The Hill's 12:30 Report

The Hill's 12:30 Report

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--> A midday take on what's happening in politics and how to have a sense of humor about it.*

*Ha. Haha. Hahah. Sniff. Haha. Sniff. Ha-- breaks down crying hysterically.

 

The Hill's 12:30 Report: Breaking - Dems launch 'no confidence' resolution on Trump | Senate GOP meeting Trump for lunch | Tensions between Trump, GOP grow | Conservatives blame Congress for repeal failure | Trump vows to find 'full truth' as voter fraud panel meets | Trump Jr. reportedly 'miserable' as first son | National Hot Dog Day!

NOW'S THE TIME TO PULL OUT THAT DASHING SMILE AND THE EMERGENCY 'APPLES TO APPLES' GAME TO BREAK THE ICE: Tensions are bubbling over between President TrumpDonald John TrumpSasse: Trump shouldn't dignify Putin with Helsinki summit Top LGBT group projects message onto Presidential Palace in Helsinki ahead of Trump-Putin summit Hillary Clinton to Trump ahead of Putin summit: 'Do you know which team you play for?' MORE and Senate Republicans. Why this time: The White House blames Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDoug Jones walks tightrope on Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh gets questionnaires for confirmation hearing Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick MORE (R-Ky.) for the ObamaCare debacle, while GOP senators say Trump didn't help at all. The good, old-fashioned blame game: A member of Trump's team says their boss bears no responsibility for the embarrassing loss because McConnell was in charge of putting together a Senate package. http://bit.ly/2uzbu55

A LITTLE BUTTERING UP BEFORE THE MEETING NEVER HURT ANYONE: President Trump complimented Senate Republicans' healthcare plan this morning, tweeting, "The Republicans never discuss how good their healthcare bill is, & it will get even better at lunchtime. The Dems scream death as OCare dies!" http://bit.ly/2uzeChh

When they're meeting: 12:30 p.m. EDT at the White House for lunch.

How many Republicans are actually going: Unclear.

Spotted getting lunch at 11:30 a.m.: "Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrThe Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by Better Medicare Alliance — Trump seeks `home run’ candidate to succeed Justice Kennedy Hillicon Valley: Senate panel upholds finding Russia backed Trump | ZTE temporarily allowed back in business | Trump targets the NSA | Court rules Yelp can't be forced to remove bad reviews Senate panel upholds finding that Russia backed Trump, contradicting House MORE R-N.C.) is ordering lunch in the Senate carry out. Not going to WH while investigation under way he says." http://bit.ly/2tpVIK5

The field trip bus: Photo of the bus taking GOP senators to the White House. I hope it smells like sunscreen -- that would be festive. http://bit.ly/2tfEr1K

The eager beaver of the group: Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyKavanaugh paper chase heats up Kavanaugh gets questionnaires for confirmation hearing Franken offers Dems a line of questioning for Kavanaugh's 'weirdly specific bit of bulls---' MORE (R-Iowa) tweeted: "I'm eager to replace Obamacare and I'm the first one on the bus to the Whitehouse to find the magic to get to 'yes.'" http://bit.ly/2vCgt1t

Notice the seating chart: "Waiting senators for lunch at White House. Trump seated next to Sens. Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerJacky Rosen hits Dean Heller over health care in first negative ad GOP moderates hint at smooth confirmation ahead for Kavanaugh GOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE MORE and Tim ScottTimothy (Tim) Eugene ScottGOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE Senate takes symbolic shot at Trump tariffs Congress should prioritize diversity so government reflects Americans MORE." Photo of the seating arrangementhttp://bit.ly/2uDi3CX

TAKING THE BRUNT OF THE OBAMACARE BLAME -- CONGRESS, NOT TRUMP: Via The Hill's Jordan Fabian and Jonathan Easley, conservatives are lashing out at the Republican-controlled Congress over the lack of progress on President Trump's agenda. Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt even compared the list of Republican defectors to "Game of Thrones" character Arya Stark's fictional revenge list. http://bit.ly/2vC0twx

It's Wednesday. Tomorrow marks six months since President Trump took office --> http://bit.ly/2tGS6OR I'm Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what's coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to cmartel@thehill.com@CateMartel and on Facebook.

JUST NOW -- HERE ARE 25 NAMES COMING DIRECTLY OFF THE WHITE HOUSE'S CHRISTMAS CARD LIST...: Via The Hill's Mike Lillis, a group of liberal House Democrats stepped up criticism of President Trump, introducing a "no confidence" resolution that officially questions Trump's fitness to serve as commander in chief. Their reasoning: His campaign's many contacts with Russian officials; his refusal to release his taxes; his verbal attacks on women and the press; and his firing of FBI Director James Comey. Sponsor: Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.). List of 24 Dems who endorsed it his resolution: http://bit.ly/2tr0VRP

MAYBE DON JR. SHOULD LET OFF A LITTLE STEAM THE WAY JENNA BUSH DIDVia People's Sandra Sobieraj and Tierney McAfee, President Trump's son Donald Trump Jr. is "miserable." From a friend of the Trump brothers: "Eric and Don, they never wanted this." Another source: "Don can't do any deals, because he'll be overly scrutinized. He just goes to work every day and is miserable ... [Don Jr.] can't wait for these four years to be over." http://bit.ly/2u7UjVg 

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TALKED -- NO, ARGUED ABOUT, THIS MORNING -- WHEN YOU MEET UP WITH YOUR EX BUT KNOW YOUR FRIENDS WON'T APPROVE: President Trump held a second, informal talk with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, earlier this month, the White House confirmed late yesterday. Details: Trump spoke with the Russian leader for roughly an hour, joined only by Putin's translator. The meeting had previously gone without mention by the administration. http://bit.ly/2vChpmw

