GOP on defense ahead of public impeachment hearings

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On the roster: GOP on defense ahead of public impeachment hearings - Buttigieg surges to first place in Iowa - Supreme Court divided over future of DACA - La. governor’s race sees record number in early voting - Marathon man

Fox News: “Three top Republicans serving on panels involved in the Democratic-led impeachment inquiry into President Trump penned a memo to GOP members on those committees outlining ‘key points of evidence’ from the closed-door inquiry ahead of public hearings slated to begin Wednesday. Addressed to the GOP members of the House Intelligence Committee, House Oversight Committee and House Foreign Affairs Committee, the memo outlines arguments in defense of Trump. It makes the case that Democrats failed to present any evidence of quid pro quo in Trump's July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. They say Trump had a ‘deep-seated, genuine and reasonable skepticism of Ukraine and U.S. taxpayer-funded foreign aid’ due to the country's history of ‘pervasive corruption’ since the collapse of the Soviet Union. The memo points out that both Trump and Zelensky have said they felt no pressure during the call. Another piece of evidence cited by the memo's authors is that Ukrainian government officials interfered in the 2016 presidential election in opposition to Trump in an effort to sway the race in favor of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, a claim that Trump has made but has not been proven.”

Schiff warns GOP about going after Bidens - Fox News: “House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff set the stage for the first public hearings as part of the impeachment inquiry by vowing to keep questions at Wednesday's lead-off session focused on the Ukraine controversy -- in an implicit shot at Republican members who have signaled an interest in turning the tables on Democrats as they defend President Trump. … Notably, he cited rules for the investigation that would keep it focused on alleged attempts by the president to seek politically advantageous investigations from a foreign government, and whether he sought to cover it up. The first hearings in the public phase of the impeachment inquiry will feature testimony from State Department official George Kent and top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine Bill Taylor on Wednesday. Later this week, former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovich will appear.”

Mulvaney reverses course, will follow Trump’s order not to cooperate - WaPo: “On the eve of the first public hearings in the House impeachment inquiry, President Trump complained that Democrats are relying on ‘2nd and 3rd hand witnesses,’ while a memo by Republican staff previewed how they plan to defend him. … In morning tweets, Trump, meanwhile, said that both Bidens should be called as witnesses in the public hearings that begin Wednesday with testimony from two State Department officials. … Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney no longer plans to seek a judge’s ruling on whether he should testify in the impeachment inquiry and will instead follow Trump’s order not to cooperate. In a court filing Tuesday, Mulvaney’s lawyer said Mulvaney is reversing course and would not file suit seeking a court opinion on whether he must comply with a House subpoena.”

“All violent policy, as it is contrary to the natural and experienced course of human affairs, defeats itself.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 25

Smithsonian: “‘At the present time we have only enough water for two weeks. Please supply us immediately,’ read the message sent by American sailors stationed at Midway, a tiny atoll located roughly halfway between North America and Asia, on May 20, 1942. The plea for help, however, was a giant ruse; the base was not, in fact, low on supplies. When Tokyo Naval Intelligence intercepted the dispatch and relayed the news onward … their American counterparts finally confirmed what they had long suspected: Midway and ‘AF,’ cited by the Japanese as the target of a major upcoming military operation, were one and the same. This codebreaking operation afforded the United States a crucial advantage at what would be the Battle of Midway, a multi-day naval and aerial engagement fought between June 3 and 7, 1942. … Midway, a new movie from director Roland Emmerich … traces the trajectory of the early Pacific campaign from the December 7, 1941, bombing of Pearl Harbor to the Halsey-Doolittle Raid in April 1942, the Battle of the Coral Sea in May of that same year, and, finally, Midway itself.”

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Biden: 27.6 points (↓ 0.6 points from last wk.)
Warren: 22.6 points (↑ 1.2 points from last wk.)
Sanders: 17.6 points (↑ 1.4 point from last wk.)
Buttigieg: 7.6 points (↓ 0.2 points from last wk.)
Harris: 3.2 points (↑ 0.4 points from last wk.)
[Averages include: Monmouth University, NBC News/WSJ, ABC News/WaPo, Fox News and IBD.]

