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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 Delta Air Lines — Trump says Florida races should be called for GOP | Latest on wildfires -- 149K people evacuated | Congress set for dramatic lame-duck session | Trump rips European allies after trip | Ron Paul's couch on Craigslist | New cheese trends

 

PHOTO OF THE MORNING

Here's a photo of an air tanker dropping fire retardant on the fires in Malibu, Calif. 

 

Devastating fires in California:

31 people have been killed in fires ravaging across California. The latest updates: https://cnn.it/2OBLN9H

How many people have evacuated: Around 149,000 people have been ordered to leave their homes. According to officials, 228 people are unaccounted for in Northern California. They are not aware of any missing people in Southern California. https://nyti.ms/2DytD7T

Getting traction -- photo of actor Gerard Butler returning to his Malibu house: Wow. http://bit.ly/2qGuqLB

Tidbit about residents fleeing: The New York Times explained how residents "got in their cars and fled. What happened next was the vehicular equivalent of a stampede, packing the roads to a standstill." The photo in this story is pretty startling: https://nyti.ms/2DytD7T

^^And when residents ran out of gas and ditched their cars: "Fire crews struggling to reach the town used giant earthmovers to plow abandoned vehicles off the road as if they were snowdrifts after a blizzard." https://nyti.ms/2DytD7T

 

It's Monday -- Happy Veteran's Day. Oh and by the way: New Years Day is 50 days from today. 

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.

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NEWS THIS MORNING

The president doesn't have any public events on his schedule, so expect tweets. Lots of tweets:

This morning, President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoaquín Castro: Trump would be 'in court right now' if he weren't the president or 'privileged' Trump flubs speech location at criminal justice conference Comey reveals new details on Russia probe during House testimony MORE said he warned European leaders that the U.S. "must be treated fairly" on trade and military funding. He also tweeted: "We pay for LARGE portions of other countries [sic] military protection, hundreds of billions of dollars, for the great privilege of losing hundreds of billions of dollars with these same countries on trade. I told them that this situation cannot continue -- It is, and always has been, ridiculously unfair to the United States." Full series of tweets: http://bit.ly/2DzJd30

KEEP IN MIND: Trump butted heads with world leaders this weekend at a World War I commemoration in Paris. How so: European leaders rebuking "nationalism" was a popular theme. https://nyti.ms/2PQQHV8

Ok, this photo was pretty funny: Here's a play on the jealous girlfriend meme: http://bit.ly/2qGsEd9

 

A Republican president called for Republicans to win:

President Trump tweeted that the Florida Senate and gubernatorial races should be called for the Republican candidates. He tweeted: "The Florida Election should be called in favor of Rick Scott and Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisLewandowski, Florida state senators tussle over Trump's influence on midterms: report Can the climate movement survive populism? Lessons from 'yellow vest' protests Andrew Gillum met with Obama during DC visit: report MORE in that large numbers of new ballots showed up out of nowhere, and many ballots are missing or forged. An honest vote count is no longer possible-ballots massively infected. Must go with Election Night!" Keep in mind: Trump has accused Democrats of trying to "steal" both races. http://bit.ly/2qHFiZB

HOW THE FLORIDA RECOUNTS ARE GOING: Florida volunteers are rushing to meet Thursday's Senate recount deadline. The gist: "Republicans sharpen 'fraud' claims, Democrats compare Scott to a 'dictator' as Florida recount ramps up." https://cnn.it/2RSJRfj

 

EXPECT A BUSY HOLIDAY SEASON ON CAPITOL HILL

If I were a lame-duck member of Congress, every day would be casual Friday:

Via The Hill's Jordain Carney, Congress returns this week for a high-drama end-of-the-year sprint. Think: A potential government shutdown, leadership battles and a potential Cabinet shakeup.  http://bit.ly/2PsRdte

 

What's coming up:

  • Leadership fights in both parties
  • Government funding deadline in less than a month
  • Dozens of executive and judicial nominations
  • A renewed effort to pass a bipartisan criminal justice reform
  • Lawmakers are hoping to pass a massive farm bill

Context and details for each: http://bit.ly/2PsRdte

  

COMING UP IN 2019

Welcome. You're going to hate it here:

Via Axios's Zachary Basu, House Democrats have at least 85 subpoenas and investigations directed at the Trump administration once they take over the House in January. Think: Trump's tax returns, the Russia investigation, the payment to adult-film actress Stormy Daniels, former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyComey reveals new details on Russia probe during House testimony READ: Transcript of Comey's interview before House lawmakers Comey’s confession: dossier not verified before, or after, FISA warrant MORE's ousting. What to expect: http://bit.ly/2PRw3Es

