Tuesday’s Mini-Report, 9.17.19

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Afghanistan: “An explosion near an election rally attended by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani killed 26 people – including 4 security forces – and injured 42 others, local officials said, but Ghani was unhurt according to an aide.”

* Impeachment process: “Democrats pressed Corey Lewandowski at a contentious House hearing on Tuesday, with at least one member calling for the former Trump campaign manager to be held in contempt for following a White House directive to limit the scope of his testimony.”

* A murky electoral picture in Israel: “Polls closed in Israel’s razor-tight election Tuesday as embattled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sought to maintain his decadelong hold on power.”

* Middle East: “The attack on a major Saudi oil facility originated geographically from Iranian territory, with a series of low-altitude cruise missiles fired from at least one location in the western region of the country, according to two U.S. officials familiar with the latest intelligence.”

* Border barriers: “The Defense Department is no longer moving forward with three border barrier projects in California and Arizona, according to a court filing Monday. The move is a reversal of an earlier Pentagon authorization for about 20 miles of fencing, lighting and other border infrastructure that would have used $2.5 billion in funds redirected from a counter-drug fund.”

* That was quick: “It hasn’t yet been a full week, but it appears [former National Security Adviser John Bolton has] found a vehicle for clearing the air. According to two people with knowledge of the situation, Bolton has already expressed interest in writing a book on his time in the Trump administration, and has been in contact in recent days with literary agents interested in making that happen.”

* Even if Republicans weren’t persuaded by the national security arguments, it’d be nice if the fiscal arguments mattered: “Holding the Nazi war criminal Rudolf Hess as the lone prisoner in Germany’s Spandau Prison in 1985 cost an estimated $1.5 million in today’s dollars. The per-prisoner bill in 2012 at the ‘supermax’ facility in Colorado, home to some of the highest-risk prisoners in the United States, was $78,000. Then there is Guantánamo Bay, where the expense now works out to about $13 million for each of the 40 prisoners being held there.”

* Women’s March: “Three leaders of the Women’s March on Washington who helped organize one of the largest mass mobilizations in United States history following the inauguration of Donald J. Trump have stepped down from the organization’s board after years of controversy.”

* A doozy of a story out of New York: “The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct announced on Tuesday that a state judge has been permanently barred from the bench after the commission filed a complaint over a threatening Facebook post that ‘conveyed racial and/or political bias.’”

* Roberts had quite a career: “Renowned ABC News journalist Cokie Roberts, among the first female broadcast reporters to cover the highest levels of U.S. government, died Tuesday due to complications from breast cancer, her family and the network said. She was 75.” (Donald Trump thought it’d be appropriate this afternoon to complain that Roberts “never treated me nicely.”)

See you tomorrow.