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Westlake Legal Group > News Media (Page 17)

Smartphone security: What’s better to use a PIN, facial recognition, or your fingerprint?

Locking your phone keeps out snoops, but it’s also your first line of defense against hackers and cybercriminals out for your data and anything else they can steal.

One of their biggest targets? Your money and your credit cards. Tap or click for 3 safer ways to pay for things online other than credit cards.

So, what’s the best way to secure your phone? Is it biometrics like your fingerprint or a scan of your face? Or a traditional PIN or password?

Most people aren’t very good at creating hard-to-crack passwords, so yours might not even be effective at keeping your devices or your accounts safe. Tap or click for 5 new rules you need to use next time you’re creating a new password.

No matter which method you choose, I’ll show you the best way to make sure your phone, and everything in it, is secure. Let’s start with facial recognition.

Look at that face

Facial recognition made its way to smartphones in 2016 with the Galaxy Note 7. Apple introduced Face ID with the iPhone X, which came out the next year.

This feature is all about convenience. Software scans your features to identify and verify your identity. One glance and your device is unlocked — no need to fuss with PINs or passwords.

Apple’s Face ID can do more than just unlock your phone. Tap or click here for 5 tips and tricks to make using your phone safer and easier to use.

Now, odds are slim someone else can use Face ID to unlock your iPhone, at least according to Apple.

The company says there’s a 1-in-1-million chance a random person could unlock your phone or iPad using the facial recognition system. The odds get a lot better if you’ve got an identical twin or a sibling or other relative who looks like you.

RELATED: Your emails are being tracked. But you can stop it. Tap or click here to take back your privacy and shut out data-hungry senders.

Things haven’t been so smooth for Google and its Pixel 4. Last month, early adopters discovered a flaw that makes it easy for anyone with physical access to your phone to unlock it.

Here are a few other situations where using facial recognition to secure your phone gets tricky:

Someone forces you to log into your device by making you look at your phone.

Law enforcement legally compels you to unlock your mobile device. Can police make you unlock your phone? It depends. Tap or click here to find out.

A photo, mask and even a baseball cap are purportedly able to fool facial recognition software.

A lasting impression

Like Face ID, fingerprint authentication is a quick and convenient way to unlock your phone. Just pick it up and place your finger over the sensor. Here are a few reasons you may want to use your fingerprint to lock your device:

No two fingers have identical characteristics, so there’s little chance of false positives. It’s quick. Scanners take just a moment to identify or reject a fingerprint. Unlike a password, you can’t lose or share your fingerprint. Fingerprints are stored as encrypted mathematical representations, not as images. This step makes them difficult to hack.

RELATED: Have a sneaking suspicion someone is stealing your Wi-Fi? Tap or click for a simple way to see every device connected to your network.

Finger authentication has many advantages, but it’s not foolproof — especially for someone who has physical access to you and your phone. There are stories of kids using a sleeping parent’s fingerprint to unlock a device, like a 6-year-old who went on an expensive shopping spree in 2016. And depending on your fingerprint scanner, they can be finicky to use.

Some reports suggest a fingerprint left on an item such as a cup can be used to deceive fingerprint scanners. Mobile security experts even warn replicating a fingerprint may only require a camera and printer.

Name games

Despite advances in technology, tried-and-true methods like PINs, passcodes and passwords are still some of the most common for securing smartphones.

Many users find these forms of security handy as they can use a similar PIN or password across many sites, accounts and devices. Smartphone users also tend to create PINs or passwords that are easy to remember, such as a birthday, address, username or other special date.

What makes this type of authentication convenient is also what makes it most susceptible to hackers. Cybercriminals know people create passwords from basic words or phrases and that they use identical passwords across the internet. Plus, PINs and passwords can be forgotten or stolen or even decoded with devices like GrayKey.

Make it a combo

While each method of securing your phone has its own set of weaknesses, stats show about a quarter of mobile device users don’t use any security technique at all. So, if you utilize any of the above procedures, you’re already a step ahead of those who take no precaution.

For the best protection, though, don’t rely on just one method. Use a combination of biometrics and PINs, passcodes or passwords to provide an extra layer of security in case one fails or is compromised.

Setting up two-factor authentication for your accounts also goes a long way in protecting you. Tap or click to learn more about how 2FA works.

When creating a password or PIN for two-factor authentication or just to lock your phone, it’s crucial you follow a few guidelines:

Do not create a password or PIN with all the same letters or digits.

Use letters, numbers and special characters whenever you can.

Make your passcode longer than four digits if possible. The longer, the better.

Do not use easy-to-guess information like your birthday, name or address.

If you’re concerned about remembering longer and more complex passcodes and PINs, it may help to store them in a password manager.

Although using multiple forms of security requires a bit more effort than relying just a single technique, it does safeguard against their individual weaknesses. This ensures your device — and your data — are protected.

BONUS TIP FOR EVEN MORE KNOW-HOW: Secret way to dig up dirt on anyone online

We’ve probably all done this at some point. You meet someone in person or online, like on a dating site or at work, and you’re compelled to do a little “research” to dig up potential dirt on them.

You can find out a lot about someone online. But there’s only so much info you can glean if the person you’re looking for has locked down his or her social media profiles or erased all the info collected on shady online directories.

That’s why you need to stick with sites you can trust. Don’t get sucked in by those creepy people search sites that charge you for often outdated or incorrect information. Here are three methods to find reliable info on just about anyone.

Tap or click here for my insider trick to learn more about anyone.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

Copyright 2019, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Learn about all the latest technology on The Kim Komando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com.

Westlake Legal Group text-message-cell-phone-getty-images Smartphone security: What’s better to use a PIN, facial recognition, or your fingerprint? The Kim Komando Show Kim Komando fox-news/tech/topics/security fox-news/tech/technologies/smartphones fox-news/tech/companies/samsung fox-news/tech/companies/apple fnc/tech fnc article 60ce94ed-f5fd-5d6d-bb49-31b5cb779de3   Westlake Legal Group text-message-cell-phone-getty-images Smartphone security: What’s better to use a PIN, facial recognition, or your fingerprint? The Kim Komando Show Kim Komando fox-news/tech/topics/security fox-news/tech/technologies/smartphones fox-news/tech/companies/samsung fox-news/tech/companies/apple fnc/tech fnc article 60ce94ed-f5fd-5d6d-bb49-31b5cb779de3

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The question is no longer whether Trump did it — it’s whether he’ll get away with it

Westlake Legal Group T6kztQZbKNwqZBasAv7-fXrmMI8VJGjUmbY1vuOIqe0 The question is no longer whether Trump did it — it’s whether he’ll get away with it r/politics

Indeed I can’t imagine any woman on planet Earth willing to sleep with such a repulsively vile guy, who’s entire raison d’etre is to constantly spew fourth angry bizarre tweets all day long?!