Average approval: 42 percent
Average disapproval: 55.4 percent
Net Score: -13.4 percent
Change from one week ago: no change
[Average includes: Monmouth University: 45% approve - 52% disapprove; NBC News/WSJ: 45% approve - 53% disapprove; ABC News/WaPo: 39% approve - 59% disapprove; Fox News: 42% approve - 57% disapprove; IBD: 39% approve - 56% disapprove.]

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Monmouth University: “South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has joined former Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders at the top of the leaderboard in the third Monmouth University Poll of the 2020 Iowa Democratic caucuses. Buttigieg’s gains since the summer have been across the board, with increasing support coming from nearly every demographic group. Regardless, less than one-third of likely caucusgoers say that they are firmly set on their choice of candidate and most would not be too disappointed if they had to switch their support. The poll also finds that Mike Bloomberg receives a chilly reception among Hawkeye State Democrats as he considers whether to make a late entry into the nomination contest. Four candidates are currently vying for the top spot in Iowa’s caucuses – Buttigieg (22%), Biden (19%), Warren (18%), and Sanders (13%).  Compared to Monmouth’s August poll, Buttigieg has gained 14 points (up from 8%)…”

Sanders falls to fourth in Granite State - Quinnipiac University: “With less than 100 days to go, former Vice President Joe Biden has an edge in New Hampshire's Democratic primary for president, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Biden receives support from 20 percent of New Hampshire likely Democratic primary voters, with Senator Elizabeth Warren getting 16 percent, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg getting 15 percent, and Sen. Bernie Sanders at 14 percent. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard gets 6 percent, businessman Andrew Yang gets 4 percent, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar and businessman Tom Steyer are each at 3 percent. No other candidate tops 1 percent, and 14 percent of likely voters are undecided. Independent voters, known as ‘undeclared voters’ in New Hampshire, who are likely to vote in the Democratic primary are divided in their top choice. Biden receives 16 percent support among these voters, while Sanders and Buttigieg get 14 percent each, and Warren and Gabbard receive 10 percent each.”

Mark Sanford drops out of presidential race - The [Charleston, S.C.] Post and Courier: “Former South Carolina governor Mark Sanford dropped out of the race for president just moments ago, ending his protest bid 60 days after it began. In a noon press conference at the New Hampshire Statehouse, Sanford announced his long-shot run is ending after previously declaring he would spend most of November campaigning in the Granite State, site of the nation’s first primary. The move came after Sanford failed to collect much of a following, especially as President Donald Trump remains the favorite of most Republican voters nationally and while Washington is gearing up for impeachment hearings. Sanford said the impeachment inquiry surrounding the president had sucked the proverbial oxygen out of the 2020 debate. ‘You gotta be a realist, and what I did not anticipate is an impeachment,’ he said, adding he is suspending the campaign and will look for other ways to advance his stance against the deficit.”

Former governor of Massachusetts considering bid - NYT: “Former Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts has told Joseph R. Biden Jr. and other Democratic officials that he is considering making a last-minute entry into the 2020 presidential race, according to three Democrats familiar with the conversations, the latest evidence of how unsettled the party’s primary is less than three months before the Iowa caucuses. Mr. Patrick, a respected two-term governor and one of the highest-profile black leaders in the party, has told some of the Democratic officials that he doesn’t think any of the candidates have established political momentum and that he thinks there is an opening for somebody who can unite both liberal and moderate voters, according to Democrats who have spoken to him. He and some of his top advisers had a meeting Sunday in Boston to discuss what a campaign would look like, according to two Democrats.”

Sen. Michael Bennet expanding campaign in N.H. - WMUR: “While another Democratic presidential candidate is cutting back her effort in New Hampshire and still another is pulling out of the state entirely, Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet is expanding his presence and making a bold commitment. The Bennet campaign currently has one New Hampshire office, in Manchester, and small number of staffers in the state. But that’s about to change. The Bennet campaign told WMUR on Monday that within the next several weeks, it will open three new offices, including a new office in Manchester, and is currently ‘aggressively hiring’ additional Granite State staffers. Bennet made a public commitment. ‘Spending time with New Hampshire voters has made me a better candidate,’ he said in a statement shared with WMUR.”

