The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Big 10 votes to resume football season


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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: Big Ten resumes season on Oct. 24 | Officials waved red flags before Trump Tulsa rally | Pence: Fla., Ariz. key to Trump’s reelection | Mich., Pa., Wis. election results could be delayed | Biden plays ‘Despacito’ on his phone during remarks | Hurricane Sally makes landfall | National Guacamole Day deals



The Big Ten is back, baby:



Via CBS Sports’s Ben Kercheval, The Big Ten football conference has voted to resume football games on Oct. 24.

How the season will run: “The Big Ten will open its season on the weekend of Oct. 24 with teams playing eight regular-season games over eight weeks along with a Big Ten Championship Game and six additional consolation games. The Big Ten Championship Game is scheduled for Dec. 19 ...” 

The COVID-19 precautions: “Tickets will not be sold and fans will not be allowed to attend games this season, though exceptions may be made for families of athletes, coaches and staff. The conference will now feature daily, rapid COVID-19 testing as a focal point of its return to play plan. Testing for athletes and coaches will begin on Sept. 30.”  

Everything we know

President TrumpDonald John TrumpObama calls on Senate not to fill Ginsburg's vacancy until after election Planned Parenthood: 'The fate of our rights' depends on Ginsburg replacement Progressive group to spend M in ad campaign on Supreme Court vacancy MORE REACTED ON TWITTER:

The president tweeted, “Great News: BIG TEN FOOTBALL IS BACK. All teams to participate. Thank you to the players, coaches, parents, and all school representatives. Have a FANTASTIC SEASON! It is my great honor to have helped!!!”

Step into our office:

Via The Hill’s Jordain Carney, “Republicans on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee voted on Wednesday to greenlight subpoenas and depositions as part of an investigation into the FBI’s Russia probe and the Obama administration.”

Details: “The 8-6 party line vote authorizes Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - White House moves closer to Pelosi on virus relief bill Second GOP senator to quarantine after exposure to coronavirus GOP-led panel to hear from former official who said Burisma was not a factor in US policy MORE (R-Wis.), the chairman of the committee, to issue a combination of subpoenas and set up closed-door depositions with approximately 40 individuals.”

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: I will be off until Tuesday. The Hill’s Alicia Cohn will be writing the 12:30 Report while I’m gone. Send tips to!



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Sally, can you, like, *not*, right now?:

Hurricane Sally made landfall early this morning near Gulf Shores, Ala.

What’s happening: “Bands of heavy rain and strong winds are affecting the northern Gulf Coast right now, particularly in parts of the Florida Panhandle and southern Alabama … More than 400,000 homes and businesses have lost power in southern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle … Significant flash flooding with flooded roads and homes has also occurred in numerous spots from southeast Alabama into the western Florida Panhandle.”  

The storm’s forecast from The Weather Channel

Sally, Paulette, Rene, Teddy and Vicky sound like quite the crew:

This tweet has more than 164k likes so far.





Exclusive — officials were not groovy with Trump’s massive indoor Tulsa rally:

Via The Hill’s Bob CusackRobert (Bob) CusackThe Hill's Campaign Report: Biden asks if public can trust vaccine from Trump ahead of Election Day | Oklahoma health officials raised red flags before Trump rally Shakespeare Theatre Company goes virtual for 'Will on the Hill...or Won't They?' The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Big 10 votes to resume football season MORE, “Oklahoma health officials raised red flags before President Trump’s indoor rally in June, warning there could be significant spikes of coronavirus cases and deaths from the event, according to internal state documents.”

How we know: “Dozens of emails obtained by The Hill through a state freedom of information request reveal growing angst within the Oklahoma public health department in the days leading up to the June 20 rally.” 

For example —  Oklahoma State Department of Health’s epidemiologist Aaron Wendelboe sent an email: “I am concerned that the mass indoor gathering in Tulsa of 19,000 people will directly lead to deaths in Oklahoma. As the state epidemiologist, I feel I have a responsibility to speak out and warn of the estimated risk.” 

