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The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Farm Credit — Pelosi, Ocasio-Cortez meet to heal Democratic rift

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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 — Presented by Farm Credit — Pelosi, AOC meet to heal Dem rift | Pelosi downplays divisions | 2020 race heats up as Team Biden fires back at rivals | Dems privately disappointed after Mueller testimony | Carbon tax gets new attention | DOJ faces legal fight over death penalty | Trump floats national security probe of Google | Sen. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeTrump says ex-staffer who penned 'Anonymous' op-ed should be 'prosecuted' White House to host swearing-in event for Barrett on Monday night Pence adviser Marty Obst tests positive for COVID-19 MORE serves Utah-shaped doughnuts | National Coffee Milkshake Day

 

THIS MORNING

'There are good ships, and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea. But the best ships, are friendships…': 

 

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiMnuchin says he learned of Pelosi's letter to him about stimulus talks 'in the press' On The Money: Trump makes a late pitch on the economy | US economy records record GDP gains after historic COVID-19 drop | Pelosi eyes big COVID-19 deal in lame duck Pelosi challenger calls delay on COVID-19 relief bill the 'privilege of politics' MORE (D-Calif.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-Cortez'Drink water and don't be racist': Ocasio-Cortez gives Republicans upset over Vanity Fair outfit 'pointers' on how to look better OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump strips protections for Tongass forest, opening it to logging | Interior 'propaganda' video and tweets may violate ethics laws, experts say | Democrats see Green New Deal yielding gains despite GOP attacks Ocasio-Cortez says she doesn't plan on 'staying in the House forever' MORE (D-N.Y.) met this morning amid tensions between progressives and moderates within the Democratic Party. http://bit.ly/2GtIrnW

Pelosi after the meeting -- differences? What differences?: "I don't think we have that many differences. We had a nice meeting. We had a nice meeting."

Ocasio-Cortez left through another door and avoided commenting. http://bit.ly/2GtIrnW

AOC yesterday about the meeting: "I think the goal is just to open a line of communication and making sure that we're all on the same page on everything." Watch: http://bit.ly/2GJaBvF

Photo of media standing riiiiiight outside the door: "No one ever stands this close to the door in a typical Pelosi stakeout." (Via The Washington Post's Rachael Badehttp://bit.ly/2GstmTB

 

Then an hour later -- Pelosi posted a best buds photo:

 

Happy summer Friday! 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 -- and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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IN CONGRESS

Budget equals recess. Don't you forget it:

The House passed a two-year budget deal that boosts government spending by $320 billion and lifts the debt ceiling until July 2021. http://bit.ly/2GvjPeI

The vote: 284-149. Sixty-five Republicans voted for the bill, and 16 Democrats voted against it. 

Next up: The bill heads to the Senate, which is expected to pass it next week. 

What to know about the spending: "The legislation would ramp up defense spending to $738 billion and $740 billion over the next two fiscal years, respectively, compared with the current level of $716 billion. Nondefense spending would rise to $632 billion and $634.5 billion during the same period, an increase from this year's $605 billion." 

  

Carbon taxes, comin' in hot:

Via The Hill's Miranda Green, "Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle are introducing competing bills that aim to put a tax on carbon. The push to regulate greenhouse gas emissions come as both Democrats and Republicans face pressure from their constituents, and in some cases the fossil fuel industry itself, to regulate carbon emissions that lead to climate change." http://bit.ly/2Zf3d27

Introduced yesterday: Sen. Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsWhat a Biden administration should look like Bitter fight over Barrett fuels calls to nix filibuster, expand court Ocasio-Cortez: Republicans don't believe Democrats 'have the stones to play hardball' MORE (D-Del.), Rep. Francis RooneyLaurence (Francis) Francis RooneyOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Environmentalists sound alarm over Barrett's climate change comments |  Energy regulators signal support for carbon pricing in electricity markets| Methane emissions up in 2020 amid turbulent year for oil and gas Calls for COVID-19 tests at Capitol grow after Trump tests positive The Hill's Convention Report: Democrats gear up for Day Two of convention MORE (R-Fla.) and Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.) all introduced carbon bills yesterday.

What to know about the bills: http://bit.ly/2Zf3d27

  

LATEST WITH THE MUELLER TESTIMONY

Some Democrats are pretty disappointed with Mueller's testimony:

Via The Hill's Olivia Beavers, while many Democrats have congratulated the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees for their questioning of former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE, some rank-and-file Democrats are privately expressing disappointment. http://bit.ly/2Gw2nGR

Their complaints: Mueller's "at times, shaky performance, the brevity of his answers and the lack of a big moment that would have shifted the electorate's sentiment on whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden campaign slams Facebook after thousands of ads blocked by platform's pre-election blackout Mnuchin says he learned of Pelosi's letter to him about stimulus talks 'in the press' Harris to travel to Texas Friday after polls show tie between Trump, Biden MORE was guilty of obstruction." 

