Early Warning for 05 February 2019

Good morning. Here’s your Early Warning for Tuesday, 05 February 2019.

 

Early Warning: Yesterday, federal prosecutors requested documents on the finances of President Trump’s inaugural committee to look for foreign donations, which are illegal. So far, no one is being accused of wrongdoing, but prosecutors are looking for leads that may have stemmed from their investigation into former Trump attorney Michael Cohen.

 

White House

The President is scheduled to give the State of the Union Address from the House Chamber at 9pm Eastern.

10: The number of days that the Trump administration and the Congress have to reach a border wall funding agreement before a potential shutdown or national emergency declaration. I don’t expect President Trump to announce a national emergency during tonight’s State of the Union address.

 


 

State Department

Secretary Pompeo is scheduled to meet with the Colombian foreign minister, then with the Brazilian foreign minister. (AC: Both Colombia and Brazil border Venezuela. During a South American visit last year, U.S. officials declared that Brazil would take the lead on the regional security situation with Venezuela. Additionally, an uptick in U.S. military presence was recently noted in Colombia.)

Other officials: The Ukrainian foreign minister and the Turkish deputy foreign minister are both in Foggy Bottom today for separate meetings with State Department officials.


 

Defense Department

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has no publicly scheduled events.

 

These are the last publicly reported locations of deployed carrier groups. Conflict requiring an aircraft carrier/carrier strike group does not appear imminent.

The Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) is off the coast of Virginia for pre-deployment training. The Lincoln will rejoin the Indo-Pacific Command once it re-bases to San Diego, CA.

The John Stennis (CVN-74) was last reported as in the Indian Ocean.

The Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan.


 

Congress

Significant House Activity:

  • Nothing significant to report.

Significant Senate Activity:

  • Nothing significant to report.

* Only events pertinent to national security are listed. Significant reporting will appear in this week’s Strategic and National Intelligence reports


 

Economy/Finance

Interesting: This chart from HowMuch, which shows the average credit card balance for residents of each state. [source]

 

“Economists are reassessing their belief that technological progress lifts all boats and are beginning to worry about the new configuration of work.” – New York Times article on how automation and robotics will heavily affect low wage workers [source]


 

Far Left Daily

“I am talking about the radical conservatives in the Democratic Party. That’s who we need to counter… pay-as-you-go, free college, ‘Medicare for all.’ These are all enormously popular in the party, but they don’t pass because of the radical conservatives who are holding the party hostage.” – Saikat Chakrabart, chief of staff to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

“There is going to be a war within the party. We are going to lean into it.” – Waleed Shahid, spokesman for Justice Democrats, a political organization that pushes democratic socialist candidates


 

What I’m Looking at this Morning

U.S. needs a real plan to counter China in Africa

Gingrich: Chinese companies post serious threat to U.S.


 

Notable Quotable

“[W]e know we can weaken him… As long as Russia continues with war, and we continue with sanctions [the Russian economic situation won’t improve]. Sooner or later this regime will collapse.” – Anders Aslund, Atlantic Council, speaking about the future of Vladimir Putin’s Russia

Samuel Culper is a former military intelligence NCO and contract Intelligence analyst. He spent three years in Iraq and Afghanistan and is now the intelligence and warfare researcher at Forward Observer.

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