The Hill’s 12:30 Report – Presented by Alibaba – Vaccinations begin in the UK
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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: First Britons vaccinated | Potential U.S. vaccination start timeline | Trump reportedly turned down offer to buy more vaccine doses | White House denies report | Gottlieb says Trump officials passed on ‘multiple offers’ to buy more Pfizer vaccine | Where the COVID-19 relief package stands | Congress dares Trump to veto defense bill | Jupiter, Saturn closest in the sky since 1600s | National Brownie Day
The first Pfizer vaccinations have been given out:
Via CNN’s Ivana Kottasová and Emma Reynolds, U.K. citizens started receiving the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine today. https://cnn.it/2K4j68M
The first person in the U.K. to receive the vaccine: 90-year-old Margaret Keenan. “It’s the best early birthday present I could wish for because it means I can finally look forward to spending time with my family and friends in the New Year after being on my own for most of the year,” Keenan said. https://bit.ly/37K6got
Lol, this interview is great. I feel like I now know this man.:
Agreed!: CNN’s Lauren Fox tweeted, “My favorite part about this is he called the hospital, went, had trouble parking and had to eat what he described as a not so delicious lunch, but he’s looking forward to being protected from COVID and hugging his grandkids.” https://bit.ly/36W7tKk
LOL: “Almost makes you want to be a colony again.” https://bit.ly/37IVPl2
Happy Tuesday! 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 firstname.lastname@example.org — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.
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LATEST WITH THE CORONAVIRUS
SoooOoooo, uh, when will we start, team?:
A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee will meet this Thursday to decide whether to authorize the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. Then the decision moves to the FDA itself. https://nbcnews.to/3gwZvKH
From NBC: “An Operation Warp Speed document obtained by NBC News referred to a four-day window — Dec. 11-14 — for a possible emergency use authorization, with distribution of the vaccine beginning Dec. 15, although the dates may be subject to change.”
Possible timelines: https://nbcnews.to/3gwZvKH
Trump reportedly passed on an early offer to buy more vaccine doses:
Via The New York Times’s Sharon LaFraniere, Katie Thomas and Noah Weiland, Months ago, Pfizer offered the U.S. government a chance to buy more than the 100 million vaccine doses that are already in the contract. But the Trump administration turned down that offer. https://nyti.ms/37OWt0i
The “choice that now raises questions about whether the United States allowed other countries to take its place in line.”
REACTION FROM THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION:
Trump officials denied The New York Times report. https://bit.ly/37OM2d4
From an official: “Anyone who wanted to sell a guarantee, without an EUA [emergency use authorization] approval, hundreds of millions of doses back in July and August, was just not going to get the government’s money.”
BUT THEN — TRUMP’S FORMER FDA COMMISSIONER CONFIRMED THE NYT REPORT:
Via The Hill’s Peter Sullivan, “Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, now a member of the Pfizer board of directors, said Tuesday that the pharmaceutical giant offered the Trump administration the chance to buy additional doses of its coronavirus vaccine multiple times, but that officials turned down the offers.” https://bit.ly/3qDcgIa
Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 14,967,618
U.S. death toll: 284,116
Breakdown of the numbers: https://cnn.it/2UAgW3y
Where the coronavirus relief bill stands:
Via The Hill’s Jordain Carney and Cristina Marcos, “Negotiators in the House and Senate are racing to finish a massive end-of-year deal to fund the government and provide help to workers and families struggling through a worsening pandemic.” https://bit.ly/3n9wg2U
First step: Congress is expected to extend government funding for a week to buy more time for negotiations.
Where Congress stands: “Last-minute sticking points are threatening to push the talks into the weekend or next week and may scuttle an agreement all together despite momentum for a deal that has been building since last week.”
We dare you. DARE YOU.:
Via The Hill’s Rebecca Kheel, “Congress is barreling toward a veto showdown with President Trump over the mammoth must-pass annual defense policy bill.” https://bit.ly/3mWVnpN
Where the legislation stands: “The House is scheduled to take up the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) on Tuesday, and the Senate is expected to follow shortly after. Both chambers are expected to have strong bipartisan votes in favor, even as Trump has repeatedly threatened to veto the $740 billion measure.”
What lawmakers are hoping will happen by Trump: “Lawmakers are holding out hope Trump will back down if the bill passes with more than two-thirds support in each chamber, the amount needed to override a veto.”
The problem with having to override Trump’s potential veto: “But if he follows through with his threat, it’s unclear how many Republicans would buck Trump and hand him the first veto override of his presidency.”
I, too, am curious what that figurine is:
Hugh Jackman had a brutal showing from Room Rater.
The House and Senate are in. President Trump and Vice President Pence are in Washington, D.C. President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris are in Wilmington, Del.
Noon: A roll call vote in the Senate.
4 p.m. EST: Two judicial confirmation votes in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/2Is8ZdH
4 – 6 p.m. EST: First and last votes in the House. The House’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/3lX7EcD
Thursday: Operation Warp Speed officials meet with the Biden transition team. https://bit.ly/3lUG27W
Thursday: The Hill is hosting a virtual event, “Doing Better in America.” Details and how to RSVP: https://bit.ly/33H6v2A
WHAT TO WATCH:
Today: The White House holds a Coronavirus Vaccine Summit. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3m3cgxW
12:15 p.m. EST: First lady Melania Trump participates in a Toys for Tots event. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3gqGUjB
2 p.m. EST: President Trump gives remarks on the COVID-19 vaccine. Vice President Pence attends. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3lS4giV
NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF…:
Today is National Brownie Day.
Look up at the sky this month:
Via ABC’s Lesley Hauler, “Keep a close look at the sky in December and you may see a very rare event … Jupiter and Saturn to appear closest in night sky in hundreds of years.” https://abcn.ws/3mXEL1a
And because you made it this far, here’s a pup who is ready to par-tay: https://bit.ly/33Ws8Mp