TimesVideoWatch Live: Day 2 of Jerome Powell’s testimony on Capitol Hill Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will testify on the semi-annual monetary policy report to Congress ahead of a virtual House Financial Services Committee hearing.
TimesVideoWatch Live: Senate Hearing on Capitol Riot The Homeland Security Committee and Rules Committee are holding a joint hearing to examine the security failures that led to a violation of the U.S. Capitol on January 6.
TimesVideoWatch Live: Jerome Powell testifies on economy On Tuesday Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will testify on the Monetary Policy Report, a biannual report, before a virtual Senate Banking Committee hearing.
WASHINGTON – The Senate Intelligence Committee will examine the influence of Russia and other foreign powers on extremist anti-government groups like those who helped mobilize the deadly attack on Capitol Hill last month, the new president said from the panel in an interview this week.
As the executive embarks on a nationwide manhunt to hold members of the crowd accountable, Democrat Senator Mark Warner of Virginia said it would be of vital importance to the influential committee to take a “meaningful dive” into anti-government extremism in the United States. , the links that these groups maintain with organizations in Europe and the amplification of their message by Russia.
With the power-sharing deal between Democrats and Republicans in place, Mr Warner took over as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee this week, after four years as vice-chairman. In an interview on Wednesday, Mr Warner laid out his priorities, such as the spread of disinformation, the rise of extremist anti-government groups, China’s dominance of key technologies, Russia’s widespread hacking of government computer networks, and strengthening surveillance protections in intelligence agencies. .
White House ordered the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to work with the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI on a new analysis of the threat of domestic extremist groups and the support they receive from foreign powers or foreign organizations .
These anti-government extremists include QAnon, the conspiratorial movement, and the Proud Boys, a far-right organization that Canada named as a terrorist group on Wednesday. Supporters of these groups and others were part of the attack on the Capitol building on January 6, which was aimed at stopping the transfer of power to the Biden administration.
The problem is difficult for the intelligence community. By law, the most influential agencies, including the CIA and the National Security Agency, are not allowed to collect information at the national level. But Avril D. Haines, the director of national intelligence, has some oversight over the intelligence services of the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, which can collect information at the national level. Other intelligence agencies are looking into foreign attempts to influence American groups.
While preliminary work on Ms Haines’ office is underway, administration officials said the scan is unlikely to be completed until April. But there seems to be great interest in moving quickly on the matter in the Senate. At Ms Haines’ confirmation hearing last month, a number of lawmakers raised the issue of domestic extremist groups.
The Senate Intelligence Committee will examine both white supremacist groups on the right and anti-fascist, or antifa, groups on the left, although Mr. Warner was quick to say that the danger the groups posed was not the even. “I don’t want to make a bogus equivalency argument here,” he said, “because the vast majority of them are on the right.”
Like the intelligence community, Mr. Warner’s group of experts could face their own jurisdictional challenges as a handful of other House and Senate groups rally to play a role in the study of the consequences of the siege of the Capitol and that the leaders of Congress consider creating an independent commission.
Over the past four years, the committee has done considerable work on disinformation efforts. Mr Warner said this experience could guide the panel as it examines how extremist groups spread propaganda and how foreign powers amplify it.
Unlike most corners of Capitol Hill, and unlike the House Intelligence Committee, Mr. Warner’s panel has managed to operate, for the most part, with bipartisan agreement. All but one of the senators on the committee supported his five-volume report on Russian interference. Completed last year, the Senate investigation was perhaps the final word on Moscow’s meddling efforts and which revealed Russia disrupted the 2016 election to help Donald J. Trump become president.
Mr Warner said on Wednesday it was important for him to preserve the committee’s bipartisan track record and that he intended to start working through closed-door meetings to make the case to other committee members about the threat that represent groups and how they might do it. be exploited by outside powers.
