The Hill’s 12:30 Report

The Hill’s 12:30 Report

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The Hill's 12:30 Report: Graham endorses Jeb | NY Daily News slams Cruz -- and it's brutal | Sean Penn regrets El Chapo interview | Shake Shake's new fried chicken sandwiches

GRAHAM ENDORSES!: Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamMcCain rivals praise senator after brain cancer diagnosis McCain absence adds to GOP agenda’s uncertainty Graham and Kushner met to discuss immigration differences: report MORE (R-S.C.) on Friday endorsed Jeb Bush for president, becoming the first Republican hopeful who has dropped out of the race to endorse another candidate. 

Graham said Bush is the right man to lead the fight against ISIS. Graham also said he was swayed by Bush's bold stand at Thursday night's GOP primary debate against front-runner Donald TrumpDonald TrumpOPINION | Hey Dems, Russia won't define 2018, so why not fix your party's problems instead? Russian lawyer who met Trump Jr. represented spy agency: report Poll: Most say Trump Jr. should not have met with Russian lawyer MORE's plan to temporarily halt Muslim immigration to the U.S. More from The Hill's Jesse Byrnes:

NOTE TO SELF -- DON'T MESS WITH NEW YORKERS: The cover of today's New York Daily News features the Statue of Liberty giving the finger with the title "Drop Dead, Ted" and the caption, "Hey, Cruz: You don't like N.Y. values? Go back to Canada!" It's in response to Cruz saying that Trump represents "New York values," a statement the two also argued about during last night's debate over New York. You should definitely see this cover:  Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonOPINION | Hey Dems, Russia won't define 2018, so why not fix your party's problems instead? Russian lawyer who met Trump Jr. represented spy agency: report Poll: Most say Trump Jr. should not have met with Russian lawyer MORE also weighed in on Friday, defending Trump on Twitter:

It's Friday. For anyone who stayed up through the end of the debate (present company included), this is how probably feel right now. I'm Cate Martel with a quick recap of what you missed this morning -- and what's on tap for the rest of the day. Send your tips, story ideas, complaints and feelings to and @CateMartel.

PROGRAMMING NOTE: The 12:30 Report will be off Monday for Martin Luther King Day. We'll be back Tuesday!

WINNERS AND LOSERS FROM LAST NIGHT: The Hill's Niall Stanage has a great breakdown of the winners and losers in last night's debate. WinnersDonald TrumpTed CruzTed CruzThe GOP Wonder Women who saved healthcare for 22 million Senators, you passed ObamaCare repeal-only bill in 2015 — do it again McCain rivals praise senator after brain cancer diagnosis MORE and Chris ChristieMixed:  Marco RubioMarco RubioBush ethics lawyer: Congress must tell Trump not to fire Mueller The private alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program  Cruz offers bill to weaken labor board's power MORE Losers: Ben Carson, Jeb Bush and John Kasich. Here's why:

THE FILLIBUSTER -- TO CHANGE OR NOT TO CHANGE?: Via The Hill's Alex Bolton and Scott Wong, Senate Republicans held a special meeting on Wednesday to discuss proposed changes that would make it tougher for the minority party to block or slow legislation. But there's still strong reluctance among GOP senators to limiting the filibuster, particularly if Donald Trump wins the GOP presidential nomination. 

RELEASED TODAY -- NEW RUBIO AD: Marco Rubio's presidential campaign has released a television ad on his immigration policy. Rubio also looks directly into the camera and slams rival Jeb Bush as "desperate and spending millions on false attacks." The Hill's Lisa Hagen with the story:

OUT-OF-SESSION FRIDAYS ARE FOR INTERN COFFEE MEETINGS: ... apparently. Filing from the coffee shop Cups on the Senate side of the Capitol, what feels like a continuous stream of interns are meeting with staffers to "pick their brains" about career aspirations. It's been very entertaining for your author.

DEBATE TIDBITS AND COMMENTARY: Here are some interesting context and observations you won't read in the takeaway pieces, told from the people who cover the candidates daily:

The Daily Beast's Jackie Kucinich (referring to Cruz and Trump's "bromance")
OH GOD they are breaking up! I don't believe in love anymore

Darth, the friendly Twitter troll, killing it with Photoshop as per usual.
Here's context: "look what i found in jeb's pocket i mean what even is this"

Business Insider's Max Tani (photo of Rand during the debate he boycotted)
I'm at the Twitter New York office with Rand PaulRand PaulSenate heads to new healthcare vote with no clear plan Overnight Healthcare: CBO predicts 22M would lose coverage under Senate ObamaCare replacement Fox News personality: GOP healthcare plan says ‘ideology is less important than victory' MORE where he'll be live tweeting the debate.

