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 visits Puerto Rico | What to watch for | Trump says island threw 'budget out of whack' | San Juan mayor attends briefing | Latest on Las Vegas | Trump says US will talk about guns later | Trump calls police response 'a miracle' | GoFundMe raises $3M for victims | Giffords, Scalise highlight divide on guns | Justices hear landmark gerrymandering case

JUST NOW -- I CAN'T WATCH, BUT I CAN'T LOOK AWAY: President Trump just landed in Puerto Rico, where he addressed the damage from Hurricane Maria. Here are some of the highlights:

*Crawls under my desk and hides*: Trump: "I hate to tell you, Puerto Rico, you've thrown our budget out of whack." This is the line everyone's talking about.

^^ *then slides down even further and covers ears*: "Trump to PR official: 'So what's your death count? Sixteen? You can be very proud, only sixteen instead of thousands in Katrina.'" Video:

Guys, GUYS. You have to see this: "Guy from Puerto Rico I met Wednesday when I went to San Juan said islanders will wear these in homage to Melania's fashion during Trump's visit today." (From Politico's Marc CaputoPhoto:

Never miss an opportunity: "Trump's trolling the San Juan mayor during his opening remarks in Puerto Rico, saying the governor was 'giving us the highest grades.'"

On the weather: "Your weather is second to none, but every once in a while you get hit. And you really got hit. There's no question about it."

It's Tuesday. 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.



AND NOW BACK TO THE GUN DEBATE ONCE AGAIN: Via The Hill's Mike Lillis, Democrat Gabrielle Giffords (Ariz.) and Republican Steve Scalise (La.) share a tragic, common bond: Both were nearly killed in separate mass shootings six years apart. But the two have had very different reactions to the shooting in Las Vegas. Giffords: Stormed Capitol Hill urging for stricter gun laws. Scalise: Called on Americans to donate blood and be kind to one another.

This morning: "Trump to reporters leaving the White House for Puerto Rico: 'We'll be talking about gun laws as time goes on.'" 

NEW INFORMATION ON PADDOCK: Via "NBC's Pete Williams: Week before Vegas attack, Stephen Paddock wired $100k to an account in Philippines, that's where his girlfriend is from."

BECAUSE THE SHOOTER DOESN'T DESERVE ANY MORE OF OUR TIME...: Here are photos and tributes to the victims of the Las Vegas shooting.

And some more positivity: A GoFundMe was started for the victims. It has raised more than $3 million so far.

PRESIDENT TRUMP'S LATEST VEGAS REACTION -- IT'S A MIRACLE, REALLY: President Trump praised the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department's response to the shooting. In his words: "What happened in Las Vegas is in many ways a miracle. The police department has done such an incredible job, and we'll be talking about gun laws as time goes by," Trump told reporters. "But I do have to say how quickly the police department was able to get in was really very much of a miracle. They've done an amazing job."

TRENDING REACTION TO VEGAS -- SO, WHEN'S JIMMY KIMMEL ANNOUNCING HIS 2020 PRESIDENTIAL BID?: Last night, late-night host Jimmy Kimmel had an emotional reaction to the shooting in Las Vegas. Watch:

Keep in mind: Las Vegas is Kimmel's hometown. He moved there when he was nine years old, graduated high school in Vegas and then attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas for a year.



TRUMP'S PUERTO RICO VISIT -- BIG, MASSIVE, REALLY, REALLY DEVASTATED. YA WOULDN'T EVEN BELIEVE IT: President Trump just landed in Puerto Rico to survey the devastation from Hurricane Maria. Here are the five things we're watching:

1) Will Trump face off with San Juan's mayor? The two went after each other over the weekend over the response to the hurricane. But the mayor will also be attending Trump's briefing.
2) Will Trump's tone be divisive or unifying? It could easily go either way.
3) Trump as comforter in chief? How comforting will he be compared to his visits to other hurricane sites?
4) Will Trump discuss the Jones Act? The waiver of the shipping rules is only active for 10 days.
5) How will Congress respond? Both parties have criticized Trump's handling of Puerto Rico.

THIS A.M. -- I'LL TAKE 'WHAT IS GERRYMANDERING FOR $500, ALEX.': The Supreme Court seemed hesitant this morning to issue a ruling that creates a standard for determining when states have engaged in unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering. For example: Chief Justice John Roberts said such a ruling would raise legal challenges to voter maps across the country that will inevitably make their way to the court. What is gerrymandering -- so you don't have to keep pretending you know ;) Gerrymandering is redrawing voter districts to increase the political power of one party over another.

NOW ALL HE NEEDS IS A MINI SPEAKER PLAYING 'THEY SEE ME ROLLIN.' THEY HATIN' --> House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) was seen riding through the halls of the Capitol in a scooter decked out in the colors of his beloved Louisiana State University. Keep in mind: Scalise returned to the Capitol last week after he was shot in June. Photos of the decked out scooter -- it's pretty great:

IF I HAVE TO HEAR ABOUT ONE MORE PUBLIC OFFICIAL USING A PRIVATE EMAIL...: Via Politico's Josh DawseyIvanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, have reportedly sent hundreds of emails from a third private email account while serving in their White House roles. Details: "The emails -- which include nonpublic travel documents, internal schedules and some official White House materials --were in many cases sent from Ivanka Trump, her assistant Bridges Lamar and others who work with the couple in the White House. The emails to the third account were largely sent from White House accounts but occasionally came from other private accounts, one of these people said."

