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: Trump tweets report based on classified N. Korea intel | Haley slams leaks after Trump tweet | Trump's vacation under scrutiny | Signs of trouble with Trump's base | Five kinds of Republicans who could primary Trump | WaPo spent a month watching Trump's DC hotel | NFL player's epic retirement video

'HEY, I FOUND THE IRONY!' 'LOST IT.' 'FOUND IT AGAIN!' 'LOST IT AGAIN :(' 'FOUND IT!': President Trump this morning shared a report on North Korean cruise missiles based on information from anonymous sources amid his administration's crackdown on leaks. The "Fox & Friends" tweet he shared (because of course it was "Fox & Friends"): "U.S. spy satellites detect North Korea moving anti-ship cruise missiles to patrol boat." The report cites anonymous sources in the intelligence community. Don't forget: That's a practice Trump often criticizes.

Another North Korea tweet at 7:17 a.m.: "After many years of failure, countries are coming together to finally address the dangers posed by North Korea. We must be tough & decisive!" Shouldn't he be sleeping in on vacation?

Then Nikki Haley steps in: United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley lashed out at the classified leaks on North Korean missiles, saying it is "incredibly dangerous" that it was reported, even after President Trump tweeted out the story.

It's Tuesday. Six months from today, the Olympic Winter Games begin in PyeongChang! Important tidbit to remember: The Olympics are in PyeongChang, South Korea -- not to be confused with Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea. 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, @CateMartel and on Facebook.


TRANSPARENCY IS FOR SQUARES: Via The Hill's Jordan Fabian in Bridgewater, N.J., President Trump's 17-day getaway at his golf club in New Jersey has been billed as a "working vacation." What's the problem: Top aides have been cycling in and out and President Trump has been holding meetings, yet it's difficult for the public to get a sense of what Trump's days are really like. To top it off: The media and some Trump aides are staying roughly 12 miles away at a hotel. The press hasn't been allowed onto the club grounds thus far, and the White House has been reluctant to describe modifications that have been made there to allow Trump to conduct business or a daily schedule. What we do know:

Tidbit from Washington: "The trip coincides with a major renovation project in the West Wing that has forced members of his team across the street to the Eisenhower Executive Office Building."

TROUBLE IN TRUMP NATIONAL RESORT PARADISE: Via The Hill's Niall Stanage, President Trump took to Twitter Monday to boast about the strength of his base of support. But polling tells a different story. For example: A new CNN poll put his job approval rating at 38 percent. Just as worryingly from the White House's perspective, the same survey showed his "strong approval" number among Republicans sliding to 59 percent, from 73 percent in February. More polling:

Interesting read: Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley and Scott Wong, here are the five kinds of Republicans who could primary Trump:

FASCINATING READ -- A PEOPLE WATCHER'S DREEEEAM: The Washington Post staked out in the Trump National Hotel in Washington, D.C., every day for a month to capture the comings and goings. Excerpt: "What reporters saw ranged from events hosted by foreign groups with policy priorities to Republican glitterati -- Rudolph W. Giuliani posing for selfies at the bar the night Trump fired FBI Director James B. Comey; White House aide Omarosa Manigault conferring with the former producer of 'The Apprentice'; former Trump campaign adviser Corey Lewandowski plopping into a black leather chair marked 'Reserved'; then-press secretary Sean Spicer scrolling through his phone on a plush blue sofa in the lobby."

WHY YOU NEED TO TURN ON ESPN8 TODAY: Via Barstool Sports, "Drawing inspiration from the 2004 hit movie 'Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story' featuring Vince Vaughn, Christine Taylor and Ben Stiller, ESPNU will become ESPN8: 'The Ocho' on Tuesday, Aug. 8, or more appropriately, 8/8. For one day only, the faux network will feature a line-up of unconventional sporting events ranging from Disc Golf to Ultimate Trampoline Dodgeball and Firefighters World Challenge." What to expect:



The Washington Post's Ron Charles (Haha!)
Greatest headline of the day:

NBC's Adam Tuss
Alert!!! We found the supposed self driving van in Arlington - and there's a guy hiding behind the seat!!!

Because it would be mean to leave you hanging there: Here's the full headline: "'Driverless' Van in Virginia Is Driven by Man Dressed Like a Car Seat" Video:

The Hill's Scott Wong
Mark Cuban says he's been contacted by people in both parties about 2020. "It's something I am considering."



The House and Senate are hopefully having a beach day.

Noon: Vice President Pence has lunch with Sens. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioOvernight Cybersecurity: Bipartisan bill aims to deter election interference | Russian hackers target Senate | House Intel panel subpoenas Bannon | DHS giving 'active defense' cyber tools to private sector Senators unveil bipartisan push to deter future election interference Puerto Rico's children need recovery funds MORE (R-Fla.), Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) and Rep. Albio Sires (D-N.J.)

3 p.m. EDT: President Trump holds a briefing with Health and Human Services Secretary Tom PriceThomas (Tom) Edmunds PriceOvernight Health Care: House GOP considers adding health measures to funding bill | WH doctor says Trump in 'excellent' health | Gallup: Number of uninsured up 3M in 2017 | CDC chief to miss fourth hearing New watchdog group targets Trump HHS on reproductive health EPA inspector general further expands probe into Pruitt travel MORE on the opioid crisis at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J.

5 p.m. EDT: The Institute of World Politics is hosting an event in Washington, D.C., on Russian foreign policy. Details:

September 24: Washingtonian's "Taste of Georgetown." How to buy tickets:



Today is National Frozen Custard Day.

A REAL-LIFE 'JOHN TUCKER MUST DIE' PLOTLINE: Via Washingtonian's Erica Sloan, "A DC Guy Planned Six Dates in a Single Night--and All the Women Found Out: The girls ended up grabbing drinks together at a bar across the street, and now they're planning a brunch."

EVERYONE LOVES INTERACTIVE ARTICLES: Time has a questionnaire you can take to find out if you'd qualify to immigrate to the U.S. under President Trump's proposed new merit-based system. Take the test:

From Sirius XM 'Press Pool' host Julie Mason: "I scored 21, well short of the 30 point minimum -- not eligible to immigrate to US. What's your score?"

THIS. IS. INCREDIBLE: Longtime Patriots nose tackle Vince Wilfork announced his retirement in the most epic video. 54-second video:

And because you read this far, here's a cat pulling out his choke slam maneuver (?!) when wrestling with his friend:

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