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Democrats subpoena Pentagon, budget chiefs in impeachment push

House Democrats on Monday subpoenaed the heads of the Defense Department and Office of Management and Budget for documents related to the Trump administration's decision to withhold financial aid to Ukraine while the president pushed the allied nation for an investigation into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFox News president, top anchors advised to quarantine after coronavirus exposure: report Six notable moments from Trump and Biden's '60 Minutes' interviews Biden on attacks on mental fitness: Trump thought '9/11 attack was 7/11 attack' MORE and his son, Hunter.

In letters to Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperTrump has list of top intelligence officials he'll fire if he wins reelection: report Overnight Defense: Biden nets military family endorsements | Final debate features North Korea exchange | Judge refuses to dismiss sexual assault case against top general Israel signals it won't oppose F-35 sale to UAE MORE and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) acting director Russell Vought, the three committee chairmen leading the House's impeachment inquiry asked for the documents to be provided by Oct. 15.

“The enclosed subpoena demands documents that are necessary for the committees to examine this sequence of these events and the reasons behind the White House’s decision to withhold critical military assistance to Ukraine that was appropriated by Congress to counter Russian aggression,” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffGreenwald slams Schiff over Biden emails on Fox Hillicon Valley: DOJ accuses Russian hackers of targeting 2018 Olympics, French elections | Federal commission issues recommendations for securing critical tech against Chinese threats | House Democrats slam FCC over 'blatant attempt to help' Trump Federal commission issues recommendations for securing critical tech against Chinese threats MORE (D-Calif.), Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelOvernight Defense: Trump, Biden set to meet in final debate | Explicit Fort Bragg tweets were sent by account administrator | China threatens retaliation over Taiwan arms sale Is Trump a better choice for Jewish voters than Biden? Overnight Defense: Trump says he's leaving Walter Reed, 'feeling really good' after COVID-19 treatment | White House coronavirus outbreak grows | Dems expand probe into Pompeo speeches MORE (D-N.Y.) and Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene Cummings'Kamala' and 'Kobe' surge in popularity among baby names Women of color flex political might Black GOP candidate accuses Behar of wearing black face in heated interview MORE (D-Md.) wrote.

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Congress had appropriated $250 million to the Defense Department for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. But according to reports, President TrumpDonald John TrumpFox News president, top anchors advised to quarantine after coronavirus exposure: report Six notable moments from Trump and Biden's '60 Minutes' interviews Biden on attacks on mental fitness: Trump thought '9/11 attack was 7/11 attack' MORE asked Mick MulvaneyMick MulvaneyTrump says he may lower corporate tax rate to 20 percent if reelected Is Social Security safe from the courts? On The Money: House panel pulls Powell into partisan battles | New York considers hiking taxes on the rich | Treasury: Trump's payroll tax deferral won't hurt Social Security MORE, currently the acting White House chief of staff, to put a hold on the Ukraine aid in July 2019.

Trump held a call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on July 25 in which he urged an investigation into the Bidens and said he would instruct his personal lawyer, Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiWhite House lawyer helped shop controversial Hunter Biden story to Wall Street Journal: NYT 'Saturday Night Live' tackles final presidential debate Biden pushes back on Trump: 'Crass' to go after political rival's children MORE, and Attorney General William BarrBill BarrPolice accountability board concludes that Seattle police officers used excessive force during encounters with protesters Trump hasn't asked Barr to open investigation into Bidens, McEnany says Seattle, Portland, NYC sue Trump administration over threat to pull federal money MORE to follow up with the Ukrainian government.

The White House eventually released its hold on the aid around the date of Sept. 11, following multiple inquiries from members of Congress about why the aid was delayed.

The committee chairmen are demanding that Esper hand over documents related to Trump's phone calls with the Ukrainian president and efforts by any current or former Trump administration officials to pressure the Ukrainian government to investigate the Bidens.

They are also seeking documents from both Esper and Vought on the delay of foreign assistance to Ukraine, including communications with people in the White House and other agencies, as well as the decision in September announcing that the aid would go forward. In addition, the committee chairmen are asking for documents related to communications with Congress about the status of the foreign aid, such as briefings and written notifications.

The House committee chairmen have issued three other subpoenas as part of the impeachment inquiry launched two weeks ago.

They have subpoenaed Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoArmenia and Azerbaijan say they will implement ceasefire agreement Monday Entire Nigerian police force mobilized after days of violent protests that have killed at least 69 Hillicon Valley: Treasury sanctions Russian group accused of targeting critical facilities | Appeals court rules Uber, Lyft must comply with labor laws | Biden: Countries that target US elections will 'pay a price' MORE, Giuliani and Mulvaney for documents related to Trump's conversations with Zelensky and the efforts to hold up the financial aid for Ukraine.

The committees also sent a letter on Friday to Vice President Pence asking for documents related to his role in Trump's efforts to press for an investigation into the Bidens, but the request was not a subpoena.

The chairmen reiterated a threat to other subpoena recipients in recent days that failing to comply with their demands would be used as evidence of obstruction in potentially writing articles of impeachment.

"Your failure or refusal to comply with the subpoena, including at the direction or behest of the president or the White House, shall constitute evidence of obstruction of the House's impeachment inquiry and may be used as an adverse inference against you and the president," they wrote in the letters to Esper and Vought.

The three House committees are also conducting depositions this week with two State Department officials. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland is scheduled to appear on Tuesday, while former Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch is set to speak with lawmakers on Friday.

Updated at 1 p.m.