WASHINGTON (AP) — For only the fourth time in U.S. history, the House of Representatives has started a presidential impeachment inquiry. House committees are trying to determine if President Donald Trump violated his oath of office by asking a foreign country to investigate a political opponent.
A quick summary of the latest news:
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
— More Americans approve of the impeachment investigation into President Donald Trump than disapprove of it, though only about one-third say the inquiry should be a top priority for Congress, according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
— House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff says the panels investigating impeachment could begin releasing transcripts of closed-door witness depositions early next week.
— The House impeachment inquiry is zeroing in on two White House lawyers. They were privy to a discussion about moving a memo recounting President Donald Trump’s phone call with the leader of Ukraine into a highly restricted computer system normally reserved for documents about covert action.
Four White House officials are scheduled to provide testimony to House impeachment investigators — though it’s unclear how many of them will do so, as The White House has urged officials not to testify in the impeachment proceedings.
Those scheduled for deposition are John Eisenberg, Trump’s deputy counsel for national security affairs; Robert Blair, a senior adviser to acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney; Michael Ellis, senior associate counsel to the president; and Brian McCormack of the Office of Management and Budget.
NUMBERS THAT MATTER
Only 33% of Americans believe the Trump impeachment inquiry should be a top priority for Congress, according to a new AP-NORC Center poll. Another 19% say the inquiry is important but should be a lower priority. Some 31% say it shouldn’t be done at all.
The same survey shows 47% approve of the inquiry that could result in articles of impeachment being drafted against Trump, while 38% disapprove. Predictably, far more Democrats support the probe than Republicans do: 83% of Democrats approve, compared with only 11% of Republicans.
— Thursday’s House vote to set the roadmap ahead in the Trump impeachment inquiry shows that the partisan divide on the issue has only deepened since the probe began:
— An AP-produced video outlines how a Senate trial would proceed if the House approves articles of impeachment against the president: