The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Arizona recount to show Trump's loss by even wider margin


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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.



‘Tell me more about how I won’: 

The Republican-controlled Arizona state Senate called for an audit of the 2020 presidential election results. 

Well, that audit has concluded and according to a draft obtained by The Arizona Republic, the audit will confirm today that President BidenJoe BidenMcAuliffe holds slim lead over Youngkin in Fox News poll Biden signs bill to raise debt ceiling On The Money — Progressives play hard ball on Biden budget plan MORE won Maricopa County.

And Biden’s margin is even wider than before: “In fact, the new hand recount for Biden exceeded the county's tally by 99 votes, while Trump received 261 fewer votes than the official results.” (Via NPR’s Ben Giles


It starts at 4 p.m. EDT — 1 p.m. in Arizona. Livestream


“The audit has uncovered significant and undeniable evidence of FRAUD! Until we know how and why this happened, our Elections will never be secure. This is a major criminal event and should be investigated by the Attorney General immediately.” 

Trump also blamed the “Fake News Media” for “trying to ‘call it’ again for Biden before actually looking at the facts…”

Happy Friday! 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 — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook

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We’ve invested $13 billion in teams and technology over the last 5 years to enhance safety. 

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A former colleague of Chris Cuomo (yes this is Chris, not Andrew) alleges sexual harassment:

A former colleague of CNN’s Chris CuomoChris CuomoThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Arizona recount to show Trump's loss by even wider margin Former co-worker accuses Chris Cuomo of sexual harassment in NYT essay Tucker Carlson says he lies when 'I'm really cornered or something' MORE published a guest essay in The New York Times alleging sexual harassment.

The essay’s title: “Chris Cuomo Sexually Harassed Me. I Hope He’ll Use His Power to Make Change.”

Excerpt: “When Mr. Cuomo entered the Upper West Side bar, he walked toward me and greeted me with a strong bear hug while lowering one hand to firmly grab and squeeze the cheek of my buttock. ‘I can do this now that you’re no longer my boss,’ he said to me with a kind of cocky arrogance. ‘No you can’t,’ I said, pushing him off me at the chest while stepping back, revealing my husband, who had seen the entire episode at close range. We quickly left.” 

After the incident: “I received the email from Mr. Cuomo about being “ashamed.” He should have been. But my question today is the same as it was then: Was he ashamed of what he did, or was he embarrassed because my husband saw it? (He apologized first in his email to my ‘very good and noble husband’ and then to me for ‘even putting you in such a position.’)”  

Read her full story 

Keep in mind: Chris Cuomo’s brother, Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoEMILY's List announces early endorsement of Hochul Hochul jumps out to early lead in NY governor's primary: poll De Blasio privately says he plans to run for New York governor: report MORE, recently stepped down as New York governor after allegations of sexual harassment.


Biden is NOT on board with the situation on the border:

President Biden slammed the treatment of Haitian migrants on the U.S.-Mexico border after images surfaced of border agents on horseback chasing and rounding up migrants. 

Biden’s response when he was asked if he takes responsibility: “To see people treated like they did, horses barely running them over and people being strapped. It’s outrageous. I promise those people will pay.” Watch Biden’s full response

Biden on the situation: “It’s an embarrassment. It’s beyond an embarrassment. It’s dangerous, it’s wrong, it sends the wrong message around the world or sends the wrong message at home. It’s simply not who we are.” 

Reaction to the images from Congressional Black Caucus member Rep. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersHillicon Valley — Presented by LookingGlass — Congress looks to strengthen government's aging cyber infrastructure Maxine Waters says her Twitter account has been hacked On The Money — Presented by NRHC — Senate slowly walks back from debt disaster MORE (D-Calif.): “What we witnessed takes us back hundreds of years. What we witnessed was worse than what we witnessed in slavery."

Well, it isn’t the ~best~ look…:

Via The Hill’s Hanna Trudo and Amie Parnes, “Democrats are worried that Joe Biden’s presidency is at an inflection point where his administration risks being defined by a series of negative and disturbing images from Afghanistan and the border.”

How so: “The early months of Biden’s first year in office mostly went according to script, but things have started to come off the rails as the stark footage from the border and Afghanistan, two consistently difficult issues for the president, crystalize in the public view.”