I mean, personally… if I was a woman…

I’d rather die than put out to a guy like that!

So if First Lady Melania is actually still giving her body to a disgusting guy like that…

Then… wow… I guess I just don’t understand her basic-psychology one slightest bit.

I just can’t imagine or fathom her being able to do it–if she is, then I can see her running at top speed to the bathroom after each “session” and vomiting, then jumping into the shower to wash away any last trace of his creepy evil touch… [SHIVERS]

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Eagles’ Malcolm Jenkins urges Philadelphia police reforms, draws rebuke from union

Philadelphia Eagles defensive back Malcolm Jenkins’ opinion piece about reforming the Philadelphia Police Department drew a sharp rebuke from the City of Brotherly Love’s police union on Tuesday.

Jenkins, who has been one of the NFL’s most outspoken voices on social injustice, wrote an essay published in the Philadelphia Inquirer calling for a half-dozen reforms under the next Philadelphia police commissioner.

COWBOYS OWNER JERRY JONES AGREES COLIN KAEPERNICK’S WORKOUT TURNED INTO A ‘CIRCUS’

The three-time Pro Bowler called for reforms in “how law enforcement police our children,” “a commissioner who fights back against the police union” and urged increased “accountability” and “transparency” under the next commissioner. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney is set to replace former Commissioner Richard Ross, who resigned in August after being accused of mishandling sexual harassment claims filed by two female police officers in a lawsuit.

Westlake Legal Group Malcolm-Jenkins Eagles' Malcolm Jenkins urges Philadelphia police reforms, draws rebuke from union Ryan Gaydos fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/sports/nfl/philadelphia-eagles fox-news/sports/nfl fox news fnc/sports fnc e9ef40ae-931a-5da6-b846-8aec97d02e70 article

New England Patriots’ Rex Burkhead (34) is tackled by Philadelphia Eagles’ Malcolm Jenkins (27) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2019, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

“Nearly every time we hear a story of an officer abusing power, whether through violence or racist Facebook postings, the police union is there to defend the bad behavior,” Jenkins wrote. “We need a commissioner who isn’t in lockstep with the union and who will instead push back when the union tries to hide and justify bad behavior.”

COLIN KAEPERNICK EXPOSED NFL HYPOCRISY IN HANDLING WAIVER SITUATION: AL SHARPTON

Jenkins’ op-ed drew rebuke from the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police. The union shared a letter on social media slamming Jenkins for his editorial and the Inquirer for running it.

“Sponsoring a racist attack by a non-resident washed-up football player and trying to disguise it as a commentary on police in Philadelphia shows why the only people who still subscribe to your paper are those who use it to paper train their puppies.

“Hurling slurs and false allegations against police offers nothing in the new way of improvement. Like other has-been football players, they now do most of their running with their mouth.

“This character’s ‘proposals’ would leave Philadelphia’s many crime victims as defenseless as his poor play has left his football team.

PHILADELPHIA EAGLES TO HOST FINAL MINUTES OF HIGH SCHOOL PLAYOFF GAME AFTER SHOOTING SUSPENDED PLAY

Kenney, however, expressed support for Jenkins. He told CBS Philadelphia he welcomes the suggestions.

“He has every right to give us some direction and make suggestions and we’ve been listening to the community the whole time,” Kenney said.

Kenney added that he will choose the new police commissioner soon.

Jenkins has been involved in social justice reform over the last few years. In 2017, Jenkins took a ride along with Philadelphia police to try and understand what others are going through.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

Jenkins, 32, is in his sixth season with Philadelphia. Through 10 games, he has three pass deflections and 46 combined tackles. He’s made the Pro Bowl the last two seasons.

Westlake Legal Group 081315-31-NFL-Malcolm-Jenkins-Eagle-4ad21638ee47f410VgnVCM100000d7c1a8c0____ Eagles' Malcolm Jenkins urges Philadelphia police reforms, draws rebuke from union Ryan Gaydos fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/sports/nfl/philadelphia-eagles fox-news/sports/nfl fox news fnc/sports fnc e9ef40ae-931a-5da6-b846-8aec97d02e70 article   Westlake Legal Group 081315-31-NFL-Malcolm-Jenkins-Eagle-4ad21638ee47f410VgnVCM100000d7c1a8c0____ Eagles' Malcolm Jenkins urges Philadelphia police reforms, draws rebuke from union Ryan Gaydos fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/sports/nfl/philadelphia-eagles fox-news/sports/nfl fox news fnc/sports fnc e9ef40ae-931a-5da6-b846-8aec97d02e70 article

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Cooper & Brackman: Bernie Sanders’ criticism of Israel makes him ideal candidate for opponents of Jewish state

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095485209001_6095485535001-vs Cooper & Brackman: Bernie Sanders’ criticism of Israel makes him ideal candidate for opponents of Jewish state Rabbi Abraham Cooper fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world fox-news/us/religion/judaism fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc e2bad884-1c08-5377-8b65-4f390434c4be Dr. Harold Brackman article

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who takes to the debate stage Wednesday night with other Democratic presidential hopefuls, recently said: “I am very proud to be Jewish and look forward to being the first Jewish president.” But many of Sanders’ fellow Jewish Americans don’t look forward to what they see as that frightening possibility.

According to a Morning Consult poll released in May, only 11 percent of Jewish Democrats supported Sanders. One reason for this low level of Jewish support is Sanders’ record of strongly opposing many Israeli actions and polices, along with his threats to reduce vital U.S. aid to Israel.

This is combined with Sanders’ failure to take a strong stand opposing the global rise of anti-Semitism, along with his warm embrace of anti-Semites and forces hostile to Israel here at home.

