12:30 Report

The Hill’s 12:30 Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden faces Ukraine decision amid Russia aggression

Julia Nikhinson

 

Presented by Facebook

 

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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.

 

TALK OF THE MORNING

The decision Joe Biden is currently making:

via GIPHY

Via The New York Times’s Helene Cooper and Eric Schmitt, Pentagon officials urged President Biden over the weekend to consider sending 1,000-5,000 troops to Eastern Europe as tensions rise over a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine. https://nyti.ms/3578pNh  

Is Biden going to move forward with that plan?: We don’t know yet. Biden may decide this week.  

Keep in mind: The plan would not be to send troops to Ukraine, just to Eastern Europe where they would be closer.  

Some context on where Biden stands: “Biden has made clear that he is loath to enter another conflict following America’s painful exit from Afghanistan last summer after 20 years. But after years of tiptoeing around the question of how much military support to provide to Ukraine, for fear of provoking Russia, Biden officials have recently warned that the United States could throw its weight behind a Ukrainian insurgency should Mr. Putin invade Ukraine.”  

What we know: https://nyti.ms/3578pNh

NEW — NATO IS SENDING MORE SHIPS AND FIGHTER JETS TO EASTERN EUROPE:

NATO allies are sending ships and fighter jets to Eastern Europe “to enhance deterrence and [defense].” We don’t know how many ships or jets, though. https://bit.ly/3qVxV0r  

Read NATO’s full statement: https://bit.ly/3KEaT6c

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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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.

 

NEWS THIS MORNING

The Supreme Court agreed to weigh in on race in college admissions: 

Via The Hill’s John Kruzel, “The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear a challenge to the use of race in college admissions decisions, teeing up a potentially landmark showdown over affirmative action in higher education.” 

The case: “The case arose after a conservative-backed group, Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA), sued Harvard and the University of North Carolina, alleging the schools illegally discriminate against Asian American applicants.” https://bit.ly/3KHdAUo

IN CONGRESS

Add a little water, stir it, make sure it doesn’t taste too diluted — and there you go, your agenda is served:

Via The Hill’s Jordain Carney, “Democrats are confronting the reality of a scaled-back agenda as they try to move past high-profile setbacks that dominated the tail end of President Biden’s first year in office.” https://bit.ly/3KHqC4j 

A year ago, now: Democrats publicly boasted about going “big and bold” with their party in control of the House, Senate and White House.   

And now: Democrats have lived through the challenges of such tight margins and are living with a scaled-back agenda heading into a midterm year.  

Democrats’ plan for the year: “Democrats are eyeing turning their focus toward bipartisan bills and legislative housekeeping like funding the government and confirming Biden’s nominees on the floor, while trying to figure out a path forward on a pared-down social and climate spending without boxing themselves in with a hard deadline.”    

More on Dems’ legislative plans for 2022: https://bit.ly/3KHqC4j

REP. LIZ CHENEY’S (R-WYO.) ROLE IN THE JAN. 6 INVESTIGATION IS ALREADY REVERBERATING IN HER PRIMARY:

Via The Hill’s Tal Axelrod: https://bit.ly/3rOmmrh

‘MOMENTUM BUILDS FOR NEW COVID-19 RELIEF FOR BUSINESSES’:

Via The Hill’s Aris Folley: https://bit.ly/3rOfmdJ

IN THE WHITE HOUSE

‘No more mister nice Joe,’ he tells the mirror:

via GIPHY

Via The Hill’s Amie Parnes and Morgan Chalfant, “President Biden made bipartisanship the backbone of his 2020 campaign, but with this year set to be dominated by the midterm elections, he is pivoting away from work with Republicans.” https://bit.ly/3rOkkHu

Biden said during his press conference last week: “I did not anticipate that there’d be such a stalwart effort to make sure that the most important thing was that President Biden didn’t get anything done.”   

Biden on the GOP when he was vice president: “They weren’t nearly as obstructionist as they are now.”    

Biden’s reason for the change in strategy: “Biden and Democrats want to play up the contrast with the GOP as they try to beat back anemic poll numbers and make the case for Democrats to be in control of Congress.”   

Keep in mind: Biden’s bipartisan strategy led to the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill passed last year.   

