The Hill's Morning Report - Trump seizes House impeachment vote to rally GOP

 

 

 

Welcome to The Hill’s Morning Report. Happy Thursday! Our newsletter gets you up to speed on the most important developments in politics and policy, plus trends to watch. Co-creators are Alexis Simendinger and Al Weaver (CLICK HERE to subscribe!). On Twitter, find us at @asimendinger and @alweaver22.



President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawmakers release defense bill with parental leave-for-Space-Force deal House Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday Houston police chief excoriates McConnell, Cornyn and Cruz on gun violence MORE seized on House Democratic foes, including four female freshman lawmakers of color whom he assailed by name, to animate his base and try to persuade voters that any Democratic nominee he faces is a “danger” to the country and to the economic gains he said his administration produced.

 

“The choice for every American has never been more clear,” Trump said during a rally in Greenville, N.C., on Wednesday night. “These are bad people.”

 

Following days of intense national criticism, a House vote on Tuesday to condemn his “racist comments” and Wednesday’s House vote to kill the first articles of impeachment filed against the president under the new Democratic majority, Trump plowed deeper into the race-saturated nationalist themes he believes will carry him to victory next year.

 

With exaggerated “thank yous” to House Democrats who joined Republicans to table a measure on impeachment sponsored by Rep. Al GreenAlexander (Al) N. GreenFeehery: Losing faith in the people and the Constitution Warren, Buttigieg fight echoes 2004 campaign, serves as warning for 2020 race Overnight Energy: Pelosi vows bold action to counter 'existential' climate threat | Trump jokes new light bulbs don't make him look as good | 'Forever chemicals' measure pulled from defense bill MORE (D-Texas), Trump relished his opportunities to play to a cheering crowd while pointing to evident divisions between progressive and moderate Democrats who control the House.

 

The Hill: The House voted 332-95 to table articles of impeachment.

 

The New York Times: 95 Democrats signaled their support for impeachment, while 137 opposed it — a dramatic split signaling trouble ahead for a divided party. The measure highlighted the rifts between progressives who want to challenge Trump more aggressively and moderate Democrats who want to focus on a policy agenda that includes improving health coverage and raising wages for working people.

 

Trump repeated his criticisms of House progressives — Reps. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarSanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire House approves two-state resolution in implicit rebuke of Trump Al Green calls for including Trump's 'racism' in impeachment articles MORE (D-Minn.), Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezTrump tops list of most tweeted about politicians in 2019 Buttigieg campaign says 2000 people attended Iowa rally Trump keeps Obama immigration program, and Democrats blast him MORE (D-N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by UANI — GOP, Democrats square off at final impeachment hearing Live coverage: Democrats, Republicans seek to win PR battle in final House impeachment hearing Sanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire MORE (D-Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleySanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire Booker unveils legislation for federal bill to ban discrimination against natural hair House approves two-state resolution in implicit rebuke of Trump MORE (D-Mass.) — inaccurately saying he quoted statements from the lawmakers, nicknamed “the squad,” to describe them as “radical” and extreme in their views.

 

“Send them back. Send them back,” the crowd chanted, echoing a tweet the president wrote on Sunday about the representatives, which urged them to “go back” to where they came from. All four are U.S. citizens. Omar was born in Somalia, a fact Trump emphasized during his remarks. At Trump’s mention of her name, the crowd booed.

 

That's why I said, ‘Hey, if they don't like it, let them leave,” Trump said. “They don’t love our country.”

 

They’re so angry,” he added.

 

If there was any lingering doubt that the president would play to voters’ racial and socioeconomic anxieties during his reelection bid, Wednesday night’s venomous 92-minute speech put the question to rest.

 

Republican political advisers say Trump wants to turn the left-leaning firebrands in Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiHouse Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday Impeachment witness to meet with Senate GOP Tuesday Press: Pelosi strikes back, hatred is a sin MORE’s (D-Calif.) caucus into the face of the Democratic Party.

 

“They don’t have enthusiasm, they’re just fighting with one another,” the president said. “We have all the enthusiasm.”