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Sanders’ weak support among his fellow Jews is a sharp contrast to the strong support then-Sen. Barack Obama enjoyed from his fellow African-Americans (about 95 percent) when he successfully ran and became our nation’s first black president. When then-Sen. John F. Kennedy ran and became America’s first Catholic president he had the support of more than 70 percent of Catholic voters.

Sanders joined some other Democratic presidential candidates Monday in criticizing the announcement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that the U.S. will no longer consider Israel’s West Bank settlements illegal under international law – reversing the position of past U.S. administrations.

“Israeli settlements in occupied territory are illegal,” said Sanders. “This is clear from international law and multiple United Nations resolutions. Once again, Mr. Trump is isolating the United States and undermining diplomacy by pandering to his extremist base.”

Sanders earlier criticized President Trump’s bold and courageous decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and even said he would be willing to overturn that decision and move the U.S. Embassy back to Tel Aviv if that would bring about a peace settlement between Israelis and Palestinians.

Sanders said last month that Israel would have to “fundamentally change” its policies dealing with the Gaza Strip to continue receiving U.S. aid. This is a position that would pose a grave threat to Israel should Sanders become president.

The Gaza Strip is controlled by the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas and also harbors other terrorist groups, including the even more extreme Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Israel captured Gaza in the Six-Day War in 1967, but withdrew in 2005 in a goodwill gesture to promote peace.

Instead of living in peace with Israelis, Palestinians backed by Iran regularly use Gaza as a launching pad for rocket attacks into Israeli towns and cities – including hundreds just in the past few days.

The Palestinians build terror tunnels to allow murderers to sneak into Israel to launch deadly attacks on civilians and kidnap Israelis and hold them for ransom. And they hold weekly demonstrations – often putting youngsters in harm’s way – that many times turn into violent riots and armed attacks on the international border with Israel.

But in Sanders’ warped view that is disconnected from reality, Israel is at fault for the attacks against it from Palestinians and its other Arab neighbors.

In a blast at Israel last month, Sanders said: “What is going on in Gaza right now is absolutely inhumane, it is unacceptable, it is unsustainable.”

Sanders won’t say a negative word about the terrorist rulers of Gaza or the non-democratic and corrupt Palestinian Authority that governs much of the West Bank, and rewards imprisoned Palestinian terrorists and the families of dead terrorists with monthly payments for murdering Jewish Israeli civilians.

Like too many other progressive leaders around the world, Sanders lowers the boom on Israelis while silently patronizing Palestinians like children who don’t have to take responsibility for “acting out” – even when the Palestinians commit horrific murders.

Sanders seeks to use his own family’s history of fleeing anti-Semitism in Eastern Europe as armor to protect him from criticism. But it doesn’t work.

For the thousands of years anti-Semitism has existed, anti-Semites have blamed Jews for being responsible for provoking Jew-hatred – just as Sanders does today when it comes to the Holy Land. The fact that a Jew embraces these noxious views makes them no less acceptable than if expressed by someone of another faith.

Sanders absurdly equates anti-Semitism with “white supremacist politics,” a bizarre and historically inaccurate claim – ignoring anti-Semitism by the left, among African-Americans and Muslims.

The senator from Vermont hasn’t offered one word of criticism of the organizers of the Women’s March that was held the day after President Trump was inaugurated to protest the new president. The protest morphed into an anti-Semitic platform by key leaders who claimed Jews in general support white supremacy and that the Jewish state of Israel is racist.

This led to protests from many progressive Jewish women who were forced to withdraw from the Women’s March, but we heard not a peep from Sanders. Why?

The leader of the Women’s March – notorious anti-Semite Linda Sarsour – is a strong supporter of Sanders and is working to help him win the Democratic presidential nomination.

Sanders has also been endorsed by anti-Semitic Reps. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., and Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich. Sanders has defended both Muslim congresswomen and now is campaigning hard to win the support of American Muslims for his presidential bid, including those who have expressed hostility to Israel.

Voters who wish to do harm to the Jewish state couldn’t find a better candidate than Sanders.

Omar has falsely claimed that U.S. elected officials only support Israel to get Jewish campaign contributions, echoing the insidious anti-Semitic trope that wealthy Jews form a secret and sinister cabal controlling governments.

Tlaib has questioned the loyalty of Jewish Americans to the U.S. because they also want to see Israel continue to exist and prosper as a Jewish state. She and other anti-Semites ignore the fact that Israel has been a staunch American ally since the creation of the modern state in 1948 and that America and Israel share common values.

On top of all this, Sanders equates the “sober facts of America’s own founding” – by which he means crimes against Native Americans and the horrific enslavement of Africans – with the ingathering of Jews from around the world to reestablish the ancient Jewish homeland of Israel as a modern state.

Far from being “colonizers,” the Jewish people have miraculously succeeded in reconstituting Jewish life in the Holy Land that dates back over 3,000 years. This was long before the founding of Islam at the beginning of the 7th century.

Israel has sought from its founding to live in peace with its Araba neighbors, but was attacked by five Arab armies that defied the United Nations and invaded the nascent Jewish state to destroy it in 1948. It was attacked again in subsequent wars and since then by terrorists, and has had no choice but to defend itself.

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While Sanders now demands that U.S. military aid to Israel be leveraged to force the Jewish state to pursue policies in “the occupied Palestinian territories” to his liking, he makes no such demand on any other American allies whose human rights policies deserve far harsher criticism. Why the double standard? Expediency or ideology?

The Jewish people are today facing a tsunami of anti-Semitism around the world not seen since Nazi leader Adolf Hitler murdered 6 million Jews in the Holocaust in an effort wipe Jews off the face of the Earth.

Jewish institutions – including our synagogues here in the U.S. – are under attack, and have had to take unprecedented security measures to protect innocent men, women and children from being murdered by anti-Semites.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

As the multi-headed hydra of Jew-hatred – including neo-Nazis, other white supremacists, Islamist extremists, and far-left ideologues – threaten Jews, American Jews seek leaders who will reconstruct the traditional bipartisan alliance against anti-Semitism.

