Student newspaper breaks story about diplomat’s retirement

Alex Appel, Editor in Chief

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Andrew Howard, a 20-year-old junior at the University of Arizona (ASU), was the first to report that the State Department’s special envoy to Ukraine Kurt D. Volker, stepped down from his position.

Howard is the Managing Editor of the ASU’s student-run newspaper, the State Post, which first reported Volker’s returement.

Volker came up in the whistleblower complaint alleging that U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to cut aid to Ukraine unless the nation investigated former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump’s political rival, the State Press reported. Many Democrats are accusing Trump of abusing his power for personal gain.

This news comes amidst an impeachment inquiry that was initiated by Congress over these allegations. As of Sunday, September 29 the House Intelligence Committee will reportedly hear testimony from the whistleblower who wrote the complaint once the anonymous government employees gains security clearance from the acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire, the Washington Post reported.

Before this scandal, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Minority Leader of the Senate Chuck Schumer (D-NY) had opposed the calls of some of her party members to initiate an impeachment inquiry of the President. Now they are leading the party in this inquiry.

Volker is the leader of the McCain Institute, a Washington-DC based political think tank that is run by ASU. After State Press reporters realized that Volker worked for both the State Department and ASU, they searched for a way to connect the national story to their school’s paper, the New York Times reported.

On Saturday, September 27 ASU confirmed Volker’s resignation to the student paper, according to the State Press. At the time of the story, Howard was at his internship, writing obituaries for the Arizona Republic, where he took a break to post the story, according to the Times.

In the past few days, the story has garnered national attention for the student newspaper. The comments on Howard’s article are filled with adults across the nation deriding the article as “fake news” and “liberal lies.” However, most of the feedback has been positive: Both the Times and the Post have reported on the students’ ability to break news and the State Post’s website has been viewed by people across the nation