Another former Trump administration official has reportedly been working on a book deal in the wake of the impeachment battle. Former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, who testified in the House hearings about the president’s Ukraine dealings, has been drafting a memoir.
The State Department has blacklisted five Iranian officials, who have been accused of preventing free and fair elections in the Islamic Republic. According to U.S. Special Representative Brian Hook, the sanctions were imposed on members of Iran’s Guardian Council and its Elections Supervision Committee.
On Tuesday, the Trump administration announced it’s imposing sanctions on a subsidiary of the Russian oil conglomerate Rosneft. The sanctions will freeze all assets held in the U.S. by Rosneft Trading SA, the Swiss-incorporated broker for the Russian oil company, and also target firm President Didier Casimiro. Private holders of interests in the firm will be given 90 days to divest from the company or risk having their assets frozen.
Senate Democrats are working on a number of proposals to limit the president’s powers to recall ambassadors. According to reports, Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) is drafting new rules aimed at limiting the president’s power over the State Department, including one which would grant Congress more authority to question the president over their decision to recall ambassadors.
According to former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bill Taylor, the State Department did not properly investigate the country’s role in alleged election meddling.
The Trump administration is bracing for a new battle with congressional Democrats over the proposed federal budget for fiscal year 2021. The $4.8 trillion budget, unveiled Monday, has proposed major cuts to wasteful spending, while keeping non-defense spending at $590 billion and allocating roughly $740 billion on national defense.