The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by the Walton Family Foundation — Sights and sounds from the final debate


Presented by the Walton Family Foundation 



Well this was a little bit less of an angry bickering match, so I’m going to call it a win for everyone:



Well, congratulations! We made it through the debates between President TrumpDonald TrumpNorth Carolina Senate passes trio of election measures 14 Republicans vote against making Juneteenth a federal holiday Border state governors rebel against Biden's immigration chaos MORE and Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenJapan to possibly ease COVID-19 restrictions before Olympics 14 Republicans vote against making Juneteenth a federal holiday China supplies millions of vaccine doses to developing nations in Asia MORE. Last night’s clash was most notable for its more measured, orderly tone, but still included an array of attacks. 

I’d like to take a moment to thank the two MVPs of the night: the first being debate moderator Kristen Welker, who did a fantastic job, and No. 2, the muting feature on the microphones. 

How the shift in tone defined last night’s debate: https://bit.ly/2Tx7f4V

What’s next: A final sprint for both campaigns in the last 10 days before Election Day. The Trump campaign is dividing and conquering in Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio today. Biden is delivering remarks today in Delaware on the pandemic, and his running mate, Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisIt's past time we elect a Black woman governor Manchin rebuffs progressive push for infrastructure guarantee It's time for domestic workers to have rights MORE, is campaigning in Atlanta.


  1. Trump changed his tone: “Trump was mostly on his best behavior Thursday night.”
  1. Both candidates landed punches: “For any remaining undecided voters, it was tough to see either man as obviously dominant.”
  1. Trump goes after Biden’s family:  “The president … eagerly pivoted to Biden’s family no matter the topic that was given to him.” 
  1. Kristen Welker shone as moderator: “The moderators this presidential debate season have not had a good time — until Thursday night.”
  1. Did Trump do enough?: “The president’s performance will win him praise … But whether Trump did enough to change the tide of the presidential race is very much in doubt.”

Reasoning and details for each from The Hill’s Niall Stanage and Jonathan Easley: https://bit.ly/35qZq63


It’s Friday! We made it. 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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An important reminder for work today ;)



Hyperlink https://bit.ly/2TjuPlh 






I love the tie coordination: President Trump wore a Republican red tie while rival Biden wore a nearly identical Democratic blue tie. Photo: https://bit.ly/3mghruN

Spotted in the audience


Hyperlink https://bit.ly/2TjxyeD

The sign about masks by the debate hall entrance: https://bit.ly/35mpiA8 

And photos inside the room: Via The Wall Street Journal’s Rebecca Ballhaus: https://bit.ly/31AOyBC

It was a beautiful day outside the venue: Here’s a video from the camera setup: Via AFP’s Agnès Bun:  https://bit.ly/2HuIzqV

Something that was not mentioned much last night (!): “Things not mentioned by Trump or Biden tonight: the Supreme Court, Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden on Putin: 'a worthy adversary' McConnell sparks new Supreme Court fight McConnell signals GOP would block Biden Supreme Court pick in '24 MORE, or court packing, the big GOP message of the week. (Kristen Welker mentioned SCOTUS in a question about Obamacare, but both candidates stuck to health care)” (via The Huffington Post’s Igor Bobic) https://bit.ly/34nSnvS

Fun fact — Anthony FauciAnthony FauciNevada man present at Capitol insurrection announces gubernatorial bid Overnight Health Care: US surpasses 600K COVID-19 deaths | Federal watchdog to examine NIH grants, likely including Wuhan funding CDC labels highly transmissible delta strain a COVID-19 'variant of concern' MORE was first mentioned at a presidential debate in 1988 (!): Here’s the clip, via C-SPAN’s Howard Mortman: https://bit.ly/2Tqg4wZ

Buzz words: Virginia House of Delegates member Mark L. Keam tweeted, “I had ‘Malarky’ right below ‘C’mon Man’ and ‘Scranton’ on my #BidenBingo” https://bit.ly/34oHMRc 

Throwback: Here’s a photo of debate moderator NBC’s Kristen Welker as an intern for NBC’s “Today.” The photo comparison: https://bit.ly/37DH1FV

Lol, this was an important tweet from The Hill’s Niall Stanage: “BREAKING: Donald Trump just complimented a debate moderator.” https://bit.ly/3jkB9nn

This moment got a lot of attention: “Question: Do you understand why black parent's give their children 'the talk?' Trump: Nobody's done more for black Americans than Donald Trump.” https://bit.ly/3dT3ZKn

The in-flight entertainment



Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3jm0I7m 

*Looks around the room to see everyone’s reactions*: President Trump said at one point, “I am the least racist person in this room.” https://bit.ly/3jpYFiy

