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The Hill’s 12:30 Report: Day 3 of Amy Coney Barrett’s questioning | Graham sets up first Barrett vote tomorrow | Confirmation schedule and timing | Reporter asks Graham to wear mask | Biden strategy to run out the clock | Avoids questioning and scrutiny | Trump campaign schedule reveals weaknesses | To hold evening rally in Iowa | Harris to appear on MSNBC tonight | CDC warns against small gatherings | Prime Day deals

 

HAPPENING ON CAPITOL HILL

Day 3: Same room, same seats, roughly the same debates, basically the same quips … slightly different outfits:

 

 

Senators on the Judiciary Committee are questioning Judge Amy Coney Barrett again today for her confirmation to the Supreme Court. 

Today’s hearing livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3iS4dCo

What next after the questioning?: “Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamLate donor surges push election spending projections to new heights Pence seeks to lift GOP in battle for Senate Wall Street backed Biden campaign with million in 2020 cycle: report MORE scheduled a committee vote for 9 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 15, the morning of the last day of hearings. Barrett’s nomination is expected to be brought up for a vote at that meeting and then delayed for a week, per committee rules.” https://bit.ly/3nRnLKU

Timing: “If that happens as expected, the GOP-led committee would then vote to approve her nomination Thursday, Oct. 22. That would set up a final confirmation vote on the Senate floor the week of Oct. 26.” What we know about timing from the Associated Presshttps://bit.ly/3nRnLKU

FROM THE HEARING:

Senators press Barrett on the fate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)https://bit.ly/2H5X0Bi

On whether a president could pardon his or her self: “Amy Coney Barrett says to Leahy she can’t answer whether the President has an absolute right to pardon himself. Says it hasn’t been tested in court and it’s a question that calls for legal analysis. ‘It’s not one in which I can offer a view.’” https://bit.ly/375kim3

A question from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.): "You're not aware of any effort to go back to the good old days of segregation by a legislative body, is that correct?" Videohttps://bit.ly/2STeq6Z

On the president following a court order: “’Do you agree a president must follow a court order and the Supreme Court’s word is final?’ Leahy asks. Barrett says she agrees no one is above the law, SCOTUS has final word but has no ability to force compliance. ‘The Supreme Court can’t control whether a President obeys.’ ” (Via CNN’s Manu Rajuhttps://bit.ly/316ChVa

FIVE TAKEAWAYS FROM THE HEARING SO FAR:

  1. Barrett elusive on specific issues
  2. Roe v. Wade draws major spotlight 
  3. Barrett stresses independence from President TrumpDonald John TrumpHillary Clinton responds to Chrissy Teigen tweet: 'I love you back' Police called after Florida moms refuse to wear face masks at school board meeting about mask policy Supreme Court rejects Trump effort to shorten North Carolina mail-ballot deadline MORE
  4. Election disputes hang over court fight
  5. 5. Senators relish national spotlight — to talk past Barrett

Details for each from The Hill’s Jordain Carney and John Kruzelhttps://bit.ly/3160drS

HOW ABORTION HAS BECOME A FOCUS OF THE 2020 ELECTION:

https://bit.ly/3nOZIfA

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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ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL

Joe BidenJoe BidenHillary Clinton responds to Chrissy Teigen tweet: 'I love you back' Supreme Court rejects Trump effort to shorten North Carolina mail-ballot deadline Overnight Defense: Trump campaign's use of military helicopter raises ethics concerns | Air Force jets intercept aircraft over Trump rally | Senators introduce bill to expand visa screenings MORE’s strategy — run out the clock:

Via The Hill’s Amie Parnes, “Team Biden knows they’re ahead against President Trump, with national polls showing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden above the 50 percent mark. And with under three weeks to go until Election Day, the campaign has been doing just enough to keep things where they are as the clock ticks down to Nov. 3.” https://bit.ly/33Xw1AX

What the Biden campaign has been up to: “In recent weeks, Biden has been traveling more than he had earlier in the pandemic — making short trips to key battleground states as he did on Tuesday when he traveled to Florida — but his campaign has usually limited events to one speech a day. Those speeches are largely the same and his campaign has all but avoided long-ranging, sit-down national interviews where he could be asked a prickly question.”

JOE BIDEN IS HAVING A PRETTY EASY TIME AS THE NOMINEE:

Via Axios’s Mike Allen and Hans Nichols, “Since Aug. 31, Biden has answered less than half as many questions from the press as Trump — 365 compared with 753 — according to a tally by the Trump campaign, which the Biden campaign didn't dispute.” https://bit.ly/3duXXQ2

Why this is the case: “The media's obsession with Trump — and Trump's compulsion to dominate the news — allowed Biden to purposely and persistently minimize public appearances and tough questions.” 

