The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump sparks confusion over census citizenship question

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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 sparks confusion over census citizenship question | Says he is 'moving forward' | What to know about Trump's Fourth of July event | Trump defends plans | White House insists event won't be political | Tanks arrive in DC | Biden raises $21.5M for quarter | Warren, Harris now tie Biden in Iowa poll | Biden losing black support | Sanders slips in polls | Netflix's 'Stranger Things' back for season 3



Drop it like it's hot, drop it like it's ~not~:

President TrumpDonald John TrumpUS-Saudi Arabia policy needs a dose of 'realpolitik' Trump talks to Swedish leader about rapper A$AP Rocky, offers to vouch for his bail Matt Gaetz ahead of Mueller hearing: 'We are going to reelect the president' MORE just added confusion to whether the citizenship question has been removed from the 2020 census after the Supreme Court ruled against the move.

Trump just tweeted: "The News Reports about the Department of Commerce dropping its quest to put the Citizenship Question on the Census is incorrect or, to state it differently, FAKE! We are absolutely moving forward, as we must, because of the importance of the answer to this question."

Why this is confusing: Yesterday, the Trump administration announced that it would remove the question and not move forward with trying to add it.

From Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossHistory in the House: Congress weathers unprecedented week The Hill's 12:30 Report: 'Send her back' chants stun Washington The Hill's Morning Report - Trump seizes House impeachment vote to rally GOP MORE: "I respect the Supreme Court but strongly disagree with its ruling regarding my decision to reinstate a citizenship question on the 2020 Census. The Census Bureau has started the process of printing the decennial questionnaires without the question."

How the news first broke yesterday: Former Obama White House lawyer Daniel Jacobson tweeted a screenshot of the email with the announcement.  



He tweeted: "A very sad time for America when the Supreme Court of the United States won't allow a question of 'Is this person a Citizen of the United States?' to be asked on the #2020 Census! Going on for a long time. I have asked the Department of Commerce and the Department of Justice ... to do whatever is necessary to bring this most vital of questions, and this very important case, to a successful conclusion. USA! USA! USA!"


It's Wednesday. 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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PROGRAMMING NOTE: The 12:30 Report will be off tomorrow and Friday for the holiday weekend. Happy Fourth of July and have a s’more for me! ;)



You're a grand old flag.

No, ~you're~ a grand old flag. 

No, ~you~ are.:



A military flyover, an address from President Trump, band performances and a firework show.

It is possible that Air Force One will fly over?: A source told NBC News that Air Force One may fly over. Though, without President Trump onboard, it is not technically called "Air Force One," but one of the two planes used to fly the president. Other military aircraft will also fly over.

The tanks ... have arrived!: Here is a photo of two tanks arriving at the Lincoln Memorial last night:

Will the address be political?: Via The Hill's Brett Samuels, the White House insists that President Trump's speech will not be political. Yeah, but: Some of Trump's political opponents aren't buying it.

^ This morning from Trump: "The cost of our great Salute to America tomorrow will be very little compared to what it is worth. We own the planes, we have the pilots, the airport is right next door (Andrews), all we need is the fuel. We own the tanks and all. Fireworks are donated by two of the greats. Nice!"



What time do gates open: 3:30 p.m.

What time President Trump is set to speak: Around 6:30 p.m.

What time are the fireworks?: The concert and show are scheduled for 8-9:30 p.m. The fireworks are expected from 9:07-9:27 p.m.

The Metro: The D.C. Metro will run from 7 a.m. until 11:30 p.m. "Parking at all Metrorail facilities will be free."

List of prohibited items if you are attending the concert:



Free Lyft rides to prevent drunk driving: Via Popville, Washington Regional Alcohol Program has teamed up with Lyft to offer free rides in the Washington, D.C., area from 7 p.m. Thursday to 2 a.m. Friday. How to redeem:

Here is a list of what is open and what is closed in the city: Via WTOP Radio: 



Inside the secret Border Patrol Facebook group:

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan said he is looking into reports of a secret Facebook group with Border Patrol agents posting derogatory messages against migrants and lawmakers. 

