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Pearl Harbor shooting, impeachment hearings, and the real problem with that Peloton ad: The Morning Rundown

Top takeaways from the House Judiciary Committee's impeachment hearings and inside Trump's tumultuous NATO trip.
Image: House Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing On Impeachment Inquiry Of President Donald Trump
Four distinguished legal scholars discussed whether President Donald Trump’s dealings with Ukraine constituted impeachable offenses before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. Andrew Harrer / Bloomberg via Getty Images

Good morning, NBC News readers.

A shooting at Pearl Harbor, reaction to yesterday's impeachment testimony, and how fears of U.S. "pharmaceutical vampires" have made their way into the British election.

Here's what we're watching this morning.


'In this country, no one is king': Legal scholars lay out grounds for impeachment

The House Judiciary Committee held its first impeachment hearing Wednesday, with four eminent legal scholars discussing whether President Donald Trump’s dealings with Ukraine constituted impeachable offenses.

The three scholars called to testify by Democrats overwhelmingly concluded that the evidence against Trump showed he had committed impeachable actions.

"On the basis of the testimony and evidence before the House, President Trump has committed impeachable high crimes and misdemeanors by corruptly abusing the office of the presidency," said Noah Feldman, a professor at Harvard Law School.

But the lone scholar called by Republicans took issue with the hurried process of the inquiry.

"I am concerned about lowering impeachment standards to fit a paucity of evidence and an abundance of anger," said Jonathan Turley, a professor at George Washington University School of Law.

The hearing delved into originalism, the Founding Fathers, King George III and even necromancy. Here are the top 10 takeaways.

News analysis: The legal scholars pointed to Trump's conduct as the very reason Congress has impeachment power, writes NBC News' Jonathan Allen.


Two civilians dead after shooting at Pearl Harbor base

A U.S. sailor fatally shot two civilian Defense Department employees and wounded a third at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard in Hawaii Tuesday before killing himself, military officials said.

"We have no indication yet whether they were targeted or if it was a random shooting," Rear Admiral Robert Chadwick said. "Obviously our thoughts are with the families of the victims and everyone involved," he added.

The anniversary of the 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor is Saturday. More than 2,400 members of the military and civilians died in that attack, which propelled the U.S. into World War II.


Slights, snubs and name calling: Inside Trump's gloomy London swing

The president rarely exits a meeting of world leaders without controversy.

But given the sheer volume of public sniping, private swipes and messaging stumbles, this meeting stood out, write NBC News' White House correspondents.

A remarkable two days that featured name calling and mutual snubs, along with headline-grabbing public slights from other world leaders, culminated in Trump's decision to scrap a planned presidential press conference as reporters waited inside the room where it was to be held.

Meantime, the host country's leader, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, did his best to keep his distance from Trump with a national election just a week away.

The specter of possible U.S. interference in the future of Britain's revered National Health Service has loomed large in the upcoming election — in large part thanks to Trump saying the NHS would be "on the table" in any post-Brexit trade deal.

He later backtracked on the comments, but the opposition Labour Party has sought to elevate the issue with the fear of U.S. "pharmeceutical vampires."


Chicago Police Superintendent's firing raises hopes mayor can finally fix department

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson's dismissal, just weeks before his planned retirement, is a potential turning point for the nation's second-largest municipal police force.

In recent years Chicago's police force has been defined by controversial use of force cases, some of the bloodiest weekends of violent crimes, strained community relations leading to court-monitored reforms, and a spike in officer suicides.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot's decision to oust Johnson this week "shows how serious she is about wanting to clean up the department," one observer said.


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Plus


THINK about it

Yes, the new Peloton ad is cringey and gross. But that's not the real problem, Caira Conner writes in an opinion piece.


Live BETTER

Six steps to take now so your financial life will be off to a good start in 2020.


One fun thing

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

The Rockefeller Christmas tree lights were turned on last night.

And the National Christmas Tree will be switched on in Washington, D.C. this evening.

See more images of the tree's journey from upstate to the big city.

Image: People watch the lighting of The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in New York City
The angels herald the lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree in midtown Manhattan on Wednesday.Jeenah Moon / Reuters

Thanks for reading the Morning Rundown.

If you have any comments — likes, dislikes — drop me an email at: petra@nbcuni.com

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Thanks, Petra