FEATURED:

The Hill's 12:30 Report

The Hill's 12:30 Report

If you'd like to subscribe to The Hill's midday political newsletter, please click here: http://bit.ly/1lsUchu

 

The Hill's 12:30 Report -- New Hampshire Edition: Trump's ground game faces big test | Jeb supporter wins Super Bowl | White House seeks $1.8B to stop Zika | Free Bernie tattoos

NEW THIS A.M. -- TRUMP HOLDS FIRM LEAD; RUBIO/CRUZ IN 2ND: Via The Hill's Mark Hensch, in a new tracking poll, Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Guardian slams Trump over comments about assault on reporter Five takeaways from the first North Dakota Senate debate Watchdog org: Tillerson used million in taxpayer funds to fly throughout US MORE has the support of 24 percent of New Hampshire's Republican-leaning voters. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzO'Rourke gives 'a definitive no' to possibility of running in 2020 Vicente Fox endorses Beto O'Rourke in Texas Senate race Beto O'Rourke on impeachment: 'There is enough there to proceed' MORE and Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioThe Memo: Saudi storm darkens for Trump GOP leaders hesitant to challenge Trump on Saudi Arabia On The Money: Treasury official charged with leaking info on ex-Trump advisers | Trump to seek 5 percent budget cut from Cabinet members | Mnuchin to decide by Thursday on attending Saudi conference MORE are tied for second with 13 percent apiece. Jeb Bush and John Kasich are tied at 10 percent each. Chris Christie has 5 percent. http://bit.ly/1mnBjMQ

BOI-NIE SAN-DUHS: Via The Hill's Mark Hensch, Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersBooker holds 'Get Out the Vote' event in South Carolina as presidential speculation builds The Democratic Donald Trump is coming Biden: Trump administration 'coddles autocrats and dictators' MORE has a double-digit lead over Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWatchdog org: Tillerson used million in taxpayer funds to fly throughout US Republicans cancel airtime in swing Vegas district The Democratic Donald Trump is coming MORE the day before the New Hampshire primary. He has 56 percent support, compared with Clinton's 40 percent. Four percent remain undecided. http://bit.ly/1PKiaR2

ADVERTISEMENT
JUST ANNOUNCED -- ANOTHER SENATOR FOR RUBIO: Sen. Deb FischerDebra (Deb) Strobel FischerCook Political Report shifts three Senate races toward Republicans Kavanaugh fight puts Senate on edge of precipice ACLU's M in anti-Kavanaugh ads won't target Flake, Collins MORE (R-Neb.) has endorsed Marco Rubio's presidential bid. Here's the full list of Congressional endorsements: http://bit.ly/1STLS5y 

Happy Monday! The New Hampshire Primary is TOMORROW. (!!) Filing from The Radio Row at the Radisson Hotel (the center of the action) in Manchester, N.H., I'm Cate Martel. MSNBC's "Morning Joe" filmed from a nearby room, and the hotel breakfast buffet is filled with campaign staffers and journalists. From the area I've staked out, Jeb Bush, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), and Sen. Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenBrunson release spotlights the rot in Turkish politics and judiciary Overnight Defense — Presented by The Embassy of the United Arab Emirates — Missing journalist strains US-Saudi ties | Senators push Trump to open investigation | Trump speaks with Saudi officials | New questions over support for Saudi coalition in Yemen Senators demand answers on Trump administration backing of Saudi coalition in Yemen MORE (D-N.H.) have passed by so far. Here's a brief update of what you missed during the morning, what's on tap for the rest of the day and some tidbits from the campaign trail. Send comments, story ideas and predictions for the madness tomorrow to cmartel@thehill.com@CateMartel and on Facebook.

