The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden reverses Trump limits on transgender protections


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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 reverses Trump limits on transgender protections | Biden to meet with McConnell, McCarthy, Pelosi and Schumer | Infrastructure plan negotiations | Plans Thursday meeting with GOP senators | House hearing on Jan. 6 attacks | Cicadas appear in Bethesda




To steal from Missy Elliott, ‘Come on, Is it worth it? Let me work it … flip it and reverse it’: 

The Biden administration just announced that it will provide health care discrimination protections for gay and transgender people, reversing Trump-era limits. https://bit.ly/3hsP0e7 

Back story: “The previous administration's HHS policy kept protections against discrimination based on race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. But the then-update narrowed the definition of sex to only mean ‘biological sex,’ cutting out transgender people from the protections.”  

From HHS Secretary Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraNew Alzheimer's drug sparks backlash over FDA, pricing Obama joins Biden to tout record ObamaCare enrollment numbers Biden walks fine line with probe into coronavirus origins MORE: “Fear of discrimination can lead individuals to forgo care, which can have serious negative health consequences. Everyone — including LGBTQ people — should be able to access health care, free from discrimination or interference, period.” https://bit.ly/3xZmvu1 

Read the HHS announcementhttps://bit.ly/3vSjry4


The New York Times: “Biden administration prohibits health care discrimination against transgender people.” https://nyti.ms/3w8yjJ1

Fox News: “Biden HHS reverses Trump-era policy limiting transgender health rights: Trump policy allowed hospitals, insurers to refuse services such as abortions and gender transitions.” https://fxn.ws/2Q4xYr9

NBC News: “Biden administration announces reversal of Trump-era limits on protections for transgender people in health care.” https://nbcnews.to/3o4weuG 

The Huffington Post: “Reversing Trump, U.S. Restores Transgender Health Protections: The Department of Health and Human Services affirmed that federal laws forbidding sex discrimination in health care also protect gay and transgender people.” https://bit.ly/3ezhJvR 

Newsmax: “Biden Admin Restores Transgender Health Protections, Reversing Trump.” https://bit.ly/3xY2Iv7


It’s Monday! 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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The internet has changed a lot since 1996 — internet regulations should too



It's been 25 years since comprehensive internet regulations passed. See why we support updated regulations on key issues, including: 

- Protecting people's privacy
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- Preventing election interference
- Reforming Section 230



Violence in Jerusalem:

Via CNN’s Andrew Carey and Hadas Gold, “Hundreds of Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli police at one of Jerusalem's holiest sites on Monday, as tensions in the city continue to soar.”

What happened: “Footage from social media showed Israeli police inside Al Aqsa mosque and its surrounding compound, throwing stun grenades, and Palestinians throwing rocks at officers. Around 50 injured Palestinians were taken to hospital for treatment, the Palestinian Red Crescent said.”  

Plus: “A car drove into two pedestrians near the Lion's Gate entrance to the Old City after it was pelted with stones, according to video of the incident. The car, carrying religious Israelis, came under attack by young Palestinians as it tried to change direction, before accelerating forward and mounting the curb, sending two Palestinians hurling backward.”  

What we knowhttps://cnn.it/3uCrxKW

From The Associated Press: “Explosions have been heard in Jerusalem after air raid sirens sounded.” https://bit.ly/3vWIkc4


I take your big number. I replace it with another big number:

President BidenJoe BidenBiden prepares to confront Putin Ukrainian president thanks G-7 nations for statement of support Biden aims to bolster troubled Turkey ties in first Erdoğan meeting MORE and Democrats have been proposing at $2.25 trillion infrastructure plan.  

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellWhat the Democrats should be doing to reach true bipartisanship Democrats mull overhaul of sweeping election bill McConnell seeks to divide and conquer Democrats MORE (R-Ky.) signaled over the weekend that he is open to $800 billion in infrastructure spending. https://bit.ly/3bc6mru 

For context a few weeks ago, Sen. Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoPelosi: 'No intention' of abandoning Democrats' infrastructure goals Collins says infrastructure bill won't have gas tax increase or undo 2017 tax reform bill Overnight Energy: Biden seeks to reassert US climate leadership | President to 'repeal or replace' Trump decision removing protections for Tongass | Administration proposes its first offshore wind lease sale MORE (R-W.Va.) put forward a slimmed down, $568 billion rebuttal to the Democratic infrastructure plan. https://bit.ly/3w0Vxkd

Let’s hammer this out:

President Biden is meeting with Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi: 'No intention' of abandoning Democrats' infrastructure goals Senate investigation of insurrection falls short Ocasio-Cortez: 'Old way of politics' influences Manchin's thinking MORE (D-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerIt's not just Manchin: No electoral mandate stalls Democrats' leftist agenda DOJ to probe Trump-era subpoenas of lawmaker records Democrats demand Barr, Sessions testify on Apple data subpoenas MORE (D-N.Y.), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyPelosi, leaders seek to squelch Omar controversy with rare joint statement Omar: I wasn't equating terrorist organizations with democratic countries Schumer bemoans number of Republicans who believe Trump will be reinstated: 'A glaring warning' MORE (R-Calif.) on Wednesday to negotiate the Biden administration’s ambitious spending proposals. https://bit.ly/33ti0tO

The big action item on Wednesday: “The meeting is expected to largely focus on Biden’s $4 trillion spending plan, which is divided up between a $2.3 trillion jobs proposal and a second $1.8 trillion bill focused on education and childcare.” https://bit.ly/3tzuIBV 

^ That’s not all, folks!: On Thursday, Biden will meet with a group of Republican senators to negotiate the infrastructure package. Including: Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), who introduced a smaller rebuttal infrastructure spending package. 

