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: Hurricane Harvey bears down on Texas | Trump 'closely monitoring' storm | Trump attacks another GOP senator | Talk of Kasich, Hickenlooper 2020 ticket | Trump adviser drafted resignation letter after Charlottesville | New healthcare deadline for Congress | Taylor Swift's trending single

TALK OF THE MORNING -- A LIL TOO MUCH NAZI TALK: Via The New York Times' Eileen Sullivan and Maggie Haberman, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, a prominent Jewish member of President Trump's White House, considered resigning over President Trump's response to the violence at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. How serious was he: He even drafted a resignation letter (!) at one point.

Let's not forget -- Cohn was in the middle of this: When President Trump made comments at Trump Tower last week that there were "very fine people on both sides" in Charlottesville, Cohn stood next to him. "After Mr. Trump left, Mr. Cohn stood uncomfortably fielding questions about the president's statements, and he repeatedly declined to comment. At the time, people close to Mr. Cohn said he was disgusted and deeply upset by Mr. Trump's comments."

Cohn publicly distanced himself from Trump's remarks: In an interview with the Financial Times Thursday, Gary Cohn said the White House "must do better" in condemning hate following Trump's response to Charlottesville. "Citizens standing up for equality and freedom can never be equated with white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and the KKK." Cohn said he also had private conversations with the president about his thoughts. "As a Jewish American, I will not allow neo-Nazis ranting 'Jews will not replace us' to cause this Jew to leave his job. I feel deep empathy for all who have been targeted by these hate groups. We must all unite together against them," Cohn said.

Tidbit: "According to a source close to Cohn - he did NOT clear his statement w/ the WH beforehand-" (From NBC's Stephanie Ruhle)

It's Fri-Yay! 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.


TALK OF THE MORNING SHOWS -- I KNOW I PROMISED TO KEEP THE 2020 TALK TO A MINIMUM, BUT...: Via Axios's Mike Allen, Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) and Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) are considering a bipartisan presidential ticket in 2020 -- with Kasich at the top of the ticket. What to know:

Politico's Gabriel Debenedetti: "I remember one Clinton donor calling me in June 2016 asking about rumors she'd pick Kasich as VP. As implausible now as it was then."

WHO ELSE TO WATCH FOR IN 2020: Political associates of Minnesota Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenNelson campaign to donate K from Al Franken group to charity Sexual assault is not a game — stop using women to score political points Election Countdown: Trump confident about midterms in Hill.TV interview | Kavanaugh controversy tests candidates | Sanders, Warren ponder if both can run | Super PACs spending big | Two states open general election voting Friday | Latest Senate polls MORE say they think he could be talked into running for the White House if he believes he's the Democrat best positioned to defeat President Trump. What would need to happen:

NEXT UP TO BE ROASTED -- DRUMROLL PLEASE -- Republican Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerPoll: More voters oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination than support it Ford opens door to testifying next week Police arrest nearly two dozen Kavanaugh protesters MORE (Tenn.)!: President Trump is firing back at Corker, tweeting that Corker has privately asked the president whether he should run for reelection. Tweet: "Strange statement by Bob Corker considering that he is constantly asking me whether or not he should run again in '18. Tennessee not happy!" Where this came from: Trump was responding to Corker's remarks last week that Trump is not showing the "stability" and "competence" needed to be president.

Some context: Via CNN's Chris Cillizza and Saba Hamedy, Trump has attacked more than 20 percent of Republican senators. Womp. List:

Flashback: From BuzzFeed's Tarini Parti in May 2017: "This Republican Senator Is Trump's Public Critic And Private Adviser: Sen. Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is close to the White House and regularly advises Trump and top aides. But he is also one of the few Republicans who has openly criticized the administration in recent weeks."

WHAT TO KNOW FOR THE HURRICANE: Hurricane Harvey has gained strength and is headed for Texas. Strength: It's currently a Category 2 storm, but could become a Category 3 today. When it's making landfall: Midday Saturday. Its path:

JUST NOW -- Trump steps in: President Trump just tweeted, "I have spoken w/ Gov. Abbott of Texas and Louisiana Gov. Edwards. Closely monitoring Hurricane Harvey developments & here to assist as needed."

Omg, this photo!: “Yikes, Congressman Blake FarentholdRandolph (Blake) Blake FarentholdFormer aides alleging sexual harassment on Capitol Hill urge congressional action AP Analysis: 25 state lawmakers running in 2018 have been accused of sexual misconduct Ex-lawmakers see tough job market with trade groups MORE (R-Texas) is not the picture of calm… #HurricaneHarvey”

Something we've been wondering: Via The Texas Tribune, the Border Patrol says checkpoints in Texas will remain open during the hurricane. How that'll happen:

GUYS, JUST IN CASE WE DIDN'T HAVE ENOUGH GOING ON IN SEPTEMBER: Congress is approaching a healthcare deadline with enormous stakes for millions of people -- and this time it isn't about ObamaCare. It involves children: Federal funding for 9 million low- and middle-income children is set to expire at the end of September. Ooph: The longer Congress waits to renew the program, the more likely it will be that they have to impose enrollment slowdowns or even cancel policies.

EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK -- TRUMP DOES MAKE THINGS EASIER: Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley, President Trump is featured heavily in the new campaign ad for former state Sen. Kelli Ward, who is seeking to oust incumbent Sen. Jeff Flake in the GOP primary in Arizona next year. The footage: The Trump clips are from his Phoenix campaign rally earlier this week. Watch the 45-second clip:



Dan Broadbent (Oh....wait.)
Am I supposed to read this straight across from left to right? Or each sign on its own? Photo:

Writer Dylan Marron (Oh wow.)
We are living in a time when Onion headlines are real. Screenshots:

NBC News
"[Trump] promised…Mexico would pay for the wall. So, why is he now threatening a gov't shutdown if Congress won't pay for it?"
WH response:



Congress is out.

3 p.m. EDT: President Trump and first lady Melania Trump leave for Camp David.



1:45 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders gives an on-camera press briefing.

9 p.m. EDT Saturday: The highly anticipated Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor fight in Las Vegas. What to know:

Fun fact: The World Boxing Council has created a special "Money Belt" for the fight. "The belt contains 3,360 diamonds, 600 sapphires, 160 emeralds and approximately 3.3 pounds of 24-karat gold, and it also features the names of both combatants." Photo:



NBC's "Meet the Press": Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R); Ohio Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownSherrod Brown says he's 'not actively considering' running for president Election Countdown: Trump confident about midterms in Hill.TV interview | Kavanaugh controversy tests candidates | Sanders, Warren ponder if both can run | Super PACs spending big | Two states open general election voting Friday | Latest Senate polls Overnight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens MORE (D)

CNN's "State of the Union": The Federalist senior writer Mary Katharine Ham; former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D); Republican operative Michael Caputo; and former Obama aide Karine Jean-Pierre.



Today is National Whiskey Sour Day. It's also National Banana Split Day!

TRENDING ON SOCIAL MEDIA -- 'SPEAK NOW' OTHERWISE 'SHAKE IT OFF': Singer Taylor Swift released a new single, which apparently slights Kanye West. Back story, including that time former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaJudge denies bid to move lawsuit over Trump national monument rollbacks to Utah Tomi Lahren to former first lady: 'Sit down, Michelle' The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump questions Kavanaugh accuser's account | Accuser may testify Thursday | Midterm blame game begins MORE called Kanye West "a jackass.": Listen to the new song:

And to kick off your weekend, here's a monkey enjoying a bubble bath:


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