Impeachment. More than half of House Democrats now support opening an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump [Politico].


Heading for the exits. Texas Rep. Will Hurd, the only black Republican in the House, announced he would not run for re-election in 2020. Hurd is the only Republican to represent a district along the southwestern border. Hurd's retirement is the ninth House Republican to announce his retirement this year [NYT].

  • Hurd's announcement has Republicans in Texas worried about holding on to a district Democrats are desperate to flip in 2020 [Texas Tribune].

More tariffs. China is threatening retaliation if President Trump goes through with a new round of tariffs he announced on Thursday afternoon. Global markets tumbled on the news of the potential renewed trade war between the two nations [AP].

  • Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin wanted to give China a heads up about Trump's new tariffs but was overruled [Bloomberg].

Comey. The Justice Department declined to prosecute former FBI director James Comey after determining he mishandled two memos he wrote about his interactions with President Trump that contained classified information [AP].


2020. When will the Democratic field start to shrink? There are still 24 Democrats running for president following the first two rounds of debates [NYT].

  • The Nevada GOP will use a poll of the party's state central committee to re-nominate President Trump instead of the usual caucus process next year [LVRJ].

Budget deal. The Senate passed the massive budget deal that raises the debt ceiling, sending the measure to President Trump's desk [CNN].


A stark warning. The FBI is warning fringe conspiracy theories now present a domestic terrorism threat [Yahoo!].


Hmmm. Rep. John Ratcliffe, President Trump's pick to be the next Director of National Intelligence, is considered to be "relatively disengaged" from his work on the House Intelligence Committee and is little known by rank-and-file workers in the various spy agencies he may potentially head up [WaPo].

  • Ratcliffe has claimed he led a massive roundup of immigrant workers in 2008 when he was a federal prosecutor. Court documents show that's not true [WaPo].

Russia. As expected, the U.S. is exiting a three-decade-old arms control treaty with Russia and plans to test a new missile in the coming weeks which would have been prohibited under the pact [AP].


Climate. July may have been the hottest month ever recorded in human history [CNN].