Trump's reaction: "Fake News story of secret dinner with Putin is 'sick.' All G 20 leaders, and spouses, were invited by the Chancellor of Germany. Press knew!" http://bit.ly/2uznSlp

Dems' reaction: Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffRussians' indictment casts shadow ahead of Trump-Putin summit Schiff expects Trump to take 'disastrous approach' on meddling in meeting with Putin Sunday shows preview: Trump readies for meeting with Putin MORE (Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, called President Trump's previously undisclosed conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin "deeply troubling." http://bit.ly/2tGD3EI

HAPPENING NOW -- IT'S ALL ABOUT THE VOTES: President Trump's Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity is holding its first public meeting, chaired by Vice President PenceLivestream: http://bit.ly/2u8DI3M

SPECIAL GUEST: President Trump stopped by and made brief remarks warning of the dangers of voter fraud. Trump called the commission's work a "sacred duty" and said he hopes its findings will give way to the "full truth." "Every time voter fraud occurs, it cancels out the vote of a lawful citizen and undermines democracy ... Can't let that happen. Any form of illegal or fraudulent voting, whether by noncitizens or the deceased, and any form of voter suppression or intimidation must be stopped." http://bit.ly/2u8GN3Q

Why the commission is already under fire: From The New York Times's Michael Wines: http://nyti.ms/2u8k8EF

REMEMBER CARRIER? -- THE TIMING IS A BIT, WELL, HMMM...: Via IndyStar's Tony Cook and James Briggs, Carrier Corp. is laying off 300 employees at its Indianapolis factory. Timing: It's happening Thursday, which happens to be exactly six months since Inauguration Day. http://indy.st/2tfgSWP

Back story: One of Trump's biggest campaign pledges was to keep jobs in the United States. An air-conditioning company, Carrier, planned to move 2,000 jobs to Mexico. Then President-elect Trump and Vice President-elect Pence announced a deal to keep roughly 1,000 jobs in the state. http://nyti.ms/2uac5cc

WHAT DO WE WANT?! TAX REFORM! WHEN DO WE WANT IT?! PLEASE, PLEASE BEFORE 2018: Via The Hill's Naomi Jagoda, the GOP's setback on healthcare is creating even more pressure for Republicans to accomplish tax reform before the midterms. Why: Expectations were set high because of the party's control of Washington. http://bit.ly/2uIyizv

Tidbit on tax reform: President Trump's former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, forecasted that the president's tax reform plan will have three parts. The gist: Lewandowski said Americans can expect a plan that will lead to less cash flow going overseas, deductions for middle-class families and a simplified tax code. http://bit.ly/2uCkW7c

A LITTLE NEW HEMPSHIRE NEWS -- MARY-JOO-AHNA: New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) has signed a new law decriminalizing marijuana, making the Granite State the 22nd in the nation to eliminate the possibility of jail time for those convicted of simple possession. What it means: The new law will reduce fines for possession of up to three-quarters of an ounce of marijuana from $2,000 to just $100 for a first or second offense. When it takes effect: Two months from now. http://bit.ly/2vjgtEa

NEWLY REPORTED -- AT LEAST CYBERSECURITY ISN'T A HOT BUTTON ISSUE RIGHT NOW: Via Bloomberg's Nick Wadhams and Nafeesa Syeed, Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonUS steps up its game in Africa, a continent open for business Matt Drudge shares mock ‘Survivor’ cover suggesting more White House officials will leave this summer 'Daily Show' trolls Trump over Pruitt's resignation MORE is closing a State Department office that works with other countries on cyber as part of an internal reorganization. What's happening to the office: It will become part of the State Department's Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs. What's different: "The coordinator will no longer report directly to the secretary of state, going instead through the bureau's chain of command." https://bloom.bg/2vC7FJ8

 

NOTABLE TWEETS:

CBS's Rebecca Kaplan (AH, PUPPY!!!! Oh wait... http://bit.ly/2tqq2E5)

Creative way to avoid swarm of Qs: bring a dog to Senate votes. Won't keep reporters away, but may distract them. Photo of the puppy swarm: http://bit.ly/2uIwWF7

 

ON TAP:

The House and Senate are in. President Trump is in Washington, D.C. 

12:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump has lunch with Senate Republicans. http://bit.ly/2vC5KnQ

1:30 p.m. EDT: First votes in the House.

3 p.m. EDT: President Trump holds a "Made in America" roundtable in the State Dining Room.

5 p.m. EDT: Last votes in the House.

 

WHAT TO WATCH:

2 p.m. EDT: A House Ways and Means subcommittee hearing on tax reform. Livestream: http://cs.pn/2uzzGEj

What you can't watch -- 2 p.m. EDT: White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders gives the daily press briefing, but off-camera.

7 p.m. EDT: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein will appear exclusively on Fox News with Martha MacCallumhttp://bit.ly/2tGFGXh

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...:

Today is National Hot Dog Day! It's also National Daiquiri Day!

ADJUSTS GLASSES AND BREATHS THROUGH HER MOUTH -- SCIENCE!: Here's a list of every total solar eclipse that will happen in your lifetime and maps of their paths. It's pretty fascinating. http://wapo.st/2u4gpYJ

TRENDING -- WELL ​SHE'S SETTLING IN NICELY TO HER ROYAL DUTIES: During a royal visit in Germany, Princess Charlotte stole the show. Photos and video: http://cnn.it/2u8ix1O

And to perfectly describe my current mood, meet Emma, the baby who loves ice cream more than any other human: http://bit.ly/2vCe2fr

 

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