Some tension in the room:

Via The Hill’s Brett Samuels, President Biden has a pretty frosty relationship with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.). This is their first meeting since Biden took office. https://bit.ly/33ti0tO 

Why their relationship is a bit frosty: “McCarthy’s refusal to recognize Biden as president-elect in the weeks that followed the 2020 election, his vote to reject the certification of electoral results declaring Biden the winner of certain states and his unwillingness to distance himself from former President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden prepares to confront Putin Biden aims to bolster troubled Turkey ties in first Erdoğan meeting Senate investigation of insurrection falls short MORE in the wake of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot have put an early strain on any potential collaboration between the House GOP leader and the president.”  

It's a contrast from Biden’s relationship with McConnell: “Biden has a long relationship with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), brokering deals with the Senate Republican leader when Biden served as former President Obama’s vice president. He’s continued to talk with McConnell since becoming president, and the two are known to have a cordial relationship.”


Election reform: “The Senate Rules Committee will hold a vote Tuesday on Democrats’ top legislative priority: The For the People Act.” Tidbit: “Democrats in the House and Senate designated the bill as their first of the new Congress — giving it bill number H.R. 1 and S. 1, respectively — to signify its importance to their agenda.”  

Jan. 6 attack: “Administration Committee Chair Zoe Lofgren is holding high-profile hearings this week on the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, when a pro-Trump mob stormed the building and interrupted the counting of the Electoral College vote for hours.” Happening today: “Michael Bolton, the inspector general for the Capitol Police, is scheduled to testify on Monday, when he’s expected to discuss his latest report on the Capitol attack.” 

China: “The Senate Commerce Committee is expected to take up the Endless Frontiers Act, spearheaded by Schumer and Sen. Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungBipartisan lawmakers want Biden to take tougher action on Nicaragua Senate passes long-delayed China bill Five key parts of the Senate's sweeping China competitiveness bill MORE (R-Ind.), after a markup last month was delayed when committee members filed roughly 200 amendments to the bill.”  

And, of course, more nominations: “The Senate will take its first vote on Monday at 5:30 p.m. on whether or not to advance Andrea Palm to be a deputy secretary of Health and Human Services.  After the Senate wraps up Palm’s nomination, they’ll turn it Cynthia Marten’s nomination to be a deputy secretary of State for political affairs.”

Context and details for each from The Hill’s Jordain Carneyhttps://bit.ly/3tzuIBV


I could cry reading this, remembering how badly we wanted this last year:

Via The New York Times, “All across the country, mask mandates are easing, restrictions are lifting and many states have gone back to business as usual. It appears much of the country will be open with few restrictions in the coming months.” 

Here are the reopening plans for all 50 states — and where their mask mandates standhttps://nyti.ms/3eBmOnr


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 32,708,500

U.S. death toll: 581,756

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


Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 260 million shots have been given.

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 2.02 million doses

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

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



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2021 is the 25th anniversary of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the last major update to internet regulation. It's time for an update to set clear rules for addressing today's toughest challenges. 

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What ultimately helped Biden win in November — young and diverse voters:

Via The Hill’s Reid Wilson, “A diverse coalition of young and new voters propelled President Biden to victory in November, according to a major new study of the 2020 electorate, while former President Trump made inroads among Hispanic voters in key states.” https://bit.ly/2R85c9F 

How we know: “The report, from the Democratic data analytics firm Catalist, found the most diverse electorate in American history showed up to vote in last year’s elections. Twenty-eight percent of voters last year were nonwhite, up 2 percentage points from the 2016 presidential election.”  

Full breakdownhttps://bit.ly/2R85c9F 

Read the report — ‘what happened in 2020’https://bit.ly/2SGDhhy



*pause to catch my breath* — Nooooooooooo.


Cicadas emerge in D.C. area


Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3bgqQPU

Wow, the longer I look, the more I see it:


Dog lookback compared to 'Girl with a Pearl Earring'


Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3bfRZ5C

Zoom in on the pupper’s facial expression. Spot on.https://bit.ly/3bfRZ5C


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

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

10:30 a.m. EDT: President Biden spoke with NATO’s eastern flank allies. 

Noon: Vice President Harris has lunch with U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-GreenfieldLinda Thomas-GreenfieldUS ambassador to UN to travel to Syria border town amid debate over humanitarian aid Harris, Hispanic Caucus meet on Central America The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Israel-Hamas carnage worsens; Dems face SALT dilemma MORE. 

3 p.m. EDT: The Senate meets. 

5:30 p.m. EDT: One roll call vote in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda todayhttps://bit.ly/3eAw6QE


Noon: White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden prepares to confront Putin Biden aims to bolster troubled Turkey ties in first Erdoğan meeting Five states have yet to administer one dose of vaccine to half their populations MORE is holding a press briefing. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3vYqe9l

1:15 p.m. EDT: President Biden delivers remarks on the economy. Vice President Harris attends. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3faRZom

3 p.m. EDT: The House Administration Committee holds a hearing on the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/2SF4KQJ


Today is National Shrimp Day.

And because you made it this far, here’s a dog who is sick of all the nonsense and is taking a load off: 


Dog takes a ride on a float in a pool