The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden discusses Ukraine with Putin

 

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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.

 

HAPPENING TODAY

Biden’s work-from-home meeting — I mean, Biden is ~technically~ working from home:

 

 

President BidenJoe BidenNew York woman arrested after allegedly spitting on Jewish children Former Sen. Donnelly confirmed as Vatican ambassador Giuliani associate sentenced to a year in prison in campaign finance case MORE is speaking with Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinUkrainian president praises Biden for reaffirming US support The pitfalls of Russia's plan to rewrite history in Ukraine Kazakhstan's crackdown is a frightening formula for authoritarians MORE today in a high-stakes meeting to dissuade Russia from invading Ukraine. 

Biden’s threat to Putin: If Russia invades Ukraine, the U.S. will impose harsh economic sanctions. 

What’s happening on the Russian border near Ukraine: Tens of thousands of Russian troops are organizing at the border of Ukraine. 

More on today’s meeting from The Hill’s Morgan Chalfant: https://bit.ly/3DyeIFk 

 

President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin 

Watch: https://bit.ly/3It0SYs

‘FIVE THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT RUSSIA’S TROOP BUILDUP NEAR UKRAINE’:

  1. “Experts warn Russia’s military buildup on the border of Ukraine is posing a more serious threat than its previous invasion and annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014.” 
  1. President Biden is threatening serious consequences against Russia.
  1. If an invasion happens, the U.S. would likely deploy troops in the region.
  1. Some are worried about “Russia’s broader destabilizing behavior.”   
  1. Republicans and Democrats actually agree about wanting Ukraine security.

Context and details for each from The Hill’s Jordan Williams and Laura Kelly: https://bit.ly/31FvbKl

‘ON UKRAINIAN FRONT, GRINDING WAR AND WEARY ANTICIPATION OF INVASION’:

Via The New York Times’s Michael Schwirtz: https://nyti.ms/3owrvDZ

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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A MESSAGE FROM FACEBOOK

Why Facebook supports updated internet regulations, including Section 230

 

Aaron is one of 40,000 people working on safety and security issues at Facebook. 

Hear more from Aaron on why Facebook supports updating regulations on the internet’s most pressing challenges, including reforming Section 230 to set clear guidelines for all large tech companies.

 

IN THE WHITE HOUSE

Biden is starting with negative points after the ordeal in Afghanistan:

President Biden is facing the second foreign policy crisis of his presidency and he has no room for error, given that he failed the first test with the ignominious U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.” https://bit.ly/3y3Qodb 

Biden’s goal in today’s meeting: “The hope, across the political spectrum, is that Putin can be shunted down an off-ramp before a catastrophic collision takes place.”  

And if Putin does go through with the invasion: “A full-blown invasion would be a huge international challenge — and a massive test of U.S. resolve and muscle.”  

Read the full column from The Hill’s Niall Stanage: https://bit.ly/3y3Qodb 

HOW DEMOCRATS ARE TRYING TO HIDE THEIR INTERNAL DISPUTES OVER RUSSIA AND CHINA:

Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton: https://bit.ly/3y2nWIy

The gist: US athletes can compete in the 2022 Olympics, but we won’t be sending any government officials to the games:

The White House announced a diplomatic boycott for the 2022 Beijing Olympics. https://bit.ly/3lHW9Z2 

White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiBiden to meet with national security team this weekend on Russia-Ukraine The Hill's 12:30 Report: Dems look to repackage BBB into salvageable bill Kaleigh Rogers discusses new voting restrictions MORE told reporters: “The athletes on team USA have our full support, we will be behind them 100 percent as we cheer them on from home. We will not be contributing to the fan fare of the games. U.S. diplomatic or official representation would treat these games as business as usual in the face of the PRC's egregious human rights abuses and atrocities in Xinjiang and we simply can’t do that.”  

