The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Senate braces for daylong brawl on elections bill


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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: Senate braces for daylong brawl on elections bill | White House monitoring fuel shortages after cyberattack | Pfizer vaccine authorized for 12-15 | 1 million enrolled in Biden’s special ObamaCare sign-up | Biden-McConnell’s cold war | Cheney ouster vote scheduled for tomorrow | Cheney’s Senate counterpart Ernst compares ouster to ‘cancel culture’ | ‘Lion King,’ ‘Hamilton,’ ‘Wicked’ return to Broadway in Sept.


The Senate Rules Committee is debating and voting on Democrats’ sweeping elections bill that could have major repercussions in the 2022 midterms. https://bit.ly/3uDkK3D

What the bill would do: “Requires states to offer mail-in ballots and a minimum of 15 days of early voting, while calling for online and same-day voter registration. The measure also calls for the creation of independent commissions to draw congressional districts in an effort to put an end to partisan gerrymandering.” 

Why Democrats are acting now: “The bill comes as GOP-led states around the country are proposing and enacting laws to rein in ballot box access, fueling pressure for Democrats to use their razor-thin congressional majorities to step in.”

Tidbit on how Dems named this bill: “Underscoring how important it is to the party, Democrats reserved their first legislative slot — S. 1 in the Senate and H.R. 1 in the House — for the legislation, known as the For the People Act.” 

How Republicans are trying to muddy or stop the bill: Republicans have filed around 150 amendments to the bill to weaken it.

Why Republicans do not support this bill: “Republicans, one committee aide said, will focus their efforts on parts of the bill they believe would make elections ‘less fair’ and ‘less secure,’ including offering amendments to strike provisions that weaken voter ID laws.”  

What to expecthttps://bit.ly/3uDkK3D

It’s 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 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
- Enabling safe and easy data portability between platforms
- Preventing election interference
- Reforming Section 230



1 million enrolled — check!:

Via The Hill’s Peter Sullivan, “President Biden announced on Tuesday that 1 million people have enrolled so far in Affordable Care Act coverage during a special sign-up period his administration created.” https://bit.ly/33zdYA5 

Back story: “Biden reopened ObamaCare enrollment upon taking office in January, a step that the Trump administration had declined to take after the COVID-19 pandemic began. Sign-ups are still ongoing until Aug. 15, and Biden urged more people to go to healthcare.gov to enroll.”


So, this is a pretty big deal:

Via The New York Times’s David E. Sanger, Clifford Krauss and Nicole Perlroth, “One of the nation’s largest pipelines, which carries refined gasoline and jet fuel from Texas up the East Coast to New York, was forced to shut down after being hit by ransomware in a vivid demonstration of the vulnerability of energy infrastructure to cyberattacks.” https://nyti.ms/3w2dCOP

The magnitude of the shutdown: “The operator of the system, Colonial Pipeline, said in a vaguely worded statement late Friday that it had shut down its 5,500 miles of pipeline, which it says carries 45 percent of the East Coast’s fuel supplies, in an effort to contain the breach.” 

Who is responsible?: “Administration officials said they believed the attack was the act of a criminal group, rather than a nation seeking to disrupt critical infrastructure in the United States.”

Everything we know about the attackhttps://nyti.ms/3w2dCOP


From White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiTaliban seize key Afghan district The Hill's Equilibrium — Presented by NextEra Energy — Tasmanian devil wipes out penguin population Democrats go down to the wire with Manchin MORE: “The President continues to be regularly briefed on the Colonial Pipeline incident. The Administration is continually assessing the impact of this ongoing incident on fuel supply for the East Coast … We are monitoring supply shortages in parts of the Southeast and are evaluating every action the Administration can take to mitigate the impact as much as possible. The President has directed agencies across the Federal Government to bring their resources to bear to help alleviate shortages where they may occur.” https://bit.ly/2Q6Un7e


  1. Hack sparks fears of gas price increase
  2. White House irritated by lack of control
  3. Ransomware is a major growing threat
  4. US energy vulnerabilities exposed
  5. Biden under pressure amid cybersecurity threats

Context and details for each from The Hill’s Zack Budryk, Maggie Miller and Rachel Frazinhttps://bit.ly/3hmULK3


I’m not saying he overstated his friendship, but he may have overstated his friendship:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “The relationship between President BidenJoe BidenMilitary must better understand sexual assaults to combat them The Hill's Equilibrium — Presented by NextEra Energy — Tasmanian devil wipes out penguin population On The Money: Democrats make full-court press on expanded child tax credit | White House confident Congress will raise debt ceiling MORE and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDemocrats go down to the wire with Manchin Schumer unloads on GOP over elections bill: 'How despicable of a man is Donald Trump?' This week: Senate set for voting rights fight MORE (R-Ky.) has failed to live up to expectations, and lawmakers are pessimistic their first face-to-face meeting since the inauguration will thaw what has become a cold war between the two leaders.”  https://bit.ly/3tEpN2s 

