The Hill's 12:30 Report - New White House threat to Acosta's press pass | Trump defends criticism of McRaven | Hamilton biographer to headline WHCA dinner

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The Hill's 12:30 Report: White House planning to revoke Acosta's press pass again | CNN seeks emergency hearing | Trump defends criticism of McRaven | Why Trump is seething two weeks after midterms | Gives himself 'A+' on presidency | Dems see new states in play for 2020 | Showdown looms over Trump court picks | Hamilton biographer to headline WHCA dinner



Here we go again -- round two, ding ding:

Via CNN's Brian Stelter, the White House is threatening to again pull the press pass of CNN's chief White House correspondent, Jim Acosta. How: A judge forced the White House to reinstate Acosta's press pass. The Trump administration gave him a temporary pass and is now saying it will be suspended again after its 14 days.

REACTION FROM CNN: "The White House is continuing to violate the First and 5th Amendments of the Constitution. These actions threaten all journalists and news organizations. Jim Acosta and CNN will continue to report the news about the White House and the President."

WHAT CNN'S NEXT MOVE IS: The network is requesting an emergency hearing for the week after Thanksgiving.


It's the Monday of Thanksgiving week! 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 and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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You know that overconfident employee in the performance review?:

During an interview on "Fox News Sunday," President TrumpDonald John TrumpBill Kristol resurfaces video of Pence calling Obama executive action on immigration a 'profound mistake' ACLU says planned national emergency declaration is 'clear abuse of presidential power' O'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could MORE gave himself an "A-plus" on his presidency but went a step further. Trump's full quote: "Look, I hate to do it, but I will do it, I would give myself an A-plus. Is that enough? Can I go higher than that?"


The mood in the White House -- well…:

Via The Hill's Niall StanagePresident Trump's initial morale boost after the midterms has ended, and now the president is publicly and privately seething over the results. From a GOP operative with ties to the White House: "Right after the election, we felt a sense of relief that the impact of the blue wave had not been so great. But there has been a rising tide of Democrats flipping Republican seats over the past week and a half, and that has really concerned Republicans and raised eyebrows."


What the president has been tweeting this morning:

President Trump doubled down on his criticism of retired Navy Adm. William McRaven, arguing that the U.S. should have killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden sooner.

Trump tweeted: "Of course we should have captured Osama Bin Laden long before we did. I pointed him out in my book just BEFORE the attack on the World Trade Center. President Clinton famously missed his shot. We paid Pakistan Billions of Dollars & they never told us he was living there. Fools! … " Full tweets:

WHAT STARTED THIS BACK AND FORTH: Retired Navy SEAL and Special Operations commander William McRaven criticized Trump as the "greatest threat to democracy in his lifetime."

SO TRUMP FIRED BACK: During Trump's interview with "Fox News Sunday," he fired back at McRaven as a "Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonO’Rourke heading to Wisconsin amid 2020 speculation The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears Exclusive: Biden almost certain to enter 2020 race MORE fan" and "Obama-backer." "Wouldn't it have been nice if we got Osama bin Laden a lot sooner than that, wouldn't it have been nice?" Trump said.

REACTION FROM SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FLA.): Rubio praised retired Adm. William McRaven for his service. He tweeted: "I don't know if Adm. William McRaven shares my political views or not. But I do know that few Americans have sacrificed or risked more than he has to protect America & the freedoms we enjoy. His military career exemplified honor & excellence. I am grateful for his service."



#HolidayTraditions: gingerbread houses, tree decorating, eggnog and an end-of-year brawl in Congress:

The Senate is bracing for brawl at the end of the year over President Trump's judicial nominations.

Keep in mind: Republicans have prioritized filling court seats before the next Senate term.

When the Senate is hoping to leave for the holidays: Dec. 14. 

How many judicial nominees are before the Senate: 35

How this could play out: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBill Kristol resurfaces video of Pence calling Obama executive action on immigration a 'profound mistake' Winners and losers in the border security deal House passes border deal, setting up Trump to declare emergency MORE (R-Ky.) "has pledged that he will move each of Trump's nominees who are out of committee by the end of the year. If he's going to make good on that plan, he'll either need a final nominations package or keep the Senate in session through the holidays."

ALSO KEEP IN MIND -- TRUMP SAID THIS IS A 'GOOD TIME' FOR A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN: Over the weekend, President Trump told reporters that there could be a government shutdown. In his words: "I think probably, if I was ever going to do a shutdown over border security, when you look at the caravans, when you look at the mess, when you look at the people coming in, this would be a very good time to do a shutdown. But he then added: A shutdown may not "be necessary, because I think the Democrats will come to their senses."



What to watch in the next two years -- new states are in play:

Via The Hill's Lisa Hagen, Democrats made significant gains in the Sunbelt states during the midterms. For example: Arizona and Nevada. How: By winning over suburban Republicans and aggressively courting minorities. Why this is important: Southwestern states are important for President Trump's reelection campaign and Republicans Senate chances in 2020. Why Arizona and Nevada specifically:

THE NEXT B.O.: Via Politico's David Siders, "Sparked by his narrow defeat in a Texas Senate race, Beto O'RourkeRobert (Beto) Francis O'RourkeO'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could NBC, CNN to host first two Democratic presidential primary debates O'Rourke, Schumer huddle on possible 2020 bid: report MORE is scrambling the 2020 presidential primary field, freezing Democratic donors and potential campaign staffers in place as they await word of his plans."

FROM A LIKELY DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE: Rep. Eric SwalwellEric Michael SwalwellDemocratic donors stuck in shopping phase of primary Five takeaways from acting AG's fiery House hearing Top Judiciary Republican to Swalwell: 'Stop running for president' MORE (D-Calif.) tweeted this morning, "Let us begin a week of Thanksgiving. I'm grateful for the millions of people who went to the polls this month and did nothing less than save America."



Just announced -- the WHCA dinner's new makeover:

The White House Correspondents' Association (WHCA) announced its headliner for the 2019 WHCA dinner: presidential biographer Ron ChernowWhen: April 27. Why this is newsy: The dinner usually features a celebrity comedian, but last year comedian Michelle Wolf drew criticism for her performance. What to know about Chernow: He wrote the award-winning biography of Alexander Hamilton that was the basis for the Broadway musical "Hamilton." Details:



Let's play … reporter for The Hill or senator-elect?:  


Bei Bei loves snow:




The House and Senate are out. President Trump and Vice President Pence are in Washington, D.C., both with light public schedules.

1 p.m. EST: President Trump and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — House moving to vote on deal after signals Trump will sign Artist buys Trump souvenir wedding cake for nearly K at auction The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine - Getting Trump to ‘yes’ on border security deal MORE participate in the White House Christmas tree delivery.

1:30 p.m. EST: President Trump has lunch with Vice President Pence.

Tomorrow: President Trump pardons the National Thanksgiving Turkey. 

Tomorrow: President Trump leaves for his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

January: Former Trump aide Cliff Sims is publishing a first-hand account of working in the Trump White House. What to expect: "An author's note describes a venomous den in which people are constantly at each other's throats. But Mr. Sims's goal, according to people familiar with the book, was not to damage Mr. Trump. And he is said to have at times painted an unflattering portrait of himself."



Tuesday: Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) will appear on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." 

Nov. 30: President Trump attends The Group of 20 Leaders' Summit in Buenos Aires.



Today is National Macchiato Day.


Cheesy! *clap* Gordita! *clap* Crunch!:

Taco Bell is opening a Taco Bell Cantina, which will serve alcoholic beverages, in Alexandria, Va., by the end of the year.


And because you made it this far, here's a golden retriever who makes the best boxing partner: