The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Capital One - Pfizer, BioNTech apply for vaccine authorization


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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: Pfizer, BioNTech apply for vaccine FDA approval | Timing and next steps | Rick Scott tests positive for COVID-19 | Giuliani’s son, who works in the White House, tests positive | Giuliani’s combative press conference | Trump campaign shifts from legal battles to public opinion | Romney on Trump tactics: ‘Difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action' | Trump delivers 2:30 p.m. remarks | Trump, Pelosi’s final border wall fight | Zoom lifts 40-minute limit for Thanksgiving Day



Oh man, you know the way to my heart, Pfizer. Keep talking.:



Pfizer and BioNTech are formally applying for emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for their COVID-19 vaccine.

Timing — what happens next: Via CNBC’s Berkeley Lovelace Jr., “The FDA process is expected to take a few weeks, and an advisory committee meeting to review the vaccine has been tentatively scheduled for early December. Some Americans could get their first dose of the vaccine in about a month.” https://cnb.cx/35OpRnR 

How many people could be vaccinated by the end of December: Via Stat’s Helen Branswell, “Pfizer projects that it will be able to provide 25 million doses in December — enough to vaccinate 12.5 million people … The U.S. government expects to take receipt of another 15 million doses of vaccine from Moderna in December, which is enough to vaccinate an additional 7.5 million people.” 

What to know about the vaccine and process, via Stat: https://bit.ly/2IQrnN8

Announced this morning — Another one down for the count:

Florida Sen. Rick Scott (R) announced this morning that he has tested positive for the coronavirus. https://bit.ly/2IKarZ9

How he’s feeling: He says he is only experiencing mild symptoms.

Scott’s statement: “After several negative tests, I learned I was positive this morning. I am feeling good and experiencing very mild symptoms. I will be working from home in Naples until it is safe for me to return to Washington, D.C.”

How many senators have had COVID-19: Scott is the seventh known senator to test positive.


White House staffer Andrew Giuliani, the son of President TrumpDonald John TrumpFederal watchdog accuses VOA parent company of wrongdoing under Trump appointee Lawsuit alleges 200K Georgia voters were wrongly purged from registration list Ivanka Trump gives deposition in lawsuit alleging misuse of inauguration funds MORE’s lawyer Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiChoking — not cheating — was Trump's undoing List of Republicans breaking with Trump grows longer Trump rants against election results for 46 minutes in new video post MORE, tested positive for the coronavirus. https://bit.ly/3nIybM4

He posted on Twitter: “This morning, I tested positive for COVID-19. I am experiencing mild symptoms, and am following all appropriate protocols, including being in quarantine and conducting contact tracing.” https://bit.ly/36SSXSi


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 11,740,229 

U.S. death toll: 252,838 

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

For context — six month ago today: 1,532,212 Americans had tested positive for the coronavirus and 92,128 had died. https://bit.ly/2ZGwHcg


For Thanksgiving Day, Zoom is lifting its 40-minute time limit for free users. https://cnn.it/36QRj3D

Happy Friday! Six days until Thanksgiving. 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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Where we stand, in one tweet:



Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3pPfAPY

Plan A: Try to get the courts involved. Plan B: Try to make everyone question everything:

Via The Hill’s John Kruzel, “The Trump campaign’s effort to change the outcome of the presidential election increasingly is moving from a legal setting to the court of public opinion, where the campaign continues to sow doubt about the contest's integrity and hopes to win over public officials with a role in certifying the results.” https://bit.ly/3906tWR

The captain of that ship: President Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani 

Giuliani’s strategy: “The former New York mayor's strategy reportedly entails a longshot bid to pressure Republican lawmakers in key battleground states to approve pro-Trump electors rather than certify their state's popular vote.”

Why this is so dangerous: “Although the campaign has little success to show in the courts, at least by any traditional measure, the flood of post-election litigation is likely a major contributor to the perception among Trump’s supporters that the vote was tainted by widespread fraud. About half of Republicans believe Trump rightfully won the election, but that it was stolen from him by widespread fraud, and nearly 7 in 10 Republicans said the election was rigged, according to a Reuters poll.”

The wild press conference you keep hearing about:

President Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani and other lawyers held a combative press conference yesterday to step up efforts to reverse the election outcome. https://bit.ly/331mEiV

Giuliani alleged that Trump was the victim of a scheme from elected officials in major cities: "This was not an individual idea of 10 or 12 Democrat bosses. This was a plan. You would have to be a fool not to realize that.”  

Trump attorney Sidney Powell alleged: “What we are really dealing with here and uncovering more by the day is the massive influence of communist money through Venezuela, Cuba and likely China and the interference with our elections here in the United States.” https://wapo.st/2UI90MT


From Fox News host Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonFox News records highest November ratings in its history Atlas departure from White House cheered by public health officials Biden's Cabinet a battleground for future GOP White House hopefuls MORE: “What Powell is describing would amount to the single greatest crime in American history. Millions of votes stolen in a day.” 

Carlson continued: “We invited Sidney Powell on the show … she never sent us any evidence, despite a lot of requests, polite requests. Not a page. When we kept pressing, she got angry and told us to stop contacting her … She never demonstrated that a single actual vote was moved illegitimately by software from one candidate to another. Not one.”

It’s worth watching the full clip from Tucker Carlson



Watch — it has more than 2 million views so farhttps://bit.ly/2UXV0z3

Former aide to George W. Bush Karl RoveKarl Christian RoveMore conservatives break with Trump over election claims The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Capital One - Pfizer, BioNTech apply for vaccine authorization Trump, attorneys step up efforts to reverse election's outcome MORE said on Fox News: "You cannot make an accusation like that without following it through by going to court and trying to prove it. If it’s left out there it will be both unfair to the president if it’s true, and unfair to the American people if it’s false."

Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyMark Kelly sworn in to Senate seat Bipartisan, bicameral group unveils 8 billion coronavirus proposal The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - GOP angst in Georgia; confirmation fight looms MORE (R-Utah) posted on Twitter: "The president has now resorted to overt pressure on state and local officials to subvert the will of the people and overturn the election. It is difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action by a sitting American president.” https://bit.ly/35LGvV6 

From Fox News White House reporter Kristin Fisher: “Well that was certainly a colorful news conference from Rudy Giuliani, but it was light on facts. So much of what he said is simply not true or has already been thrown out in court.” Watch the full Fox News segmenthttps://bit.ly/2IKVmXi 

Twitter pretty much erupted during this press conference: Here’s what I mean, via Mediaite: https://bit.ly/2HnZ08K

From President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenLawsuit alleges 200K Georgia voters were wrongly purged from registration list GOP lawmaker blasts incoming freshman over allegations of presidential voter fraud Haaland has competition to be first Native American to lead Interior  MORE: “I think we’re witnessing something that is incredibly irresponsible,” Biden said. “Incredibly damaging messages being sent to the rest of the world about how democratic functions … I don’t know his motives, but it’s totally irresponsible.” https://bit.ly/38Yk01a


During the presser, dark brown-colored sweat started dripping down Giuliani’s sideburns and onto his face. The photos are pretty startling. 

The New York Times’s Jonah Engel Bromwich spoke with hairdressers who said it was likely not hair dye. 

The gist of why it likely wasn’t dye: “Once the solution oxidizes, the color adheres to the hair. No one would leave the solution in place in its raw form, [a Manhattan hair dresser] said, because the solution would irritate the scalp and could burn the hair or cause it to fall out.” 

What it could have been: “Mirko Vergani, the creative color director at the Drawing Room, a salon in downtown Manhattan, said it was far more likely that Mr. Giuliani had used mascara or a touch-up pen to make sure his sideburns matched the rest.”



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Round two: ding, ding:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “President Trump and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOn The Money: Funding bill hits snag as shutdown deadline looms | Pelosi, Schumer endorse 8 billion plan as basis for stimulus talks | Poll: Most Americans support raising taxes on those making at least 0K Battle heats up for House Foreign Affairs gavel Nearly one-third of US adults expect to lose employment income: Census Bureau MORE (D-Calif.) are headed to a final showdown over his signature border wall, setting the stage for a rematch of a fight two years ago that shuttered the government for 35 days.” https://bit.ly/3pGB55L 

The dispute: “The White House is requesting a $2 billion installment to continue building the wall, while Pelosi and House Democrats have countered with no new money for construction.” 

What about a loophole?: “And to guard against Trump’s workaround to the previous standoff, the House spending bill prohibits the administration from shifting funds from other accounts to pay for the wall.”


Lol, this is quite the friendly banter:



Read the full exchange between the New York Magazine writer and Giulianihttps://bit.ly/2IZdCLZ

Testing on Capitol Hill:



Hyperlink https://bit.ly/390mbkM 


The House is in. The Senate is out. President Trump is in Washington, D.C. Vice President Pence is in Georgia today. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisMiddle East: Quick start for Biden diplomacy Hillicon Valley: GOP chairman says defense bill leaves out Section 230 repeal | Senate panel advances FCC nominee | Krebs says threats to election officials 'undermining democracy' Top intelligence official says China targeting foreign influence at incoming Biden administration MORE are in Wilmington, Del.

TodayPresident-elect Biden’s birthday!  

Today: President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris meet with Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerPelosi, Schumer endorse 8 billion plan as basis for stimulus talks Funding bill hits snag as shutdown deadline looms Trump supporters could hand Senate control to Democrats MORE (D-N.Y.) in Wilmington, Del.

6:50 a.m. EST: President Trump participates in a virtual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting.

9:30 ­– 11:30 a.m. EST: First and last votes in the House. The House’s full agenda todayhttps://bit.ly/332tPHv

10:15 a.m. EST: Vice President Pence left for Georgia. 

4:10 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence speaks at a rally in Gainesville, Ga., titled, “Defend the Majority.”

7:55 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence lands in Washington, D.C.


Noon: White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany holds a press conference. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3nIHMSO

1:05 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence speaks at a rally in Canton, Ga., titled, “Defend the Majority.” Sens. David PerdueDavid PerdueRepublican senators introduce bill to protect government workers from being targeted at home Republicans scramble to counter calls to boycott Georgia runoffs Georgia Republicans push for photo ID for future absentee voting MORE and Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerLawsuit alleges 200K Georgia voters were wrongly purged from registration list Pro-Trump attorneys tell Georgians not to vote in runoff until votes are 'secure' List of Republicans breaking with Trump grows longer MORE also attend. Livestreamhttps://cs.pn/2Hk9So5

2:30 p.m. EST: President Trump delivers remarks from the Roosevelt Room on lowering prescription drug prices. Livestream: https://bit.ly/2IUvXdc


Today is National Peanut Butter Fudge Day.

Attention, my competitive readers:

The Capital Weather Gang is hosting a competition for you to predicts how much snow Washington, D.C., will get through April 1.  What do you have to lose?https://wapo.st/3nEM7GI

And to get your weekend off to the right start, here’s a golden retriever who is not even trying to be sneaky: https://bit.ly/3nCFULi 

10/10 for execution

2/10 for a skill you want your dog to have (I have to give him points for creativity, y’know?)