The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Biden takes victory lap after robust jobs report


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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: Robust June jobs report | Demand for services disrupted during COVID-19 returns | Biden celebrates | U.S. vacates Afghan airfield | Big step in withdrawal | Supreme Court voting restriction ruling raises temp. in Congress | Legal, political dangers for Trump increase | Wild storms in DC | Celebrating the Fourth in DC



A check in the ‘win’ column!:

The U.S. economy added a robust 850,000 jobs in June as the demand for services disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic returns. 

What economists had predicted: A gain of around 700,000 jobs. 

On the other hand: “The labor force participation rate stayed roughly even at 61.6 percent, a sign that many Americans are still unable to return to the workforce. There were also 6.4 million Americans who did not seek a job in June — and therefore not counted as unemployed — but want to work, up from 5 million before the pandemic.”


“A #JobsDay stat that caught my eye: The number of Americans who said a COVID-19 related reason prevented them from looking for work dropped to 1.6 million in June, down 900,000 from 2.5 million in May.”

Did Joe Biden just try to start ‘the wave?’ And is Jen Psaki hiding red, white and blue face paint under the podium…?:

President BidenJoe BidenCDC chief clarifies vaccine comments: 'There will be no nationwide mandate' Overnight Defense: First group of Afghan evacuees arrives in Virginia | Biden signs Capitol security funding bill, reimbursing Guard | Pentagon raises health protection level weeks after lowering it Biden urges local governments to stave off evictions MORE celebrated the jobs report this morning, holding a press conference to tout the economic recovery so far. 

Have a cold, American beer this weekend: “Today's job news brought us something else to celebrate," Biden said to kick off the holiday weekend.    

Livestream of Biden’s morning press conference

Happy Friday before the long weekend! I’m Cate Martelwith a quick recap of the morning and what’s coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.

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PROGRAMMING NOTE: The Hill’s 12:30 Report will not publish on Monday for the long weekend. Enjoy your Fourth of July and have a beer for me — we’ve really earned it over the past eighteen months.





Vacated for the first time in nearly 20 years:

Via The Associated Press’s Kathy Gannon, “After nearly 20 years, the U.S. military left Bagram Airfield, the epicenter of its war to oust the Taliban and hunt down the al-Qaida perpetrators of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America, two U.S. officials said Friday.”

What happened to the airfield?: “The airfield was handed over to the Afghan National Security and Defense Force in its entirety.”  



The New York Times: “U.S. Leaves Its Last Afghan Base, Effectively Ending Operations”

The Wall Street Journal: “U.S. Shuts Down Bagram Air Base as Afghanistan Pullout Speeds Up: Leaving the installation removes most of the remaining U.S. capability to provide air support from inside the country” 

The Washington Post: “U.S. military vacates main air base in Afghanistan, underscoring withdrawal expected within days” 

Fox News: “U.S. forces pull out of Bagram Air base in Afghanistan: US forces will continue to assist Afghanistan through September with airstrikes against the Taliban”


Nope, not taking your appeal:

Via The Hill’s Harper Neidig, “The Supreme Court on Friday declined to hear a case over a Washington state florist's refusal to service a wedding for a same-sex couple, letting stand a state court's ruling that the shop had engaged in unlawful discrimination over sexual orientation.”

Was this expected?: “The move was surprising for a court with a 6-3 conservative majority that has seemed eager to wade into legal fights over whether nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people are at odds with the First Amendment.”


The thermostat just rose a few degrees in Congress:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “A controversial 6-3 decision by the Supreme Court on Thursday upholding Republican-backed voting restrictions in Arizona has upped the ante for this year’s voting rights debate in Congress.”

