The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden delivers COVID update

The Hill's 12:30 Report: Biden delivers COVID update
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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: Biden delivers COVID update | CDC expected to release new guidance | Biden under pressure to forgive student loans | Biden, Schumer punt loan action | Biden visits Philly for Amtrak’s 50th | House seats shuffled after Census data release | Dems file first redistricting lawsuit | DC loosens coronavirus restrictions



Keep on truckin’! We’re headed in the right direction:

President BidenJoe BidenBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' Biden: McCarthy's support of Cheney ouster is 'above my pay grade' Conservative group sues over prioritization of women, minorities for restaurant aid MORE is updating Americans this afternoon on the state of the coronavirus pandemic. 

When: At 1:15 p.m. EDT. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/2R6XoEY

Oh and at 12:30 p.m. EDT: The White House’s COVID Response Team gives an update Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3tXap2l


Via CBS’s Sara Cook and Alexander Tin, “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is expected to announce updated guidelines for fully vaccinated Americans as early as Tuesday, according to several administration officials.” What we know: https://cbsn.ws/3ns2bNd 

Where we stand: “Nearly 230 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered, and nearly 54% of the U.S. adult population have received at least one of their shots, according to the CDC. With vaccination rates continuing to rise, the health agency is set to unveil interim public health recommendations on activities those who have received their shots can engage in, including on outdoor mask-wearing.” https://cbsn.ws/3xDzCRI


It’s a beautiful Tuesday in DC! 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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Excuse the debt like we excuse that random silent ‘B’ in the word:

Via The Hill’s Alex Gangitano, “Progressive groups are vowing to raise the heat on President Biden to cancel student debt, a priority issue for a number of Democratic lawmakers including Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Republicans welcome the chance to work with Democrats on a bipartisan infrastructure bill Cheney sideshow distracts from important battle over Democrats' partisan voting bill MORE (D-N.Y.).” https://bit.ly/3dVmteG

What Biden supports: Forgiving $10,000 in student debt. 

What progressive groups want: Up to $50,000 in student debt forgiveness 

Biden and Schumer are playing hot potato — you deal with it, no you deal with it: “Schumer has pushed Biden on the issue and argues that it’s harder to tackle student debt through legislation than it is for Biden to act through executive order. Biden has punted to Congress, calling for lawmakers to present legislation on the issue.”  

What to expecthttps://bit.ly/3dVmteG

‘Welcome back from hibernation, big government. We’ve missed you,’ says Biden:

Via The Hill’s Niall Stanage, “When President Biden delivers a joint address to Congress on Wednesday evening, he won’t just be advocating specific policies. He’ll be making the case that Americans want bigger government.” https://bit.ly/3sVwdtY 

The bet: “The Biden bet is that the public has warmed to the idea of a more interventionist government — partly because of the crisis foisted on the nation by COVID-19, but also because people are hungry for solutions to longer-term problems, from student debt and income inequality to racial justice and climate change.”

Is Biden just guessing here? Essentially, yes!: “There is some polling that backs up Biden’s case. The president is himself riding high in the polls, especially in relation to his handling of the pandemic. But Americans have historically been much more resistant to activist government than their counterparts in Western Europe. The concepts of rugged individualism and personal responsibility are deeply embedded here, in contrast to the European emphasis on social cohesion and a stronger safety net.” 

Read Stanage’s full columnhttps://bit.ly/3sVwdtY


Via The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jonathan Tamari, President Biden is visiting Philadelphia on Friday to celebrate Amtrak’s 50th anniversary. https://bit.ly/3xDvj90


Musical House seats:

The U.S. Census Bureau unveiled state populations from its 10-year survey, which are used to refigure the allocation of congressional seats. https://bit.ly/3tYhqzZ 

  1. The Sun Belt beats the Rust Belt
  2. Every person matters
  3. California’s winning streak is over
  4. The Mountain West is booming
  5. Crises take decades to play out

