The Hill's 12:30 Report: Warren becomes latest 2020 rival to back Biden

The Hill's 12:30 Report: Warren becomes latest 2020 rival to back Biden
© Greg Nash

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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: Warren endorses Biden | WHO says it regrets Trump move to halt funding | Global coronavirus cases top 2 million | Retail sales plunge | Stocks dip | Dem leaders try to box out McConnell in relief talks | Treasury orders Trump's name on stimulus checks | DC bar lowers cocktails in buckets to customers



Warren jumped on the Joe train:

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenBecerra says he wants to 'build on' ObamaCare when pressed on Medicare for All Yellen deputy Adeyemo on track for quick confirmation Menendez reintroduces corporate diversity bill MORE (D-Mass.) officially endorsed former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenKlain on Manchin's objection to Neera Tanden: He 'doesn't answer to us at the White House' Senators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Overnight Defense: New Senate Armed Services chairman talks Pentagon policy nominee, Afghanistan, more | Biden reads report on Khashoggi killing | Austin stresses vaccine safety in new video MORE's presidential campaign this morning.

Warren wrote in an email to supporters: "Joe Biden has spent nearly his entire life in public service. He knows that a government run with integrity, competence, and heart will save lives and save livelihoods. And we can't afford to let Donald Trump continue to endanger the lives and livelihoods of every American."

Screenshot of her endorsement email to supporters: https://bit.ly/3bc14u7

Why her endorsement is important: Warren became the last of the major former Democratic presidential competitors to back Biden.

Other former Democratic candidates who have not endorsed Biden: "Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeWashington state officials warn providers offering VIP vaccine access Legislators go after governors to rein in COVID-19 powers Inslee rebukes hospital over vaccine appointments for donors MORE, John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump's second impeachment trial begins Sanders says Biden sees progressives as 'strong part of his coalition' Gardner to lead new GOP super PAC ahead of midterms MORE, Steve BullockSteve BullockOvernight Health Care: CDC calls for schools to reopen with precautions | Cuomo faces rising scrutiny over COVID-19 nursing home deaths | Biden officials move to begin rescinding Medicaid work requirements Montana governor lifts state mask mandate Lobbying world MORE, Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Finger-pointing on Capitol riot; GOP balks at Biden relief plan New Yorkers should double mask until at least June, de Blasio says NYC reports fewer than 1,000 vaccine doses amid winter weather shipment delays MORE, Marianne WilliamsonMarianne WilliamsonRush Limbaugh dead at 70 Marianne Williamson discusses America's "soulless ethos" Marianne Williamson discusses speaking at People's Party Convention MORE." (Via NBC's Sahil Kapurhttps://bit.ly/2z66Tv7


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 cmartel@thehill.com -- and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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WHO is to blame?:

President TrumpDonald TrumpSenators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House Georgia secretary of state withholds support for 'reactionary' GOP voting bills MORE announced yesterday that he is halting funding to the World Health Organization (WHO). https://bit.ly/2RGdDWJ

Why: Trump said "to assess the World Health Organization's role in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus."

Trump's allegations: "The WHO's attack on travel restrictions put political correctness above life-saving measures. The reality is that the WHO failed to adequately obtain, vet and share information in a timely and transparent fashion," Trump said. He also accused the WHO of treating the U.S. unfairly, pointing to the contributions from the U.S. versus China.

How long the review will take: Between 60 and 90 days



WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a news briefing this morning: "We regret the decision of the President of the United States to order a halt in funding to the World Health Organization ... The United States of America has been a longstanding and generous friend to WHO and we hope it will continue to be so." https://bit.ly/2XKgodk



The Chamber's executive vice president Myron Brilliant said in a statement: "The Chamber supports a reformed but functional World Health Organization, and U.S. leadership and involvement are essential to ensuring its transparency and accountability going forward ... However, cutting the WHO's funding during the COVID-19 pandemic is not in U.S. interests given the organization's critical role assisting other countries -- particularly in the developing world -- in their response." https://bit.ly/3enPe1P



The AMA urged President Trump to reconsider, calling the move a "dangerous step in the wrong direction." https://bit.ly/2RGdDWJ

The AMA said in a statemen: "Fighting a global pandemic requires international cooperation and reliance on science and data. Cutting funding to the WHO – rather than focusing on solutions – is a dangerous move at a precarious moment for the world."



Retail sales dropped 8.7 percent in March, the biggest decline on record. https://bit.ly/2XCnQr3



Markets dipped this morning following a record retail sale drop in March and Trump's announcement to halt the WHO's funding. https://bit.ly/2RIhVx0

The numbers: "The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 500 points, or 2.1 percent, while the S&P 500 was down 62 points, or 2.2 percent." 