Despite his own Jewish heritage and the terrible deaths of members of his own family who were among the 6 million who perished in the Holocaust, Sen. Sanders has shown us he is not ready to lead America in the fight against anti-Semitism today.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY RABBI ABRAHAM COOPER

Dr. Harold Brackman, a historian is a consultant to the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095485209001_6095485535001-vs Cooper & Brackman: Bernie Sanders’ criticism of Israel makes him ideal candidate for opponents of Jewish state Rabbi Abraham Cooper fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world fox-news/us/religion/judaism fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc e2bad884-1c08-5377-8b65-4f390434c4be Dr. Harold Brackman article   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095485209001_6095485535001-vs Cooper & Brackman: Bernie Sanders’ criticism of Israel makes him ideal candidate for opponents of Jewish state Rabbi Abraham Cooper fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world fox-news/us/religion/judaism fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/opinion fox news fnc/opinion fnc e2bad884-1c08-5377-8b65-4f390434c4be Dr. Harold Brackman article

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What to Watch For in Day 4 of the Trump Impeachment Inquiry Hearings

The House impeachment hearings hit a critical moment on Wednesday with the appearance of perhaps the most significant witness on the public schedule. Gordon D. Sondland, the Trump donor now serving as ambassador to the European Union, will be asked about his role in pressuring Ukraine to open investigations into Democrats and any link to American security aid.

Who: Mr. Sondland will appear by himself in the morning session. Laura K. Cooper, a deputy assistant defense secretary, and David Hale, the under secretary of state for political affairs, will testify together in the afternoon session.

What: The House Intelligence Committee, led by its chairman, Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California, will continue to examine the case for impeaching President Trump. The Republican minority, led by Representative Devin Nunes of California, will again work to poke holes in testimony implicating the president.

When and Where: The morning proceedings start at 9 a.m. Eastern in the vaulted, columned chambers of the House Ways and Means Committee, and could last until the early afternoon. The second set of hearings is scheduled to start around 2:30 p.m., depending on when the morning session is finished.

How to Watch: The New York Times will stream the testimony live, and a team of reporters in Washington will provide real-time context and analysis of the events on Capitol Hill. Follow along at nytimes.com, starting a few minutes before 9.

Westlake Legal Group 00impeachment-archetypes-videopromo-image-articleLarge-v2 What to Watch For in Day 4 of the Trump Impeachment Inquiry Hearings Zelensky, Volodymyr United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Sondland, Gordon D (1957- ) Republican Party impeachment House of Representatives House Committee on Intelligence Democratic Party

The Impeachment Inquiry’s Main Players

Here are the lawmakers to watch as the process unfolds.

Mr. Sondland, who told other presidential advisers that Mr. Trump had put him in charge of Ukraine policy, faces a challenging morning as lawmakers will grill him about conflicts between his previous closed-door testimony and versions of events offered by other witnesses.

Mr. Sondland has already been compelled to amend his testimony once by saying that he now recalled telling a senior Ukrainian official that the release of frozen American security aid probably depended on a public commitment to investigate Democrats, a revision he made only after another Trump administration official told investigators about the conversation.

While Republicans derided many previous witnesses for offering only secondhand accounts, Mr. Sondland was in direct contact with Mr. Trump and will be asked about the president’s instructions to him. Along with Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, Mr. Sondland was at the center of the effort to press Ukraine to turn up damaging information about Democrats.

He will be asked in particular about a telephone conversation he had with Mr. Trump on July 26, the day after the president pressed President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine to “do us a favor” by investigating Democrats. Mr. Sondland was on the outdoor patio of a restaurant in Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, and the president spoke loudly enough that the ambassador held the phone away from his ear, allowing others at the table to hear, including an embassy official who told House investigators about it last Friday.

As Republicans seek to protect Mr. Trump, they may portray Mr. Sondland as acting on his own to link the security aid to the investigations without explicit direction from the president.

Ms. Cooper has said that there was a consensus within the government that Ukraine was making progress on corruption when the White House abruptly froze the security aid without explanation for a review. Mr. Hale has described pushing unsuccessfully for the State Department to defend Marie L. Yovanovitch, the ambassador to Ukraine who was targeted by Mr. Giuliani and ultimately removed from her post.

  • The three witnesses have already appeared for closed-door depositions in the inquiry. Read transcripts or key excerpts from their testimony here: Mr. Sondland, Ms. Cooper, Mr. Hale.

  • Mr. Trump repeatedly pressured Mr. Zelensky to investigate people and issues of political concern to Mr. Trump, including the former vice president. Here’s a timeline of events since January.

  • A C.I.A. officer who was once detailed to the White House filed a whistle-blower complaint on Mr. Trump’s interactions with Mr. Zelensky. Read the complaint.

Video

transcript

Who Are the Main Characters in the Whistle-Blower’s Complaint?

President Trump’s personal lawyer. The prosecutor general of Ukraine. Joe Biden’s son. These are just some of the names mentioned in the whistle-blower’s complaint. What were their roles? We break it down.

Congressman: “Sir, let me repeat my question: Did you ever speak to the president about this complaint?” Congress is investigating allegations that President Trump pushed a foreign government to dig up dirt on his Democratic rivals. “It’s just a Democrat witch hunt. Here we go again.” At the heart of an impeachment inquiry is a nine-page whistle-blower complaint that names over two dozen people. Not counting the president himself, these are the people that appear the most: First, Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudolph Giuliani. According to documents and interviews, Giuliani has been involved in shadowy diplomacy on behalf of the president’s interests. He encouraged Ukrainian officials to investigate the Biden family’s activities in the country, plus other avenues that could benefit Trump like whether the Ukrainians intentionally helped the Democrats during the 2016 election. It was an agenda he also pushed on TV. “So you did ask Ukraine to look into Joe Biden.” “Of course I did!” A person Giuliani worked with, Yuriy Lutsenko, Ukraine’s former prosecutor general. He pushed for investigations that would also benefit Giuliani and Trump. Lutsenko also discussed conspiracy theories about the Bidens in the U.S. media. But he later walked back his allegations, saying there was no evidence of wrongdoing by the Bidens. This is where Hunter Biden comes in, the former vice president’s son. He served on the board of a Ukrainian energy company run by this guy, who’s had some issues with the law. While Biden was in office, he along with others, called for the dismissal of Lutsenko’s predecessor, a prosecutor named Viktor Shokin, whose office was overseeing investigations into the company that Hunter Biden was involved with. Shokin was later voted out by the Ukrainian government. Lutsenko replaced him, but was widely criticized for corruption himself. When a new president took office in May, Volodymyr Zelensky, Zelensky said that he’d replace Lutsenko. Giuliani and Trump? Not happy. They viewed Lutsenko as their ally. During a July 25 call between Trump and the new Ukrainian president, Trump defended him, saying, “I heard you had a prosecutor who is very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair.” In that phone call, Trump also allegedly asked his counterpart to continue the investigation into Joe Biden, who is his main rival in the 2020 election. Zelensky has publicly denied feeling pressured by Trump. “In other words, no pressure.” And then finally, Attorney General William Barr, who also came up in the July 25 call. In the reconstructed transcript, Trump repeatedly suggested that Zelensky’s administration could work with Barr and Giuliani to investigate the Bidens and other matters of political interest to Trump. Since the whistle-blower complaint was made public, Democrats have criticized Barr for dismissing allegations that Trump had violated campaign finance laws during his call with Zelensky and not passing along the complaint to Congress. House Democrats have now subpoenaed several people mentioned in the complaint, as an impeachment inquiry into the president’s conduct continues.

