The Hill's 12:30 Report

The Hill's 12:30 Report

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The Hill's 12:30 Report: FBI expands Clinton probe | Chris Hughes selling TNR | Trump joining Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show

WHAT TO WATCH THIS WEEK: Welcome back from the holidays, Senate! Lawmakers will gather Tuesday night to hear President Obama's last State of the Union address (at 9 p.m. EST), a day before Republicans decamp to Baltimore for their annual policy retreat. Here's what else is happening on Capitol Hill:

NORTH KOREA: The House will vote this week to toughen sanctions against North Korea. Why: The country claimed to have detonated a hydrogen bomb last week. 

AUDIT THE FED: Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulHouse bill set to reignite debate on warrantless surveillance Authorizing military force is necessary, but insufficient GOP feuds with outside group over analysis of tax framework MORE (R-Ky.) is getting his long-awaited vote to audit the Federal Reserve. But wait: The bill could face an uphill battle to get the 60 votes needed. 

ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATIONS: Two measures to combat President Obama's environmental regulations are scheduled for a vote in the House this week. One bill involves mining. The other involves redefining waterways. 

More from The Hill's Cristina Marcos and Jordain Carney

BREAKING THIS MORNING -- THE NEW REPUBLIC UP FOR SALE: New Republic owner Chris Hughes is selling the publication after a tumultuous year. Background: Hughes, a Facebook co-founder, bought TNR in 2012 when he was 28 years old. In December 2014, Hughes announced the century-old liberal magazine would be restructured as a "vertically integrated digital media company." Two editors were forced out, causing an uproar that resulted in a mass resignation of much of the publication's senior staff.

EXCERPTS OF MEMO HUGHES SENT TO TNR STAFF: "I bought this company nearly four years ago to ensure its survival and give it the financial runway to experiment with new business models in a time of immense change in media. After investing a great deal of time, energy, and over $20 million, I have come to the conclusion that it is time for new leadership and vision at The New Republic. Full memo on Medium (!): 

JUST RELEASED - TRUMP’S LEAD GROWS IN NH: Via The Hill’s Jonathan Easley, Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpIvanka Trump pens op-ed on kindergartners learning tech Bharara, Yates tamp down expectations Mueller will bring criminal charges Overnight Cybersecurity: Equifax security employee left after breach | Lawmakers float bill to reform warrantless surveillance | Intel leaders keeping collusion probe open MORE has increased his lead over the Republican presidential field in New Hampshire according to the new Monmouth poll, where he holds a more than two-to-one advantage over the next closest contender.

Trump is at 32 percent (up from 26 in November), Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzWhatever you think the Alabama special election means, you’re probably wrong This week: Congress gets ball rolling on tax reform Week ahead: Senators work toward deal to fix ObamaCare markets MORE (R-Texas) at 14 percent, Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) 14 percent, Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioOvernight Defense: Tillerson, Trump deny report of rift | Tillerson says he never considered resigning | Trump expresses 'total confidence' in secretary | Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad with pro-communist posts GOP establishment doubts Bannon’s primary powers MORE (R-Fla.) 12 percent, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) 8 percent. Full poll: 

Happy Monday -- and a big hug to the Redskins fans that are mourning the stinging loss to the Green Bay Packers last night. I'm Cate Martel with what you missed this morning -- and what's on tap for the rest of the day. Send your tips, comments and complaints to and follow along by liking my shiny new Facebook page! :) 

DEVELOPING NOW -- FBI EXPANDS HILLARY'S EMAIL PROBE: Via Fox News's Catherine Herridge and Pamela Browne, the FBI investigation into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonChris Murphy’s profile rises with gun tragedies DNC, RNC step up cyber protections Gun proposal picks up GOP support MORE's use of private email as secretary of State has expanded into whether work involving both the Clinton Foundation and State Department might have violated public corruption laws.

RIGHT ON SCHEDULE -- HAGAN JOINS LOBBY SHOP: Via The Hill's Megan Wilson, with another year to go in the "cooling period" senators are required to take before they can advocate their congressional colleagues, former Sen. Kay HaganKay HaganLinking repatriation to job creation Former Sen. Kay Hagan in ICU after being rushed to hospital GOP senator floats retiring over gridlock MORE (D-N.C.) is joining Akin Gump Strauss Hauer and Feld, Washington's largest lobby shop (by revenue). Hagan will serve as a senior policy consultant and will become a registered lobbyist. 

