Challenge” competition that is coming to Austin, Texas in January.

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