The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump headed to border as shutdown hits Day 20 | Talks fall apart | Emergency plan could set up clash with GOP

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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 headed to border as shutdown hits Day 20 | Talks fall apart | Trump says it would be 'surprising' if he doesn't declare emergency | How emergency plan could set up clash with GOP | Trump says he never meant that Mexico would 'write out a check' for wall | 100 days since Khashoggi was murdered | O'Rourke livestreams dental appointment | 'Baby Shark' hits Billboard Hot 100



I accept, cash, credit, Venmo, Bitcoin – anything really, just no checks:

This morning, President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump reversed course on flavored e-cigarette ban over fear of job losses: report Trump to award National Medal of Arts to actor Jon Voight Sondland notified Trump officials of investigation push ahead of Ukraine call: report MORE tried to clarify how Mexico would pay for the border wall.

What Trump told reporters -- the $$ line: "[I] never meant [Mexico was] going to write out a check. I said they're going to pay for it." 

How Trump says Mexico is paying for the wall: "They are paying for it with the incredible deal we made," Trump said, referring to the trade agreement with Mexico and Canada. 

Watch Trump's explanation:



Btw, Trump likes negotiating with China more than with Democrats: When discussing shutdown negotiations, President Trump called diplomats from China "more honorable" than the Democrats. In Trump's words: "We have a lot of great things happening. The economy is incredible. We're negotiating and having tremendous success with China, and I find China, frankly, in many ways, to be far more honorable than Cryin' Chuck and Nancy."

Psh, I thought I was too until I tried using Apple shared photo albums…: Trump said at the White House this morning, "I am a professional at technology."

WHERE TRUMP WAS HEADED WHEN HE MADE THESE REMARKS: President Trump is currently flying from Washington, D.C. to McAllen, Texas to visit the U.S.-Mexico border.


Trump keeps glancing at the shiny, 'emergency declaration' button: 

President Trump also gave his strongest indication yet that he might declare a national emergency to bypass Congress and build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

What Trump told reporters outside the White House: Trump said it would be "surprising to me" if he did not declare a national emergency if Democrats don't cave. 

Yup, this sounds like a yes to me: "If this doesn't work out, probably I will do it. I would almost say definitely." 



It's a chilly, windy Thursday in Washington. 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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Today is Day 20 of the partial government shutdown.


Trump to Democrats -- Boy BYEEE:

Around 20 minutes into a meeting with congressional Democrats, President Trump abruptly stormed out dismissing the meeting as a "total waste of time." So that went well.

Trump then tweeted: "Nancy said, NO. I said bye-bye, nothing else works!" Read Trump's full "bye-bye" tweet -- it's pretty funny:

^The best part: Trump did use the words "bye-bye" when he left the room, according to a source.

THE DEM SIDE OF THE STORY: Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSchumer calls on Trump to testify as part of impeachment inquiry Sunday shows — Spotlight shifts to Sondland ahead of impeachment inquiry testimony Perception won't be reality, once AI can manipulate what we see MORE (D-Calif.) described yesterday's meeting: "Not only was the president unpresidential – surprise, surprise – in his behavior. I think the meeting was a set up so he could walk out."

FOR CONTEXT -- HOW MUCH THE SHUTDOWN IS COSTING THE U.S. ECONOMY: Via Politico's Victoria Guida, the partial government shutdown is costing the U.S. economy an estimated $1.2 billion for each week (!) it lasts.

WHAT HAPPENS IF THE GOVERNMENT HASN'T REOPENED BY JAN. 21: President Trump said he will skip the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.


Fund the soldering iron to fix the wall -- that rolls off the tongue:

Via NBC's Jacob Soboroff and Julia Ainsley, the Department of Homeland Security tested a prototype of a steel slat barrier on the border and found it could be cut with a saw. Photo of the prototype:



It's been 100 days since journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered:

One hundred days ago today, Saudi dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

A memorial in The New Yorker:

Check out this ad in The Washington Post today: Keep in mind, Khashoggi was a columnist for The Washington Post and lived in Virginia. Screenshot:

Happening today: Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerHillicon Valley: Federal inquiry opened into Google health data deal | Facebook reports millions of post takedowns | Microsoft shakes up privacy debate | Disney plus tops 10M sign-ups in first day Microsoft embraces California law, shaking up privacy debate Google sparks new privacy fears over health care data MORE (D-Va.), Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffJohnson: Whistleblower 'exposed things that didn't need to be exposed' Schiff knocks Mulvaney over failure to testify in impeachment probe Impeachment hearings likely to get worse for Republicans MORE (D-Calif.) and Rep. Steve ChabotSteven (Steve) Joseph ChabotSECURE it — for small businesses and their workers Bottom Line Consequential GOP class of 1994 all but disappears MORE (R-Ohio) are hosting a ceremony for Khashoggi on Capitol Hill.


Hums to a tune by Paul McCartney...

--> ;)

"Spotted in Washington, Thursday at 9am: a man takes a photo of the White House with his middle finger in it." (Via The Hill's Alex Gangitano)



Y'know, if he were a millennial, my whole generation would get blamed for this!: 

See for yourself -- Click on his profile photo outlined in pink:

Twitter had a lot of fun with this: 

Yuppp: CNN's Leigh Munsil tweeted, "Somebody is REAL confident in his enamel. No way I'd stream my dentist visit until I got the no-cavity all clear"

From The Huffington Post's Elise Foley: "I love going to the dentist. It is the only place I feel truly affirmed and successful."

Lol: "heard the kids were way into this 'flossing' thing and just ran with it huh" (From Reuters's Pete Schroeder



The House and Senate are in. President Trump is on his way to the U.S.-Mexico border for the afternoon. 

11 a.m. EST: Vice President Pence met with members of Congress at the U.S. Capitol. 

1:45 p.m. EST: The Senate holds a procedural vote. The Senate's full schedule today:

2:05 p.m. EST: President Trump arrives at the U.S. Border Patrol station in McAllen, Texas.

3:35 p.m. EST: President Trump receives a briefing on border security at the Rio Grande.

3:45 -- 4:45 p.m. EST: First and last votes in the House. The House's full schedule today:

4:05 p.m. EST: President Trump heads back to Washington, D.C.

8:05 p.m. EST: President Trump gets back to the White House.

This weekend: Via The Washington Post's Going Out Guide, here's a list of 12 things to do in the Washington, D.C., area this weekend. The list:



This morning: Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) held a press conference. Livestream:

2:10 p.m. EST: President Trump participates in a roundtable in McAllen, Texas, on immigration and border patrol. Livestream:



Today is National Bittersweet Chocolate DayYou don't have to tell me twice.


Apologies for getting this stuck in your head, but -- 'Baby Shark, Doo, Doo, Doo, Doo, Doo, Doo…':

The viral children's song "Baby Shark" has entered the Billboard Hot 100 chart. How high: No. 32.

If there are no tiny humans currently in your lives -- back story: "Baby Shark" is a YouTube video that gained tremendous popularity among small children. It has more than 2.1 billion views so far. I.e.: It's one of the most-viewed YouTube videos ever. 

(Now taking a moment to apologize to any parents reading this.)

The original YouTube video, if you dare:


And because you made it this far, here are two birds who can't seem to stay awake: