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Vox Sentences: An impeachment week in the SCIF

Impeachment hearings continue amid Republican protests; Iraqis fed up with their government attempt to storm the Green Zone.

Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

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Trump’s no good, very bad week in impeachment

  • House Democrats issued subpoenas Friday for several Trump administration officials who previously were reluctant to testify. [CNN / Jeremy Herb and Manu Raju]
  • It was the latest development in a week filled with bad news for President Trump. [Vox / Andrew Prokop]
  • The most significant was the testimony of William Taylor, ambassador to Ukraine, who told members of Congress on Tuesday there absolutely was a quid pro quo: Trump demanded Ukraine investigate the Bidens in order to release military aid. [Vox / Alex Ward]
  • On Wednesday, a group of Republican members of Congress stormed the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, or SCIF, during a closed-door deposition at the Capitol, forcing the proceedings to stop. They then ordered pizza. [NYT / Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Nicholas Fandos]
  • And Sen. Lindsey Graham proposed a resolution in that condemned the impeachment inquiry, getting 46 signatures. Constitutional scholars dismissed Graham’s proposal as “full of phony objections” and having “absolutely no substance.” [Newsweek / Shane Croucher]
  • But all of this pushback doesn’t change that the investigation is continuing. National Security Council official Tim Morrison plans to testify Thursday, making him the first to speak while actively serving in the White House. [Politico / Kyle Cheney]
  • And former National Security Adviser John Bolton is reportedly in discussions about potentially testifying to Congress. [Vox / Alex Ward]
  • Support for impeachment among the American public has mostly held steady in the past couple weeks. It’s now at 49.1 percent, according to FiveThirtyEight, a 9-point increase since the Ukraine scandal “snowballed” last month. [FiveThirtyEight / Nathaniel Rakich]

Iraqis return to the streets

  • Demonstrators attempting to storm Baghdad’s Green Zone faced tear gas and security forces, in an escalation of protests that began on October 1. [Reuters / Ahmed Aboulenein]
  • At least two Iraqis are dead and 95 wounded in the attempt to enter the fortified area where the Iraqi Parliament and several Western embassies reside in Baghdad. Iraq’s Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi made a televised speech talking about the government reshuffling in an attempt to placate the protesters. [CNN / Hamdi Alkhshali, Jaide Garcia, and Aimee Lewis]
  • After the anti-government protests were suspended two weeks ago when nearly 150 protesters lost their lives as a result of security forces opening fire, the government investigated military and police commanders in connection with the shootings. Protesters, however, want more substantial change. [New York Times / Alissa J. Rubin]
  • ”People are very upset about the ongoing lack of economic opportunities, basic services — such as water and electricity — and what they perceive to be a dysfunctional government that is looting the country of its money. Adding to their anger is the fact that in the first round of protests earlier this month, 149 protesters were killed,” said Al Jazeera correspondent Natasha Ghoneim. [Al Jazeera]


  • “Nobody said anything. Nobody did anything”: Harvey Weinstein appeared at an invite-only event for young performers. An actor who confronted him described how that felt. [Vulture / Rachel Handler]
  • How pop culture reference costumes worked their way into Halloween. [New York Times / Jennifer Harlan]
  • The Tree of Life synagogue shooting brought fear of anti-Semitism to the forefront of many Jewish Americans, prompting conversations about how best to combat it and renew the Jewish sense of belonging in America. [Vox / Zack Beauchamp]
  • In a messy, unpredictable decade, our sense of time appears to have warped completely. [BuzzFeed / Katherine Miller]
  • The creepy crawlies celebrated on Halloween might be sticking around in homes for the other 364 days of the year. [Wall Street Journal / Jo Craven McGinty]


“I’m sure he’s going to bring up the strike, the finances, the shootings — obviously because we’re his favorite punching bag among the cities. Part of that, I think, is because Obama was from here and anything Obama is radioactive to him.” [University of Chicago political scientist Christopher Mooney on President Trump’s upcoming visit to Chicago]

Listen to this: Brexit, forever?

Brexit is still chugging along, and with all of the latest developments, you might be wondering what’s next for the UK. The Worldly team has got you covered. [Spotify]

And if you’d like your impeachment news in podcast form, check out the latest episode of Impeachment, Explained, on Saturday. Ezra Klein details why the Ukraine story is really a Russia story, too.

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