 

Trump voiced disdain for Democratic presidential contenders, as well, reprising his “Sleepy Joe” mockery of former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGabbard says she won't participate in next debate even if she qualifies House Democrats expected to unveil articles of impeachment Tuesday FBI head rejects claims of Ukrainian 2016 interference MORE and his “Pocahontas” nickname for Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenGabbard says she won't participate in next debate even if she qualifies On The Money: White House, Dems edge closer to trade deal | GOP worries about Trump concessions | DOJ argues Congress can't sue Trump on emoluments | Former Fed chief Volcker dies UN International Anticorruption Day highlights democracy as a human right MORE (D-Mass.). He called Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisKrystal Ball: Media turns on Buttigieg, will this end him? Senate Democrats demand Trump fire Stephen Miller The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - A crucial week on impeachment MORE (D-Calif.) the “new one” who “knocked the hell out of Biden” during the June debate, and called out Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersLawmakers release defense bill with parental leave-for-Space-Force deal Gabbard says she won't participate in next debate even if she qualifies Overnight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments MORE (I-Vt.) as “desperate” this cycle, adding that he “missed his time” with his presidential primary loss in 2016. 

 

“It’s a sad situation,” Trump said about Sanders. “But I think they’re all sad when you get right down to it.”

 

Trump exaggerated the pronunciation of South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegGabbard says she won't participate in next debate even if she qualifies McKinsey allowing Buttigieg to disclose past clients Saagar Enjeti: Elizabeth Warren reveals grim future under her presidency MORE’s name and said the mayor could not skillfully represent the United States with President Xi Jinping of China, Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnUS to ask UN Security Council to discuss recent North Korean missile launches 'Rocket Man' and 'The Dotard,' redux North Korea labels Trump a 'heedless and erratic old man' after tweets MORE of North Korea or President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinUkraine, Russia agree to restart peace process Trump, Russian foreign minister to meet Tuesday Impeachment, Ukraine, Syria and warheads color Washington visit by top Russian diplomat MORE of Russia. 

 

The rally — which took place in a North Carolina county Trump lost in 2016 and the district of Democrat Rep. G.K. ButterfieldGeorge (G.K.) Kenneth ButterfieldDemocrats likely to gain seats under new North Carolina maps North Carolina poised to pass new congressional maps Black leaders say African American support in presidential primary is fluid MORE — was originally expected to coincide with the scheduled testimony of former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTrump says he'll release financial records before election, knocks Dems' efforts House impeachment hearings: The witch hunt continues Speier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump MORE. However, Mueller’s appearance on Capitol Hill was postponed until next week. Trump called the Russia investigation and its years of controversy “bullshit.”

 

The Hill: Trump blasts Reps. Omar, Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib, Pressley.

The Hill: Here are the 95 Democrats who voted to support impeachment … 

The Hill: And the 137 Democrats who voted to table the impeachment resolution.

The Associated Press: Trump leaning on issue of race to win a second term in 2020.

Omar quotes Maya Angelou in a tweeted response to Trump’s rally: “like air, I’ll rise.”

 

 

 



LEADING THE DAY

CONGRESS: The feuding between progressive and moderate Democrats shows no sign of letting up as progressives warned Wednesday that they are prepared to sink a minimum wage bill if moderates adopt a Republican amendment ahead of the final vote, expected Thursday.

 

Questions remain what the amendment will be, given that GOP lawmakers are not expected to introduce their measure — known as a motion to recommit — until just before the vote, but progressives are standing tall and demanding that there are no changes. More than anything, progressives are trying to avoid a second loss at the hands of moderates after the $4.6 billion border supplemental three weeks ago (The Hill). 

 

“The Progressive Caucus is eager for a strong floor vote raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. We are deeply grateful to the organizers, activists and working people across the country who fought for years to make this vote a reality," said Rep. Mark PocanMark William PocanHouse progressives may try to block vote on Pelosi drug bill Overnight Health Care: House to vote next week on drug prices bill | Conway says Trump trying to find 'balance' on youth vaping | US spent trillion on hospitals in 2018 Progressive leader warns members could vote no on drug price bill as it stands MORE (D-Wis.) and Rep. Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalOvernight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments Judiciary Democrat: Trump himself is 'smoking gun' in impeachment case Live coverage: Democrats, Republicans seek to win PR battle in final House impeachment hearing MORE (D-Wash.) said in a statement. “It would be a disservice to these families — who put their paychecks on the line to fight for dignity in the workplace — to do anything less than what we’ve promised: a clean vote to raise the minimum wage, for all workers across the country."

