The Presidential Daily Brief

Important

  1. House Impeaches Trump, Stage Set for Senate Trial

    "President Trump thus warrants impeachment and trial." So said the House clerk following the historic vote in the House of Representatives which makes President Donald J. Trump the third sitting president of the country to be impeached. Following 12 hours of debate, a majority in the House approved both articles of impeachment — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — in a test vote of 228 to 197.

    What does this mean? The adoption of the articles sets the stage for the trial in the Republican-controlled Senate next month — where a two-thirds vote is necessary for conviction. The clash there will help define the legacies of both the president and the chief justice of the U.S., John Roberts, who may soon become the subject of Trump’s ire.

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    India's Top Court Delays Reckoning on Citizenship Law

    India's Supreme Court today put off hearing challenges to a new citizenship law that's sparked widespread, sometimes deadly protests. The court said it would hear petitions Jan. 22, but did not delay the law, which speeds the path to Indian citizenship for migrants who claim religious persecution in Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Pakistan, but not if they're Muslim.

    Why is the law so contentious? Critics say combined with other moves by the Hindu nationalist government — like excluding 1 million Muslims from a citizenship registry and cracking down on majority-Muslim Kashmir — it's designed to marginalize the religious minority.

    OZY profiles the woman helping Lebanon's stateless people.

  3. US Senate Launches Space Force, House OKs Budget Packages

    The House made time from its impeachment schedule Tuesday to pass two budget bills totaling $1.4 trillion days before a funding deadline threatens a government shutdown. Meanwhile, the Senate overwhelmingly passed a House-approved $738 billion Pentagon funding package President Trump has promised to sign. It establishes a new military branch, the Space Force, and grants federal employees 12 weeks of paid parental leave.

    What would the budget package do? It repeals three health care taxes, raises the tobacco purchase age to 21 and allocates $25 million for gun violence research, among countless other items.

    OZY's Donald Dossier looks at federal debt.

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    Judiciary Warns Poland Is Flirting With EU Ouster

    Poland's highest court warned that judicial reforms proposed by the country's nationalist government could spur the European Union to boot it from the bloc. In a 40-page assessment, the Supreme Court said the ruling Law and Justice Party's proposal that would let judges be fired for disagreeing with any law passed by a majority amounts to an "infringement of EU treaties."

    What are the implications? Whether the EU balks or not, one human rights campaigner said the reforms would create an "all-powerful government" like the nation endured under communism.

    OZY explains why Poland is winning the gaming game.

  5. Also Important...

    The U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court is demanding changes to how the FBI seeks warrants in the wake of a report faulting the way agents wiretapped a Trump campaign aide. A Japanese journalist has won $30,000 in damages in a civil case against a colleague she said raped her, after prosecutors said there was insufficient evidence for a criminal case. And archaeologists have discovered 3,500-year-old royal tombs in Greece.

    #OZYFact: New York shelters some 95 percent of its homeless population, while Los Angeles County houses only 25 percent. Read more on OZY.

    The PDB is changing! In a few days, you'll see improvements in your daily news briefing from OZY. The same great summary of headlines from around the globe is getting a sleeker design. Let us know what you think at any time by replying to your email.

Intriguing

  1. Former Gadhafi Stronghold Now Extorting Migrants

    The Libyan town of Bani Walid has become notorious for kidnapping, torturing and extorting migrants following the fall of former dictator Moammar Gadhafi in 2011. Although it enjoyed special privileges under the strongman, Bani Walid became marginalized in the new political and economic order, OZY reports. Now, as migrants make their way toward Europe, they're being snatched by kidnapping cartels. In 2018 Doctors Without Borders reporting finding 50 of their corpses each month.

    Who could stop this? Militias fighting on both sides of Libya's ongoing civil war could, but neither side wants to drive the cartels into the arms of the enemy.

  2. Australia Suffers History's Hottest Day

    The country's average maximum temperature hit 105.6 degrees Fahrenheit (40.9 Celsius), breaking the 2013 record of 104.5 F (40.3 C), according to Australia's Bureau of Meteorology. Forecasters warned another record could be set before cooler air brings some relief beginning on Thursday. They blamed the heat on a widespread drought plus a delayed monsoon season in northern Australia.

    What are the effects? Over 100 fires continue to rage across New South Wales, threatening Sydney and prompting authorities to enforce a statewide fire ban.

    OZY looks into how Indians are fighting global warming's ravages.

  3. Congolese Child Labor Leads to Tech Firm Lawsuit

    Apple, Google, Dell, Microsoft and Tesla must answer a lawsuit on behalf of the victims of cobalt mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Filed in Washington, D.C., the claim brought by the nonprofit International Rights Advocates says the firms "aided and abetted" hazardous operations where 14 Congolese families' children were killed or injured while mining. Cobalt is a key element in the lithium-ion batteries ubiquitous in electronic devices.

    How are the defendants responding? Google and Apple say they prohibit such sourcing, as does Dell, which said it was investigating the claims.

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    US Can Seize Snowden Book Proceeds, Judge Rules

    A federal judge in Virginia ruled Tuesday that the U.S. government can confiscate all royalties from Edward Snowden's best-seller, Permanent Record. In it, the 36-year-old, who's been charged with espionage and has lived in exile in Russia since 2013, details his work at the National Security Agency, whose widespread surveillance programs he exposed. The judge ruled that Snowden violated nondisclosure agreements by not submitting his manuscript for NSA and CIA review.

    Can they collect? The Justice Department's suit seeks to retrieve the money through New York-based publisher Macmillan Publishing Group.

    OZY's security columnist addresses Julian Assange's detention.

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    First Woman Wins Coed Match at World Darts Championship

    Fallon Sherrock is "over the moon." On Tuesday she became the first woman to win a match against a man at the Professional Darts Corporation World Championship. After Sherrock's final throw, a double 18, the London crowd cheered the English 25-year-old, who came from behind to beat Ted Evetts 3-2. "Can't believe I've made history tonight!" Sherrock said. She'll now face world No. 11 Mensur Suljovic in the second round.

    How did she get here? Sherrock, ranked No. 4 in the world in women's darts, is just the fifth woman to compete in the prestigious tournament, which recently reserved two of its 96 slots for women.