Westlake Legal Group vidxx-trump-ukraine-1-videoSixteenByNineJumbo1600 What to Watch For in Day 4 of the Trump Impeachment Inquiry Hearings Zelensky, Volodymyr United States Politics and Government Trump, Donald J Trump-Ukraine Whistle-Blower Complaint and Impeachment Inquiry Sondland, Gordon D (1957- ) Republican Party impeachment House of Representatives House Committee on Intelligence Democratic Party

President Trump’s personal lawyer. The prosecutor general of Ukraine. Joe Biden’s son. These are just some of the names mentioned in the whistle-blower’s complaint. What were their roles? We break it down.CreditCredit…Illustration by The New York Times

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Hong Kong Open golf tournament postponed amid social unrest

Westlake Legal Group Hong-Kong Hong Kong Open golf tournament postponed amid social unrest fox-news/world/world-regions/hong-kong fox-news/sports/golf fnc/sports fnc fbc9c1a8-5e8e-5698-96ca-952337592621 Associated Press article

The Hong Kong Open golf tournament has been postponed because of violent unrest in the city.

The tournament was scheduled to be held at Hong Kong Golf Club from Nov. 28 to Dec. 1.

A statement posted on the Hong Kong Open’s website said the European Tour made the decision to postpone in conjunction with the tournament’s co-sanctioning partner at the Asian Tour, and that an attempt will be made to reschedule it for early next year.

Unrest has gripped the semi-autonomous Chinese city for more than five months.

Addressing ongoing safety concerns, European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley says “we feel this is the correct, but unfortunate, course of action.”

Westlake Legal Group Hong-Kong Hong Kong Open golf tournament postponed amid social unrest fox-news/world/world-regions/hong-kong fox-news/sports/golf fnc/sports fnc fbc9c1a8-5e8e-5698-96ca-952337592621 Associated Press article   Westlake Legal Group Hong-Kong Hong Kong Open golf tournament postponed amid social unrest fox-news/world/world-regions/hong-kong fox-news/sports/golf fnc/sports fnc fbc9c1a8-5e8e-5698-96ca-952337592621 Associated Press article

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Democratic Debate: What You Need To Know About Wednesday’s Face-Off

Westlake Legal Group hsieh_angela_politics_demdebates_3-1-_wide-91ad9d8384374998b0f97222ba44c155f4178c5a-s1100-c15 Democratic Debate: What You Need To Know About Wednesday's Face-Off

Ten Democrats are debating in Atlanta on Wednesday, beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Angela Hsieh/NPR hide caption

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Angela Hsieh/NPR

Westlake Legal Group  Democratic Debate: What You Need To Know About Wednesday's Face-Off

Ten Democrats are debating in Atlanta on Wednesday, beginning at 9 p.m. ET.

Angela Hsieh/NPR

Amid a slew of public impeachment hearings, Democratic presidential candidates are gathering in Atlanta to debate once again. This round also comes less than three months before the first primaries and caucuses.

Ten candidates made the cut, down from a record of 12 in October’s debate.

Here’s what you need to know (and here’s what to watch for):

How to watch a live stream of the debate

MSNBC and The Washington Post are hosting the debate, which is scheduled to start at 9 p.m. ET and last for two hours.

You will be able to watch the broadcast on MSNBC. It will stream on MSNBC.com and washingtonpost.com, as well as in the NBC News and Post mobile apps. You’ll be able to listen to the debate on SiriusXM Channel 118 and TuneIn.

NPR.org will host a live fact check and analysis of the debate to read while you watch. Subscribe to The NPR Politics Podcast for post-debate analysis.

Which candidates will be there?

The Democrats who qualified based on polling and fundraising are:

Joe Biden, former vice president
Cory Booker, senator from New Jersey
Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Ind.
Tulsi Gabbard, representative from Hawaii
Kamala Harris, senator from California
Amy Klobuchar, senator from Minnesota
Bernie Sanders, senator from Vermont
Tom Steyer, billionaire business executive and activist
Elizabeth Warren, senator from Massachusetts
Andrew Yang, founder of Venture for America

Two candidates who debated in October will not be on stage this time. Former housing Secretary Julián Castro did not reach the threshold, and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke has dropped out of the race.

Read more about the debate requirements.

Who is moderating and what is the format?

Four women will be running the show: Rachel Maddow of MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show; Andrea Mitchell, NBC News chief foreign affairs correspondent; Kristen Welker, NBC News White House correspondent; and Ashley Parker, a Post White House reporter.

As NBC News has reported, the hosts will ask a “balanced number of questions” to each candidate. There will be four segments. Candidates will have 75 seconds to answer direct questions and 45 seconds for follow-ups, as allowed by the moderators. In the last debate, Warren ended up with far more speaking time than other candidates.

Get caught up: What’s happened since the last round?

Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick entered the race last week. Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is reconsidering whether to jump in himself. O’Rourke, as noted above, dropped out; so has Republican primary challenger Mark Sanford and Democratic Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan.

Buttigieg has taken Warren’s place as the surging candidate of the moment.

The group of female freshman lawmakers who have come to be called “The Squad” have split when it comes to presidential endorsements. Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts is backing Warren, while Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortze of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan have all endorsed Sanders.

