The Hill's 12:30 Report — Sponsored by Pfizer — Trump, Kim summit set for June 12 in Singapore

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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 — Sponsored by Pfizer — Trump to meet Kim Jong Un on June 12 in Singapore | Trump greets detainees freed by North Korea | Cohen storm grows | McCain urges fellow senators to reject Haspel | The opioid epidemic's 'forgotten people' | Maryland gov candidate dies of heart attack | 12 tons of chocolate flip over on a highway

 

NEWS OF THE MORNING

I'll bring the wine, you bring the cheese and crackers and It's. A. Date.:

President TrumpDonald John Trump20 weeks out from midterms, Dems and GOP brace for surprises Sessions responds to Nazi comparisons: 'They were keeping the Jews from leaving' Kim Jong Un to visit Beijing this week MORE just announced that his high-stakes meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will be in Singapore on June 12. President Trump tweeted: "The highly anticipated meeting between Kim Jong Un and myself will take place in Singapore on June 12th. We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!" http://bit.ly/2wuDEjG

 

 

It's Thursday. 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.

 

EARLY THIS A.M.

Welcome back!: 

Early this morning, President Trump greeted three Americans who were just released from being prisoners in North Korea. Lol, this was a pretty funny line: Addressing the media covering the arrival, President Trump said, "I think you probably broke the all-time in history television rating for 3 o'clock in the morning." Watch their arrival: http://bit.ly/2IsZ8lT

ON KIM JONG UN'S INVOLVEMENT: President Trump thanked North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for freeing the American prisoners, though, when asked if he had spoken to Kim, the president replied, "I don't want to comment."

ON NUCLEAR TALKS: "The fact we were able to get them out so soon was a tribute to a lot of things," President Trump said to a crowd of journalists. "I just want to say, this is a special night. I'm very honored to have helped these great folks, but the true honor is going to be if we have a victory in getting rid of nuclear weapons." 

TIDBIT FROM ONE OF THE DETAINEES: This morning, Vice President Pence recalled how one of the prisoners had asked to walk outside the airplane during a refueling stop on the way back from Pyongyang, because he "hadn't seen daylight in a very long time." Watch Pence describing the interaction: http://bit.ly/2I4k9E5

 

LATEST FROM THE WEST WING

In gossip news you don't want to admit you're curious about, but really are: 

Via Page Six, President Trump's son, Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpBannon: I don’t believe that Trump says things that are not true Giuliani: 'I doubt' Trump knew Roger Stone met with Russian during 2016 campaign The Hill's Morning Report — 'Sobering' IG report damages FBI MOREwho is currently divorcing his wife of 12 years, is dating Fox News host Kimberly GuilfoyleA source told Page Six: "Don Jr. and Kimberly are seeing each other, and are having a great time. While he wants to respect the privacy of his family, he is getting divorced, and he enjoys Kimberly's company." Full story -- no one will know you clicked it: https://pge.sx/2KbpQN3

SIDE NOTE ABOUT DON JR.: Via CNN's Dan MericaDonald Trump Jr. will play a major role in the midterms. Which races: "Trump Jr. will particularly focus on West Virginia, Missouri, Montana and Indiana, four states that have key Senate races where Republicans are looking to unseat Democrats in states Trump won in 2016, and on defending House seats in districts where the President has a high approval rating." https://cnn.it/2KTIHNA

 

Eh, who needs cybersecurity anyway?: 

Via Politico's Eric Geller, national security adviser John Bolton is considering eliminating the top White House cybersecurity job. The worry: "Cybersecurity experts and former National Security Council officials expressed alarm at the idea of eliminating the job, saying it would undo much of the progress the U.S. has made on cyber efforts and send the wrong message about U.S. priorities in the digital domain." https://politi.co/2KRI07t 

 

If you really want it to wrap up, the key is to pretend you're totally cool with it:

During an interview on NBC's "Today," Vice President Pence urged special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE to wrap up his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. His reasoning: "Our administration has provided over a million documents, we've fully cooperated in it and in the interest of the country, I think it's time to wrap it up." http://bit.ly/2rzhTKA

KEEP IN MIND: The Mueller investigation has actually been moving at lightning pace. Scholars in the field have said Robert Mueller's pace has measured up "to some of the best special prosecutors in modern history." Reasoning -- via NPR: https://n.pr/2IbQS6u

 

Everyone has his or her own 'Michael Cohen':

Via The Hill's Niall Stanage, the growing storm over President Trump's personal attorney Michael Cohen is casting a dark cloud over the White House. http://bit.ly/2I5cNjL

What escalated the situation: Stat reported yesterday that Michael Cohen promised the pharmaceutical company Novartis that he could provide access to Trump and his inner circle if they signed a contract with Cohen. http://bit.ly/2I5cfKJ

Not helping things: The White House, as well as the president's private legal team, has shown little willingness to engage with the subject. 

