Cup of Joe – November 13, 2023

Punchbowl News: “Government funding runs out after Nov. 17. The chances of a shutdown are low, but this week will be full of drama between the two parties and two chambers — plus the White House — over how to deal with this situation. Even keeping the lights on has proven to be tedious work in the 118th Congress, one of the key reasons Moody’s moved on Friday to downgrade its outlook on the U.S. government’s credit rating.”

“After weeks of conversations about changing the way Washington works, Speaker Mike Johnson will seek to pass a complex ‘clean’ stopgap funding bill Tuesday that maintains the status quo. The House Rules Committee will meet this afternoon to take up the 32-page bill.”

“The Rules hearing will be watched closely, especially how a trio of hardline conservatives on the panel vote. Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas), one of those members, has already said he’s opposed to Johnson’s proposal. If successful in Rules, Johnson and GOP leaders will have to pass the rule on the floor, another major challenge. The full House is expected to vote on the measure Tuesday.”

The Washington Post says how Johnson handles this high-stakes week will “set the stage” for the rest of his speakership.

Politico: “Given the timetable (less than a week), Johnson’s experience dealing with shutdown politics (near zero), and the level of disarray in the GOP conference (high), the chances of a shutdown are growing.”

“Sources on the Hill and at the White House said they are adjusting travel plans accordingly and preparing to spend the holiday in D.C.”

“A last-minute short-term clean CR is always possible, but over at the White House they are not holding their breath.”

Playbook: “Nobody is rooting for a shutdown, but it isn’t lost on Democrats that the recent political history of these funding standoffs is that they usually redound to the benefit of one party— and it isn’t the GOP.”

“Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) rolled out a two-step government funding stopgap bill on Saturday, settling on an unusual approach to avert a government shutdown that is already getting pushback from Republicans with just days until a Friday funding deadline,” The Hill reports.

“The ‘laddered’ continuing resolution (CR) released Saturday would have some funding run out on Jan. 19, and the rest of the funding on Feb. 2 — an approach intended to discourage negotiation of a whole-of-government omnibus funding bill and to encourage the House and Senate to negotiate on the 12 regular funding bills.”

Donald Trump promised on Truth Social to “root out” the “vermin within the confines of our Country” if re-elected.

Said Trump: “The threat from outside forces is far less sinister, dangerous, and grave, than the threat from within.”

Washington Post: “As Trump’s Republican rivals face growing pressure to stop his momentum, while Democrats seek to neutralize concerns about Biden’s age, the two sides are converging on a common argument — that Trump’s cognition has declined too far for him to lead the country again.”


Associated Press: “Much of the 2024 presidential campaign has been dominated by the myriad investigations into former President Donald Trump and the subsequent charges against him. But with less than a year until Election Day, Trump is dominating the race for the Republican nomination and has already laid out a sweeping set of policy goals should he win a second term.”

“His ideas, and even the issues he focuses on most, are wildly different from President Joe Biden’s proposals. If implemented, Trump’s plans would represent a dramatic government overhaul arguably more consequential than that of his first term. His presidency, especially the early days, was marked by chaos, infighting and a wave of hastily written executive orders that were quickly overturned by the courts.”

“Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has not decided on a re-election bid in 2024,” Axios reports.

“The California Republican, who was ousted in a historic speaker removal last month, had previously said he would run for re-election.”

“Democrats’ rush to get abortion-related initiatives on the ballot in key states could throw a wrench in Republicans’ effort to keep the House in 2024,” Axios reports.

“As many as eight states could have an abortion-related referendum on the ballot next November. Among those states are nearly two dozen House districts rated as some degree of competitive by Cook Political Report.”

“Maryland and New York — which alone could have half a dozen swing districts, pending a redistricting lawsuit — are both set to have referenda on the ballot.”

A new Financial Times/University of Michigan poll finds just 14% of American voters believe they are better off financially now than when President Biden took office.

“The New Georgia Project, a voting rights organization founded by the state’s Democratic star Stacey Abrams and overseen for more than two years by Georgia Sen. Raphael Warnock, is beset by allegations of financial misuse and irregularities,” Politico reports.