Warren explained how she would pay for “Medicare for All” amid criticism that the candidate with a plan for everything was falling short when it came to health care.

More reporting you don’t want to miss

Recent features on the state of the race:

Interviews with the candidates: NPR’s Off Script video series puts candidates at a table with an NPR host and two voters; listen back to in-depth interviews from The NPR Politics Podcast’s On The Trail series.

Policy fix: Get caught up on where the candidates stand on health care, immigration, the environment, guns, Democratic processes and trade.

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LeBron sets triple-double mark, Lakers hold off OKC 112-107

Westlake Legal Group LeBron-James2 LeBron sets triple-double mark, Lakers hold off OKC 112-107 fox-news/sports/nba/los-angeles-lakers fox-news/sports/nba fox-news/person/lebron-james fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 7a48285e-fb16-5818-9cc8-c8ea5fd579df

To LeBron James, triple-doubles are not a goal.

They are only a side effect of the consistent, brilliant all-around play he has been dishing out for 17 NBA seasons, with no slowdown in sight.

Triple-doubles also don’t mean much to LeBron without wins attached to them, so James was pleased when his latest statistical superlative occurred during yet another successful night for the surging Los Angeles Lakers.

James became the first player in NBA history to record a triple-double against every team in the league, and Anthony Davis scored 34 points during the Lakers’ fifth straight victory, 112-107 over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday night.

James finished with 25 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists to post a triple-double against his 30th opponent for the NBA-leading Lakers, who have won 12 of 13 after a perfect four-game homestand. James was more surprised than thrilled by his latest statistical achievement, particularly while a different statistic glared at him from the box score.

“Coach (Frank) Vogel came in here and said, ‘Congratulations,’ and I thought he was joking about my seven turnovers,” James said. “I really don’t know what to think about it. I just think it’s a pretty cool stat to know, and I’m glad it happened in a win.”

James has five triple-doubles in the Lakers’ last 10 games, getting four in victories. There’s a reason for this spree: Although James has constantly filled the stat sheet since he joined the league in 2003, he is leading the NBA this season with 11.1 assists per game, nearly four more than his career average. He has at least 10 assists in six consecutive games, the longest streak of his career.

Vogel has put the ball in James’ hands constantly on offense, and his playmaking acumen has grown along with his chemistry with Davis, as they demonstrated repeatedly against the Thunder. Seven of LeBron’s assists came on baskets by Davis.

“Amazing,” Davis said. “To be able to do that against every team is something special. I mean, (it’s) trippy that he’s been playing for a long time, so it was a matter of time before it happened, but just a tribute to all his hard work.”

James is fifth in NBA history with 86 triple-doubles, but the four players in front of him — Oscar Robertson, Russell Westbrook, Lakers great Magic Johnson and Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd — hadn’t done it against 30 teams. Kidd, who did it against 28 teams, has served as a role model for James’ efforts as a tall point guard.

“He’s just playing terrific basketball,” Vogel said. “For him to be doing what he’s doing in his 17th year is just nothing short of remarkable. There’s no reason to believe he can’t sustain that for the rest of the season and help us make a real strong playoff push.”

Dennis Schröder scored 20 of his season-high 31 points in a phenomenal first half for the Thunder, who have lost four of five despite two solid performances at Staples Center. Danilo Gallinari added 25 points in his former home arena, and Nerlens Noel had 15.

“That’s why (James) is considered probably the best of all time, but I think we did a great job on him,” Schröder said. “They obviously hit some tough shots.”

One night after the Thunder barely missed an upset win over the Clippers thanks to a last-minute 3-pointer by former star Paul George, Oklahoma City couldn’t quite catch up to the powerful Lakers despite keeping the game close all night.

“There’s a lot of things we did well in there,” Oklahoma City coach Billy Donovan said. “But, you know, we came up short in all these games. I think the one sign you can point to is both teams, the Clippers and the Lakers, are really, really good teams, so we’re competing well at a high level. But we’ve just got to do more in order to be able to finish and close out games.”

The Thunder won’t have to wait long for a rematch: These teams meet again in Oklahoma City in three days.

TIP-INS

Thunder: F Hamidou Diallo missed his third straight game with a left knee sprain. … Schröder got a technical foul in the third quarter for confronting Davis at the free throw line after Davis dunked and was fouled.

Lakers: Kyle Kuzma left the court in the second quarter with an eye abrasion after teenager Darius Bazley hit him in the right side of his face with an elbow on a drive. Kuzma returned to the bench in the second half, but with obvious damage above his eye. He didn’t return to the game, although Vogel said he was available if necessary. The Lakers plan to re-evaluate him within the next 24 hours.

CLOSEOUT SEQUENCE

James’ 3-pointer put the Lakers up 109-98 with 3:08 to play, but the Thunder scored nine straight points to cut the Lakers’ lead to two on Gallinari’s free throws with 1:24 left.

After Danny Green got a key offensive rebound for the Lakers, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope drilled a 3-pointer with 55 seconds left. James missed two free throws moments later to keep the Thunder in it, but Oklahoma City couldn’t score again.

POINT GUARDS BEHAVE

Chris Paul had four points, 10 assists and five rebounds for the Thunder, and he didn’t appear to clash with Rajon Rondo, his opponent in a fight early last season while he was with the Rockets. Rondo had eight points and a season-high 10 assists.

UP NEXT

Thunder: Host the Lakers on Friday.

Lakers: Visit the Thunder on Friday.

Westlake Legal Group LeBron-James2 LeBron sets triple-double mark, Lakers hold off OKC 112-107 fox-news/sports/nba/los-angeles-lakers fox-news/sports/nba fox-news/person/lebron-james fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 7a48285e-fb16-5818-9cc8-c8ea5fd579df   Westlake Legal Group LeBron-James2 LeBron sets triple-double mark, Lakers hold off OKC 112-107 fox-news/sports/nba/los-angeles-lakers fox-news/sports/nba fox-news/person/lebron-james fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 7a48285e-fb16-5818-9cc8-c8ea5fd579df

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LSU, Ohio State, Clemson, Georgia remain atop CFP rankings

The College Football Playoff rankings were unchanged at the top this week, with LSU first followed by Ohio State, Clemson and Georgia.