Keep in mind about the rally: Former Republican presidential candidate Herman CainHerman CainThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Big 10 votes to resume football season Exclusive: Internal documents show officials waved red flags before Trump's Tulsa rally Herman Cain account tweets coronavirus 'not as deadly' as claimed after his death from COVID-19 MORE attended the rally, did not wear a mask and died from COVID-19 complications a few weeks later at the age of 74.  

The full report


The keys to Trump’s reelection — Florida, Minnesota and Arizona:

In an exclusive interview with The Hill’s Brett Samuels aboard Air Force Two, Vice President Pence said the Trump campaign is focused on winning Florida and Arizona in order to secure 270 electoral votes.

In Pence’s words: “Florida’s of great importance. Arizona’s of great importance. We’re going to make sure we continue to campaign in those states …  We’re actually looking at expanding the map now. I’ve been campaigning in Minnesota. So has the president … We think Minnesota is in play.” 

This is important (!) — why Florida is huge: “Without winning Florida’s 29 electoral votes or expanding the map by winning a state won by Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhat Senate Republicans have said about election-year Supreme Court vacancies Bipartisan praise pours in after Ginsburg's death Trump carries on with rally, unaware of Ginsburg's death MORE in 2016, the Trump-Pence ticket would likely have to sweep Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona and North Carolina to get to 270 electoral votes.”


Via The Atlantic’s James Fallows, “The press hasn’t broken its most destructive habits when it comes to covering Donald Trump.” 

“Many of our most influential editors and reporters are acting as if the rules that prevailed under previous American presidents are still in effect. But this president is different; the rules are different; and if it doesn’t adapt, fast, the press will stand as yet another institution that failed in a moment of crucial pressure.”

Mentally prepare yourself — mail-in voting may slow down the results in a few *key* states:

Via Politico’s Zach Montellaro, “Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin decided the 2016 election. We’ll have to wait on them in 2020.”

Why: “Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are expecting huge surges in ballots cast by mail in 2020 … all three Midwestern battlegrounds, which President Donald Trump flipped in 2016 to win the White House after years of Democratic presidential victories there, are among the states where local election officials are not allowed to start processing mail ballots until Election Day, according to a POLITICO review of election rules in 13 key states.”  

Full explanation



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Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 6,609,770 

U.S. death toll: 196,023 

Breakdown of the numbers

For context: Five months ago today, 640,014 Americans had tested positive for the coronavirus and 31,002 had died.



Lol, this is pretty funny:




If you missed the news about the planet Venus: Astronomers have found phosphine on Venus, a molecule that is found primarily in living microorganisms. Details from CBS News’s William Harwood






The House and Senate are in. President Trump is in Washington, D.C. Vice President is also in D.C., but is heading to Ohio this afternoon.

11:30 a.m. EDT: The Senate holds votes three roll call votes on nominations. 

Noon: Vice President Pence speaks at the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) battleground luncheon in Washington, D.C. Note: This is closed to press.

12:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump participates in a “High Holy Days Call with Jewish leaders.” 

1:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump has lunch with Vice President Pence.

2 – 4 p.m. EDT: First and last votes in the House. The House’s full agenda today

3:30 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence leaves for Zanesville, Ohio. 

3:30 p.m. EDT: More roll call votes in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda today 

5:30 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence speaks at a Workers for Trump event in Zanesville.

7 p.m. EDT: President Trump speaks at a National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) battleground dinner at the Capitol Hill Club in Washington, D.C. 

8:45 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence arrives in Washington, D.C.


1 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany holds a press briefing. Livestream

1 p.m. EDT: The Hill is hosting a virtual event, “Powering America's Economy With AI.” Livestream 

2:30 p.m. EDT: A Senate subcommittee hearing on the wildfires. Livestream


Today is National Guacamole Day!

Because it is a day worth celebrating!:

Here’s a list of National Guacamole Day specials today:

And because you made it this far, here’s a large group of duck friends. And I mean a LARGE group: