The Hill’s 12:30 Report — Biden’s Russian sanctions get poetic
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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.
Getting poetic with the sanctions:
President Biden just announced plans to use the proceeds from Russian oligarchs’ seized assets to help Ukrainians.
Does he have that authority?: Well, Biden is sending those plans to Congress to approve.
Why this is the next step: “The Biden administration has been working with European partners since the war began to find and confiscate bank accounts, property and even such trappings of wealth as super yachts from Russian moguls. But officials said current U.S. law has gaps and needs to be streamlined to make the campaign more effective.” A full explanation from The New York Times’s Peter Baker: https://nyti.ms/3OVhjjF
And another massive $$ request:
As part of the announcement, President Biden also asked Congress to authorize an additional $33 billion in assistance to Ukraine amid the Russian conflict.
More from The Hill’s Morgan Chalfant: https://bit.ly/3LseC6U
Biden’s justification for the price tag: “The cost of this fight? It’s not cheap. But caving to aggression is going to be more costly, if we allow it to happen.” https://bit.ly/3vpnlRE
WATCH BIDEN’S FULL ANNOUNCEMENT:
Here’s the video: https://bit.ly/3xY9Vh4
And here’s a photo from the room: From Bloomberg’s Jordan Fabian: https://bit.ly/3KDdqwp
It’s an annoyingly chilly Thursday morning in D.C., especially considering it’s almost May. 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 email@example.com — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.
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OTHER NEWS THIS MORNING
A good step in vaccinating the bebehs:
Moderna announced this morning that it will seek authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to vaccinate children 6 months to five years old for COVID-19.
Now what? It could take some time: “The company said the application would become fully complete next week, and there still needs to be time for the FDA to review it and for an outside advisory committee to meet, which could be in June.”
What we know: https://bit.ly/3vp8Nl0
Happening today — that chair may be feeling a bit warm:
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is testifying today on the Biden administration’s immigration policies.
Specifically: The Biden administration’s plan to lift Title 42, a Trump-era asylum rule put in place at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Watch the hearing: Here’s the livestream: https://bit.ly/36VCGQD
Photo of the room, via The Hill’s Rebecca Beitsch: https://bit.ly/39svIUd
Some of the charts for the hearing: From C-SPAN’s Howard Mortman: https://bit.ly/37RoFUj
IN THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY
Which is more appropriate: A little nudge or a big shove?:
Via The Hill’s Alexander Bolton, “Democrats are divided over how hard to push President Biden’s agenda in the months remaining until Election Day, uncertain about how much risk to take on at a time when Biden’s approval rating is stuck just above 40 percent.” https://bit.ly/3MHmnGp
Democrats aren’t as optimistic anymore: “Democratic lawmakers are growing increasingly pessimistic about scoring a big legislative victory and are split over whether it makes sense to force so-called messaging votes on the Senate floor to draw contrasts with Republicans on key issues, such as expanded access to child care, programs to fight climate change and prescription drug reform.”
How this could play out: https://bit.ly/3MHmnGp
IN THE GOP
Alexander Burns and Jonathan Martin continue to have us on the edge of our seats:
The two New York Times journalists shared another tidbit from their book, “This Will Not Pass,” this time with quotes from former President Trump.
The gist, according to Punchbowl News: Trump argues that he would still be in the White House had it not been for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)
Excerpt: “McConnell, he said matter-of-factly, ‘is bad news.’ ‘Had Mitch stuck with many members of the party who knew the election was rigged, I think we wouldn’t be at Mar-a-Lago,’ Trump said, clinging to the fantasy of a stolen election. ‘We would be at the White House having this conversation.’”
Some context to that excerpt: https://bit.ly/3Krh4sZ
LATEST WITH COVID-19
The gist of the messaging:
Via The Hill’s Peter Sullivan, “Americans are hearing mixed messages on the pandemic as the country moves into a new phase of a more than two-year battle against the coronavirus.” https://bit.ly/3KlhwZH
The conundrum: “The United States is clearly in an improved position, with hospitalizations at their lowest point of the pandemic and deaths falling. But with cases ticking up, there is disagreement among health experts about how much risk remains and how far people need to go to deal with it.”
The debate experts are discussing: https://bit.ly/3KlhwZH
Coronavirus cases in the U.S.: 81,189,980
U.S. death toll: 992,740
Breakdown of the numbers: https://cnn.it/2UAgW3y
Total number of vaccinations administered in the U.S.: 574 million shots have been given.
Seven-day average of doses administered: An average of 88,505 doses
For context: The U.S. population is roughly 331 million.
Breakdown of the numbers: https://bloom.bg/3iVTPLH
This looks like a school pick-up line:
The Huffington Post’s Igor Bobic tweeted a time lapse of House members leaving the Capitol after votes. Watch: https://bit.ly/38wkugE
I love random facts like this — iS tHiS a CoNsPiRaCy?:
CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski noticed that “from 1869 to 1913 we only had one president who did not have a mustache or beard. Since we have not had a single president have either.” https://bit.ly/36YNRbe
The House and Senate are in. President Biden is in Washington, D.C.
9:30 a.m. EDT: President Biden received the President’s Daily Brief.
Noon: A cloture vote in the Senate. The Senate’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/3MwosEI
1:15 p.m. EDT: First votes in the House. The House’s full agenda today: https://bit.ly/3vRGJ92
1:45 p.m. EDT: Another Senate vote if cloture is reached.
3:15 p.m. EDT: Last votes in the House.
5 p.m. EDT: President Biden and first lady Jill Biden host their first official film screening at the White House, showing HBO’s “The Survivor” in honor of Yom HaShoah and Holocaust Remembrance Week.
WHAT TO WATCH:
9:45 a.m. EDT: Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Schumer Charles (D-N.Y.) held a press conference on lowering gas prices. Watch: https://bit.ly/3vOhc0k
10 a.m. EDT: Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testified on the southern border. Livestream: https://bit.ly/36VCGQD
10:45 a.m. EDT: President Biden delivered remarks on supporting Ukrainians. Watch: https://bit.ly/3ETzHVm
2 p.m. EDT: President Biden meets with small business owners. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3F3Db7S
3 p.m. EDT: White House press secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing. Livestream: https://bit.ly/3xXVE44
IN LIGHTER NEWS:
Today is National Blueberry Pie Day!
I’ve never met a tiki bar I didn’t like:
Via DC Eater, a new tiki bar will pick guests up on the Georgetown waterfront and float around the Potomac. Photo and details: https://bit.ly/3kiUQPd
And to make you smile, here’s a dog who loves listening to Billy Joel: https://bit.ly/3F01y6b
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