HOW TRUMP SAYS HE WILL REACT: "If that happens then we're going to do the same thing and government comes to a halt," Trump said last Wednesday during his press conference. "And I would blame them." http://bit.ly/2T1xIG2

THE MAKEUP OF THE HOUSE: Democrats have 225 seats; Republicans have 200 seats; 10 races are still undecided. The list of the 10 undecided House races: http://bit.ly/2PsRdte

WHY REPUBLICANS ARE WORRIED ABOUT 2020: Democrats outraised Republicans by a good chunk, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump flubs speech location at criminal justice conference Sunday shows preview: Trade talks, Cohen sentencing memo take center stage Trump tells McConnell to let Senate vote on criminal justice reform MORE (R-Ky.) warned his party that the GOP desperately needs to catch up. https://politi.co/2T3ov09

WOW, CHECK OUT THE NEW COVER OF THE NEW YORKER: http://bit.ly/2FiABQ6

 

IN OTHER NEWS

Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson Obama8-year-old girl goes viral dressing up as hero Michelle Obama Transplanted uterus: Complications on fertility shaming are born Jeb Bush: Trump and Melania ‘really gracious’ following George HW Bush’s death MORE on her marriage — ‘There Are Times You Want to Leave’:

In an interview with People, former first lady Michelle Obama talked about seeing a marriage counselor. In her words: “Because we’re role models, it’s important for us to be honest and say, if you’re in a marriage and there are times you want to leave, that’s normal — because I felt that way ...  There were definitely times when I wished things were different, but I don’t think I ever thought, ‘I’m just checking out of this.’” More from the interview: http://bit.ly/2PpxHNV

  

NOTABLE TWEETS

Nope, this looks too much like boxed wine. Veto.:

The reason: To be eco-friendly. https://cnn.it/2Pq4K4w

 

When the Starbucks mermaid has been drinking too many Ventis:

      

ON TAP

The House and Senate are out.

Today: A federal holiday to celebrate Veterans Day.

President Trump has no public events on his schedule.

Vice President Pence is in Japan.

2:10 p.m. EST: Former Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet YellenJanet Louise YellenOn The Money: US adds 155k jobs in November | Unemployment holds at 3.7 percent | Wage growth strengthening | Trump signs stopgap spending bill delaying shutdown Trump makes Fed chief economic punching bag On The Money: Trump eyes new auto tariffs in response to GM layoffs | GM's 2020 threat to Trump | Stocks soar on hopes of slower Fed rate hikes | Mnuchin deletes tweet, points to possible breach MORE speaks at the Global Financial Leadership Conference in Naples, Fla. Details: http://bit.ly/2z5wIZ7

3:15 p.m. EST: Former White House economic adviser Gary CohnGary David CohnOcasio-Cortez rips presence of lobbyists at orientation event Incoming Dem lawmaker fires back at Trump's former economic adviser: ‘No Gary, YOU don't know what's coming’ Ocasio-Cortez criticizes congressional orientation program for featuring CEOs over labor leaders MORE speaks at the Global Financial Leadership Conference in Naples, Fla. Details: http://bit.ly/2z5wIZ7

2 p.m. EST Tuesday: The House returns.

3 p.m. EST Tuesday: The Senate returns.

5:30 p.m. EST: The Senate votes.

6:30 p.m. EST Tuesday: Votes postponed in the House.

 

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WHAT TO WATCH

Over the weekend: "Following a small firestorm last weekend -- when SNL's Pete Davidson mocked Republican Dan Crenshaw, a former Navy SEAL wounded in Afghanistan -- the two came together in a sincere plea for unity." https://cnn.it/2PlzlQN Watch the full segment: http://bit.ly/2DzhM9t

Released today: The trailer for "Toy Story 4." Watch: https://cnet.co/2B1gHoH

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National French Dip Day.

 

Wanna buy Ron Paul's couch?:

Via PoPville, a Craigslist poster is selling a couch owned by former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas). Excerpt of the ad: "They sat in his home living room during his time in Congress. When he retired in late 2012, Dr. Paul bequeathed them to my roommates and I (a bunch of broke Congressional staffers). We rented a U Haul truck and went to his condo in VA, where he kindly helped us load them into the truck." Photo of the couch: http://bit.ly/2JZjwJq

 

Tell me more about cheese trends for 2019:

"Food & Wine" breaks down the cheeses to watch next year. I'm serious. For example: Halloumi and spicy cheese. http://bit.ly/2z40PAk

 

And because you made it to the end on a Monday, here's the cutest baby bunny I've ever seen: http://bit.ly/2QCwMGL