What to expect: “It also means that calls to reform the Senate’s rules will only continue to grow, despite recent declarations from Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinDemocrats warn shrinking Biden's spending plan could backfire Top Democrat: 'A lot of spin' coming from White House on infrastructure An August ultimatum: No recess until redistricting reform is done MORE (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaOn The Money: Justice Department says Trump's tax returns should be released | Democrats fall short of votes for extending eviction ban Senate starts infrastructure debate amid 11th-hour drama The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden sets new vaccine mandate as COVID-19 cases surge MORE (D-Ariz.) that they will not support eliminating or curtailing the filibuster.”  

How this could play out

Liz Cheney’s sitting at a new lunch table these days:


Jan. 6 commission




Things are getting a bit scary for Trump:

Via The Hill’s Niall Stanage, “The legal and political dangers facing former President Trump became a lot more real Thursday, when his closest lieutenant in running his businesses, Allen WeisselbergAllen Howard WeisselbergEx-Trump adviser Barrack charged with secretly lobbying for UAE The Memo: Trump is diminished but hasn't faded The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Biden backs Cuban protesters, assails 'authoritarian regime' MORE, gave himself up to prosecutors at dawn.”

Details of the charges: “Weisselberg, along with the Trump Organization, was formally charged in court a few hours later. He was brought into court handcuffed. The 15-count indictment alleges that Weisselberg committed grand larceny and tax fraud, and that the Trump Organization was complicit in many of those offenses. The core of the issue is whether perks for Weisselberg and other Trump employees were hidden in order to evade tax.”


What we know:





A win for J&J:

Via NPR’s Barbara Campbell, “Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine offers strong protection against the delta variant of the coronavirus, the company said Thursday. And the protection appears to last at least eight months.” What we know

What about Pfizer and Moderna?: “The results follow similar announcements about the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, in the fight against the fast-spreading delta strain.”


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 33,679,997

U.S. death toll: 605,038 

Breakdown of the numbers


Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 328 million shots have been given. 

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 1.12 million doses

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

Breakdown of the numbers:


Yikes — this is pretty wild:


D.C. storm



Whoa — check out the radar from last night:


D.C. possible tornado



From The Capital Weather Gang: “Possible tornado swept from Arlington through District, damage reported; Showers linger overnight”


The House and Senate are 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.

12:30 p.m. EDT: President Biden has lunch with Vice President Harris.  

3:45 p.m. EDT: Vice President Harris leaves for Los Angeles, Calif.


10:15 a.m. EDT: President Biden delivered remarks on the June jobs report. Livestream

11:40 a.m. EDT: President Biden and Vice President Harris met with the Los Angeles Dodgers to honor their 2020 World Series Championship. Livestream

12:30 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiMeghan McCain: Democrats 'should give a little credit' to Trump for COVID-19 vaccine House adjourns for recess without passing bill to extend federal eviction ban Hunter Biden blasts those criticizing price of his art: 'F--- 'em' MORE holds a press briefing. Livestream 

2:30 p.m. EDT: President Biden participated in a naturalization ceremony ahead of Independence Day. Livestream 

5 p.m. EDT: President Biden and first lady Jill BidenJill BidenThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden sets new vaccine mandate as COVID-19 cases surge First lady leaves Walter Reed after foot procedure Biden backs effort to include immigration in budget package MORE deliver remarks to the National Education Association’s Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Livestream


Today is National Anisette Day. And for weekend planning purposes, tomorrow is National Chocolate Wafer Day, Sunday is National Barbeque Day and Monday is National Apple Turnover Day!

‘Cause baby you’re a firework:

If you’re in the Washington, D.C. area this weekend, here’s how to watch the fireworks and plan for the holiday: 

Parking restrictions: Via Fox 5 D.C.:

Security: The D.C. police chief says the entire department will be working to ensure the city is safe for the July fireworks. Details from WTOP News: 

If you’re planning on going to the National Mall: Here’s what to know, via NBC Washington: 

What’s open and what’s closed: Via WTOP:

And to get your long weekend off on the right foot, here’s a rescue dog who absolutely should steal the show: 


Florida rescue dog