 

What's next for Democrats:

Democrats are seizing on election security legislation after former special counsel Robert Mueller warned of the interference threats. What to expect: http://bit.ly/2GvszS4

 

KARATE CHOP FROM MCCONNELL:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMnuchin says he learned of Pelosi's letter to him about stimulus talks 'in the press' On The Money: Trump makes a late pitch on the economy | US economy records record GDP gains after historic COVID-19 drop | Pelosi eyes big COVID-19 deal in lame duck Lawmakers say infrastructure efforts are falling victim to deepening partisan divide MORE (R-Ky.) blocked two election security measures yesterday. Why: McConnell argued that Democrats are trying to give themselves a "political benefit." http://bit.ly/2Gx3pTb

 

JUST NOW FROM HOUSE JUDICIARY CHAIR JERROLD NADLER (D-N.Y.):

During a press conference, Nadler said his committee “is negotiating with former [White House] Counsel Don McGahn and if there’s no resolution they will go to court seek their enforcement of a subpoena for him early next week.” (Via CBS News’s Rebecca Kaplan) http://bit.ly/2Gw2r9E

On impeachment: “Nadler frames the Dems' suit to obtain grand jury information: They need to obtain the grand jury information so they can decide whether to pursue impeachment, Nadler says” (Via CNN’s Jeremy Herb) http://bit.ly/2GtIJeQ

  

ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL

No more mister nice Joe:

Via The Hill's Jonathan Easley and Amie Parnes, former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHarris to travel to Texas Friday after polls show tie between Trump, Biden Florida heat sends a dozen Trump rally attendees to hospital Harris more often the target of online misinformation than Pence: report MORE is ready to fight back as his 2020 rivals attack his civil rights record. http://bit.ly/2ZdEH1t

The straw that broke the camel's back: On Wednesday, Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerDemocratic senators unveil bill to ban discrimination in financial services industry Obama endorses Espy in Mississippi Senate race Durbin says he will run for No. 2 spot if Dems win Senate majority MORE (N.J.) accused Biden of being the "architect of mass incarceration" for supporting a 1994 crime bill. 

From a Biden ally: "You can't be called the architect of mass incarceration and remain quiet. That's cruel and personal. That goes against his entire career. You can't let people say bullshit and not respond to it."

Timing: The next round of Democratic presidential debates are next week.

  

IN THE WHITE HOUSE

Google that:

"President Trump on Friday suggested his administration would investigate Google's work in China for potential national security issues just days after his top Treasury official said the government had looked into the company and found no cause for such concerns." http://bit.ly/2GwtjpV

Trump tweeted: "There may or may not be National Security concerns with regard to Google and their relationship with China. If there is a problem, we will find out about it. I sincerely hope there is not!!!"http://bit.ly/2Gy67HQ

 

TRUMP ALSO TWEETED ABOUT APPLE:

The president tweeted, "Apple will not be given Tariff wavers, or relief, for Mac Pro parts that are made in China. Make them in the USA, no Tariffs!" http://bit.ly/2Gy0BVJ

Reaction: Apple's shares dipped. 

 

IN OTHER NEWS

Just now -- DOJ says yes to the T-Mobile-Sprint merger:

The Department of Justice just approved the $26 billion T-Mobile-Sprint merger to combine more than 80 million U.S. customers. http://bit.ly/2GweXpv

What's next: "The department's approval means both federal agencies overseeing the merger have given it their blessing, though a legal challenge by state attorneys general could still block the deal from going through." 

What is required: "The DOJ's plan requires T-Mobile and Sprint to hand over assets including wireless spectrum and subscribers to Dish, a satellite television company that has been tapped to create a mobile network to compete with the merged company." 

What this means: http://bit.ly/2GweXpv 

 

Of course there will be a legal fight here:

Via The Hill's Brett Samuels and Jacqueline Thomsen, "Human rights and anti-death penalty groups are vowing to challenge the Justice Department's decision to resume the federal death penalty after a 15-year hiatus."

  

NOTABLE TWEETS

I laughed out loud several times: 

 

How cute are these?!:

  

ON TAP

The House and Senate are out. President Trump is in Washington, D.C. Vice President Pence is in Jacksonville, Fla., for the afternoon.

Noon: President Trump received an intelligence briefing.

12:15 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence tours Operation New Hope in Jacksonville, Fla., a group that provides jobs training to people who were formerly incarcerated, followed by a Ready4Work roundtable discussion.

2 p.m. EDT: President Trump meets with Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoPompeo's wife and son made personal requests of State Dept staff: report Pompeo: US citizens born in Jerusalem can now list Israel on passports The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump, Biden blitz battleground states MORE and acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan. 

5:20 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence gets back to Washington, D.C.

  

WHAT TO WATCH

This morning: Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) held a news conference before leaving for August recess. Livestream: https://cs.pn/2GwkCfh

1:50 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence gives a speech at Miller Electric Company in Jacksonville, Fla. Livestream: http://bit.ly/2Gw4xpT

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National Coffee Milkshake Day.

 

And to get your weekend off to the right start, here are around half a dozen police officers "trying to capture some type of noble, flightless bird that's on the loose. It's been several hours." http://bit.ly/2GyXTPY

 

And in the words of @darth: "THIS NOBLE FLIGHTLESS BIRD IS INNOCENT BRENDAN" http://bit.ly/2GwI7F2