The Hill's 12:30 Report

The Hill's 12:30 Report

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The Hill's 12:30 Report: Iowa turnout key in Clinton vs. Sanders | Trump-less debate ratings | Grassley hits the trail with Carson, Kasich | Palin on 'Today' Monday

JUST POSTED -- IT'S ALL ABOUT THAT TURNOUT, 'BOUT THAT TURNOUT: Via The Hill's Amie Parnes and Niall Stanage (who is on the ground in Iowa!), with Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonRussia-linked attack targets government officials, journalists, activists 5 things to watch in Montana’s special election Hannity on attempted advertiser boycott: 'Nobody tells me what to say on my show' MORE maintaining a paper-thin lead in Iowa over rival Bernie SandersBernie Sanders5 things to watch in Montana’s special election GOP on edge over Montana election Overnight Healthcare: CBO fallout | GOP senators distance themselves from House bill | Trump budget chief blasts score | Schumer says House bill belongs 'in the trash' MORE, turnout will determine who wins. Polls suggest that a heavy turnout will benefit Sanders, who beats Clinton in polls among those who have never caucused before. If turnout is low, however, the edge goes to Clinton. Here's why: http://bit.ly/1PYzGNz

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NUMBERS OUT -- SO, WHO WON THE RATINGS WAR?: Via The Hill's Harper Neidig, early Nielsen ratings show that Thursday night's Fox News debate was the second-lowest rated debate of the primary season, with an 8.4 rating. The record-breaking first Fox News debate had a 15.9 rating. http://bit.ly/1SO3PoX

WINNERS AND LOSERS FROM LAST NIGHT: The Hill's Niall Stanage has a great breakdown of the winners and losers from last night's debate.

Winners: Donald TrumpDonald TrumpScarborough links Trump rhetoric, candidate's alleged assault of reporter Trump was smart to abandon NAFTA war, now let’s improve trade 5 things to watch in Montana’s special election MORE, Marco RubioMarco RubioMcConnell on Trump: 'We could do with a little less drama' Taking the easy layup: Why brain cancer patients depend on it Rubio: 'All options should be on table' if Flynn refuses new subpoenas MORE and Jeb Bush.

Mixed: Ted CruzTed CruzGOP senators distance themselves from House ObamaCare repeal bill Cruz: Jokes about me in Franken's book 'obnoxious' The Hill's 12:30 Report MOREChris Christie and Rand PaulRand PaulPaul: 0B Saudi arms deal ‘a travesty’ Senate feels pressure for summer healthcare vote Overnight Defense: Trump budget gets thumbs down from hawks | UK raises threat level after Manchester attack | Paul to force vote on 0B Saudi arms deal MORE.

Losers: John Kasich and Ben Carsonhttp://bit.ly/1PmPpKf

JUST OUT ­-- CRUZ HAS GOT MONEY IN DA BANK: Via The Bloomberg's Sahil Kapur and Madeline McMahonTed Cruz's presidential campaign has $19 million in the bank as of Dec. 31, campaign manager Jeff Roe said at a Bloomberg breakfast this morning. That's going to be important if the nomination process lasts for the long haul. http://bloom.bg/1PnaDHG

Happy Friday! The Iowa caucuses are MONDAY and the New Hampshire primary is 11 days from today (cue excited shriek from your politically nerdy author!). 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 tips, comments, story ideas and Iowa caucus predictions to cmartel@thehill.com and follow me on Facebook.

WHITE HOUSE'S FALLON OUT: Via The Hill's Jordan Fabian, Katie Beirne Fallon, the legislative chief for President Obama, is leaving the White House, aides said Friday. What this means: Fallon's departure could complicate White House's efforts to get Congress to pass the remaining items on Obama's agenda during his final year in office, including his trans-Pacific trade deal and criminal justice reform. It's also a reflection of the president's pared down to-do list for lawmakers, a bow to election-year gridlock and Republican control of both sides of Capitol Hill. http://bit.ly/23y6aZ5

Tweet from Politico's Burgess Everett: With little coordination going on between the Hill and White House these days, top Hill hand Katie Beirne Fallon leaving. http://bit.ly/20xWsDr

DEBATE SNUB STILL KEPT THE CONVERSATION ON TRUMP: From Yours Truly, despite skipping Thursday's debate, Donald Trump dominated the conversation on Twitter and Facebook. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio followed Trump in mentions on both Twitter and Facebook, but at a distance. Here's a breakdown of the numbers: http://bit.ly/1OTvpgC

T MINUS 60ISH HOURS UNTIL HEALTHCARE.GOV DEADLINE: Borrowing from The Hill's "Overnight HealthCare," it's that time of the year again. In the final days before Sunday's deadline, first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle ObamaMake national service a priority Trump gets royal welcome during 'tremendous' Saudi Arabia visit Melania and Ivanka Trump choose not to wear headscarves on Saudi trip MORE is doing radio interviews, DJ Khaled is tweeting, and even Lyft is getting the word out. More from The Hill's Sarah Ferris: http://bit.ly/1SMHsQA