Global cases surpass 2 million this morning:

More than two million people in the world have tested positive for COVID-19, according to data from Johns Hopkins University: https://bit.ly/2z0Q4S1


An 11-year-old byline in The New York Times:

For The New York Times, 11-year-old Henry Dodd explains what it's like to have virtual school. https://nyti.ms/2xmJnth

"Kids are getting more bored by the day. We wish we could go back to school to see our friends. But some of us are also really scared about getting the coronavirus, and we don't want our friends and family to get it either. That's what kids across the country told The New York Times (where my dad works) when they were asked about learning from home during the coronavirus outbreak." 

The full piece -- with illustrations from children: https://nyti.ms/2xmJnth



You block Mitch while we go negotiate.

OK, break!:

Via The Hill's Alexander Bolton, "Congressional Democratic leaders are trying to box out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellKlain on Manchin's objection to Neera Tanden: He 'doesn't answer to us at the White House' Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House Murkowski undecided on Tanden as nomination in limbo MORE (R-Ky.) by negotiating a deal with Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinOn The Money: Schumer urges Democrats to stick together on .9T bill | Collins rules out GOP support for Biden relief plan | Powell fights inflation fears Mnuchin expected to launch investment fund seeking backing from Persian Gulf region: report Larry Kudlow debuts to big ratings on Fox Business Network MORE and President Trump to provide $251 billion in new funding for small businesses." https://bit.ly/2V8sPy1

The calculation by Dem leaders: "Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHillicon Valley: Biden signs order on chips | Hearing on media misinformation | Facebook's deal with Australia | CIA nominee on SolarWinds House Rules release new text of COVID-19 relief bill Budowsky: Cruz goes to Cancun, AOC goes to Texas MORE (D-N.Y.) and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSenators given no timeline on removal of National Guard, Capitol fence Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House House Republican attempts to appeal fine for bypassing metal detector outside chamber MORE (D-Calif.) calculate that Trump will be eager for a deal when funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a popular small-business lending program, is projected to expire Thursday, when another wave of unemployment claims become public." 

What to expect: https://bit.ly/2V8sPy1


They appear to be getting closer. What we know: https://bit.ly/2yYd97P



Via The Hill's Niv Elis: https://bit.ly/3baOlHX


Tidbit -- notice if your stimulus check says 'President Donald J. Trump' printed on it: 

Via The Washington Post's Lisa Rein, "The Treasury Department has ordered President Trump's name printed on stimulus checks the Internal Revenue Service is rushing to send to tens of millions of Americans, a process that could slow their delivery by a few days, senior IRS officials said." https://wapo.st/2VytxDB

Is this routine?: "It will be the first time a president's name appears on an IRS disbursement, whether a routine refund or one of the handful of checks the government has issued to taxpayers in recent decades either to stimulate a down economy or share the dividends of a strong one." 

Keep in mind: "Treasury officials disputed that the checks would be delayed." 



The view in London:



The House and Senate are in. President Trump and Vice President Pence are in Washington, D.C.

10 a.m. EDT: President Trump hosted a phone call with "banking, financial services, food and beverage, hospitality and retail industry groups."

11 a.m. EDT: Vice President Pence participated in a phone call with the College Football Playoff Management Committee.

Noon: President Trump hosted a phone call with "health care, tech, telecommunications and transportation industry groups."

2 p.m. EDT: President Trump hosts a call with "agriculture, construction/labor/workforce, defense, energy, and manufacturing industry groups and thought leaders."

3 p.m. EDT: President Trump hosts a call with sports industry groups.

3 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence leads a White House Coronavirus Task Force meeting in the Situation Room.



11 a.m. EDT: Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) gave an update on his state's outbreak. Livestream: https://cs.pn/2z40xfB

1 p.m. EDT: New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) is holding a press briefing on the coronavirus outbreak. Livestreamhttps://cs.pn/3cjSWYx

5 p.m. EDT: The White House Coronavirus Task Force holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/2K7lt7I



Today is National Spiral Ham Day.


Ummm, *hard click*:

Via Eater Washington, D.C., "lowering cocktails in buckets is just one way D.C. bars are getting creative right now." https://bit.ly/3bcs6BE

Because I wouldn't dangle that carrot without following through: Here's a video of cocktails being lowered in a bucket: https://bit.ly/2K4HUdx


And to give you an afternoon distraction, here are two very confused golden retrievers: https://bit.ly/2XCPGDG