 

Progressive lawmakers are also wary of moderates because they have voted for some of the GOP measures of this kind in the past, which are used to try to divide Democrats on certain issues. 

 

 

 

 

> Budget/debt ceiling: Democratic lawmakers have grown optimistic that a two-year deal to raise the budget caps for military and domestic spending and the debt ceiling will be done by Friday, allowing the House to vote on a package next week before they leave town for the August recess. 

 

Pelosi told reporters that a deal is in sight as she continues to negotiate with Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinWhite House, Democrats edge closer to deal on trade Pelosi gets standing ovation at Kennedy Center Honors World Bank approves billion-plus annual China lending plan despite US objections MORE, the lead negotiator for the administration, who she and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTikTok chief cancels Capitol Hill meetings, inflaming tensions Overnight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments Overnight Health Care — Presented by Johnson & Johnson — Democrats call on Supreme Court to block Louisiana abortion law | Michigan governor seeks to pause Medicaid work requirements | New front in fight over Medicaid block grants MORE (D-N.Y.) spoke to shortly before her press conference on Wednesday (The Hill). 

 

As Andrew Taylor from The Associated Press writes: 

 

“Also driving the negotiations is the threat of cuts averaging 10% to agency accounts, reversing recent gains for the Pentagon and hard-won increases in domestic programs favored by Democrats. Those cuts are the final leftovers of a failed 2011 budget and debt deal negotiated by former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaFormer White House physician Ronny Jackson to run for Congress Obama issues statement praising Paul Volcker Ex-Rep. Scott Taylor to seek old Virginia seat MORE and then-Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFormer Speaker Boehner's official portrait unveiled Key Republicans say Biden can break Washington gridlock From learning on his feet to policy director MORE that used the threat of the automatic cuts to try to prompt additional progress on the deficit.”

 

The two sides are not expected to agree to any short-term deal and are unlikely to vote on a clean debt ceiling package by the end of next week, something Mnuchin suggested in a recent letter to congressional leaders in lieu of a budget caps deal. 

 

Politico: Senate Republicans pray Trump will take budget deal. 

 

The Associated Press: House Democrats, GOP unite to repeal Obama health care tax.

 

> Legislative filibuster: Talk of nixing the legislative filibuster is gaining steam among Senate Democrats, especially after Schumer opened the door to getting rid of the higher threshold if Democrats retake the Senate next year and win the presidency, telling reporters that "nothing is off the table." 

 

Progressives view keeping the filibuster as a death knell for major priorities like “Medicare for All” and climate change legislation, but it remains unknown what the appetite is within the conference as a whole to make the change. Striking the legislative filibuster would require 51 votes (The Hill). 

 

The Hill: Democrats warm to idea of studying reparations.

 

The Hill: House votes to block Trump’s arms sale to Saudi Arabia. 

 

The Hill: The House voted on Wednesday night to hold Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrDemocrats rip Barr over IG statement: 'Mouthpiece' for Trump Comey in op-ed after IG report: 'Barr needs to stop acting like a Trump spokesperson' Graham: FBI investigation in 2016 turned into a 'criminal conspiracy' MORE and Commerce Secretary Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossPelosi gets standing ovation at Kennedy Center Honors Space race is on: US can't afford congressional inaction in this critical economic sector Trump escalates fight over tax on tech giants MORE in criminal contempt of Congress for flouting subpoenas. The two Cabinet members wrote to Pelosi before the vote seeking without success to delay it to continue negotiations. The White House in a statement assailed the House Democrats’ action as “ridiculous and yet another lawless attempt to harass” Trump and the administration. Ross called the House vote a “PR stunt” that was “unnecessary.”

 

Reuters: Schumer asks FBI, FTC to probe Russia’s FaceApp over security concerns.

 

Roll Call: Dems appear stymied on a top priority: climate legislation.

 

The Associated Press: Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulPelosi gets standing ovation at Kennedy Center Honors Senate braces for brawl on Trump impeachment rules Trump's legal team huddles with Senate Republicans MORE (R-Ky.) blocks bill to boost 9/11 victims fund.