More on Biden’s new strategy: https://bit.ly/3rOkkHu

PHOTO OF PRESIDENT BIDEN RETURNING FROM CAMP DAVID THIS MORNING:

 

 

He headed straight to the Oval Office, according to NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell: https://bit.ly/3AGCuPL

TIDBIT — TWO YEARS AGO THIS PAST WEEKEND:

Here’s a clip of CBS’s Ed O’Keefe asking then-candidate Joe Biden about a spat with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) I did not expect Biden’s reaction — watch: https://bit.ly/3r500ml

 

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

Omicron’s spread could lead us to the next phase: 

Via The New York Times’s Marc Santora, “The pandemic that has convulsed the world for more than two years is entering a ‘new phase’ globally, and the rapid spread of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus offers ‘plausible hope’ for a return to normalcy in the months ahead, the World Health Organization’s top official in Europe said in a statement released Monday.” https://nyti.ms/35jlpQ9  

Is this a controversial opinion?: Not really. “His comments echoed the optimism of other leading public health officials around the world, including Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, President Biden’s top medical adviser for the coronavirus.”   

The full story: https://nyti.ms/35jlpQ9

WASHINGTON POST OP-ED — ‘BIDEN HAS FAILED TO DEFEAT COVID-19 AS PROMISED. HERE’S HOW HE MUST SHIFT HIS STRATEGY.’:

From the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Michelle A. Williams: https://wapo.st/3fU80A4 

CASE NUMBERS:

Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 70,700,678 

U.S. death toll: 866,541 

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

VACCINATION NUMBERS:

Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 535 million shots have been given.  

Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 290,142 doses  

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

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

NOTABLE TWEETS:

Well, this is adorable:

A giraffe was born at the Santa Barbara Zoo last week. The baby weighed 150 lbs. Video from CBS News: https://bit.ly/35nVmrb

Wow, check out this political ad:

Republican Mauro Garza, who is running for Congress from Texas, released a campaign ad on the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. Video from The Wall Street Journal’s Michael C. Bender: https://bit.ly/3AqyW3I  

Excerpt from the ad: “They call it an insurrection. But what really happened January 6th? Were FBI agents used as political agitators? … Why are violent, left-wing rioters praised while pro-Trump protesters are in prison? Because radical, socialist politicians and establishment Republicans are selling you out?”

I laughed out loud at this:

via GIPHY

Simple Modern’s Mike Beckham tweeted, “Recently one of our newest team members asked if he could decorate his cubical. When I said yes, I wasn’t expecting this…” Photos of the decorated cubicle: https://bit.ly/3nWfc2X

 

ON TAP:

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

10:05 a.m. EST: Vice President Harris and second gentleman Doug Emhoff left Los Angeles and flew to Milwaukee. 

10:30 a.m. EST: President Biden returned to the White House from Camp David. 

11:30 a.m. EST: President Biden received his daily intelligence brief. 

2:30 p.m. EST: Vice President Harris tours the Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership/Building Industry Group Skilled Trades Employment Program building.  

5:15 p.m. EST: Vice President Harris and second gentleman Doug Emhoff return to Washington, D.C. 

WHAT TO WATCH:

1:30 p.m. EST: White House press secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3IxIm0d  

3 p.m. EST: Vice President Harris delivers remarks on the bipartisan infrastructure law. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan also speaks. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3rHS8pH 

5 p.m. EST: President Biden holds a meeting with administration officials to discuss inflation and lowering prices. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3GZgn9t

IN LIGHTER NEWS:

Today is National Peanut Butter Day!  

Getting traction — ‘Inside the wildest two minutes of the NFL season’:

 

 

Via The Washington Post’s Nicki Jhabvala, “The Chiefs’ 42-36 overtime victory over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday featured … 78 points — 25 of which were scored in the final two minutes of regulation before Kansas City sealed it in overtime…” The breakdown — the changes in ‘win probability’ in the final two minutes were pretty interesting: https://wapo.st/3Ix2iAf

And because you read this far, here is a blanket. Just a blanket. No sign of any dog here: https://bit.ly/3IuVhjB

Tags 12:30 Report Bernie Sanders Biden-Putin COVID-19 Doug Emhoff Jen Psaki Joe Biden Liz Cheney NATO NFL playoffs omicron

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