/Congress: Gordon Sondland, Syria talks, Columbus Day: 5 things you need to know Monday
Congress: Gordon Sondland, Syria talks, Columbus Day: 5 things you need to know Monday

Congress: Gordon Sondland, Syria talks, Columbus Day: 5 things you need to know Monday


Editors, USA TODAY
Published 3: 43 a.m. ET Oct. 14, 2019 | Updated 8: 34 a.m. ET Oct. 14, 2019


Congress: Impeachment inquiry: Subpoena deadline for key player in Ukraine controversy

A subpoena delivered to a Gordon Sondland, a U.S. ambassador involved in the Trump administration’s dealings with Ukraine, demands that he hand over key documents by Monday. House Democrats subpoenaed Sondland last week after the State Department blocked him from appearing before a trio of congressional committees to answer questions about his role in pushing Ukraine’s president to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden. President Donald Trump defended the decision to prevent Sondland’s testimony, saying the Democrats’ inquiry is illegitimate. Rep. Adam Schiff, who leads the House Intelligence Committee, said the administration’s move to block Sondland’s testimony, as well as withhold relevant documents, is “strong evidence of obstruction” of justice. 


Trump and impeachment: Can President Trump block witnesses and subpoenas, and what can Congress do about it? Lawyer and author David Stewart explains.
Hannah Gaber, USA TODAY

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Congress: European leaders talk escalating Syria conflict

European Union foreign ministers will discuss the Syrian conflict Monday following Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops out of northeastern Syria.The decision cleared the way for Turkey to launch a military offensive in the region as it views a Kurdish militia that dominates the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, as a terrorist group. The announcement drew condemnation from members of Congress, including top Republicans Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, and Sen. Lindsey Graham, who argued that the action betrayed a close U.S. ally and risks creating a chaotic and dangerous situation where thousands of Islamic State group fighters languish in Kurdish-run detention centers. 

Congress: Columbus Day: Celebrating cultural heritage or colonization of Native Americans?

Columbus Day, which falls on the second Monday of October, is considered a celebration of Italian heritage and Christopher Columbus’ 1492 voyage to the Americas. But a growing number of cities, states and universities this year are replacing Columbus Day, which is widely controversial because of Columbus’ treatment of indigenous people. At least eight states, 10 universities and more than 130 cities across 34 states now observe Indigenous Peoples Day as an alternative to the federally recognized holiday. Yet not everyone’s on board. In May, a northern New Jersey town shut down a proposal to change the name. Many Italian-American heritage groups opposed the change, saying it was motivated by “propaganda.” 

Congress: National League Championship Series goes to Washington 

The National League Championship Series is headed to our nation’s capital for the first time in Major League Baseball history on Monday. The Washington Nationals, up 2-0 in their best-of-seven series against the St. Louis Cardinals, return home to D.C. after two dominant pitching performances on the road. Stephen Strasburg will look to keep the streak going for the Nationals, while the Cardinals will counter with their ace Jack Flaherty. 


SportsPulse: USA TODAY Sports’ Steve Gardner previews the NLCS showdown between the Washington Nationals and St. Louis Cardinals.

Congress: ‘Joker’ wins at the box-office — again 

Final numbers are expected Monday for the supremely dark “Joker” movie, which had a phenomenal second weekend at the box office, topping the charts once more over newcomers like the animated “The Addams Family” and the Will Smith action pic “Gemini Man.” Studios on Sunday estimate that “Joker” added $55 million from North American theaters, down only 43% from its record-breaking debut. Worldwide, the movie has earned $543.9 million to date. 


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Contributing: The Associated Press 

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