 

***

 

MORE 2020 POLITICS & CAMPAIGNS: Senate Republicans received a boost Wednesday as Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoHillicon Valley: Amazon alleges Trump interfered in Pentagon contract to hurt Bezos | Federal council warns Trump of cyber threats to infrastructure | China to remove foreign technology from government offices Trump, Russian foreign minister to meet Tuesday Impeachment, Ukraine, Syria and warheads color Washington visit by top Russian diplomat MORE left the door ajar to leaving the State Department to run for the Senate in Kansas, raising hopes that the party can keep the seat in GOP hands next year. 

 

Pompeo admitted in a radio interview with KCMO in Kansas City that he has spent time thinking about a possible run, albeit not as much as some other GOP politicos, and that he will “always leave open the possibility that something will change.” The comments came months after he said publicly that he had ruled out a run (The Hill).

 

“I do see this from time to time,” Pompeo said of rumors that he could run. “There is a lot more people talking about this and spending time on it than Susan and I are spending time thinking about it. Look, we love Kansas, but I am very focused on my mission serving America and President Trump as the secretary of State.  That’s my mission and as I think I’ve said a couple of times, I intend to do this so long as President Trump wants me to be engaged in this activity.”

 

I would have never dreamed that I’d be the secretary of State even a year before I became the director of the CIA, a year before that,” he continued. “And so, I always leave open the possibility that something will change and my path in life will change, too, but my mission set is really very clear.”

 

Talk of a Pompeo run has heated up since Kris Kobach announced a run to replace retiring Sen. Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsThe Hill's Morning Report - Intel panel readies to hand off impeachment baton The job no GOP senator wants: 'I'd rather have a root canal' The Hill's Morning Report — House set for Phase 3 of impeachment push MORE (R-Kan.). Kobach is considered unelectable by national Republicans after his loss in the Kansas governor race in 2018. 

 

 

 

 

> “Medicare for All”: Sanders took aim at Biden on Wednesday as he issued a passionate defense of Medicare for All and tried to draw a line in the sand between the two heavyweights in the 2020 Democratic primary field. 

 

In his speech, Sanders called for his Democratic primary opponents to reject campaign contributions from health insurance and drug companies. The remark was viewed as a veiled shot at Biden, who has held large-dollar fundraisers with wealthy contributors from the health care industry.

 

“Now is not the time for tinkering around the edges, and now is not the time for taking money and large campaign contributions from the insurance companies and drug companies,” Sanders said at George Washington University. 

 

The comments also came days after Biden laid down his marker on health care, calling for the preservation and expansion of the Affordable Care Act, namely by creating a public option to allow consumers to sign up for Medicare if they are unhappy with their private insurance. 

 

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board: Biden goes halfway to BernieCare. 

 

ABC News: Sanders accepted pharma executives’ donations prior to new pledge. 

 

The Wall Street Journal: 2020 spotlight shines on lawmakers in early primary states.

 

The Los Angeles Times: The next Democratic debate will have a new face: Montana Gov. Steve BullockSteve BullockThe Hill's Campaign Report: Democrats worry about diversity on next debate stage The Hill's Morning Report — Pelosi makes it official: Trump will be impeached Steve Bullock exits: Will conservative Democrats follow? MORE.

 

Mark Leibovich, The New York Times Magazine: Buttigieg is still figuring this out.

 

Rahm Emanuel: No, the Democratic Party has not lurched left.



IN FOCUS/SHARP TAKES

WHITE HOUSE & ADMINISTRATION: At the Labor Department, Patrick Pizzella took over as acting secretary following Alexander AcostaAlex Alexander AcostaThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by National Association of Manufacturers — Whistleblower complaint roils Washington On The Money: Senate confirms Scalia as Labor chief | Bill with B in wall funding advanced over Democrats' objections | Lawyers reach deal to delay enforcement of NY tax return subpoena Sanders calls Eugene Scalia's Labor Dept. confirmation 'obscene' MORE’s resignation last week. Conservatives and business groups expect Pizzella to pursue a deregulatory, anti-union agenda at the department, a dynamic that alarms Democratic lawmakers and organized labor (The Hill). … Who is Pizzella, 65, and what do the president’s advisers want him to do that Acosta would not? (The New York Times).

