'Start Here': Pompeo says State Department employees won't testify and FAA approves UPS drone delivery

Here's what you need to know to start your day.

It's Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2019. Let's start here.

1. Pompeo’s pushback

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused House Democrats of trying to "intimidate, bully and treat improperly" five State Department officials called for depositions in the Ukraine investigation.

Reps. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and Elijah Cummings, D-Md., responded, arguing Pompeo was the one trying "to intimidate witnesses or prevent them from talking with Congress."

Three House committees investigating the State Department’s role in President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s efforts in Ukraine have scheduled depositions with the five employees, according to a letter sent Friday.

However, Pompeo seemed to suggest that none of them would appear: "The committee has not issued any subpoenas for depositions, and we are not aware of any other authority by which the committee to could compel appearance at a deposition."

ABC News Chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl tells the "Start Here" podcast that while Republicans are essentially united behind the president against the impeachment inquiry, “what you don't hear Republicans doing is outright defending the president's actions.”

2. Critical shot in Hong Kong

A police officer fired on a protester at close range Tuesday amid escalating violence stemming from ongoing anti-government demonstrations in Hong Kong.

The shooting left the protester bleeding on the ground.

Police Commissioner Stephen Lo defended the actions of the officer, saying he feared for his life and called the action "reasonable and lawful."

ABC News’ Ian Pannell was on the ground and describes the tense scenes.

3. Mail by drone

The U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration approved plans Tuesday for UPS to start delivering medical supplies via drones.

The initial certifications come after a successful pilot program that saw drones deliver health specimens, including blood, around a hospital campus in Raleigh, North Carolina.

"This is history in the making, and we aren’t done yet," UPS CEO David Abney said in a statement. "Our technology is opening doors for UPS and solving problems in unique ways for our customers. We will soon announce other steps to build out our infrastructure, expand services for healthcare customers and put drones to new uses in the future."

ABC News Senior Transportation correspondent David Kerley says the program is the first step toward drones delivering mail for customers around the country.

4. Sex worker scrutiny

A proposed bill in Washington, D.C., would make the district the first full U.S. city to decriminalize prostitution.

Proponents for and against the bill will make their push in city council hearings in the coming weeks before the measure is officially brought up for a vote.

ABC News Senior Legal Analyst Sunny Hostin tells the podcast that many critics believe there is no way to decriminalize prostitution safely: "This is not a victimless crime, ever."

"Start Here," ABC News' flagship podcast, offers a straightforward look at the day's top stories in 20 minutes. Listen for free every weekday on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn or the ABC News app. Follow @StartHereABC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for exclusive content and show updates.

Elsewhere:

Flush with cash: The third quarter campaign fundraising totals are coming in and it's clear a lot of money is being pushed into the race -- led by Trump and the RNC's $125 million total. Bernie Sanders led Democratic candidates with $25.3 million.

'I immediately knew that it was child abuse': A day care worker in Florida allegedly repeatedly struck an 8-month-old boy, and is now on the run from police.

End of the line: Russell Bucklew, a convicted murderer who had fought execution, claiming his rare illness would make the process cruel, was put to death on Tuesday night.

Warren v. Zuckerberg: A campaign battle is brewing between Sen. Elizabeth Warren and ... Mark Zuckerberg? The Facebook CEO is reportedly none too happy with the presidential candidate threatening to break up his company.

From our friends at FiveThirtyEight:

On Fox, Trump Is Not At The Center Of The Ukraine Story: The Ukraine scandal has thrust Biden squarely into the center of the media spotlight — he saw a huge uptick in 15-second cable news clips last week.

Doff your cap:

A quick-thinking airport employee averted a bad accident when a catering cart spun out of control on the tarmac of Chicago's O’Hare International Airport. The dramatic incident was caught on video by a passenger inside the terminal.

Employees were servicing an American Airlines jet when their catering cart suddenly lurched out of control and began spinning wildly on its own. Dr. Kevin Klauer, who shot the video Monday, said it appeared that a case of bottled water fell off the vehicle and lodged under the accelerator.