Schumer Says It’s ‘Outrageous’ for Trump to Refuse Biden Access to Intel Briefings

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    Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and other top Democrats are pushing for a generous COVID relief package. They also slammed President Donald Trump for throwing up obstacles during the post-election transition, as well as moving ahead with a drawdown of U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. “It’s outrageous that the Trump administration has refused to provide the president-elect with high level intelligence briefings, or brief the transition on the vaccine distribution plan,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. “We want our troops home, but let’s not bring them home in body bags,” said Sen. Tammy Duckworth, who served in Iraq and lost her legs when her helicopter was shot down. “And that’s potentially what’s going to happen if this president gets his way and puts his own political timeline ahead of our national security,” Duckworth said. Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller on Tuesday announced plans to reduce U.S. troop levels in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying the decision fulfills Trump’s pledge to bring forces home, even as Republicans and U.S. allies warn against a rash withdrawal Miller said the plan will cut the number of troops in Afghanistan from more than 4,500 to 2,500, and in Iraq from about 3,000 to 2,500. “Trump is once again putting his own self-interest ahead of our national interests,” Duckworth said. “He is sowing chaos when we most need stability,” she said. As far as a COVID relief bill is concerned, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wants to go big, say $2 trillion; McConnell wants a smaller package in the $500 billion range that his rightward-tilting colleagues can live with. Moving toward somewhere in the middle would be difficult for both camps. Trump is a disruptive factor on Capitol Hill and no deal is possible without his buy-in, or at least his signature. Without a better and more reliable signal of Trump’s intentions, both McConnell and Pelosi could be wary of navigating the turbulence required to forge an agreement. Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/2TwO8Gm Bloomberg Quicktake brings you live global news and original shows spanning business, technology, politics and culture. Make sense of the stories changing your business and your world. To watch complete coverage on Bloomberg Quicktake 24/7, visit http://www.bloomberg.com/qt/live, or watch on Apple TV, Roku, Samsung Smart TV, Fire TV and Android TV on the Bloomberg app. Connect with us on… YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/Bloomberg Breaking News on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/BloombergQuickTakeNews Twitter: https://twitter.com/quicktake Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/quicktake Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/quicktake

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    In This Story: Afghanistan

    Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. Afghanistan is bordered by Pakistan to the east and south; Iran to the west; Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan to the north; and China to the northeast.

    Occupying 652,000 square kilometers (252,000 sq mi), it is a mountainous country with plains in the north and southwest. Kabul is the capital and largest city. The population is around 32 million, composed mostly of ethnic Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras, and Uzbeks.

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    The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

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    • a high temperature (e.g. head feels warm to the touch)
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    Iraq, officially the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia. The capital and largest city is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Kurds, Turkmen, Assyrians, Yazidis, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandaeans, Circassians, Sabians and Kawliya. Around 99% of the country’s 38 million citizens are Muslims, with small minorities of Christians, Yarsans, Yezidis and Mandeans also present. The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish.

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