Cup of Joe – 11/10/21

“The White House is planning a signing ceremony for the bipartisan infrastructure deal next week when Congress returns to town from recess,” Punchbowl News reports.

“We do wonder if any of the 13 House Republicans who voted for the bill will stand next to Biden as he signs it. Somehow, since some in the House Republican Conference are threatening to try to strip them of committee assignments, we doubt they’ll find their way to 1600 Pennsylvania for this one.”

“But what about Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell? We doubt that one too.”

“It’s a godsend for Kentucky.” — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), quoted by WKYT, on the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Punchbowl News: “Before the Friday night vote, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy met with a number of Republicans who were potential ‘yes’ votes for the infrastructure bill in Minority Whip Steve Scalise’s office. McCarthy pleaded with the group to hold back their votes until Democrats crossed the 218-vote threshold for passing the bill on their own. Leadership believed everyone was in agreement on the plan, GOP sources said.”

“Rep. John Katko (R-NY) then saw this clip on TV in which Scalise and Reps. Jim Banks (R-IN) and Andy Biggs (R-AZ) dumped all over the $1 trillion-plus measure.”

“Katko was furious about this clip, sources told us, and voted early for the infrastructure bill on the House floor, ignoring McCarthy’s entreaties. Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ) did the same. By then, it was clear that the Democrats were going to win. But the whole incident demonstrates once again how tense the mood is in the House these days — in both parties.”

Washington Post: The GOP floats punishing 13 of its members. Their sin? Giving Biden a win.

Punchbowl News: “The GOP leadership is bracing for rank-and-file lawmakers to attempt to strip committee assignments from the 13 Republican lawmakers who voted for the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. Several of these lawmakers are also ranking members — top Republicans on committees — and those could be at risk, too.”

“A number of GOP lawmakers were upset by the fact that several of their Republican colleagues voted early for the infrastructure package, helping Democrats cross the majority threshold on a key piece of President Joe Biden’s legislative agenda and undermining their party strategy.”

“McCarthy’s strategy had been to wait until the Democrats reached 218 votes before Republicans cast their votes, making Pelosi and other Democratic leaders carry it on their own. But Katko and the others blew that up. There’s a lingering feeling of betrayal.”

The House Select Committee has issued subpoenas to ten former Trump administration officials, including individuals who served on the White House staff at the time of the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Politico: “Former President Donald Trump filed an emergency request to a federal judge late Monday night to prevent the National Archives from sending sensitive records to Jan. 6 committee investigators by Friday. And just after midnight, Judge Tanya Chutkan rejected it, contending the request itself was legally defective and ‘premature.’”

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) said that former President Donald Trump is at war “with the rule of law and the Constitution” and that GOP lawmakers who sit by silently are aiding his efforts, the AP reports.

Said Cheney: “We are also confronting a domestic threat that we have never faced before: A former president who’s attempting to unravel the foundations of our constitutional republic, aided by political leaders, who have made themselves willing hostages to this dangerous and irrational man.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) hit back at Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) after he posted an altered anime clip that showed him killing her, the Washington Post reports.

Said Ocasio-Cortez: “While I was en route to Glasgow, a creepy member I work with who fundraises for Neo-Nazi groups shared a fantasy video of him killing me.”

She added: “This dude is a just a collection of wet toothpicks anyway. White supremacy is for extremely fragile people & sad men like him, whose self concept relies on the myth that he was born superior because deep down he knows he couldn’t open a pickle jar or read a whole book by himself.”

“Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is calling for a series of investigations into Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) after the Arizona Republican took to Twitter this week to advertise violence against Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and President Biden,” The Hill reports.

Said Pelosi: “Threats of violence against Members of Congress and the President of the United States must not be tolerated.”

Rep. Paul Gosar’s (R-AZ) sister told CNN that her brother is not being held accountable for his behavior by other lawmakers.  Said Jennifer Gosar: “I have proximity to this sociopath who has been elected from a very gerrymandered district. There is no other way that someone like Paul wins. Without that he is incompetent. It is obvious.”

The Congressional Budget Office warned that a full cost estimate on the $1.75 trillion budget reconciliation bill may not be done by the week of November 15.

While there will be some estimates this week, “other estimates will take longer, particularly for provisions in some titles that interact with those in other titles.”

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN): “Translation: Build Back Better act is not gonna happen next week and everyone should have seen that coming when we decoupled the bills.”

New York Times: “Pfizer and BioNTech are expected on Tuesday to ask federal regulators to expand authorization of its coronavirus booster shot to include all adults.”

“The Food and Drug Administration is considered likely to grant the request, perhaps before Thanksgiving.”

“During the month of September, Texans not vaccinated against Covid-19 were 20 times more likely to die from Covid-19-related complications and 13 times more likely to test positive than people who were fully vaccinated, according to a new study by the Texas Department of State Health Services,” the Dallas Morning News reports.

The Singaporean government said that it will no longer cover the medical costs of people “unvaccinated by choice,” who make up the bulk of remaining new covid-19 cases and hospitalizations in the city-state, the Washington Post reports.

“Senior Chinese diplomats have called on the United States not to show off its power over the South China Sea, as former leaders in Southeast Asia warned of the risk of a misfire in the disputed waters with increasing presence of naval vessels,” the South China Morning Post reports.

“China’s military has built mockups in the shape of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier and other U.S. warships, possibly as training targets, in the desert of Xinjiang,“ Reuters reports.

