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Fate of ‘national security Democrats’ provides key to House majority
GOP hopes for impeachment backlash; these races tell a different story

From left, Democratic Reps. Mikie Sherrill of New Jersey, Abigail Spanberger of Virginia, and Elissa Slotkin of Michigan pose for a selfie taken by Rep. Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania in February 2019 after group photo of House Democrats wearing white at the State of the Union address to promote women's issues. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Four months ago, seven freshmen Democrats accelerated the impeachment process with an op-ed in The Washington Post. With less than a year before Election Day, their electoral fates are a microcosm of Republicans’ challenge to win back the House majority.

For much of the impeachment discussion and process, Republicans have been emboldened. They believe Democrats will be held accountable for the time spent investigating President Donald Trump and experience a backlash similar to the one Republicans faced in the late 1990s when President Bill Clinton was impeached.

Democrats fight for Elijah Cummings’ legacy — and a seat in Congress
Support from black women will be key in next Tuesday’s special election primary

Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, Democratic candidate for Maryland’s 7th District, greets guests before a service at the Zion Baptist Church in Baltimore, Md., on Sunday. She is running in a crowded Democratic primary to succeed her late husband, Rep. Elijah Cummings. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

BALTIMORE — Two dozen Democrats are running for the nomination in Maryland’s 7th District, but no one looms larger over the race than the late Elijah Cummings, whose death last fall prompted the upcoming special election.

What Cummings wanted in a successor — and what people think he would have wanted — have become big factors in this contest, where the two best-known candidates are his widow, Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, and his friend and predecessor, Kweisi Mfume, who left Congress in 1996 to lead the NAACP.

Subpoena for Bolton’s unpublished book would likely face fierce resistance
Intellectual property rights among issues that could entangle legislative branch, publisher

The forthcoming book by former national security adviser John Bolton could lead to a protracted fight if it is subpoenaed in President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial. (Win McNamee/Getty Images file photo)

Congress could subpoena the manuscript of former national security adviser John Bolton’s forthcoming book on his time in the White House, but such a move could raise concerns about intellectual property rights and lead to a fight between lawmakers and Bolton and his publishers.

“Either [chamber] of Congress has the ability to subpoena records, including unpublished manuscripts,” said Chris Armstrong, the former chief oversight counsel for the Senate Finance Committee.

Checks and Balance: This summer's conventions may be a bit unconventional
Some lobbyists aren’t entirely convinced the show is worth the investment

The Clintons and Kaines gather on stage as balloons drop at the end of the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

ANALYSIS | The quadrennial political conventions, where the party faithful publicly coalesce in cheerleading for their respective White House picks, play a lesser-known role — as sleep-away camp for K Street.

Away from the convention’s main stage, K Streeters are booking concert halls, hotel ballrooms and chic restaurants in the host cities for brunches, receptions and late-night, booze-infused concerts to fete their favorite politicians and bring them together with the corporate clients they represent.

Impeachment news roundup: Jan. 28
As Trump’s defense wraps up its case, debate over witnesses heats up

Republican Sen. Susan Collins arrives to the Capitol for the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on Monday. Collins is among those GOP senators Democrats are hoping will vote to hear more witnesses and subpoena documents. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

File updated 12:55 p.m.

As President Donald Trump’s legal team wraps up its defense of the president in his impeachment trial today, the debate over more witnesses is heating up as a vote on the issue gets closer.

Courts, without law for guidance, setting value of cryptoassets
Judges determining currency values receive little input from policymakers focused on other issues

Inconsistent classifications and ill-formed definitions of bitcoin and other digital assets are being left to the judiciary to sort out. (AFP via Getty Images)

Bankruptcy judges are used to deciding the value of assets, but for cryptocurrencies, which can halve or double in value in a matter of months, determining how much one party is owed gets tricky.

It’s an issue that could be mitigated by regulators or lawmakers, but despite myriad efforts focusing on digital assets this year, U.S. bankruptcy judges are unlikely to get much guidance, according to several lawyers who track the cryptocurrency industry.

How Maz Jobrani deals with hecklers
The ‘peaceful warrior’ is blissed out and rising above the f-bombs

Maz Jobrani will return to the Kennedy Center on Friday. (Don Emmert/AFP via Getty Images)

Maz Jobrani knows politics. He has a degree in political science. He’s spoken out on immigration. He’s toured the country with a comedy troupe named after a speech by George W. Bush.

Heck, he even had a bit part on “The West Wing.”

Pentagon using artificial intelligence to track wildfires, study chaos of combat
Head of military AI office promises more money for 2021 budget

National Guard helicopters drop water on a wildfire near Ojai, Calif., on Dec. 9, 2017. The Pentagon’s Joint Artificial Intelligence Center has been working with the National Guard to track natural disasters using AI tools. (David McNew/Getty Images file photo)

One year ago, Air Force Lt. Gen. John N.T. “Jack” Shanahan became the first director of a new Pentagon office created to act as a clearinghouse for all of the U.S. military’s work on artificial intelligence. Among a raft of near-term projects the office has taken up is one deploying computer vision technology to track and combat wildfires. 

Taking tools developed for Project Maven, an initiative to analyze and identify objects on the ground from videos shot by aerial drones during the fight against the Islamic State, the Pentagon’s office known as the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center has been working with National Guard units combating wildfires in California and hurricanes elsewhere.

The Bolton bombshell and the moral lessons of Watergate
Republicans would be wise to ponder the examples of the late Egil Krogh and Tom Railsback

Republicans would be wise to ponder the examples of two Watergate figures who died recently, Tom Railsback, left, and Egil Krogh, Shapiro writes. (CQ Roll Call file photo/Courtesy Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum)

OPINION — The John Bolton book bombshell represents the intersection of mendacity and greed.

The mendacity has been the dissembling and the lying by Donald Trump and his Republican enablers that the withholding of assistance to Ukraine was anything other than an old-fashioned mob shakedown: “You have a nice $400 million military aid package here. It would be a shame if anything should happen to it.”

With Iowa and New Hampshire still up in the air, Democratic race has 2016 echoes
Once impeachment is done, Democrats will have to deal with their divisions

Senators raise their hands as Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. administers the oath of the Senate Court of Impeachment Thursday. (Screenshot/Senate Recording Studio)

ANALYSIS — Sometime soon, the impeachment trial of Donald John Trump will likely end and the Senate, notwithstanding who might get called as a witness, will acquit him.

The president, of course, will claim victory and, having escaped punishment, will presumably return to doing what he has been doing for months — looking for ways to discredit Democrats, even if it involves help from foreign governments. The rest of us will also jump quickly from impeachment and back to the presidential race, hardly missing a beat.