IN LOCAL BRAGGING RIGHTS NEWS -- YAY URBAN RENOVATION!: Lonely Planet named the Capitol Riverfront and Yards Park in Washington, D.C., as one of the 10 hottest neighborhoods in the U.S. Full list:

THE BANNON EFFECT: Via The Hill's Ben Kamisar, "Establishment Republicans are skeptical that former judge Roy Moore's victory in last week's Alabama GOP primary runoff means that an alliance of insurgent conservative groups, led by former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon, is about to knock off more Republican incumbents."



Reporter Matt Laslo (Confirmed.)
"It's not even 10am and I'm ready for a happy hour" - mood among press corps today

NBC's Steve Kornacki (Oh wow.)
Promising to "make America great again," Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonMaxwell accuser testifies the British socialite was present when Epstein abuse occurred Epstein pilot testifies Maxwell was 'number two' in operation Federal judge changes his mind about stepping down, eliminating vacancy for Biden to fill MORE declared his presidential candidacy 26 years ago today in Little Rock. Screenshot:

The Los Angeles Times's Sarah D. Wire
A bunch of Capitol Police just walked into the atrium of the Senate Judiciary Committee room, where senators are discussing DACA today 



11:45 a.m. EDT: President Trump arrived in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He received a briefing and is visiting with victims of Hurricane Maria.

12:30 p.m. EDT: The Senate breaks for weekly caucus luncheons.

3:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump and first lady Melania Trump meet with Gov. Kenneth Mapp of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

6 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence meets with local businesses, community leaders and families in Phoenix to discuss tax reform.

6 p.m. EDT: Sen. Tom CottonTom Bryant CottonConservatives target Biden pick for New York district court GOP anger with Fauci rises Cotton swipes at Fauci: 'These bureaucrats think that they are the science' MORE (R-Ark.) speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations about the Iran nuclear deal. Details:

Tonight: The MLB postseason kicks off with the first wild card game. 

7 p.m. EDT: Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenFranken rules out challenge against Gillibrand for Senate seat Franken targets senators from both parties in new comedy tour Al Franken on another Senate run: 'I'm keeping my options open' MORE (D-Minn.) will be discussing his book, "Al Franken, Giant of the Senate," at a sold-out Politics and Prose event. Details:

9 p.m. EDT: President Trump arrives back at the White House.

9:45 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence participates in a Republican National Committee reception.

8 a.m. EDT Wednesday: The Hill is hosting a health-care event on improving patient health. Reps. Ami BeraAmerish (Ami) Babulal BeraDemocrats livid over GOP's COVID-19 attacks on Biden Major abortion rights group names new president Democrats call for removing IRS bank reporting proposal from spending bill MORE (D-Calif.) and Bill Johnson (R-Ohio) are among the speakers. Details:


Wednesday: President Trump visits Las Vegas.

Wednesday: The NHL's regular season kicks off. Opening night info:

October 11: The Hill is hosting an event on the tax code and explaining the tax reform proposal. Details:



Noon: "The Washington National Cathedral [rang] its funeral bell 60 times at noon to mark each soul lost in the Las Vegas mass shooting, including the gunman." Livestream from WJLA-TV:

2 p.m. EDT: State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert briefs reporters. Livestream:

9 p.m. EDT Wednesday: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) participates in a CNN town hall moderated by anchor Chris Cuomo.



Today is National Soft Taco Day. 

BEST STORY I'VE READ IN YEARS -- IN THE BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN WORDS OF "FINDING NEMO," "FISH ARE FRIENDS, NOT FOOD.": Via NPR's Philip Reeves, to ease the foot shortage in Venezuela, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro unveiled "Plan Rabbit" to encourage citizens to eat rabbits for protein. During a pilot program, the government distributed baby rabbits to people in poor neighborhoods. Where it gets funny -- this plan totally backfired: "Some people responded by tying bows around the rabbits' necks, giving them cute names, and even cuddling up with them in bed at night." I.e. -- the new bunnies are pets! Where it gets even funnier -- how they're hoping to fix that problem: The Venezuelan government minister in charge of the plan is proposing a nationwide campaign to convince people that bunnies are not cute, not pets and should not be used as mascots (lol) -- they are food! Full story -- I promise you won't be disappointed:

Ok, now you NEED to watch this clip to see why I've been laughing about this story all morning --> 

BECAUSE IT'S OCTOBER AND WE SUDDENLY HAVE VISIONS OF "​SUGARPUMPKINS" DANCING IN OUR HEADS: Via CNN Travel, here's a list of some of the most beautiful places to visit in the fall.

And because we all need happy thoughts to get us through this bad week, here's a pile of husky dogs snuggling and not wanting to wake up:


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