Did you notice Joe Biden checking his watch?: Politico’s Roger Simon pointed out, “Oh, man, I can’t believe Biden’s staff let him wear his watch on a debate stage. He just looked at it. Which never looks good.”  https://bit.ly/3kol7Kr


This is great. Fine, actually! I’m fine. — ‘How to worry about this election— and when’:

In Politico Magazine, journalist Garrett M. Graff gives “a day-by-day guide to what chaos could unfold, according to the experts.” https://politi.co/34kLz1Z


Just send this to anyone who says they don’t have time to vote:



Hyperlink https://bit.ly/2TlAMhy


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 8,413,274

U.S. death toll: 223,087 

Breakdown of the numbers: https://cnn.it/2UAgW3y

For context: Three months ago today, 3,973,370 Americans had tested positive for the coronavirus and 143,224 had died.


A silver medal we did not want:

Yesterday marked the second-highest daily total of coronavirus cases in the U.S. https://bit.ly/3dPwqZu

How many new COVID-19 cases were reported in the U.S. yesterday: 75,049

For context: “There has been an average of 62,166 cases per day over the past week, an increase of 32 percent from the average two weeks earlier.” 

The highest daily total: More than 77,000 new cases in a day in July. 


Anthony Fauci, the nation's leading infectious diseases expert, will appear on MSNBC’s MTP Daily.” https://bit.ly/35vxCOd


Lol, anything goes in 2020:



hyperlink https://bit.ly/31C6Sdv

If you don’t see it... here’s the original photo where Blake Lively is, you know, barefoot: https://bit.ly/2J0ri9J

And here is Blake magically wearing heels in the same photo: https://bit.ly/37yEug9



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This is hard. And at times heartbreaking. But the steadfast commitment to learning must be celebrated. By documenting the all-too-real experiences, showcasing bootstrap ideas and sharing unflappable creativity on social media with #SchoolsIN, we can create a web of support for students, parents and educators who deserve every ounce of inspiration and motivation we can offer. 

To join the community and learn more, visit SchoolsIN.org.



The Senate is in. The House is out. President Trump is in Florida and Vice President Pence is in Ohio and Pennsylvania today. Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is in Delaware and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is campaigning in Georgia.

8 a.m. EDT: Vice President Pence and second lady Karen PenceKaren Sue PencePence buys .9M home in Indiana There is no pandemic recovery plan without the arts and culture Karen Pence confirms move back to Indiana: 'No place like home' MORE voted early in Indianapolis. https://bit.ly/34oaj9K

Noon: The Senate meets. The Senate’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/2ITRORX

12:15 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence leaves for Swanton, Ohio.

1:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for The Villages, Fla. 

3:10 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence leaves for West Mifflin, Pa.

6:10 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for Pensacola, Fla.

8 p.m. EDT: President Trump holds a campaign rally in Pensacola, Fla. 

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

8:40 p.m. EDT: President Trump leaves for his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla., where he will stay for the night.


1:20 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence holds a campaign event in Swanton, Ohio. Livestream: https://cs.pn/37DCh35 

2:30 p.m. EDT: Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden delivers remarks in Wilmington, Del., on the pandemic. Livestream: https://cs.pn/37B1Xx9

4:30 p.m. EDT: President Trump holds a campaign rally at The Villages, Fla. Livestream: https://cs.pn/31CCsrL 

4:30 p.m. EDT: Vice President Pence holds a campaign event in West Mifflin, Pa. Livestream: https://cs.pn/31xVgbm 

5:10 p.m. EDT: Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) holds a campaign event in Atlanta. Livestream: https://cs.pn/3mgQuao


Today is National Boston Cream Pie Day. And for weekend planning purposes, tomorrow is National Bologna Day and Sunday is National Greasy Foods Day


Oh boy, here we go again!:

“Borat 2” is now out on Amazon. https://bit.ly/3jm9aUk 

“Yes, Sacha Baron Cohen is back in the suit he wears best, as journalist Borat Sagdiyev, who is returning to America and causes quite a bit of chaos. And as you can see above, he's very pro-face mask, highlighting how super-timely the movie appears to be.”




Hyperlink https://bit.ly/34l9L4a

Watch: https://bit.ly/34l9L4a

You have my attention:

Via The Associated Press, “Unexploded WWII bomb washes up on North Carolina beach.” Yes, there’s a photo:https://bit.ly/2IScPfS 

And because this made me laugh out loud, here’s a monkey who absolutely LOVES whipped cream: https://bit.ly/31zQSsp

Have a good weekend! Monday. Same time. Same place.