Good morning. Here’s your Daily Situational Awareness for Monday, 20 December 2021. You can receive this daily briefing by signing up at https://forwardobserver.com/daily-sa

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TODAY’S BRIEFING:

  • GOP to hammer Biden admin in 2023
  • Legislation targets Iranian drone attacks
  • Freedom to Vote Act would establish national voting standards
  • Bipartisan Senators want to expand support to Ukraine

 

SITUATIONAL AWARENESS

GOP TO HAMMER BIDEN ADMIN IN 2023: According to leaked documents, Republicans under House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy plan to investigate Biden administration wrongdoing if the GOP takes the House in 2022 elections. As House Speaker, McCarthy said he would issue so-called “preservation notices” to order Biden Cabinet members to preserve documents and communications for future oversight. (Analyst Comment: Democrats expect to lose the House and possibly the majority in the Senate, clearing a path for GOP-led investigations. The GOP can initiate a number of investigations for border policies, energy policies, international deals, and corruption inside the Justice Department. Impeachment would be impossible without firm control of the Senate. – D.M.)

IRANIAN DRONES: Bipartisan leadership on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee introduced legislation to counter Iran’s ability to procure and use lethal drones. The Stop Iranian Drones Act of 2021 would bolster previous legislation designed to limit the ability of American adversaries such as Iran and their proxies to use drones to attack U.S. military interests in the region, in addition to commercial facilities, oil and gas infrastructure, shipping vessels, and other potential targets. (AC: In November, Iranian proxy groups used two drones carrying explosives in an attack on the Iraqi Prime Minister, who was not hurt during the attack. Other failed attacks since 2020 have targeted the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, according to former intelligence officials. Iran officially condemned the attack, however, Iran’s inability to control their armed proxy groups in the Middle East will likely result in continued drone attacks because these methods are relatively cheap and effective. – M.S.)

FREEDOM TO VOTE: Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) continues to lobby for the Freedom to Vote Act, which would enable Congress to change voting laws. During a recent floor speech, Klobuchar said expanding the ability to vote and establishing national voting standards are key to the foundation of the country. “The Constitution anticipated that perhaps we would need a federal response when, in the words of the Constitution, as written by our founding fathers, that Congress can make or alter the rules regarding federal elections… That is why we must now establish national standards for voting, completely allowed for in the Constitution, to make sure all voters can cast their ballots in the way that works best for them regardless of what zip code they live in. The need for federal action is urgent,” she said. The bill would add a number of rules, including guards against replacing state election officials and “sham audits.” (AC: Attempts to adopt national voting standards will restrict the freedom of states to run and oversee their own elections. Several legislative efforts remain underway to nationalize voter registration, appoint national election controllers, and remove the state’s ability to control the redistricting processes. – D.M.)

SENATORS SIGNAL UKRAINE SUPPORT: Bipartisan leadership on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee introduced legislation designed to increase U.S. support to Ukraine. Under the Guaranteeing Ukraine’s Autonomy by Reinforcing its Defense Act (GUARD Act), the U.S. would increase military training and lethal aid to Ukraine, fully enforce sanctions on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline, designate Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism,” among other efforts. (AC: Passage of this act will be seen as escalatory by Russia, but the current political climate makes its fate uncertain. The U.S. doesn’t have broad popular support for military intervention in Ukraine, which makes backing adventurism politically risky just before the midterms. GOP supporters of Ukraine often have difficulty explaining exactly why the U.S. shouldn’t abandon Ukraine apart from general support for Western ideals. The past round of $300 million to Ukraine could purchase about 2,000 javelin missiles, or twice the number received by the mujahideen in Afghanistan. – D.M.)

HAZARDS/WX:

 

UPGRADE TO EARLY WARNING AND GET THESE BRIEFINGS:

  • Russia-NATO SITREP: Euro energy prices rise, NATO talks likely to fail
  • Indo-Pacific SITREP: CCP oversees Hong Kong elections, Japan deepens ties with Taiwan
  • Domestic SITREP: Americans to struggle with winter heating costs
  • Far Left Activity Rollup & Outlook
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