‘No one above law’, US court orders former WH counsel to comply with congressional subpoena
In a potentially significant setback for President Donald Trump, a US federal judge on Monday ordered a former White House counsel to comply with a congressional subpoena saying “no one is above the law” and “presidents are not kings”.
The president caught a break, however, from the Supreme Court, which temporarily stayed an appeals court ruling that required Trump to hand over his financial records to a House committee.
US District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s ruling would force Don McGahn, the counsel, to testify in hearings being held by the House of Representatives into allegations of obstructions of justice, corruption and abuse of power by President Donald Trump.
The department of justice has appealed against the ruling, whose implications are very significant, specially in regard to the ongoing impeachment inquiry against. If upheld, it would pave the pay for some key Trump White House officials to testify, and they include former National Security Adviser John Bolton.
The judge dismissed the White House’s key ground for preventing McGahn from testifying; that he was ”absolutely immune from compelled congressional testimony”.
The White House has blocked, not successfully always, other officials using a similar argument. And one of them has gone to court asking it to settle the question if he can defy a congressional subpoena on the orders of the White House.
China's high-tech Chinese research vessel, which was to dock at Sri Lanka's Hambantota Port, won't reach there as scheduled, according to a media report on Thursday, citing the port authorities. Newsfirst.lk website reported that the Harbour Master for the Hambantota Port said no vessel can enter the port without his permission. It said the Chinese ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship 'Yuan Wang 5' will not reach Hambantota Port on Thursday.
The average price of US retail gasoline fell below $4 per gallon on Thursday for the first time in months, giving some relief to drivers in the world's largest consumer of the fuel. The national average price for regular unleaded gas fell to $3.990 a gallon on Thursday, according to the American Automobile Association. The latest price drop may help President Joe Biden's administration and Democrats in Congress during November's midterm elections.
Russia and Ukraine accused each other of new shelling near the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant on Thursday ahead of a UN Security Council meeting to address concerns over the facility's security. Kyiv nuclear agency Energoatom said later that there had been fresh Russian shelling near one of the plant's six reactors that had caused "extensive smoke" and "several radiation sensors are damaged". The Security Council is expected to meet at 1900 GMT.
Much like with Covid-19, the monkeypox health crisis in the US is hitting Black and Hispanic Americans hard. Yet those groups are so far lagging in vaccination rates, early data obtained by Bloomberg News show. In some major US cities with outbreaks, White people are getting the majority of vaccinations, data collected by Bloomberg show. In Chicago, 55% of vaccines have gone to White people. In Washington, D.C., 63.5% of vaccine recipients identify as White.
A prominent Taliban cleric, Sheikh Rahimullah Haqqani, was killed in an attack in a seminary in Kabul when the attacker detonated explosives hidden in a plastic artificial leg on Thursday, according to officials and Taliban sources. It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast. Four Taliban sources told Reuters the attacker was someone who had previously lost his leg and had hidden the explosives in a plastic artificial leg.