Democrats and Republicans on the committee have expressed interest in examining extremist anti-government groups, Mr. Warner said. But he acknowledged the political sensitivities after the attack on Capitol Hill and Mr. Trump’s support among the far-right factions of those groups. Arguing that anti-government groups are a problem not only in the United States but also in Europe is one way to reach consensus on the issue. The committee, Mr. Warner said, will begin its discussions in closed sessions so lawmakers can have a frank and less political discussion.
Beyond an investigation into anti-government extremism and foreign efforts to promote it, Mr Warner said the committee would work to push for new protections for whistleblowers and make it harder to fire inspectors general, government officials responsible for finding garbage, fraud. and abuse.
Mr Trump sacked Michael K. Atkinson, the inspector general of the intelligence community, last year. It was Mr. Atkinson who investigated the whistleblower’s complaint about Mr. Trump’s call with his Ukrainian counterpart in 2019 and ultimately delivered that report to Congress.
At Ms Haines’ confirmation hearing last month, Mr Warner began his questioning by describing how his own views about the Chinese government had changed, thoughts he repeated in his interview. He said he was wrong to believe that China would become more democratic the more it was introduced into the world order.
“I’m going to amaze you and admit that in terms of leadership, Trump was right,” Warner said Wednesday.
Mr Warner said he disagreed with John Ratcliffe, Mr Trump’s last national intelligence director, who argued that China was trying to interfere with the election. But Mr Warner said he believed China had “a very, very sophisticated effort to influence US policy.”
The Senate committee will also examine Chinese technology investments, building on the work that members of Congress have done on Beijing’s dominance over 5G, the next generation of mobile phone networks, Mr. Warner said. He said the United States needs to carefully assess its technology against China’s on artificial intelligence, facial recognition and quantum computing.
Having a government role in bringing some of the manufacturing industry back to the United States from China was an area of bipartisan agreement, Mr. Warner said, citing Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas and member of the Intelligence Committee.
“There is a coalition of supporters ready to take up China’s challenge,” Warner said. “China has learned the best lessons from British imperialism and American imperialism, and we find them in a kind of authoritarian capitalism model.
House Republicans will be forced to officially declare the conduct of Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene on Thursday, with Democrats scheduling a vote on whether to strip the first-year lawmaker of her committee duties.
The vote presents the latest bifurcation for Republicans as they attempt to navigate the aftermath of former President Donald J. Trump’s re-election defeat and grappling with their party’s future.
It will come at a particularly difficult time for Republicans in the House, coming a day after their leader, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, issued a statement condemning past comments by Ms Greene endorsing the violent behavior and theories of the plot – but clarified the party. did not intend to punish her.
Another sign of the party’s post-Trump turmoil came on Wednesday night, when House Republicans voted by secret ballot on whether to deprive Wyoming’s Rep. Liz Cheney, the 3rd House Republican, of her post as House Republican. management after having voted to remove Mr. Atout. Ms Cheney survived by a wide margin, but the vote nonetheless highlighted the party’s divisions.
On Thursday, the Democratic-led House will vote on a resolution removing Ms Greene from its two committees – the Budget Committee and the Education and Labor Committee – citing “the conduct she has exhibited”. While expelling a lawmaker from the chamber requires a two-thirds vote, censorship or removing any of a committee’s assignments requires a simple majority.
Mr McCarthy had tried to prevent his members from taking such a vote and spoke with Rep. Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the second House Democrat, by telephone on Wednesday to try to find a compromise. Mr McCarthy later told reporters he had offered to remove Ms Greene from committees and place her in a small business oversight group. Mr Hoyer declined the offer, he said, insisting that Ms Greene should not sit on any committee.
Some Republicans now argue that voting for the resolution would set a dangerous precedent, as it would in effect allow the majority party to dictate which minority party lawmakers are fit to sit on committees, a crucial pipeline for members to advance legislation. . Committee assignments have always been the prerogative of party leaders.
Others argue that members of Congress should not be punished for remarks they made before being elected. But Democrats said they were comfortable establishing a new set of rules under which statements like the ones Ms Greene made would cause banning from committees.