Time's Zeke Miller
Trump getting booed by RNC-heavy crowd

The Boston Globe's James Pindell
McCain 2008 "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb bomb Iran" Trump 2016 ""Indonesia: bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb"

The Washington Post's Dave Weigel
"The soybean, uh, sales from Iowa" is like the ultimate Jeb phrase

BuzzFeed's Katherine Miller (Lol to the gif of Trump dancing)

Michele BachmannMichele BachmannBachmann: Muslim immigrants trying to undermine Western civilization Religious leaders pray over Trump in Oval Office 'Real Housewives' producer 'begging' Conway to join cast MORE
Trump great. NYT always wrong

Buzzfeed's John Stanton (Cruz on Rubio's attacks)
BUT MOM!! he had no less than 11 attacks! I know because i counted

The Hill's Jesse Byrnes
2 hours in ... "WE WANT RAND"

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SHARING ON FACEBOOK: The Huffington Post's Samantha-Jo Roth has a 5-minute video of what it's like to spend a week on a presidential campaign bus.

SEAN PENN REGRETS HIS INTERVIEW WITH EL CHAPO: Via The Hill's Bradford Richardson, actor Sean Penn says he seriously regrets his article on drug kingpin El Chapo because it failed to create a dialogue about the war on drugs.



ABC's Jordyn Phelps
Fiorina gets specific in her Donald Trump-Kim Kardashian comparison: He has a big mouth, she has a big you know what

RealClearPolitics's Rebecca Berg (Uhhh ohhh)
Spotted in Charleston by a GOP campaign aide. (And no, the car does not have a handicapped placard.)

USA Today's Josh Hafner
Trump, in July: "I like people who weren't captured." (on McCain) Trump, this week: "These 10 wonderful (sailors) ... went through hell."

NBC's Kasie Hunt
Confederate flag banner flying over SC GOP debate. Unclear who paid for it

CNN's Cassie Spodak
Just realized Bernie SandersBernie SandersOPINION | Hey Dems, Russia won't define 2018, so why not fix your party's problems instead? OPINION | They told us to abandon ObamaCare — then came the resistance OPINION | Shailene Woodley: US should run on renewable energy by 2050 MORE plays "Burn Baby Burn" at the end of his rallies



Congress is not in session today; Republicans are finishing their retreat. 

2:15 p.m. EST: YouTube stars Destin SandlinIngrid Nilsen and Adande will join President Obama in the East Room of the White House to ask questions that are top-of-mind for their fans. You can join by tweeting #YouTubeAsksObama. 
Live stream:

4:30 p.m. EST: Future45 and America Rising PAC are screening the film "13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi."

7 p.m. EST: Sen. Tom CottonTom CottonCruz offers bill to weaken labor board's power Overnight Finance: GOP offers measure to repeal arbitration rule | Feds fine Exxon M for Russian sanctions violations | Senate panel sticks with 2017 funding levels for budget | Trump tax nominee advances | Trump unveils first reg agenda Iran deal faces uncertain future under Trump MORE (R-Ark.) speaks at the Ritz-Carlton Georgetown during a reception following the screening of the Benghazi film.



9 p.m. EST Sunday: The fourth Democratic presidential debate, live from South Carolina. Hillary ClintonBernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley will participate.



Today is National Strawberry Ice Cream Day!

WHY I WANT TO BE FRIENDS WITH ADELE: Here's a video of Adele singing karaoke to Adele's songs. That's all I need to say.

IMPORTANT CHIPOTLE PSA: In the wake of the norovirus and E.coli outbreaks, Chipotle plans to close all restaurants for one day on Feb. 8 to educate employees on how to safeguard against these issues. Don't worry; I'll be sure to remind everyone closer to the date, but just to put on your radar.

UH-OH FOR EOS: Eos, the popular egg-shaped lip balm, is facing a class action lawsuit for causing blisters and rashes.

SHAKE SHACK UPS ITS GAME: Fried chicken sandwiches are making their debut at Shake Shack today. I repeat: friend chicken sandwiches at Shake Shack.

And with that, here's the cutest thing you'll see all day: a koala getting kicked out of a tree and crying. I literally can't make this stuff up.


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