The selection committee’s third weekly rankings had little movement in the top 10, with Alabama fifth followed by Oregon, Utah, Penn State, Oklahoma and Minnesota.

The committee could face an interesting decision with Alabama in the coming weeks. The Crimson Tide lost quarterback Tua Tagovailoa for the season to a hip injury Saturday. Alabama faces Western Carolina this weekend, so playing backup Mac Jones shouldn’t make much difference. On Thanksgiving weekend, the Tide will face Auburn with its No. 2 quarterback, which should give the committee a better read on what kind of a team Alabama is now.

“We do not look forward,” said committee chairman Rob Mullens, who is also Oregon’s athletic director. “Our charge is to rank the teams based on their body of work through week 12, and that’s what we did. Obviously, we’ll watch the games moving forward and evaluate them after that.”

Minnesota and Baylor, both of which lost for the first time last weekend, dropped in the rankings. Minnesota went from eighth to 10th after losing at Iowa. Baylor slipped from 13th to 14th after blowing a 25-point lead to Oklahoma.

Ohio State and Penn State play this weekend in a game that could essentially eliminate the Nittany Lions from the playoff race.

The highest-ranked team from outside the Power Five conferences is Memphis at 18th, one ahead of American Athletic Conference rival Cincinnati, and two ahead of Boise State from the Mountain West.

The highest-ranked team from outside the Power Five with a conference championship receives a bid to one of the New Year’s Six bowls.

WHERE IS THIS GOING?

It certainly looks as if the Southeastern Conference is positioned to have two teams in the final four, but it’s far from a slam dunk.

Tagovailoa’s injury complicates the evaluation of Alabama, and it is difficult to see how it does anything but harm the Crimson Tide’s chances. There is no way to argue the Tide is as good without one of the two or three best quarterbacks in the country and with a backup who has shown to be capable but not a star.

“We are aware of who’s available in what games, and we make an evaluation based on watching the games and the results,” Mullens said.

Of course, the rest of Alabama’s roster is still about as talented and deep as it gets in college football. There is a case to be made that if Jones and Alabama win at Auburn in impressive fashion they could get the Cardale Jones bump from the committee. You might remember in 2014, Jones stepped in for an injured J.T. Barrett in the Big Ten championship game and led Ohio State to a historic 59-0 rout of Wisconsin. That game nudged the Buckeyes past TCU and Baylor and into the fourth seed.

The problem for Alabama is unless LSU collapses down the stretch, the Tide is locked out of the SEC championship game. Alabama was probably going to need some help working its way back into the top four even before Tagovailoa’s injury. Now, it seems the Tide will need some real chaos in other conferences to extend its streak of playoff appearances to six.

So that leaves LSU and Georgia sitting in the top four and on course to meet in the SEC championship game. Barring upsets over the next two weeks, LSU will enter unbeaten and Georgia will be 11-1. (Note: Texas A&M is now the SEC’s Agent of Chaos, playing at Georgia on Saturday and at LSU next week).

If Georgia were to win the SEC, beating an unbeaten LSU in the process, it is probably safe to assume the Tigers would still have done enough with victories against Alabama, Florida, Auburn and Texas to stay in the top four.

Twice previously a team that has not won its conference has reached the playoff, but neither Ohio State in 2016 nor Alabama in 2017 reached their conference title game. No team has lost its conference title game and made the playoff. That would be a little weird. Also, the previous cases of a team getting into the playoff without winning its conference included Ohio State getting in over Penn State, the champion of the Big Ten, and Alabama at 11-1 getting in over several two-loss conference champions.

Neither scenario seems likely this time around, though there are some real traps laid out for the teams at the top of the Big 12 over the next two weeks and many of the Big Ten’ best teams still have to play each other.

LSU winning out and handing Georgia a second loss probably shuts down any chance of the SEC getting two teams in the playoff, but here’s a tricky one. If the Bulldogs lose to Texas A&M and beat LSU, does the committee leave out Georgia and still go with LSU?

Here’s the big question: If the SEC gets two teams in this year, shutting out 12-1 champions from the Big 12 and Pac-12, do those conference join the Big Ten and start making serious noise about expansion?

Westlake Legal Group Ed-Orgeron LSU, Ohio State, Clemson, Georgia remain atop CFP rankings fox-news/sports/ncaa/ohio-state-buckeyes fox-news/sports/ncaa/lsu-tigers fox-news/sports/ncaa/georgia-bulldogs fox-news/sports/ncaa/clemson-tigers fox-news/sports/ncaa-fb fox-news/sports/ncaa fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 9f3c09c8-236c-5491-bbc0-b204daf71ef8   Westlake Legal Group Ed-Orgeron LSU, Ohio State, Clemson, Georgia remain atop CFP rankings fox-news/sports/ncaa/ohio-state-buckeyes fox-news/sports/ncaa/lsu-tigers fox-news/sports/ncaa/georgia-bulldogs fox-news/sports/ncaa/clemson-tigers fox-news/sports/ncaa-fb fox-news/sports/ncaa fnc/sports fnc Associated Press article 9f3c09c8-236c-5491-bbc0-b204daf71ef8

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Get Caught Up: Key Takeaways From Tuesday’s Impeachment Hearing

Westlake Legal Group ap_19323528371503-67ea5baccc764282a916682dfa0d0344f7263fec-s1100-c15 Get Caught Up: Key Takeaways From Tuesday's Impeachment Hearing

Jennifer Williams (right) and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman are sworn in to testify before the House Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill Tuesday. Jacquelyn Martin/AP hide caption

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Westlake Legal Group  Get Caught Up: Key Takeaways From Tuesday's Impeachment Hearing

Jennifer Williams (right) and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman are sworn in to testify before the House Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill Tuesday.

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

As House Ukraine hearings opened their second week Tuesday, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said there won’t be enough votes to remove President Trump in the Senate if Democrats trigger an impeachment trial.

The Kentucky Republican told reporters he would convene a Senate trial as required by the Constitution if he receives articles of impeachment from the House — but he reiterated that he believes Trump would prevail.

“It’s inconceivable to me that there would be 67 to remove the president from office,” McConnell said.

House Democrats press forward

Democrats in the House nonetheless convened their latest public hearing on the other side of the Capitol. They heard from three current or former White House insiders who listened firsthand when Trump asked his Ukrainian counterpart for investigations that could help him in the 2020 election.