Happening tomorrow: “Biden and McConnell will meet at the White House Wednesday with Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHeatwaves don't lie: Telling the truth about climate change Schumer backing plan to add dental, vision and hearing coverage to Medicare Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting MORE (D-N.Y.), Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats make full-court press on expanded child tax credit Maria Bartiromo defends reporting: 'Keep trashing me, I'll keep telling the truth' Democratic clamor grows for select committee on Jan. 6 attack MORE (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyHillicon Valley: Cyber agency says SolarWinds hack could have been deterred | Civil rights groups urge lawmakers to crack down on Amazon's 'dangerous' worker surveillance | Manchin-led committee puts forth sprawling energy infrastructure proposal Chuck Todd reluctant to 'ban' election deniers from 'Meet the Press' GOP divided over bills targeting tech giants MORE (R-Calif.). The stated topic for the first meeting of the so-called Big Four congressional leaders with the president is infrastructure.” 

For context: “Biden and McConnell have only spoken twice since the Jan. 20 inauguration, aides note. Biden called McConnell in late March to talk about infrastructure, and the two leaders spoke in February about the situation in Myanmar.”

Cheney’s trial by colleague combat:

House Republicans will vote tomorrow on whether to oust Rep. Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyLiz Cheney hired security after death threats: report Cheney: 'It is disgusting and despicable' to see Gosar 'lie' about Jan. 6 GOP's Stefanik defends Trump DOJ secret subpoenas MORE (R-Wyo.) from House leadership. https://bit.ly/2RMh8xD 

How the vote will happen: Behind closed doors and by secret ballot

Back story: “[House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.)] and his pro-Trump allies have been plotting Cheney’s ouster over the past two weeks as she has continued to condemn former President TrumpDonald TrumpWhat blue wave? A close look at Texas today tells of a different story Democrats go down to the wire with Manchin Trump's former bodyguard investigated in NY prosectors' probe: report MORE’s false claims that the 2020 presidential election was rigged and stolen.”


“Sen. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstOvernight Defense: Pentagon details military construction projects getting .2B restored from wall funds | Biden chooses former commander to lead Navy | Bill seeks to boost visa program for Afghans who helped US Meghan McCain: Harris 'sounded like a moron' discussing immigration Senate bill would add visas, remove hurdles to program for Afghans who helped US MORE (R-Iowa), the only woman in Senate Republicans' elected leadership team, compared efforts to oust Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) from leadership to ‘cancel culture,’ and argued that the party should be focused on unifying heading into 2022.” https://bit.ly/2Q7WbNh

Ernst told reporters yesterday: "I feel it's OK to go ahead and express what you feel is right to express and, you know, cancel culture is cancel culture no matter how you look at it. Unfortunately, I think there are those that are trying to silence others in the party.”


Next up, teens!:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children 12 to 15 years old. https://bit.ly/2SJgim0


Via The New York Times’s Abby Goodnough and Jan Hoffmanhttps://nyti.ms/2RHEnsP


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 32,745,835 

U.S. death toll: 582,183 

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


Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 262 million shots have been given.

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 2.12 million doses

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

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



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I lol-ed at this:


"Bennifer" spotted in Montana, where a House seat will be gained


Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3y64fiH


We don’t deserve The Onion:


Onion article shows Major Biden with a missile


Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3eCGoj9



The House and Senate are 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. Senators will then meet for weekly caucus luncheons. The Senate’s full agenda todayhttps://bit.ly/3o6tn4k 

2:30 p.m. EDT: The Senate holds a confirmation vote on Cynthia Minette Marten to be deputy education secretary. 

4 p.m. EDT: Vice President Harris meets with members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. 

6:30 – 7:30 p.m. EDT: First and last votes in the House. The House’s full agenda todayhttps://bit.ly/3eCuANF


Noon: White House press secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3eAxmTy

1 p.m. EDT: President Biden meets virtually with a bipartisan group of governors. Livestreamhttps://bit.ly/3txfa1y


Today is National “Eat What You Want” Day. Sure?

How cute?!:

Via Popville, “There’s a new free little art gallery on Capitol Hill and it is as awesome as it sounds.” My favorite feature is the tiny bench. Photoshttps://bit.ly/3tC3aMh

Back on Broadway:

“The Lion King,” “Hamilton” and “Wicked” are resuming their Broadway shoes on Sept. 14. https://gma.abc/33wEKZN

And because you made it this far, here are besties having a ball together:


Child and dog bounce on a trampoline