Explanations for eachhttps://bit.ly/3tYhqzZ


In Louisiana, Minnesota and Pennsylvania: https://bit.ly/3aJYWeL


Via The Hill’s Mike Lillis and Scott Wong, “He’s no longer in the White House, and was not invited to speak, but former President TrumpDonald TrumpWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' More than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal MORE remains an outsize presence at the House Republicans' policy retreat in central Florida this week.” https://bit.ly/3u9oVnT

Manchin pumps the breaks:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinIs the Constitution in the way of DC statehood? Biden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Joe Manchin is wrong — D.C. statehood is constitutional MORE (D-W.Va.) is emerging as the chief obstacle to quick passage of President Biden’s $2.25 trillion infrastructure package that Democrats want to move through Congress sooner rather than later.” https://bit.ly/2R7l6AY

How so: “Manchin is ramping up discussions with Republicans about what a scaled-down infrastructure package should look like, and some GOP senators are even optimistic that the moderate Democrat can be persuaded to block efforts to raise the corporate tax rate.”


Interesting read — ‘The most promising coronavirus vaccine you’ve never heard of’:

Via Politico’s Sarah Owermohle and Carmen Paun, “Hopes are growing that a dark-horse coronavirus vaccine from a tiny U.S. drugmaker can shore up supplies in the U.S. and globally as safety concerns and production problems shadow shots from Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca.” https://politi.co/3xr2pJ5

“The vaccine’s developer, Novavax, has never brought a product to market. The shot entered late-stage clinical trials months after candidates from bigger names like Pfizer and Moderna. But the Novavax vaccine proved just as potent as those mRNA shots in a U.K. trial, and the company is now preparing to file for U.S. authorization in a matter of weeks — potentially leapfrogging AstraZeneca, a former frontrunner.”  

The full storyhttps://politi.co/3xr2pJ5

Getting traction — well, this is quite the take:





Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 32,126,653

U.S. death toll: 572,715

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


Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 231 million shots have been given.

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 2.74 million doses 

For context: The U.S. population is roughly 331 million. 

Breakdown of the numbers: https://bloom.bg/3iVTPLH


Getting a little loosey-goosey in the capital:

“Washington, D.C., is loosening coronavirus restrictions on local businesses and public life, including increasing capacity restrictions for indoor dining from 25 percent to 50 percent and ending a requirement for outdoor diners to purchase food in order to be allowed to purchase alcohol.” https://bit.ly/2QsZEGE

The metro is ready for sports again!:

Via The Washington Post’s Justin George, Washington, D.C.’s Metrorail will begin running past normal closing time whenever sporting events run late. Detailshttps://wapo.st/32PsraV


I have tears in my eyes from laughing:

I should also mention that this exact tune is playing while I write this.  


Samsung washing machine




This video has nearly half a million views so far. 


A poorly aged video on Jeffrey Epstein's wealth




The House is out. The Senate is in. President Biden and Vice President Harris are in Washington, D.C. 

9:30 a.m. EDT: President Biden received the President’s Daily Brief. 

11:30 a.m. EDT: Two roll call votes in the Senate. 

2:30 p.m. EDT: Two more roll call votes in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda todayhttps://bit.ly/3t4Kc0F

4 p.m. EDT: Vice President Harris participates in a virtual roundtable with Guatemalan community-based organizations.


12:30 p.m. EDT: The White House’s COVID Response Team holds a press briefing. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3tXap2l

1:15 p.m. EDT: President Biden delivers remarks on COVID-19. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/2R6XoEY

1:45 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBlinken talks with Netanyahu amid escalating violence White House: 'Disturbing' to see Cheney booted for telling the truth The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Republican reactions to Cheney's removal MORE holds a press briefing. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/2R0sxd9


Today is National Prime Rib Day.


Via Washingtonian’s Andrew Beaujon, the District of Columbia’s new graphic encouraging residents to get the COVID vaccine looks a bit like it says something else. The graphic in questionhttps://bit.ly/3sQaMdG

And to make you smile, here’s an armadillo playing with its favorite toy: https://bit.ly/3tX2qCm