 

> U.S. sanctions on Russia: The Trump administration has long insisted it would impose additional sanctions on Russia following the 2018 poisoning in Great Britain of Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, as required by a 1991 law aimed at eliminating chemical and biological weapons. Skripal, a former Russian spy, was exposed to a lethal nerve agent by two officers from Russia’s military intelligence agency and survived. But after the Trump administration assured lawmakers months ago that Russia’s actions would trigger a second round of U.S. punishment, nothing happened.

 

The State and Treasury departments finalized a package of proposed additional sanctions last spring, but the White House and senior officials have not approved the recommendations, sources told Morgan Chalfant. The administration has publicly held Russia accountable, a State Department spokesperson said when asked for a status report.

 

A year ago while traveling in the United Kingdom, Trump boasted that in response to the “horrible” Skripal poisoning, the United States expelled 60 Russian diplomats, officials and staff from the United States. “We have been far tougher on Russia than anybody—anybody,” the president said.

 

> U.S. troops to Saudi Arabia: The United States plans to send about 500 more troops to Saudi Arabia in a show of force against Iran, the Defense Department said on Wednesday. In June, the administration announced it would send 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East but did not specify which countries would receive them. The forces going to Saudi Arabia are part of that deployment. Congress awaits details of the deployment from the administration next week (CNN).



The Morning Report is created by journalists Alexis Simendinger and Al Weaver. We want to hear from you! Email: asimendinger@thehill.com and aweaver@thehill.com. We invite you to share The Hill’s reporting and newsletters, and encourage others to SUBSCRIBE!



OPINION

House unravels with rise of 'Les Enfants Terrible,’ by Jonathan Turley, opinion contributor, The Hill. https://bit.ly/2Y1FhSH 

 

Will Trump's racist tweets backfire? by Steve IsraelSteven (Steve) J. IsraelThe Hill's Morning Report - Dem dilemma on articles of impeachment Republicans need to face reality with hypocrisy on impeachment Elise Stefanik tests impeachment waters for moderates in Congress MORE, opinion contributor, The Hill. https://bit.ly/2M6Hxlh 



WHERE AND WHEN

Hill.TV’s “Rising” at 9 a.m. ET  features Rep. Al Green (D-Texas), who will talk about his ongoing push to impeach the president; and Stephen Auth, executive vice president at Federated Investors, to discuss his book, “The Missionary of Wall Street.” Find Hill.TV programming at http://thehill.com/hilltv or on YouTube at 10 a.m.

 

The House meets at 9 a.m.

 

The Senate convenes at 10 a.m. and resumes consideration of the nomination of Clifton L. Corker to be a federal judge for the Eastern District of Tennessee.

 

The president and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpFirst lady lends a hand to 'Toys for Tots' charity drive The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by UANI — GOP, Democrats square off at final impeachment hearing The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - A crucial week on impeachment MORE will host a photo opportunity with members of Team USA for the 2019 Special Olympics World Games at noon. The president meets with Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands for 90 minutes this afternoon at the White House.

 

Pompeo departs for travel through Sunday to Buenos Aires, Argentina; Guayaquil, Ecuador; Mexico City, Mexico; San Salvador, El Salvador; and Orlando, Fla.

 

The Aspen Security Forum runs through Saturday in Aspen, Colo., with current and former federal officials analyzing a range of security topics. Information HERE.

 

The Smithsonian Institution for a final time tonight transforms the east face of the Washington Monument into a 363-foot Saturn V rocket to salute the 50th anniversary this week of the Apollo 11 lunar mission. View the high-tech projection show on the Mall from 9:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Information is HERE

 

The Hill invites you to two live events: July 24 features the third annual Latina Leaders Summit at the Conrad Washington, D.C., with leaders from across the country, including Rep. Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-Calif.), Del. Jenniffer González-Colón (R-Puerto Rico) and Rep. Grace NapolitanoGraciela (Grace) Flores NapolitanoBicameral group of Democrats introduces bill to protect immigrant laborers Latina leaders: 'It's a women's world more than anything' The Hill's 12:30 Report: Muller testimony dominates Washington MORE (D-Calif.). They’ll discuss paths to elective office and the next generation of Latina leaders. Information is HERE. … On July 25, The Hill presents “Policy Prescriptions: Lowering Drug Prices” at 1777 F Street NW, Washington, D.C., with Sens. Mike BraunMichael BraunSenate braces for brawl on Trump impeachment rules Trump's legal team huddles with Senate Republicans Pressure grows on House GOP leaders to hold line ahead of impeachment trial MORE (R-Ind.) and Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinIt's time for Congress to establish a national mental health crisis number The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Better Medicare Alliance - Dems unveil impeachment measure; Vindman splits GOP The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Better Medicare Alliance - Dems shift strategy on impeachment vote MORE (D-Wis.), who will discuss how to lower patient drug prices. Sign up HERE.

