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January 1, Republicans Stand with Trump on Ukraine Call, For Now | Giuliani: ‘I’ll Be the Hero’ | Military Suicides Surge



This Day in History | 1964

1964: The government publicly releases the report of the Warren Commission, which concludes that Lee Harvey Oswald had acted alone in assassinating President John F. Kennedy.

Good morning Middle Americans!

Republicans are straining under the uncertainty of being swept up in the most serious test yet of their alliance with the Trump White House.  Once ‘America’s mayor,’ Giuliani became a fierce Trump partisan whose Ukraine gambit is at the core of whistleblower complaint. Also today, military suicides surged this year to a record high among active duty troops, continuing a frustrating trend that Pentagon officials say they are struggling to counter.  Read all about it. 

– Fraser Dixon 

Republicans Twist as Trump’s Ukraine Storm Rages

(Politico) – A handful of GOP lawmakers have evinced concern about the president’s call with Ukraine: Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) found it “troubling.” Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) has called it “inappropriate.” Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) said on Thursday, “I want to say to the president, ‘This is not okay. That conversation is not okay.’

But even uncomfortable Republicans are so far making clear they aren’t standing with the Democrats (though Romney has not outright dismissed the House’s impeachment inquiry). While they wouldn’t have brought up investigating former Vice President Joe Biden with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, so far Republicans don’t think it’s a high crime or misdemeanor that could lead them toward impeachment.

Politico has the latest here

Rudy Giuliani: ‘You Should Be Happy for Your Country That I Uncovered This’

(The Atlantic) – Even among the president’s closest allies, Giuliani is now the subject of scorn. When I reached him by phone this morning, following House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff’s release of the full whistle-blower complaint at the center of the Ukraine scandal, he was, put simply, very angry.

“It is impossible that the whistle-blower is a hero and I’m not. And I will be the hero! These morons—when this is over, I will be the hero,” Giuliani told me.

“I’m not acting as a lawyer. I’m acting as someone who has devoted most of his life to straightening out government,” he continued, sounding out of breath. “Anything I did should be praised.”

Read more from the Atlantic Here

Military Sees Frustrating Trend as Suicides Spike

(AP) – The Army, Navy and Marine Corps all saw the rate of suicides go up as well as the overall numbers, with only the Air Force showing a decrease, according to data released by the Pentagon Thursday. Suicides among members of the Reserves and the National Guard also grew.

The difficulties involved in identifying service members with possible problems and finding ways to prevent suicides were underscored earlier this month when the Navy reported that three crew members who served on the USS George H.W. Bush took their own lives within a week.

Once ‘America’s mayor,’ Giuliani became a fierce Trump partisan whose Ukraine gambit is at the core of whistleblower complaint. 

Find out more from the AP here

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