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

The Washington Post's Dave Weigel posted a video on Instagram of Jim Gilmore thanking Twitter for verifying him. http://bit.ly/1nCIT7M

BuzzFeed's Rosie Gray
Carson: "You're not gonna hear a lot of polished political speech from me." True. http://bit.ly/1RQMBXJ

Roll Call's Eli Yokley
brb #GOPDebate Trump is on. http://bit.ly/23xDGOU

The Boston Globe's James Pindell
Huckabee is now telling folk tales at Trump rally http://bit.ly/1Kf0fBA

The Hill's Julian Hattem
John Kasich apparently thinks that any policy proposals regarding encryption are too secretive to talk about on television http://bit.ly/1So55xD

also guys if you mention nuclear weapons it will leak opsec so don't do that either http://bit.ly/1SfHlO0

AJC's Tamar Hallerman
Very little interaction between the candidates so far as the moderators hustle from topic to topic http://bit.ly/1KK1bJ0

Politico's Glenn Thrush
.@JebBush can B-R-E-A-T-H-E when the bully isn't in the lunchroom http://bit.ly/1Kf0blo

The Huffington Post's Jennifer Bendery (LOL to the photo)
"Ben Carson, this question is for you. Ben?" http://bit.ly/1nT5lJR

The Huffington Post's Matt Fuller
This is almost certainly Jeb Bush's strongest debate. Makes you wonder how he would have done without Trump on the stage every debate. http://bit.ly/1TrkKx4

 

NEW HAMPSHIRE CORNER:

WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF TRUMP WINS N.H.: New Hampshire consultant Drew Cline has an op-ed in The Boston Globe making the case that if Trump wins in New Hampshire, it could ruin the primary forever. Cline knows his state. It's worth reading: http://bit.ly/1PEL9RV

BEHIND THE SCENES OF NEXT WEEK'S UNSANCTIONED DEBATE: The Union Leader's Trent Spiner appeared on New Hampshire Public Radio's "The Exchange" this morning, where he explained how the unsanctioned debate came about. The last New Hampshire Democratic debate was the Saturday before Christmas, when voters were "not paying attention" yet. After hearing from readers, Spiner called NBC's Chuck Todd and "in three minutes, [Todd] had said, 'yes he was on board,' but we also had a sketch of what it would look like.' " Todd then called the president of NBC, who agreed. "Most debates take three months to produce," said Spiner. "This will be produced in a week." (No pressure or anything!)

-- When asked whether they had spoken with the DNC, Spiner said they had not heard from the DNC in the past 24 hours. He called next week's debate "the not-yet-sanctioned debate."

Listen to the show: http://bit.ly/1JM2oon

 

ON TAP:

The House is in recess; the Senate is out until Monday, but there won't be any votes until the Iowa caucuses are over.

12:30 p.m. EST: Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) holds a town hall in Cedar Rapids, Iowa with Sen. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyFeinstein: Comey memos 'going to be turned over' Judiciary chair may call for meeting with Mueller Bad intel from Russia influenced Comey's Clinton announcement: report MORE (R-Iowa) and Iowa GOP Chairman Jeff Kaufmann.

1 p.m. EST: Carly Fiorina holds a town hall in Marion, Iowa. This is the first of three town halls she's holding today.

1:15 p.m. EST: Vice President Biden will deliver remarks on the economy with Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.)

2:20 p.m. EST: President Obama meets with Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter in the Oval Office.

3 p.m. EST: Ben Carson holds a town hall in Iowa City, Iowa, with Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) -- Grassley's making the rounds today!

4 p.m. EST: Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) holds a town hall in Burlington, Iowa.

7 p.m. EST: Ben Carson holds a town hall in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, with Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa.)

The weekend: It's a mad dash for candidates to meet as many voters as possible in Iowa this weekend. All of the candidates on the main debate stage will be in the Hawkeye State this weekend. Check out The Hill's "Overnight Campaign" from Lisa Hagen for a full rundown of the weekend's campaign events.

 

WHAT TO WATCH:

7 a.m. EST Monday: Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie sit down with Sarah Palin on NBC's "Today."

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National Corn Chip Day!

THE GREATEST COCKTAIL IN ALL THE LAND (I HOPE): The Washington City Paper's Jessica Sidman makes the case for the $100 cocktail in D.C. http://bit.ly/23xKQmv

BEST OF LATE-NIGHT: In "protest" of Donald Trump boycotting the Fox News debate last night, Stephen Colbert hosted an "All Trump" debate. http://bit.ly/1Kfge2r

And with that, send me your predictions for the Iowa Caucuses Monday. Have a good weekend!

 

To view past editions of The Hill's 12:30 Report, click here: http://bit.ly/1M1mIfw

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