A new report released today finds that the “proportion of electricity the United States gets from solar and wind nearly quadrupled between 2011 and 2020,” the Washington Post reports.

“The analysis also found that if the current growth rate continues, wind, solar and geothermal would meet current electricity demand levels by 2035 — which is when President Biden aims to have an entirely fossil-fuel-free grid.”

Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) told CNN that he received a threatening voicemail after voting for the bipartisan infrastructure bill.  Said the message: “I hope everybody in your fucking family dies.”  The caller added that the Republican lawmaker was a “fucking piece of shit traitor.”

Reuters tracked down nine people who made threats or left other hostile messages to election workers.

“In all, they are responsible for nearly two dozen harassing communications to six election officials in four states. Seven made threats explicit enough to put a reasonable person in fear of bodily harm or death, the U.S. federal standard for criminal prosecution.”

“These cases provide a unique perspective into how people with everyday jobs and lives have become radicalized to the point of terrorizing public officials.”

Just out: Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show by Jonathan Karl.

The Atlantic runs an excerpt explaining how Trump loyalist Johnny McEntee, as director of presidential personnel, turned the office into an internal police force and set up a rogue legal team to pressure Mike Pence into overturning election results. 

Washington Post: “American workers are increasingly seeking higher pay, more flexibility, and remote options as they flex their leverage in the current job market, but many companies are not necessarily being more accommodative, continuing to favor candidates with several years of experience in their industry, more availability to work evening or weekend hours, or a preference for those willing to work in-person.”

“This mismatch in what both sides prioritize is yet another challenge complicating the country’s economic recovery, helping explain weaker hiring in August and September. In many ways, supply and demand forces in the labor market are still out of equilibrium.”

“Economic pessimism is on the rise — despite the fact that the actual economy is doing exceptionally well,” Axios reports.

“The big question facing the White House between now and next year’s elections is whether it will be able to use America’s real-world economic health to boost President Biden’s economic approval ratings.”

“Inflation at the wholesale level rose 8.6% last month from a year earlier, matching September’s record annual gain and offering more evidence that inflationary pressures are not yet easing,” the AP reports.

“California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has not appeared publicly since abruptly canceling a visit to Glasgow, Scotland on Oct. 29 for a climate change conference, stirring considerable online speculation,” the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

“The governor’s office originally said Newsom would not make the trip due to ‘family obligations,’ and when reached for comment Monday, offered no additional details on why the governor backed out. In the time since, Newsom has held no press conferences or public appearances of any kind, which is uncommon for the usually highly visible governor.”

“After more than a week of silence, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) finally revealed the reason he canceled his trip to Scotland for the United Nations climate conference: spending Halloween with his kids,” the Sacramento Bee reports.

“Newsom and his wife… had planned to attend the conference from Nov. 1-3 in Glasgow, which would have forced them to miss Halloween. That upset the four Newsom children — ages 5, 8, 10 and 12 — so they staged what Newsom called an ‘intervention’ at dinner.”

“Newsom said he explained to his kids why he and Siebel Newsom needed to go. But the next morning he woke with a knot in his stomach and decided he had to cancel.”

Washington Post: “Celinda Lake, a pollster for Biden, said Democrats should take two cautionary tales from the American Rescue Plan: Few voters know that Republicans voted against it, and voters only temporarily gave credit to Democrats for passing it.”

Said Lake: “It’s a sobering reminder of how hard it is to break through, how hard it is to get credit and how little people really understand who is voting for and against these things.”

“White House officials say circumstances are different now. For instance, the infrastructure plan will take much more time to implement, in contrast to the American Rescue Plan, for which the administration worked to get relief out to Americans as quickly as possible.”

“That longer timeline, officials said, will allow the administration to continue to sell pieces of the plan for many months and even years later.”

Politico: “The Senate is only scheduled to be in three weeks for the rest of 2021, with a recess set to start Dec. 10. There’s almost no chance that schedule holds at this point, with the Democratic majority facing a to-do list more daunting than a Black Friday sales rush. Congress has to fund the government past Dec. 3, pass a massive defense policy bill, finish out a $1.75 trillion party-line social spending bill and potentially maneuver around a U.S. credit default.”

“Each of those four bills could take several days of Senate floor time, not to mention the myriad negotiations still left to hash out Biden’s GOP-free domestic agenda with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), who wants to slow things down. Already some senators are anticipating a short-term government funding patch for a few weeks, potentially right up until Christmas. And in a worst-case scenario, the debt limit would need to be raised right around that same time — something Republicans say they won’t help with.”

Said Sen. John Thune (R-SD): “It’s going to be a train wreck.”

“Boris Johnson declined to apologize over his attempt to protect a ruling U.K. Conservative Party lawmaker who broke lobbying rules, even with his government still battling to contain the fallout,” Bloomberg reports.

“Russia is moving more tanks near the border with Ukraine, defense-intelligence firm Janes said, reinforcing western concerns about reports of a build-up of Russian military forces close to its neighbor,” Bloomberg reports.

“Former U.S. senator and Veterans Administration leader Max Cleland (D) died more than 53 years after a live grenade dropped by a fellow soldier in Vietnam robbed him of three limbs,” the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports.

“President Joe Biden is planning to host an in-person meeting with the leaders of Mexico and Canada, the first of its kind in more than five years,” Reuters reports.

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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