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House Republican Conference Chair Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyOvernight Defense: Rockets land in Iraq's Green Zone in third attack in week | US 'outraged' at attacks but won't 'lash out' Republican Arkansas governor says he would not support Trump 2024 bid Is the 'civil war' in the Republican Party really over? MORE (Wyo.

) on Tuesday rejected the “America First” foreign policy that was the centerpiece of former President TrumpDonald TrumpFauci: U.S. political divide over masks led to half a million COVID-19 deaths Georgia bishop says state GOP's elections bill is an 'attempt to suppress the Black vote' Trump closer to legal jeopardy after court ruling on tax returns MORE’s global agenda.

Speaking during a virtual event with the Reagan Institute, the No. 3 House Republican warned against policies of isolationism and said the U.S. must take a leading role on the world stage as part of efforts to push back against China's and Russia's ambitions.

“These ideas are just as dangerous today as they were in 1940, when isolationists launched the America First movement to appease Hitler and prevent America from aiding Britain in the fight against the Nazis,” Cheney said. “Isolationism was wrong and dangerous then and it is wrong and dangerous now.”

The top House GOP lawmaker is a controversial figure in her party. Earlier this month she beat back efforts from opponents to remove her from her Republican leadership position after she voted to impeach Trump over the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Her willingness to break with Trump reflects the divide in the Republican party over the former president's future in the GOP. 

While Cheney has broken with the Trump administration on policy before, she also criticized the Biden administration for reentering several multilateral agreements that she views as threatening to America’s national security interest.

“I do think that it's very important for us not to confuse American leadership in the world with America... re-entering into agreements that we know are damaging, and two in particular are the Paris Climate Accords and the Iranian nuclear deal,” she said.

President BidenJoe BidenTikTok users spread conspiracy that Texas snow was manufactured by the government The problem with a one-size-fits-all federal minimum wage hike Throwing money at Central America will not curb illegal migration MORE rejoined the Paris Climate Accords with an executive order on his first day in office.

Cheney criticized the international agreement, which commits signatories to hitting environmental benchmarks in an effort to mitigate threats from climate change, as harming the American economy without requiring more stringent commitments from countries that are larger contributors to global pollution.

The Wyoming lawmaker also rejected moves by the Biden administration to engage with Iran in an effort to rejoin the Obama-era nuclear deal from which Trump withdrew in 2018. Cheney called for maintaining the “maximum pressure” campaign of sanctions instituted during the Trump administration.

“The Iranian nuclear deal remains the single worst agreement the United States has ever entered into,” she said in her opening remarks. “We were right to withdraw and turn to a policy of maximum pressure with sanctions against the regime. Any effort by the Biden administration to return to the deal would be a mistake, and would signal to Iran that nuclear blackmail is effective.”

Yet Cheney called for bipartisan cooperation on confronting China, which she said is “one of the greatest threats our nation faces today,” and urged the Biden administration to adopt policy proposals laid out in a Republican task force report on confronting Beijing.

“Two thirds of the proposals of the report are bipartisan,” she said. “...We should come together in a bipartisan fashion to be clear eyed in confronting the threat China poses.”

Cheney also voiced support for the Biden administration’s outreach towards NATO, calling it “very important” that the U.S. is “moving towards a reinvigorated relationship with NATO.” Biden, in remarks to the Munich Security Conference last week, said that the U.S. is “fully committed” to the NATO alliance and Article 5, the mutual defense provision of the treaty alliance.

Cheney also reiterated her opposition to the former Trump administration’s agreement with the Taliban in Afghanistan to withdraw U.S. troops by May if certain benchmarks are reached. The Biden administration has said they don’t believe the Taliban have met their commitments under the deal and are reviewing the agreements signed by the previous administration.

“In Afghanistan, the notion — and I've been publicly opposed to this idea – that there's a negotiated peace that we can reach with the Taliban, that's just simply not the case,” Cheney said.

“The idea that we would base any of our deployment decisions on, you know, purported words from members of the Taliban, is highly irresponsible.”

Tags Donald Trump Liz Cheney Joe Biden America first Foreign policy

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Tags: by the biden administration america first foreign policy the trump administration the biden administration the iranian nuclear deal the iranian nuclear deal in the republican party maximum pressure with the taliban former president house republican agreements criticized in afghanistan very important on confronting america first as dangerous in an effort that the u cheney against the america to withdraw

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Giuliani probe awaits Garland as he nears AG confirmation

NEW YORK (AP) — With Merrick Garland poised to be confirmed as attorney general as early as next week, one of the first major questions he is likely to encounter is what to do about Rudy Giuliani.