“A member of this House calls for assassinations – this is the new precedent,” said Rep. Jim McGovern, Democrat of Massachusetts and chairman of the rules committee. “If that’s the standard by which we remove people from committees, that’s fine with me.”
Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma, the top Republican on the Rules Committee, made no attempt to excuse Ms Greene’s comments, calling them “deeply offensive,” “disgusting” and “unworthy of a member of the Congress”. But he argued the matter should be referred to the ethics committee for a bipartisan group of lawmakers to consider.
“I’m very concerned about the precedent that another party chooses” to cut committee appointments, Cole said.
The House will vote on Thursday to strip Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of her powers on the committee, a senior Democrat said, forcing Congress Republicans to take a public stand on the Georgia rookie who endorsed conspiracy theories and calls for run Democratic politicians ahead of his election.
Maryland Rep. Steny Hoyer, No. 2 Democrat, said on Wednesday that he had spoken with Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, the Republican leader, and that “it is clear that there is no alternative to holding a floor vote on the resolution to be withdrawn. Representative Greene from her committee assignments. “
House Democrats, angered by a spate of social media posts made by Ms Greene before winning her seat in November, threatened earlier this week to make the unusual move to unilaterally move Ms Greene from education committees and the budget if The Republicans themselves did not act. Party leaders generally have authority over who represents them on committees.
The vote will force Republicans to officially state for the first time whether Ms Greene should be reprimanded for her past comments.
While most Republican lawmakers have been privately horrified by his rhetoric, some have argued that members of Congress should not be punished for remarks they made prior to their election and that allowing a party (in this case, the Democrats) to take unilateral action against a lawmaker in another party would set a dangerous precedent. Others are reluctant to take such a vote after former President Donald J. Trump rallies alongside Ms Greene.
Mr McCarthy met with Ms Greene on Tuesday evening in her office to discuss her past rhetoric and calls from members on both sides to remove her from committees. Mr McCarthy then met with a group of Republicans who control the conference committee’s missions, but no decision was ultimately made on whether or how to reprimand Ms Greene, according to people familiar with the discussions.
A spokesperson for Mr McCarthy declined to respond to Mr Hoyer’s announcement and said the Republican leader “will raise this issue with members later today.”
Mr Hoyer’s announcement comes hours before House Republicans meet at 4 p.m. on Wednesday to discuss the future of Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the No.3 Republican in the House. They are also expected to discuss the turmoil around Ms. Greene.
Mr. Trump’s supporters want to strip Ms. Cheney of her leadership position as a reward for her vote to impeach the former president. And a range of House and Senate Republicans and Trump critics want to strip Ms. Greene of her committee duties for endorsing false statements and using bigoted and violent language.
Ms. Greene’s behavior poses the most serious test for Republicans because her behavior is so outside the mainstream of American politics. The House Republicans meeting will be a turning point for the party as members wonder how to deal with two lawmakers who infuriated different wings of the party for very different reasons.
Ms Greene took advantage of the announcement on Wednesday, sending out a fundraising email minutes after Mr Hoyer released his statement, asking his supporters to “rush an emergency donation” to help defend her. The Georgia Republican began fundraising on Tuesday, claiming Democrats were unfairly targeting her for her beliefs, and said the effort earned her more than $ 160,000 in one day.
President Nancy Pelosi on Thursday berated Republican House leaders for appointing Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene to serve on the Education and Labor Committee, despite Ms. Greene’s earlier false claims that fatal school shootings in Parkland, Florida, and Newtown, Connecticut, were held.
Ms Greene, a first-term Georgian congresswoman with a history of supporting the pro-Trump movement QAnon, wrote on Facebook in 2018 that she agreed with one of her followers that the Parkland massacre which has killed 17 students was a “false flag”. event, a term used by conspiracy theorists to describe an act committed by one group – usually the government – for which another group is blamed.
In a video posted to YouTube in 2020 by her campaign, Ms Greene followed and harassed David Hogg, a Parkland survivor who was visiting Capitol Hill to lobby for gun safety measures. In the video, Ms Greene demanded he explain why he was “using children” to advance his cause, shouted that she was allowed to carry a gun and called him a “coward”.