A fourth witness, Ambassador Kurt Volker, was an instrumental part of the parallel foreign policy for Ukraine run by Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani — although Volker said he didn’t know in real time the object of their work was to get the Ukrainians to help Trump politically.

As for the current and former White House officials, each was concerned — but they did not agree on why or what action should result.

Lt. Col. Vindman: “My worst fear”

Lt. Col Alexander Vindman, an Eastern Europe specialist detailed to the National Security Council, said he felt Trump leaned inappropriately on President Volodymyr Zelenskiy because of the power disparity between the two men and because Trump mentioned former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump’s political foe.

“Frankly I couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” Vindman said. “It was probably an element of shock that maybe, in certain regards, my worst fear of how our Ukraine policy could play out, was playing out — and how this was likely to have significant implications for U.S. national security.”

Can’t see the video? Click here.

Vindman reported his concerns to White House lawyers with whom he already had a channel open from an earlier, related episode, as well as a few other people inside the government — one of whom may have blown the whistle on the whole story.

Jennifer Williams: “Unusual and inappropriate”

Jennifer Williams, a foreign service officer detailed to the staff of Vice President Mike Pence, said she found the call “unusual and inappropriate” but said she didn’t hear a “demand” from Trump.

Zelenskiy did broach frozen assistance for Ukraine with Pence at a meeting in Warsaw, Williams said. Although it still isn’t clear how or when the Ukrainian side learned about the halt in aid, Williams’ testimony underscored that when the Ukrainians learned about it in a news story, it caught their attention at the highest levels.

Tim Morrison: Political consequences

Tim Morrison, a former policy specialist who served as Vindman’s supervisor, told lawmakers that what worried him were the political consequences that could result if Trump’s remarks became public.

But Morrison, who holds a strong view about Trump’s power under the Constitution, has told investigators that no one can tell a president what to do or say and that no one has a higher say over foreign affairs under the Constitution.

Here are other key moments that stood out:

1. Trump was briefed about “corruption” — but didn’t mention it

Vindman’s duties included helping prepare materials for use by Trump when he speaks to foreign leaders. The ones compiled for Trump’s calls with Zelenskiy included mentions about corruption-fighting in Ukraine, Vindman said.

But as Democratic counsel Daniel Goldman established, Trump didn’t mention corruption-fighting on either of the phone calls they heard — even though an official account of the first one suggested the two leaders did discuss it.

Trump and supporters have said since the Ukraine affair blew up that the White House froze assistance to Ukraine was about concerns over “corruption,” even though the Defense Department and other agencies certified beforehand they were satisfied enough to release the aid.

Vindman’s testimony reinforced that although some administration officials focused on corruption in real time this year as key events were playing out — the president then didn’t.

2. Trump’s Tweets resonated

Democrats slammed Trump last week for criticizing an impeachment witness on Twitter even as she was appearing before the House Intelligence Committee live on TV. But the president was undeterred and, over the weekend, faulted Williams in another tweet.

She was asked about that on Tuesday.

“It certainly surprised me,” Williams said. “I was not expecting to be called out by name.”

Rep. Jim Himes, D-Conn., repeated earlier criticisms of the president and echoed the prospect that Democrats might take Trump’s posts into consideration when they draft articles of impeachment.

“It looked an awful lot like witness intimidation and tampering, and, in effect, an effort to try to get you to, perhaps, shape your testimony today,” Himes said.

3. Lawmakers clashed over testimony about the whistleblower

Vindman had talked with White House attorneys after a July 10 episode involving prospective Ukraine investigations. He returned to the same lawyers after Trump’s July 25 call.

Vindman told members of Congress he then communicated with a few other people about what he’d heard, which he called part of his job coordinating policy with the State Department, intelligence community and elsewhere.

Intelligence Community Ranking Member Devin Nunes, R-Calif., asked Vindman to identify those with whom he spoke in the intelligence community, but Vindman’s attorney intervened, as did Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif.

Can’t see the video? Click here.

The strong implication from the exchange was that Vindman spoke to the person who later filed the complaint to the intelligence community inspector general that animated the Ukraine affair — and which has been largely borne out by subsequent witnesses.

GOP cries foul

Republicans howled — angry at what they called the unfairness of the process and at what they called a broken promise by Schiff to convene a hearing with the whistleblower at which that person could be cross-examined.

Schiff was unmoved and stopped subsequent attempts to ask Vindman the same question. The whistleblower is entitled to remain anonymous, the chairman said.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said the exchanges exposed that Schiff must know who the person is — as, Jordan suggested, must others — despite their denials.

“The witness has testified in his deposition that he doesn’t know who the whistleblower is,” Jordan said. “You have said, even though no one believes you, you don’t know who the whistleblower is. So how is this outing the whistleblower to find out who this individual is?”

Translation: Schiff and Vindman must know, per Jordan, in order to know not to answer the question.

4. Members tussled over the facts and alleged crimes

Few of the underlying facts in the Ukraine affair are in dispute, including by the White House or its supporters.

And Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y. restated on Tuesday that for all “the hysteria and frenzied media coverage,” the frozen aid for Ukraine was ultimately released and no political investigations ultimately were undertaken.

Even so, said Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, Democrats keep changing their allegations against Trump.

What began as an investigation into an ostensible “quid-pro-quo” has changed into one over alleged “bribery,” he said, citing press reports that polls showed that phrase tested better with voters.

“It’s bad enough that the Democrats have forbidden White House lawyers from participating in this proceeding,” Ratcliffe said. “It’s hard enough to defend yourself without your lawyers present. But what’s even worse is trying to defend yourself against an accusation that keeps changing in the middle of the proceeding.”

Chairman: We determine the charges

Schiff used an opening later in the hearing to respond.

“Bribery does involve a quid pro quo,” he said. “Bribery involves the conditioning of an official act for something of value.”

Schiff said thing of “value” could include a meeting with Trump or the roughly $400 million in U.S. assistance for Ukraine the White House froze for a time this year. The reason for the paucity of the term “bribery” in witness testimony, he said, was that witnesses were there only to say what they know.

“It will be our job to decide whether the impeachable act of bribery has occurred,” Schiff said.

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