The full story — it’s pretty interestinghttps://bit.ly/34VJEQC

If you put on those reading glasses and focus on Trump’s campaign schedule:

Via The Hill’s Niall StanagePresident Trump’s campaign schedule in the last weeks before the election reveals his weaknesses in battleground states. https://bit.ly/376ZXge

For example: “Trump will travel to Iowa for a rally Wednesday and to Georgia, as well as Florida, on Friday. Trump carried Iowa by more than 9 percentage points against Democrat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillary Clinton responds to Chrissy Teigen tweet: 'I love you back' Trump fights for battleground Arizona Biden leads Trump by 12 in new national poll MORE in 2016, while no Democrat has won Georgia in a presidential election since former President Clinton in 1992.”

Why that’s important: “The fact that those states are competitive is a warning sign about the president’s chances.” 

Timing: “The travel decisions come at the same time as speculation mounts about the financial health of the president’s campaign. According to recent reports, the Trump campaign has pulled $17 million of planned ad spending from Iowa, New Hampshire and Ohio.” https://bit.ly/376ZXge

LATEST WITH THE CORONAVIRUS

Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 7,860,452

U.S. death toll: 215,971 

Breakdown of the numbershttps://cnn.it/2UAgW3y 

For context: A month ago today, 6,521,887 Americans had tested positive for the coronavirus and 194,107 had died. https://bit.ly/3nOl4K3

Small gatherings aren’t great for the spread of COVID-19:

Via The Hill’s Jessie Hellmann, “Small gatherings are increasingly becoming a source of COVID-19 infection around the country, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield warned governors on a call Tuesday.” https://bit.ly/33ZLu3I 

In Redfield’s words: “In the public square, we're seeing a higher degree of vigilance and mitigation steps in many jurisdictions … But what we're seeing as the increasing threat right now is actually acquisition of infection through small household gatherings. Particularly with Thanksgiving coming up, we think it's really important to stress the vigilance of these continued mitigation steps in the household setting." https://bit.ly/33ZLu3I

TIDBIT IN IOWA:

Via NBC’s Jesse Rodriguez: “Iowa has reported a record number of hospitalizations at 473 today, ahead of Pres Trump's MAGA rally tonight in Des Moines.” https://bit.ly/34VYir0

 

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NOTABLE TWEETS:

This interview is pretty wild — and the last minute, wow:

 

 

Watchhttps://bit.ly/3nMWUPX

A CNN reporter asked Sen. Graham to keep wearing his mask:

 

 

Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3jZxBrA

ON TAP:

The House and Senate are out. President Trump is in Washington, D.C., and is campaigning in Iowa this evening. Vice President Pence is in Michigan today. 

10:35 a.m. EDT: Vice President Pence left for Grand Rapids, Mich.

11 a.m. EDT: President Trump delivers remarks from the Rose Garden to the Economic Clubs of New York, Florida, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Pittsburgh and Sheboygan, Wis.

12:40 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence holds a campaign event in Grand Rapids.

4:05 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for Des Moines, Iowa.

4:10 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence returns to Washington, D.C.

7 p.m. EDT: President Trump holds a campaign rally in Des Moines.

10:45 p.m. EDT: President Trump returns to the White House.

WHAT TO WATCH:

9 p.m. EDT: Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisTrump fights for battleground Arizona Biden to air 90-minute radio programs targeting Black voters The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden's big battleground | Trump and Harris hit the trail in Arizona | Turnout surges among new voters MORE (D-Calif.) will appear on MSNBC’s “The Rachel MaddowRachel Anne MaddowCable news October ratings explode as Fox News hits historic highs Maddow: Trump owes Welker an apology Hillicon Valley: Five takeaways on new election interference from Iran, Russia | Schumer says briefing on Iranian election interference didn't convince him effort was meant to hurt Trump | Republicans on Senate panel subpoena Facebook, Twitter CEOs | MORE Show.” https://bit.ly/316crRa

NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF...:

Today is National Dessert Day!

Oh mannn — I get why this video has gone viral:

 

 

Watchhttps://bit.ly/33X5XWI

Prime! Day!:

Via CNet, here’s a list of some of the best Prime Day deals today: https://cnet.co/3nXz04D

And because you made it this far, here are birds playing basketball: https://bit.ly/34RZdbU