 

ON THE GROUND IN NEW HAMPSHIRE:

TRUMPMENTUM NEEDS TO BE REAL: Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley and Yours Truly, Donald Trump has a firm lead in the polls in New Hampshire, but tomorrow's primary will be determined by the ground game -- just how Ted Cruz's big win was reached in Iowa. There is doubt about Trump's ground game from veteran Republican operatives, but here's what the campaign has to say: http://bit.ly/1UY3sWV

NO, HE COULDN'T HAVE! ...RIGHT?: During the debate, the live feed in the press room glitched when Chris Christie said "fight" so we just heard the first syllable -- "F" -- Cue momentary freak-out. 

SPIN ROOM: Following the debate, candidates spoke to reporters in the spin room. It was such close quarters that your 5' 4" author stood on her toes to see, and when she put her heels back down on the ground there was another person in the crowded area "using that space." Here's a photo for perspective: http://bit.ly/1T8rhNT

TEAM RUBIO SHIPPING UP TO NEW ENGLAND: At a rally for Marco Rubio in Bedford, N.H., a group of the senator's family and friends were spotted in the crowd, who came up from Miami, Fla., sporting custom Rubio football jerseys. One friend, Becky Patron, said she was Rubio's son's kindergarten teacher and was up in the area doing door knocks and other volunteer efforts. Here's a group photo with Rubio's wife Jeanette. http://bit.ly/1RirZqu

MAILER UPDATE: By my latest count, we have received at least 31 political mailers in the past week. Most notably, Right to Rise USA, the super-PAC supporting Jeb Bush, sent out a mailer so big it was essentially a big poster of his face. 

ALRIGHT, SOMEONE MESSED UP: Supporters of Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSaudi mystery drives wedge between Trump, GOP Noisy democracy, or rude people behaving like children? Lawmakers, Wall Street shrug off Trump's escalating Fed attacks MORE held a sign wave for the Kentucky senator in Nashua, N.H. One itsy bitsy problem: Paul dropped out. Did that message not get relayed? Photohttp://bit.ly/1PK6Kga 

I'LL SAY IT AGAIN: Via The Hill's Rebecca Savransky, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is fighting off criticism from the media over his repeated attacks against President Obama during Saturday night's GOP debate. In response, a fundraising pitch from Rubio encourages people to donate to his campaign because he will continue to say what he believes: that "Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaFive takeaways from the first North Dakota Senate debate Live coverage: Heitkamp faces Cramer in high-stakes North Dakota debate Khashoggi prompts Trump to reconsider human rights in foreign policy MORE is trying to change the United States of America." http://bit.ly/1K7YhTO

 

AND IN OTHER NEWS...

THE WHITE HOUSE TAKES ON ZIKA: Via The Hill's Sarah Ferris, the White House is seeking $1.8 billion in emergency funding to fight the Zika virus, hoping to halt the spread of the relatively unknown disease. Timing: The World Health Organization declared a global emergency as of Friday. http://bit.ly/1Q3p2Vq

YEAH, NO PRESSURE. AT ALL: Via The Hill's Julian Hattem, Attorney General Loretta Lynch is about to be dragged into the spotlight in the Clinton FBI probe. If the FBI finds sufficient evidence to launch a criminal investigation into classified information of emails, Lynch will have to decide how to handle. http://bit.ly/1KB3eVb

BEST BUDS TALKING BEST BUD THINGS: IJ Review created a video of Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamThe Memo: Saudi storm darkens for Trump Trump changes tone on Saudi Arabia amid mounting pressure Trump rebukes Saudis, but also gives them more time MORE (R-S.C.) and John McCainJohn Sidney McCainMcConnell: GOP could try to repeal ObamaCare again after midterms Comey donates maximum amount to Democratic challenger in Virginia House race Live coverage: McSally clashes with Sinema in Arizona Senate debate MORE (R-Ariz.) doing a comedy show about the 2016 election. Graham: "Do you think they treated you fairly when you were up there on the debate stage?" McCain: "I've been treated better." Graham: "By who?" McCain: "The Vietnamese!" http://on.fb.me/1KAGfcJ

THIS WEEK IN CONGRESS -- BUDGET, NORTH KOREA: President Obama is expected to release his final budget tomorrow. But hold your horses, Barack: Republicans on Capitol Hill have already indicated they won't take it seriously. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said the GOP goal is to produce their budget out of committee during the last week of February and hold a floor vote sometime in early March. 