Republican leaders announced this week that Ms Greene will be part of the House education panel.
At a press conference Thursday, Ms Pelosi expressed concern that Republican House leaders were comfortable assigning Ms Greene to the education committee “when she laughed at the murder of small children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, when she mocked the murder of high school teenagers at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
“What could they think – or think a word too generous for what they could do?” Ms. Pelosi said. “It is absolutely appalling.”
Ms Pelosi appeared to have been referring in part to a report last week from Media Matters for America, a liberal watchdog group, which said Ms Greene commented approvingly on Facebook in 2018 to a user who claimed the shooting at the The 2012 Newtown school, in which a gunman killed 26 people, including 20 small children, was staged. “This is all true,” Ms. Greene replied, according to the report, although the post appears to have been deleted.
Ms Greene’s penchant for conspiracy theories has created an enigma for Republican leaders and has privately infuriated many of her rank-and-file colleagues, who are upset with many of her comments as well as the flood of negative press they have attracted.
A spokesman for Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the minority leader, told Axios this week that Facebook posts recently posted by Ms Greene and reported by CNN, in which she discussed the execution of senior Democratic politicians , including Ms. Pelosi, were “deeply disturbing. . A spokesperson said Mr McCarthy was planning to “have a conversation” with her about them.
new video loaded: Janet Yellen is unanimously approved by the Senate committee
Janet Yellen is unanimously approved by the Senate committee
Janet Yellen’s appointment as Secretary of the Treasury was approved unanimously by the Senate Finance Committee on Friday. He will move towards the final vote by the entire Senate.
“It’s an urgent appointment – you look at yesterday’s unemployment figures still at the top of all-time records, and I hope that when Janet Yellen is in place she will work with us to come up with a strong economic package. “” I think in her testimony before this committee she really focused on how she was going to focus on Main Street rather than Wall Street, or at least and there are a lot of policies that she needs to continue on. to focus, and make sure that shadow the bank is not a key aspect of the challenges we face in ensuring that depositors’ interests are taken into account. But I really hope that she can lead another day at Treasury to focus on Main Street issues. “I have very strong disagreements with Dr Yellen over a number of her positions, particularly in the area of tax policy. committed to us to work with us on these issues and the concerns that we have. And I think the strong vote on our side to support it today is an indication that we want to engage. And I just want to ask my colleagues to engage with us, and Dr Yellen to engage with us as we develop new policies. “I congratulate Dr Yellen on his appointment. And I will say a second time that I will support it. “Mr. President, the final total is 26 yes, zero no.” “The nomination will be reported unanimously by the committee.”
Recent episodes of United States and politics
TimesVideoWatch Live: Senate Committee Holds Hearing on Lloyd Austin The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a hearing to consider the appointment of Lloyd J. Austin III, a retired three-star general, as Secretary of Defense.
new video loaded: House Rules Committee participates in heated impeachment exchange
House Rules Committee participates in heated impeachment exchange
The House Rules Committee met on Tuesday to debate a resolution calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment and strip President Trump of office.
“Trump instigated this attack, and there should be no doubt what Vice President Pence needs to do now. I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me in supporting this resolution. Most importantly, I urge Vice President Pence to do the right thing. “Our job as elected officials is to speak the truth. So my question to you, will you admit that Joe Biden won fair and square and that the election was not rigged or stolen? “On Thursday, January 7, when we concluded our business on the floor, Joe Biden became – Vice President Biden became President-elect Biden. This is how the process unfolds. “So I ask you to declare that the election was not stolen, that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won a fair and just victory. That’s the question. [arguing] “No the question, no the question you asked me was, ‘Is Joe Biden the vice president, is he vice – I said yes. “You just repeated the question. So Joe Biden won fair and square? “He won the election because the way the process works is the last chance to object on January 6 – and the last objection did not prevail.” “If we want to talk about healing, we have to talk about the truth.”
Recent episodes of United States and politics