The Hill's 12:30 Report: Dems, GOP dig in for public impeachment hearings

To view past editions of The Hill's 12:30 Report, click here: http://bit.ly/1M1mIfw

To receive The Hill's 12:30 Report in your inbox, please sign up here: http://bit.ly/1Tt4hqN

--> 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: Dems, GOP dig in for public impeachment hearings | GOP unveils defense strategy | Dems sharpen message | White House looks to get in sync | Mulvaney drops subpoena lawsuit | Latest from Roger StoneRoger Jason StoneSchiff says investigators seeking to identify who Giuliani spoke to on unlisted '-1' number What if impeachment fails? Juan Williams: Trump has nothing left but smears MORE trial | Trump to deliver economic speech in NYC | Sanford drops out of presidential race | Jimmy CarterJimmy CarterJimmy Carter released from hospital Booker notes 'anger' over more billionaires than black candidates in 2020 race New Hampshire parochialism, not whiteness, bedevils Democrats MORE recovering from brain surgery | Disney Plus hit with tech issues as it goes live

 

DEMOCRATS PREP FOR TOMORROW'S IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS

Don't expect to hear 'quid pro quo' anymore: 

Via The Hill's Scott Wong and Mike Lillis, "In a last-minute move, Democrats are shifting their impeachment rhetoric and talking points just days before the first public hearings into President TrumpDonald John TrumpPence: It's not a "foregone conclusion" that lawmakers impeach Trump FBI identifies Pensacola shooter as Saudi Royal Saudi Air Force second lieutenant Trump calls Warren 'Pocahontas,' knocks wealth tax MORE's handling of foreign policy in Ukraine." http://bit.ly/2KfvW1o

The phrase Democrats are dropping: The Latin phrase "quid pro quo," a phrase the party has been using for nearly seven weeks. 

And instead: Democrats are using legal terms such as "extortion" and "bribery" to make it easier for the public to digest in a short period of time.

Reasoning from Rep. Jim HimesJames (Jim) Andres HimesPelosi faces tough choices on impeachment managers This week: Impeachment inquiry moves to Judiciary Committee Juan Williams: Trump has nothing left but smears MORE (D-Conn.), a senior member of the Intelligence Committee: "When you are trying to persuade the American people of something really pretty simple, which is that the president acted criminally and extorted in the way a mob boss would extort somebody, a vulnerable foreign country, it's probably best not to use Latin words to explain it."

 

LIVESTREAM OF TOMORROW'S PUBLIC IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS: 

https://cs.pn/2CyXHO6

  

It's a dreary Tuesday 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 cmartel@thehill.com -- and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

Did someone forward this to you? Want your own copy? Sign up here to receive The Hill's 12:30 Report in your inbox daily: http://bit.ly/2kjMNnn

   

MEANWHILE FROM REPUBLICANS

Republicans, here are your talking points:

Republicans on the House committees that are conducting the impeachment inquiry are circulating a memo about how to defend President Trumphttp://bit.ly/2QbmJLe

The gist: "[E]vidence gathered does not establish an impeachable offense."

Republicans' stance: "President Zelensky and President Trump have both said there was no pressure on the call; The Ukrainian government was not aware of a hold on U.S. security assistance at the time of the July 25 call; and President Trump met with President Zelensky and U.S. security assistance flowed to Ukraine in September 2019 -- both of which occurred without Ukraine investigating President Trump's political rivals."

Read the memo that Republicans are circulating: http://bit.ly/2Ku9AJN

 

HOW SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-S.C.) IS BASKING IN THE IMPEACHMENT SPOTLIGHT:

http://bit.ly/34Vwoto

  

This a.m. from Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyGiuliani meets with fired Ukrainian prosecutor who pushed Biden, 2016 claims: report Fox's Napolitano says obstruction 'easiest' impeachment offense for Democrats The key impeachment hearings are before an appeals court, not the House Judiciary panel MORE -- jk about that lawsuit: 

Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney reversed his plans to file a lawsuit about his congressional subpoena. http://bit.ly/2X6Aaxs

Instead: Mulvaney will ignore the subpoena, per instructions from President Trump

 

TIMING: 

Yesterday, "Mulvaney ... told a federal judge that he is withdrawing from his effort to join a former White House aide's lawsuit against House Democrats and intends to file his own case in an effort to fight a subpoena as part of the impeachment inquiry." http://bit.ly/32M0r5C

  

Meet me on the same page:

A day before the public impeachment hearings are set to begin, the White House is still struggling to get in sync on messaging. http://bit.ly/2NDjiv7

For example: "Trump's use of his own megaphone to drive the message against impeachment has at times undermined arguments coming from his White House and Republican allies on Capitol Hill." 

Why this is especially important now: "[T]hings don't appear to be improving in the hours before House committees prepare to receive public testimony from officials who are expected to offer damaging accounts of efforts by the president's personal attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiTrump: Giuliani to deliver report on Ukraine trip to Congress, Barr Trump denies report that he still uses personal cell phone for calls Giuliani draws attention with latest trip to Ukraine MORE to press for investigations by Ukraine. The hearings are likely to receive wall-to-wall coverage on cable news." 