A federal probe into the overseas and business dealings of the former New York City mayor and close ally of former President Donald Trump stalled last year over a dispute over investigative tactics as Trump unsuccessfully sought reelection and amid Giuliani’s prominent role in subsequently disputing the results of the contest on Trump’s behalf.

But the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan has since returned to the question of bringing a criminal case against Giuliani, focusing at least in part on whether he broke U.S. lobbying laws by failing to register as a foreign agent related to his work, according to one current and one former law enforcement official familiar with the inquiry. The officials weren’t authorized to discuss the ongoing case and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The arrival of a new leadership team in Washington is likely to guarantee a fresh look at the investigation. No matter how it unfolds, the probe ensures that a Justice Department looking to move forward after a tumultuous four years will nonetheless have to confront unresolved, and politically charged, questions from the Trump era — not to mention calls from some Democrats to investigate Trump himself.

The full scope of the investigation is unclear, but it at least partly involves Giuliani’s Ukraine dealings, the officials said.

Giuliani was central to the then-president’s efforts to dig up dirt against Democratic rival Joe Biden and to press Ukraine for an investigation into Biden and his son, Hunter — who himself now faces a criminal tax probe by the Justice Department. Giuliani also sought to undermine former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, who was pushed out on Trump’s orders, and met several times with a Ukrainian lawmaker who released edited recordings of Biden in an effort to smear him before the election.

The Foreign Agents Registration Act requires people who lobby on behalf of a foreign government or entity to register with the Justice Department. The once-obscure law, aimed at improving transparency, has received a burst of attention in recent years, particularly during an investigation by former special counsel Robert Mueller that revealed an array of foreign influence operations in the U.S.

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan pushed last year for a search warrant for records, including some of Giuliani’s communications, but officials in the Trump-era Justice Department would not sign off on the request, according to multiple people familiar with the investigation who insisted on anonymity to speak about an ongoing investigation.

Officials in the deputy attorney general’s office raised concerns about both the scope of the request, which they thought would contain communications that could be covered by legal privilege between Giuliani and Trump, and the method of obtaining the records, three of the people said.

The Justice Department requires that applications for search warrants served on lawyers be approved by senior department officials.

“They decided it was prudent to put it off until the dust settled, and the dust has settled now,” said Kenneth F. McCallion, a former federal prosecutor who represents Ukrainian clients relevant to the inquiry and has been in contact with federal authorities about the investigation.

McCallion declined to identify his clients, saying he had not been authorized to do so. He previously has represented former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

Giuliani’s attorney Robert J. Costello told The Associated Press he has “heard nothing” from federal prosecutors concerning Giuliani.

It is possible that Giuliani could try to argue that his actions were taken at the behest of the president rather than a foreign country, and therefore registration would not be required under federal law.

Giuliani wrote in a text message Thursday to the AP that he “never represented a foreign anything before the U.S. government.”

“It’s pure political persecution,” he said of the investigation. The U.S. attorney’s office declined to comment.

McCallion said federal authorities were asking questions concerning a wide range of Giuliani’s international business dealings, and that “everything was on the table” as it pertained to his work in Ukraine. He said the inquiry was not entirely focused on Ukraine, but declined to elaborate.

The investigation of Giuliani’s lobbying first came to light in October 2019, when The New York Times reported that federal prosecutors were investigating Giuliani’s efforts to oust Yovanovitch, who was recalled amid Trump’s bid to solicit dirt from Ukraine to pressure Ukraine into helping his reelection prospects.

Federal prosecutors also have investigated Giuliani as part of a criminal case brought against his former associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, Soviet-born business partners from Florida who played key roles in Giuliani’s efforts to launch the Ukrainian corruption investigation against the Bidens.

Parnas and Fruman were charged in a scheme to make illegal campaign donations to local and federal politicians in New York, Nevada and other states to try to win support for a new recreational marijuana business.

Giuliani has said he had no knowledge of illegal donations and hadn’t seen any evidence that Parnas and Fruman did anything wrong.


Tucker and Balsamo reported from Washington. Associated Press writer Larry Neumeister contributed to this report from New York.

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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