Details of the human rights abuses the Biden administration is referring to: https://bit.ly/3lHW9Z2

IN CONGRESS

Schumer: ‘Can I get a vroom vroom?’ *pause* I SAID, ‘can I get a vroom vroom?!’:

 

 

Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats call on Biden administration to ease entry to US for at-risk Afghans Predictions of disaster for Democrats aren't guarantees of midterm failure Voting rights and Senate wrongs MORE (D-N.Y.) is trying to hit the gas on President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, calling for his colleagues to pass the bill before Christmas. 

Timing: “Senate Democrats have less than three weeks to meet Schumer’s preferred timeline, a potentially herculean lift as they continue to negotiate with both themselves and the Senate parliamentarian, Elizabeth MacDonough, who offers guidance on whether provisions in the bill comply with budget rules.”  

How this could play out: https://bit.ly/3DyrPX9

MEANWHILE – BIDEN IS PLAYING UP PRESCRIPTION DRUG PRICES TO RALLY THE TROOPS:

Via The Hill’s Peter Sullivan: https://bit.ly/3ItdHBT

Can you IMAGINE how stressful this must be? ... To be responsible for the famously delicate sculpture … and then the wheel comes off?:

 

The Capitol Gingerbread House 

Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3ExoPvb 

^ But do not panic — the gingerbread house made it!: Here are up-close photos of the detailed, edible U.S. Capitol: Via NBC’s Haley Talbot: https://bit.ly/305UGEu

 

A MESSAGE FROM FACEBOOK

Why Facebook supports updated internet regulations, including Section 230

 

Aaron is one of 40,000 people working on safety and security issues at Facebook. 

Hear more from Aaron on why Facebook supports updating regulations on the internet’s most pressing challenges, including reforming Section 230 to set clear guidelines for all large tech companies.

 

LATEST WITH THE CORONAVIRUS

There is much we still don’t know about the omicron variant, but here’s what we ~do~ know so far:

The New York Times’s David Leonhardt breaks it down into four categories: Contagiousness, severity, risks to the vaccinated and whether tests work: https://nyti.ms/3rNF7wv

CASE NUMBERS:

Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 49,288,016 

U.S. death toll: 789,902 

Breakdown of the numbers: https://cnn.it/2UAgW3y

VACCINATION NUMBERS:

Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 462 million shots have been given. 

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 745,169 doses 

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

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

IN OTHER NEWS

‘Inside CNN’s decision to fire Chris Cuomo: ‘He gave me his word’:

Via The Washington Post’s Jeremy Barr and Sarah Ellison, CNN President Jeff Zucker told employees: “Chris had been much more deeply involved than we had ever known, and than he’d ever told us.”  

“Zucker framed Cuomo’s lack of candor as a betrayal, noting that ‘he gave me his word that there was no involvement’ beyond advice and support to his brother. ‘And in the weeks and months that followed, he gave repeated, similar assurances not just to me but to other key members of our management team here.’ ”  

What else we know about CNN’s decision to fire Cuomo: https://wapo.st/3lF6XHC

NOTABLE TWEETS:

Lol, I appreciate the honesty:

 

Blank back page 

Hyperlink https://bit.ly/3y0qK96

Wow:

 

200 officers have left since Jan. 6 

Watch: https://bit.ly/3It5hKY

ON TAP:

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

8:30 a.m. EST: President Biden received the President’s Daily Brief.

10 a.m. EST: President Biden held a video call with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

11:10 a.m. EST: Vice President Harris spoke with five-time U.S. Olympian Allyson Felix about maternal health. 

11:30 a.m. EST: Two confirmation-related roll call votes in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/3pC3KJQ 

2:15 p.m. EST: Two more roll call votes in the Senate. 

5:30 p.m. EST: A confirmation vote in the Senate. 

6:30 p.m. EST: First votes in the House. The House’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/31y0JSM

WHAT TO WATCH:

10 a.m. EST: Vice President Harris delivered remarks on Maternal Health Day of Action. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3lKDAn0

12:30 p.m. EST: The White House COVID-19 Response Team holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3GkCQNf

2 p.m. EST: White House press secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3dp6QLI

IN LIGHTER NEWS:

Today is National Cotton Candy Day!

And to brighten your day, here’s a duck who enjoys Starbucks drinks just as much as I do: https://bit.ly/3dssnD5