• North Korea: The Senate is expected to pass new sanctions cracking down on North Korea after the country claimed it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. 

• Energy: A wide-ranging energy bill is back under the spotlight after it was derailed last week over a Democratic-push to include aid for the Flint, Mich., drinking water crisis. 

• Scientific research: The House is slated to consider a measure on Wednesday that would establish standards for National Science Foundation research grants to be "worthy of federal funding." 

• Nutrition labeling: A bill that would modify the FDA's menu-labeling rule to add the number of calories. http://bit.ly/1W6rAqk

 

CAMPAIGN TRAIL TWEETS:

The Center for Public Integrity's Dave Levinthal (the photo shows Manning's political contribution history)
Peyton Manning <3 Jeb Bush (hat tip to Open Secrets DC) http://bit.ly/1Rgu1aB

Politico's Hadas Gold
On Colbert, Megyn Kelly says at last Fox News debate they were worried that Trump would show up in the middle of the debate http://bit.ly/1ojIHKV

The Huffington Post's Jennifer Bendery
Trump: "Grab em. Hug em. Kiss em. Whatever. Get the deal done." Clinton: I'll give GOP lawmakers "bear hugs" to get deals. #Hugs2016 http://bit.ly/1okM1oU

 

ON TAP:

The House is out of session on Monday. 

1 p.m. EST: Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) holds a town hall in Windham, N.H.

1:30 p.m. EST: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) holds a meet-and-greet in Raymond, N.H.

3:30 p.m. EST: Cruz speaks at an event hosted by Tea Party Nation and the 603 Alliance in Manchester, N.H.

4 p.m. EST: Kasich holds a town hall at Fidelity Investments in Merrimack, N.H.

5 p.m. EST: Donald Trump has a rally at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, N.H. This is one of the biggest event spaces in the area. Mitt Romney had his last rally here the night before the general election.

5:30 p.m. EST: The Senate will vote to confirm Rebecca Ebinger as a federal judge.

6 p.m. EST: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) holds a town hall in Manchester, N.H.

6 p.m. EST: Kasich holds a town hall in Manchester, N.H.

6:30 p.m. EST: Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) holds a rally in Nashua, N.H.

6:30 p.m. EST: Carly Fiorina holds a town hall in Concord, N.H.

7:30 p.m. EST: Jeb Bush holds a town hall in Portsmouth, N.H.

7:30 p.m. EST: Hillary Clinton holds a rally in Hudson, N.H.

8 p.m. EST: Kasich holds an election-eve rally in Hooksett, N.H.

 

WHAT TO WATCH:

5 p.m. EST: Jeb Bush joins Chuck Todd on MSNBC's "MTP Daily." 

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National Molasses Bar Day and National Potato Lover's Day!

OH. MY. GOD.: The mother of a two-year-old and 8-month-old triplets posted a video of what it's like getting the four very active toddlers into pajamas. The video is hilarious but as stressful as watching your favorite sports team in a very close game. Watch: http://on.fb.me/1T7pit1

WE. ARE. FAM. ILY.: During the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl, a video shows the Mannings celebrating in their box. Well, except for Peyton's brother, Eli Manning -- quarterback for the New York Giants. What a special moment. http://nydn.us/1QQo6aj

LITERALLY "FEELING THE BERN": A tattoo parlor in Vermont is offering free tattoos of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) http://bit.ly/1LblQWC

And with that, here's a video of two dogs hugging it out in a way too human way. These are the things that get me through the day. http://on.fb.me/1nY7JPI 

 

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

To receive The Hill's 12:30 Report in your inbox, please sign up here: http://bit.ly/1lsUchu