THE CRAZY STORY EVERYONE WAS TALKING ABOUT THIS WEEKEND: Actor Sean Penn secretly visited the notorious Mexican drug kingpin and escaped fugitive Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán and released a first-hand account in Rolling Stone. Hint: It involved handing over electronic devices, several airplane rides with technology to block ground radar, convoys of armored SUVs traveling over 100 mph and an oasis in the jungle. Oh, and lots of tequila! It's wild -- you should definitely read. 

Fallout: Mexican government sources told ABC news that Sean Penn is under investigation for the interview.

THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVIN': Hillary Clinton sat down with The Boston Globe's editorial board Sunday to discuss President Bill ClintonBill ClintonAll five living former presidents to attend hurricane relief concert The Hill's 12:30 Report The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE's infidelity. "This is something that the Republicans have been trying to turn into political gold for a long time. And it hasn't worked," Hillary Clinton said. Full interview: 

POWER HEADLINE -- "WITH GREAT COOKIES COMES GREAT RESPONSIBILITY": The U.S. Chamber of Commerce interviewed the founder of D.C.-famous Captain Cookie (hat tip to The Hill's Sylvan Lane). 



A GLIPMSE INTO WHY I LOVE THE NH PRIMARY SO MUCH: The Huffington Post's Scott Conroy has a fascinating (and very accurate!) short documentary about what it's like to cover the New Hampshire primary. It's a crazy, fun ride. 

UNION LEADER IS OUT: The New Hampshire Union Leader has been yanked from the Feb. 6 presidential debate, and Donald Trump is taking credit. "[Their feud with me] is really unfair and a conflict for all the other candidates," Trump said. "I said it should not be allowed and ABC agreed." An ABC spokeswoman told The Hill that the newspaper played a "minor role" in the debate.

Flashback: WMUR, New Hampshire's only TV affiliate, was pulled from the ABC Democratic debate in December. 



Bloomberg's Joseph Weisenthal
Wow. Totally didn't know that [Hillary] Clinton was once a Walmart board member.

CBS's Sopan Deb
A Trump supporter just asked me at Reno event if I was taking pictures for ISIS. When I looked shocked, he said, "yeah, I'm talking to you."

CNN's Dylan Byers
Lesson of [TNR owner] Chris Hughes (& husband Sean
Eldridge) is pretty simple: Money & Optimism don't buy everything... In fact, can be quite destructive. 

BuzzFeed’s Jim Waterson
Daily Telegraph journalists are wondering why management secretly placed motion sensors on their desks. 



1 p.m. EST: Sidewire is interviewing three former White House speechwriters to preview the State of the Union, including Jon Favreau (President Obama), Mary Kate Cary (President George H.W. Bush) and Jeff Shesol (President Clinton). 
Live stream: 

5:30 p.m. EST: Politico cocktails and conversation events with House Ways and Means Committee Chair Kevin BradyKevin Patrick BradyGOP eyes limits on investor tax break Overnight Finance: White House requests B for disaster relief | Ex-Equifax chief grilled over stock sales | House panel approves B for border wall | Tax plan puts swing-state Republicans in tough spot Swing-seat Republicans squirm over GOP tax plan MORE (R-Texas). 
Live stream: 

6:30 p.m. EST: The House votes including on sanctions against North Korea and a bill to prevent workplace harassment and discrimination of unpaid interns. 
Full list here: 

8:30 p.m. EST: College football national championship with Clemson University and the University of Alabama. 



8 p.m. EST: Fusion is hosting "The Iowa Brown and Black Forum" in Des Moines, Iowa, with presidential candidates Hillary ClintonMartin O'Malley and Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersChris Murphy’s profile rises with gun tragedies Clip shows Larry David and Bernie Sanders reacting after discovering they're related For now, Trump dossier creates more questions than answers MORE (I-Vt.). Live stream: 

11:35 p.m. EST: Donald Trump joins Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show.

9 p.m. EST tomorrow: President Obama's last-evah State of the Union address. Obama promises it'll be unconventional. Live stream: 

6 a.m. EST tomorrow: "The Today Show" will broadcast live from inside the White House. It will include interviews with President Obama and Vice President Biden and will have a behind-the-scenes look at the White House. What a way to soften people up ahead of Obama's last State of the Union address that night! More info: 



Today is National Hot Toddy Day (ooh la la!)

WHOA, THIS IS MCDONALDS?!: Via CNN, in efforts to be "modern and progressive," the world's first McDonald's Next has opened in Hong Kong. Think: quinoa. You at least need to see the photo: 

GET IT WHILE IT'S HOT: The Playboy Mansion is for sale. But wait, it may still come with Hugh Hefner... 

THAT'S UBER GOOD NEWS: Uber has lowered its prices for January, including 10 percent in Washington, D.C.

And with that, here's a list of the winners of the 2016 Golden Globes.


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