  

HAPPENING TODAY

No Stone left unturned:

^Man, the Mueller investigation was a gold mine for puns...:

Via The Washington Post's Rachel Weiner, "The federal trial of self-described dirty trickster Roger Stone is set to resume Tuesday as former Trump campaign staffer Rick Gates is expected to testify for the prosecution and the focus returns to calls Stone made to members of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump's election operation."  https://wapo.st/2Qd6wFA

Photos outside the courthouse: http://bit.ly/34V2gi2

 

FROM Rick GatesRick GatesJustice Dept releases another round of summaries from Mueller probe What if impeachment fails? Democrats ask judge for quick ruling on McGahn subpoena MORE'S TESTIMONY:

President Trump's former deputy campaign manager Rick Gates testified that Roger Stone gave the Trump campaign updates on the WikiLeaks email dumps. Details: http://bit.ly/2X6a6m2

 

INTERESTING READ ON THE TRIAL -- 'WHAT'S LEFT OF THE MUELLER INVESTIGATION':

Via Law Fare Blog's Mikhaila Fogelhttp://bit.ly/2rvwYQa

 

ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL

Just now — Mark SanfordMark SanfordThe Hill's Campaign Report: Late bids surprise 2020 Democratic field Michigan GOP attempting to have Trump be only Republican candidate on ballot Weld files to run in GOP presidential primary in New Hampshire MORE dropped out:

Via The Post and Courier’s Caitlin Byrd, Former South Carolina governor Mark Sanford (R) just announced that he dropping out of the presidential race, just two months after he announced his candidacy. http://bit.ly/2q5ZY0D

Why: “The move came after Sanford failed to collect much of a following, especially as President Donald Trump remains the favorite of most Republican voters nationally and while Washington is gearing up for impeachment hearings. Sanford said the impeachment inquiry surrounding the president had sucked the proverbial oxygen out of the 2020 debate.” 

  

IN OTHER NEWS

Jimmy Carter had brain surgery:

Former President Jimmy Carter is recovering from brain surgery to relieve pressure caused by bleeding. http://bit.ly/34S6VRG

How he is doing: According to the Carter Center, he is recovering "with no complications" and will remain in the hospital for observation.

Read the full statement from the Carter Center: http://bit.ly/2QiAdVo

  

NOTABLE TWEETS

Wow, this came from the Tidal Basin:

  

ON TAP

The House and Senate return this afternoon. President Trump is in New York today. Vice President Pence is in Washington, D.C.

1:55 p.m. EST: President Trump participates in a roundtable with supporters in New York, N.Y.

2 p.m. EST: The House meets.

2:30 p.m. EST: President Trump speaks at a fundraising committee reception in New York City.

2:30 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence meets with the U.S. ambassador to France, Jamie McCourt.

3 p.m. EST: The Senate meets.

5:25 p.m. EST: President Trump and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpWhy we cherish — and guard — the White House gingerbread house The Hill's 12:30 Report: Job growth soars in November Impeachment hearing didn't go as Chairman Nadler planned MORE get back to the White House.

5:30 p.m. EST: The Senate has one roll call vote. The Senate's full schedule today: http://bit.ly/2paBnHw

6:30 p.m. EST: Postponed votes in the House. The House's full schedule today: http://bit.ly/2X4tn7y

7:05 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence and Karen PenceKaren Sue PenceKaren Pence reveals 'Victorian Christmas!' themed decorations at vice president's residence Pence, second lady make unannounced trip to Iraq to visit US troops The Hill's Morning Report - Wild Wednesday: Sondland testimony, Dem debate take center stage MORE attend the Kuwait-America Foundation 2019 Gala Dinner. 

8 a.m. EST Wednesday: The Hill is hosting an event, "Aspirations: Arab Youth & the Modern Dream." Details and how to RSVP: http://bit.ly/2pbd9gi

  

WHAT TO WATCH

Noon: President Trump speaks at the Economic Club of New York. Livestream: http://bit.ly/36S0wb7

Noon: Vice President Pence speaks at the 2019 National Adoption Month Celebration at the Department of Health and Human Services. Livestream: http://bit.ly/2O0i8Ja

2:30 p.m. EST: Democratic leaders hold a press conference on the Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program following the Supreme Court's oral arguments. Livestream: https://cs.pn/2NIjsBv

 

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...

Today is National Pizza with the Works Except Anchovies Day. That is oddly specific.

  

Would one say the app is ... 'Frozen?' 

I'll see myself out now:

Via The New York Times's Nancy Coleman, the highly anticipated Disney Plus streaming service is live today, but users are reporting technical difficulties. https://nyti.ms/2Kg2V5F

The extent of the glitch: "More than 8,000 Disney Plus subscribers appeared to be affected by the outage around 9 a.m. on Tuesday, according to downdetector.com. For others, the platform appeared to be working just fine." 

From a Disney Plus spokeswoman: "The consumer demand for Disney Plus has exceeded our high expectations. We are pleased by this incredible response and are working to quickly resolve the current user issue. We appreciate your patience."

By the way, here is what is on the streaming service: Nearly 500 movies and 7,500 episodes of TV shows.

 

And to break up your Tuesday afternoon, meet Cinderblock, a 25 lb. cat who is trying to lose weight. His workout routine has gone viral: http://bit.ly/2NYtMnG