This is what we call a ‘next week problem’:

Via The Hill’s Mike Lillis and Scott Wong, “House Democrats are hoping to vote next week on both facets of President Biden's far-reaching domestic agenda: a bipartisan infrastructure bill and a much larger social benefits package, Democratic leaders announced Friday.”

A civil war is brewing:

Via The Hill’s Mike Lillis and Scott Wong, “House progressives appear poised for a showdown with their own leadership team as Democrats steamroll toward a Monday vote on a Senate-passed infrastructure bill that is a key part of President Biden’s agenda.”

How so: Progressives are saying they will vote against the bipartisan infrastructure bill. 

^ Why: They want it combined with the $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill. If the two bills are separated, progressives are not on board.

What to expect


Via The Hill’s Sylvan Lane, “The U.S. is on track to default on the national debt sometime between Oct. 15 and Nov. 4 if Congress is unable to raise the federal debt ceiling, according to a forecast released Friday by the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC).”


Via The Washington Post’s Amber Phillips 

It would be the third time in three years (!)



Facebook invested $13B in teams and technology to enhance safety



We’ve invested $13 billion in teams and technology over the last 5 years to enhance safety. 

It's working: In just the past few months, we took down 1.7 billion fake accounts to stop bad actors from doing harm.

But there's more to do. Learn more about how we're working to help you connect safely.



Interesting thread — big yikes:


COVID-19 groups keep evolving on Facebook


The rest of the Twitter thread


Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 42,680,809

U.S. death toll: 684,428

Breakdown of the numbers


Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 388 million shots have been given.

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 748,943 doses

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

Breakdown of the numbers:


I’ve never related more to Angela Merkel than in this image:


German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a bird zoo


OK, here’s a happier photo. I relate to her slightly less:

Wait, seriously? They’re still on the loose?:


A Zebra walks across the road in Maryland 


In the off chance that you’re confused by this image (lol): Here’s the full story from Washingtonian’s Jane Recker


The House is in. The Senate is out. President Biden is in Washington, D.C. Vice President Harris is leaving New York and is returning to D.C. this afternoon. 

7:45 a.m. EDT: Vice President Harris left for New York, N.Y. 

10:30 – 11:30 a.m. EDT: First and last votes in the House. The House’s full agenda today 

11 a.m. EDT: President Biden participated in a bilateral meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

12:40 p.m. EDT: Vice President Harris returns to Washington, D.C. 

4:10 p.m. EDT: President Biden meets with Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide.

4:45 p.m. EDT: Vice President Harris meets with the Quad Leaders — that’s Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide. 

6 p.m. EDT: President Biden leaves for Camp David.


9:45 a.m. EDT: President Biden delivered remarks on the COVID-19 response and vaccination program. Livestream:

12:30 p.m. EDT: The White House COVID Response Team holds a press briefing. Livestream 

2 p.m. EDT: President Biden hosts the first-ever in-person Quad Leaders Summit with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide. Livestream: 

2:30 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden's Supreme Court reform study panel notes 'considerable' risks to court expansion DeSantis pledges to sue Biden administration over vaccine mandates Biden likely to tap Robert Califf to return as FDA head MORE and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasJohns Hopkins to launch degree program in cybersecurity and policy The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Altria - New front in mandate wars; debt bill heads to Biden DHS to end workplace raids, shift focus to employers over undocumented workers MORE hold a press briefing. Livestream


Today is National Cherries Jubilee Day.

This is pretty incredible — humans were in North America a lot longer than we had thought:

Via CNN’s Katie Hunt, researchers have dated footprints found in New Mexico, showing that humans settled North America at least 23,000 years ago (!) 

Why that is huge news — the working theory was much more recent than that: “The commonly held view is that people arrived in North America from Asia via Beringia, a land bridge that once connected the two continents, at the end of the Ice Age around 13,000 to 16,000 years ago.”  

So cool: “The analysis of the dimensions of the footprints suggested they were made by children between 9 and 14 years old -- a pattern that's seen at other fossilized footprint sites. Tracks of mammoths, giant ground sloth, dire wolves and birds are all present at the site as well.”

Interesting tidbit — the sky does actually look more blue in the fall!:


Why is the sky blue?


And to get your weekend off to a great start, here’s a bear teaching its cub how to properly use a slide: