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Good morning and welcome to Fox News First. Here’s what you need to know as you start your Wednesday …
With House impeachment vote imminent, Trump set to travel to Michigan to rally the faithful
President Trump on Wednesday will be far away from Capitol Hill — and the Washington establishment he has long criticized as an irredeemable “swamp” — as the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives prepares to impeach him in a likely party-line vote on charges of obstruction of Congress and abuse of power.
Instead, the president will be on friendly turf in downtown Battle Creek, Mich., hosting a rally that may rank among his most defiant — a marked contrast from the approach of former President Bill Clinton, who mostly stayed under the radar during his own impeachment proceedings in 1998.
A crowd gathers on Federal Plaza for a protest against President Donald Trump on the eve of a scheduled vote by the US House of Representatives on the two articles of impeachment against the president Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
House Democrats will convene to adopt the rules for the impeachment debate shortly after 9 a.m. ET, followed by six hours of debate evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. Some members will be afforded only one minute to speak, and no amendments to the impeachment resolutions will be permitted.
Trump supporters protest outside a town hall meeting where U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.) is speaking on Monday, Dec. 16, 2019, in the Oakland Center at Oakland University in Rochester, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)
The final vote sequence will likely begin well into the evening hours, with one vote held on each article of impeachment, Fox News was told.
The stage was set late Tuesday night by the House Rules Committee, which approved the procedures for Wednesday’s impeachment proceedings in a 9-4 party-line vote after a marathon day of contentious hearings. Wednesday “promises to be a long day,” Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern, D-Mass., told reporters.
It will likely end with Trump becoming just the third U.S. president ever to be impeached — a history-making development that Trump has said reflects far worse on congressional Democrats than it does on him. In a blistering, no-holds-barred six-page letter Tuesday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Trump lambasted the Democrats’ impeachment inquiry as an “open war on American Democracy,” writing that Pelosi has violated her oath of office and “cheapened the importance of the very ugly word, impeachment!” Click here for more on our top story.
Read Trump’s letter to Pelosi.
Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page (Associated Press)
Ex-FBI lawyer Lisa Page explains anti-Trump ‘insurance policy’ texts, defends Russia probe in TV interview
Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page spoke out Tuesday night, explaining her controversial texts with her lover, former FBI agent Peter Strzok, and defending the Russia investigation into President Trump.
Appearing on “The Rachel Maddow Show,” Page was asked about the “insurance policy” text Strzok had sent to her during the 2016 election that was released by the Justice Department in 2017, part of a string of texts that led to Strzok’s removal from the Russia probe over concerns of potential bias.
“It’s an analogy,” Page began. “First of all, it’s not my text, so I’m sort of interpreting what I believed he meant back three years ago, but we’re using an analogy. We’re talking about whether or not we should take certain investigative steps or not based on the likelihood that he’s going to be president or not.”
Page’s interview aired hours after the chief judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court [FISC], in a rare public order, strongly criticized the FBI over its surveillance-application process, giving the bureau until Jan. 10 to come up with solutions, in the wake of findings from Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz. Click here for more.
TUNE IN: Don’t miss Fox News’ exclusive interview with Attorney General William Barr on “The Story with Martha MacCallum” tonight at 7 p.m. ET!
FILE – In this Aug. 15, 2019, file photo, a Pacific Gas & Electric worker walks in front of a truck in San Francisco. Pacific Gas and Electric has reworked a $13.5 billion settlement with victims of deadly wildfires blamed on the utility to try to prevent it from unraveling after California Gov. Gavin Newsom rejected the company’s financial rehabilitation plan.(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)
PG&E, California agree to $1.68 billion settlement for wildfires
The California Public Utilities Commission has proposed a $1.68 billion settlement with PG&E Corp. for the role the utility company played in igniting a series of deadly wildfires in 2017 and 2018 that killed more than 100 people.
Under the terms of the settlement included in a filing by the regulator, the company would be required to spend the amount of the penalty on steps to prevent future wildfires. It wouldn’t be allowed to pass those costs on to its customers in the form of higher rates. The settlement, which still needs to be approved by utility commissioners, is a slightly larger penalty than the settlement PG&E and the regulator reached in 2015 over a 2010 explosion in San Bruno, Calif. Click here for more.
House approves $1.4 trillion spending bill, repealing ObamaCare taxes.
Barnard freshman’s fatal stabbing caught on video: testimony | One suspect faces judge
France’s massive strikes see major power cuts, Eiffel Tower closed.
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SOME PARTING WORDS
Sean Hannity says history will judge Democrats harshly for their relentless pursuit of President Trump’s impeachment.
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Fox News First is compiled by Fox News’ Bryan Robinson. Thank you for making us your first choice in the morning! Enjoy your day! We’ll see you in your inbox first thing on Thursday morning.
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