Milwaukee DNC replaces top fundraiser - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: “There's been a quiet shakeup in the leadership of the fundraising team for next year's Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee. Out as the Host Committee's fundraising director is Marcus Switzer, a 32-year-old Milwaukee native who served as deputy national fundraising director for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016. Switzer has returned to Pete Buttigieg's presidential campaign team. Switzer held the post for about six months. Replacing him is Leah Israel, a 36-year-old Chicago native who worked as a fundraiser for U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, an Illinois Democrat. … In her new post as fundraising director, Israel is taking on the daunting task of raising up to $70 million for next July's big event.”

Fox News: “The future of the DACA program for young illegal immigrants remained uncertain as the Supreme Court on Tuesday appeared to lack consensus on whether the Trump administration's plans to rescind legal protections for so-called Dreamers were proper. The cases were debated during 80 minutes of tense oral arguments. No side appeared to command a clear majority of justices over what has become a major test of executive power on the contentious issue of immigration reform. At issue is the Obama-era program known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. It was created under executive order and gives about 700,000 people brought as children to the United States illegally --or on visas that later were overstayed -- the opportunity to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and become eligible for a work permit. Hundreds of Dreamers and their supporters rallied outside the court. Members of Congress were among those watching the arguments inside.”

Monroe [La.] News Star: “Louisiana loves voting early with voters coming close to setting an all-time record last week for the Nov. 16 governor's election. In all, 489,654 cast early ballots for the Nov. 16 runoff between Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards and Republican Baton Rouge businessman Eddie Rispone in a race generally considered a tossup. That's 100,000 plus more ballots than were cast early for the Oct. 12 primary that whittled the field to Edwards and Rispone. ‘This is a sea change between what existed previously,’ said Pearson Cross, a University of Louisiana at Lafayette political science professor. ‘I think it's a good thing that spurs turnout.’ … Early voting isn't likely to hit 40% of the total for the Nov. 16 election, but it could account for a third or more of total votes cast. Trump will headline another rally at 7 p.m. Thursday at the CenturyLink Center in Bossier City.”

Widow Rep. Elijah Cummings announces campaign for husband's seat - Fox News: “The widow of late Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said on Monday that she will launch a campaign to win her husband’s seat as representative of Maryland’s 7th Congressional District. Maryland Democratic Party Chairwoman Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, 48, initially told The Baltimore Sun that she would formally announce her campaign on Tuesday, nearly a month after her husband died of cancer on Oct. 17 at age 68. … In her first televised interview since her husband’s death, Rockeymoore Cummings said on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show Monday evening that she and her husband decided about six months ago that she would be the best fit to carry on his legacy and vision for the Baltimore district.

Former President Jimmy Carter out of surgery to reduce pressure on brain after recent falls - AP

Poll finds majority of Georgia voters support impeachment - AJC

“Our politics are paralyzing the country. We practice suspicion or contempt where trust is needed, imposing a sentence of anger and loneliness on others and ourselves. We scorch our opponents with language that precludes compromise. We brush aside the possibility that a person with whom we disagree might be right. We talk about what divides us and seldom acknowledge what unites us. … Contending viewpoints and vocal dissent are inevitable, and not the issue. … What is dangerous is not that people have serious differences. It is the tone—the snarl, the scorn, the lacerating despair.” – Former Defense Secretary James Mattis in his piece “The Enemy Within,” published in the Atlantic.

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BBC: “A British man has become the first person to run a marathon in every country in the world. Nick Butter, 30, from Bristol, [England] has run 196 marathons in 196 countries after starting in Canada in January 2018 and finishing in Greece on Sunday. He was inspired to do it to raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK after a friend was diagnosed with the disease. Mr. Butter said he was ‘overwhelmed’ to have finished, after he crossed the finishing line of the Athens marathon. He said he was ‘very tired’ after completing the challenge, which took 674 days and involved visiting an average of just over two countries a week. … He chose Athens for his final run due to it being ‘the home of the marathon.’ Mr. Butter, originally from Dorset, [England] crossed the line with his friend Kevin Webber, who has prostate cancer and who inspired him to take up the challenge.”

“There is no single meaning of the Bush doctrine. In fact, there have been four distinct meanings, each one succeeding another over the eight years of this administration…” – Charles Krauthammer (1950-2018) writing in the Washington Post on Sept. 13, 2008.

Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here.