 

IN OTHER NEWS

McCain's a 'no' on CIA nominee Gina Haspel:

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTrump plan to claw back billion in spending in peril McCain calls on Trump to rescind family separation policy: It's 'an affront to the decency of the American people' Senate passes 6B defense bill MORE (R-Ariz.) came out against President Trump's CIA nominee Gina Haspel after her Senate confirmation hearing. Why: From McCain: "her refusal to acknowledge torture's immorality is disqualifying." The big question: Can McCain sway any other Republicans? http://bit.ly/2Ialhlk

AND FEINSTEIN OPPOSES HER: Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinSenate passes 6B defense bill Manchin becomes final Democrat to back bill preventing separation of immigrant families Live coverage: FBI chief, Justice IG testify on critical report MORE (D-Calif.) said she will vote against CIA Deputy Director Gina HaspelFeinstein's statement: "This nomination is bigger than one person. The torture program was illegal at the time based on international treaties. ... I believe those who were intimately involved should not lead the agency."  http://bit.ly/2I9oly9

BUT AT LEAST ONE DEMOCRAT WILL VOTE YES: Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinKaine shares photos of child detention facility: ‘The real Trump Hotel’ Manchin becomes final Democrat to back bill preventing separation of immigrant families Manchin touts support for Trump border wall in new ad MORE (D-W.Va.) This is a good sign for her confirmation. http://bit.ly/2K91zHk

THE BIG TAKEAWAY FROM HASPEL'S HEARING: No major stumbles. Haspel bolstered her case to be CIA director http://bit.ly/2KOYbCw

 

Rest In Peace: 

Via The Baltimore Sun, Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz (D), a candidate for governor in Maryland, died of a heart attack early this morning. From police: "Kamenetz was at his home in Owings Mills, asleep, when he awoke at about 2 a.m. and complained of feeling ill. He was transported by the Garrison Fire Station's Medic 19 to St. Joseph, where doctors pronounced him deceased at 3:22 a.m." Kamenetz has a wife and two teenage sons. https://bsun.md/2rxbvUm

 

The forgotten ones:

Via The Hill's Rachel Roubein, "American Indians are among those the opioid epidemic has hit the hardest, though scant attention has been paid to how the crisis is ripping through their communities." How these communities are responding: "At least 20 tribes have formally sued opioid manufacturers and distributors, with at least 10 more suits under contract and expected to be filed soon." http://bit.ly/2rwn3Hm

 

NOTABLE TWEETS:

Lol:

 

 

ON TAP:

The House and Senate are in.

10:45 a.m. EDT: Last votes in the House. The House's schedule today: http://bit.ly/2jYhqPv

11 a.m. EDT: President Trump meets with Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisHillicon Valley: Supreme Court takes up Apple case | Senate votes to block ZTE deal | Officials testify on Clinton probe report | Russia's threat to undersea cables | Trump tells Pentagon to create 'space force' | FCC begins T-Mobile, Sprint deal review Pentagon: Planning for August 'war game' with South Korea suspended Dem: Trump 'Space Force' would 'rip the Air Force apart' MORE.

Noon: Votes in the Senate. The Senate's schedule today: http://bit.ly/2I63zDN

Noon: Vice President Pence and second lady Karen PenceKaren Sue Pence'Queer Eye' star recounts his visit to White House The Hill's 12:30 Report Indiana middle school shooting survivors protest NRA MORE host a lunch for military spouses.

1:45 p.m. EDT: The Senate has a roll call vote. 

2 p.m. EDT: President Trump meets with Agriculture Secretary Sonny PerdueGeorge (Sonny) Ervin PerdueThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump: `A very great moment in the history of the world’ Trump signs order to boost efficiency in federal agencies PETA sues USDA over roadside zoo licensing MORE, Sen. Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsTrump tightens grip on GOP Overnight Finance: Senators introduce bill to curb Trump's tariff authority | McConnell calls it 'exercise in futility' | Kudlow warns WTO won't dictate policy | Mulvaney feud with consumer advocates deepens Senators introduce bill to curb Trump's tariff authority MORE (R-Kan.), and Rep. Mike ConawayKenneth (Mike) Michael ConawayHillicon Valley: Deal reached on ZTE, but lawmakers look to block it | New encryption bill | Dems push Ryan for net neutrality vote | Google vows it won't use AI for weapons Lawmakers scrutinize Google, Twitter's relationship with Chinese phone makers Farmland is being consumed by expanding urban areas MORE (R- Texas).

4:15 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for Elkhart, Ind.

7 p.m. EDT: President Trump hosts a campaign rally in Elkhart, Ind. Vice President Pence introduces the president.

10:45 p.m. EDT: President Trump gets back to the White House.

Just announced -- around June 10: Net neutrality rules are ending. http://bit.ly/2wuarWh

 

WHAT TO WATCH:

This morning: Vice President Pence sat down with CBS's Margaret BrennanTranscript: https://cbsn.ws/2Ibm45I

Later this year: The cable TV channel FX is teaming up with The New York Times to create a weekly show that tells behind-the-scenes stories of the newsroom's reporting. Details: https://nyti.ms/2jNvmKJ

  

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...:

Today is National Shrimp Day! --> http://bit.ly/2KNDyXw ;)

 

*Hard click*: 

Via Time, "This is what it looks like when a truck hauling 12 tons of chocolate flips over on a highway." This. Is. So. Sad. Watch -- because we all want to know: https://ti.me/2KbFUyq

 

And because you made it to the end, here's a dog being tricked by broccoli: http://bit.ly/2Ibr3mM