 

The Well News hosts a 9 a.m. moderated panel discussion called “Legislating from the Middle” with members of Congress about efforts to build consensus on Capitol Hill. Lawmakers from the Blue Dog Coalition, the New Democrat Coalition and the Tuesday Group will participate. Information HERE.

 

The Washington Post hosts a live event to interview presidential candidate Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerRosario Dawson joins Booker for 'Lead with Love' tour Sunday shows — Nadler: A jury would convict Trump in 'three minutes flat' Booker on Harris dropping out: 'Iowa voters should have the right to choose' MORE (D-N.J.) at 9 a.m. Information HERE

 

National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Rep. Tom EmmerThomas (Tom) Earl EmmerDemocrat who opposed Trump, Clinton impeachment inquiries faces big test Republicans disavow GOP candidate who said 'we should hang' Omar George Papadopoulos launches campaign to run for Katie Hill's congressional seat MORE (R-Minn.) will be interviewed by reporters from 8 a.m.-9 a.m. during an event sponsored by The Christian Science Monitor in Washington.



ELSEWHERE

Notre Dame: The famous cathedral in Paris came far closer to collapsing in April than anyone knew (The New York Times event reconstruction). … Restoring the cathedral, a July progress report in photographs (TIME).

 

Federal Reserve: In Donald Trump vs. Jay Powell, new battle lines are being drawn (Bloomberg Businessweek).

 

Housing: For buyers and renters, housing costs are vastly outstripping income, a new study based on census data going back to 1960 confirmed with some eye-popping statistics. “The Midwest might be the last region homeowners can realistically afford,” the study said (The Hill). … The U.S. housing market is stuck in a rut, even as mortgage rates fall. Weak housing and manufacturing are holding back the economy, offsetting strong consumer spending, the Commerce Department reported on Wednesday (Reuters).

 

Ebola: The outbreak of the deadly disease in the Congo is a global health emergency, the World Health Organization declared Wednesday after the virus spread this week to a city of 2 million people. It’s only the fifth such declaration in history. Health workers continue to worry about regional spread of Ebola after the first confirmed case in Goma in northeastern Congo indicated infection at a regional crossroads on the Rwandan border near an international airport (The Hill and The Associated Press).

 

 

 



THE CLOSER

And finally … It’s Thursday, which means it’s time for this week’s Morning Report Quiz! Inspired by the Apollo 11 lunar mission 50 years ago, we’re eager for some smart guesses about the moon, NASA and the global fascination with outer space.

 

Email your responses to asimendinger@thehill.com and/or aweaver@thehill.com, and please add “Quiz” to subject lines. Winners who submit correct answers will enjoy some richly deserved newsletter fame on Friday.

 

How many astronauts have walked on the surface of the moon?

 

1)        Zero

2)        One

3)        Three

4)        Twelve

 

How many Apollo missions successfully landed astronauts on the moon and brought them back to Earth?

 

1)        One

2)        Two

3)        Six

4)        Twelve

 

Which of these innovations exist as a result of the Apollo era, thanks to NASA scientists and those working with them?

 

1)        Freeze-dried foods

2)        Silver foil “space blankets”

3)        Cordless vacuum cleaners

4)        All of the above

 

During the Apollo 11 mission, “Eagle” referred to …?

 

1)        Former NASA flight commander Gene Kranz

2)        U.S. flag planted on the moon

3)        Small module that transported two astronauts to the moon’s surface

4)        NASA mission control headquarters in Houston

 

What inspired President Kennedy to announce in 1961 that the United States would go to the moon?

 

1)        Federal budget surplus that the White House wanted to spend

2)        Desire to create more jobs in Texas and Florida

3)        History-making Soviet strides with the Sputnik satellite and cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin’s orbit of the Earth

4)        1961 sci-fi TV show “A for Andromeda”