McAleenan tweeted: "Reporting this week highlighted disturbing & inexcusable social media activity that allegedly includes active Border Patrol personnel. These statements are completely unacceptable, especially if made by those sworn to uphold the @DHSgov mission, our values & standards of conduct." His full tweets:



"Inside the Secret Border Patrol Facebook Group Where Agents Joke About Migrant Deaths and Post Sexist Memes: The three-year-old group, which has roughly 9,500 members, shared derogatory comments about Latina lawmakers who plan to visit a controversial Texas detention facility on Monday, calling them 'scum buckets' and 'hoes.' " The full report: 



The Bern may be cooling off:

Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley, "Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersGabbard arrives in Puerto Rico to 'show support' amid street protests Democratic strategist predicts most 2020 candidates will drop out in late fall Sanders unveils plan to guarantee the 'right to a secure retirement' MORE(I-Vt.) is slipping in polls following the first Democratic debate, raising questions about whether he can recapture the insurgent energy that nearly carried him to the party's presidential nomination in 2016."

What the Sanders campaign says: "The Sanders campaign says those counting him out are once again underestimating a candidate who surprised the political world three years ago and remains a small-dollar fundraising juggernaut with an enthusiastic core of supporters. Sanders has an inexhaustible base of grass-roots donors that will churn out tens of millions of dollars for him as long as he's in the race." 


New polls:

-- Biden's support among black voters drops: According to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll, former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden compares Trump to George Wallace Sanders unveils plan to guarantee the 'right to a secure retirement' CNN Democratic debate drawing finishes third in cable news ratings race MORE's support among black voters has dropped from 40 percent to 20 percent.

-- Warren, Harris surge in Iowa: According to a new poll conducted by Democratic pollster David Binder, "Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenJulián Castro is behind in the polls, but he's finding a niche Gabbard arrives in Puerto Rico to 'show support' amid street protests Democratic strategist predicts most 2020 candidates will drop out in late fall MORE (D-Mass.) and Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisWhat to expect when Mueller testifies: Not much Biden compares Trump to George Wallace CNN Democratic debate drawing finishes third in cable news ratings race MORE (D-Calif.) have surged into a virtual tie with former Vice President Joe Biden in Iowa after last week's debates."


Just announced — Biden’s fundraising numbers:

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign raised $21.5 million in the second quarter of 2019.

For context:

“Buttigieg: $24.8M

Biden: $21.5M

Sanders: $18.2M”

Keep in mind: Q2 started on April 1. Biden launched his formal campaign on April 25.



The tanks on their journey to D.C.



The House and Senate are out for the week. President Trump is in Washington, D.C. Vice President Pence has no public events on his schedule.

Noon: President Trump received an intelligence briefing in the Oval Office.

12:45 p.m. EDT: President Trump has lunch with Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoTrump talks to Swedish leader about rapper A$AP Rocky, offers to vouch for his bail Trump confirms he authorized Rand Paul to negotiate with Iran Trump: 'We already started' talks to get A$AP Rocky home from Sweden MORE. 

July 17: Special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTop Republican considered Mueller subpoena to box in Democrats Kamala Harris says her Justice Dept would have 'no choice' but to prosecute Trump for obstruction Dem committees win new powers to investigate Trump MORE will testify before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees.



6:45 p.m. EDT: Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) holds a town hall in Des Moines, Iowa. Livestream:

Thursday: Netflix's hit series "Stranger Things" returns for Season 3. What to remember from the previous seasons:

Friday morning: Former Vice President Joe Biden's interview with CNN's Chris CuomoChristopher (Chris) Charles CuomoCNN's Cuomo spars with Kris Kobach over whether Trump's tweet was racist Harris on Biden civil rights record: 'Not going to allow us to engage in revisionist history' Biden talks about son's struggles with mental illness, substance abuse MORE airs on CNN's "New Day."



Today is National Fried Clam Day.


And to get your holiday weekend off to a festive start, here are two dogs with the right idea: