Friday’s Mini-Report, 11.22.19

Updated

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* The Horowitz probe: “A highly anticipated report by the Justice Department’s inspector general is expected to sharply criticize lower-level F.B.I. officials as well as bureau leaders involved in the early stages of the Trump-Russia investigation, but to absolve the top ranks of abusing their powers out of bias against President Trump, according to people briefed on a draft.”

* Ukraine: “[I]n Kyiv, the status of the U.S. Embassy is shaky at best with many top officials under attack from Trump and his allies. It has left Ukrainians questioning whether U.S. diplomats can really connect them to the White House and have Trump’s ear.”

* Seems fair: “Joe Biden’s presidential campaign accused Sen. Lindsey Graham of having ‘forfeited his conscience’ for requesting State Department records concerning the former vice president’s efforts to oust a corrupt Ukrainian prosecutor in 2016.”

* So many flip-flops: “President Donald Trump’s White House meeting with vaping lobbyists and anti-tobacco activists erupted in shouting and debate Friday afternoon as the president seemed poised to backpedal on his ban of flavored e-cigarettes.”

* The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Initiative: “Attorney General William Barr announced a nationwide plan Friday to address the crisis of missing and slain Native American women as concerns mount over the level of violence they face. Barr announced the plan, known as the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Initiative, during a visit with tribal leaders and law enforcement officials on the Flathead Reservation in Montana.”

* A case worth watching: “The Supreme Court will take up the Trump administration’s bid to end a lawsuit filed by Muslim men who say they were placed on the government’s no-fly list because they refused to serve as FBI informants.”

* Another case worth watching: “ ‘Protecting Statutory Conscience Rights in Health’ is a controversial rule that may be held up in the courts right now but could be appealed by the Trump administration any day. The rule expands who is defined as a health care worker, and could lead to more patients being denied an abortion or other procedure if the worker believes it violates their own religious or moral beliefs.”

* Remember, this prevented a shutdown, but the deadline in December will likely be more difficult: “President Donald Trump signed a monthlong spending bill Thursday, hours before government funding had been set to expire at midnight. The continuing resolution funds the government through Dec. 20, giving appropriators more time to hash out numerous divides over policy riders and programmatic spending levels.”

Enjoy the weekend.