“The organization, which played a key role in registering the new voters necessary to turn Georgia from a red state to a swing state with two Democratic senators, is conducting its own internal probe into its finances in response to the claims of irregularities, one of its two board chairs, Frank Wilson, said.”

An internal State Department dissent memo accuses President Biden of “spreading misinformation” on the Israel-Hamas war and alleges that Israel is committing “war crimes” in Gaza, Axios reports.

Washington Post: “Each was like a piece from a grisly puzzle, a snippet of fine detail from an operation that called for hundreds of discrete crimes in specific locations. Five weeks later, the reassembled fragments are beginning to reveal the contours of Hamas’s broader plan, one that analysts say was intended not just to kill and capture Israelis, but to spark a conflagration that would sweep the region and lead to a wider conflict.”

“The evidence, described by more than a dozen current and former intelligence and security officials from four Western and Middle Eastern countries, reveals an intention by Hamas planners to strike a blow of historic proportions, in the expectation that the group’s actions would compel an overwhelming Israeli response.”

 “Brett McGurk, President Biden’s senior Middle East adviser, is expected to travel to Israel and several other countries in the region this coming week to discuss the war in Gaza and the efforts to secure the release of the hostages held by Hamas,” Axios reports.

“Prime Minister Rishi Sunak of Britain on Monday fired Suella Braverman, one of his most senior and divisive ministers, in a shuffle of his top team that brought one of his predecessors, David Cameron, unexpectedly back into government as the foreign secretary,” the New York Times reports.

“Critics had argued that Ms. Braverman, who as home secretary had been responsible for law enforcement, immigration and national security, had stirred tensions ahead of a huge, pro-Palestinian demonstration in London on Saturday during which the police clashed with far right counterprotesters.”

BBC: “It is a remarkable return to government for the former Conservative prime minister, in office between 2010 and 2016.”

Wall Street Journal: “Biden and Xi are set to hold their first face-to-face meeting in a year in the San Francisco Bay Area on Wednesday, with both saying they want to mend a divisive, rivalrous U.S.-China relationship. To get to the table, both sides have resorted to maneuvers that appear aimed at putting the other side off balance.”

Foreign Affairs: “Xi Jinping has brought an era of pragmatic, non-ideological governance to a crashing halt. In its place, he has developed a new form of Marxist nationalism that now shapes the presentation and substance of China’s politics, economy, and foreign policy.”

“In doing so, Xi is not constructing theoretical castles in the air to rationalize decisions that the CCP has made for other, more practical reasons.”

 “In a landmark agreement set to be announced at Wednesday’s much-awaited bilateral meeting, Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping are poised to pledge a ban on the use of artificial intelligence in autonomous weaponry, such as drones, and in the control and deployment of nuclear warheads,” the South China Morning Post reports.

“President Biden is shifting more into campaign mode, with plans to increasingly attack his likely 2024 Republican opponent, former President Donald Trump, after some of his allies have urged him to do so in recent days,“ NBC News reports.

“Biden personally made the decision to criticize Trump on more than policy during an event Thursday with United Auto Workers, according to two of the people, after privately expressing dismay that union members might support his predecessor over him. He also took a punchier approach to his typical swipes at Trump during a fundraiser that same day, saying ‘since I came off the sidelines to go toe to toe with Donald Trump we haven’t stopped winning.’”

Said Biden: “The truth is, this guy can’t get tired of losing.”

“Federal authorities are investigating whether Mayor Eric Adams, weeks before his election two years ago, pressured New York Fire Department officials to sign off on the Turkish government’s new high-rise consulate in Manhattan despite safety concerns with the building,” the New York Times reports.

“After winning the Democratic mayoral primary in July, Mr. Adams contacted then-Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro in late summer 2021 and urged him to allow the Turkish government to occupy the building at least on a temporary basis. The building had yet to open because fire officials had cited safety issues and declined to sign off on its occupancy.”

Reuters: “Center-left Peronist economy chief Sergio Massa faces libertarian outsider Javier Milei in the Nov. 19 vote, with polls suggesting a likely photo finish. Two wildly different visions for South America’s no. 2 economy are on offer.”

“Milei offers potentially painful shock therapy for the embattled country that has run out of foreign currency reserves, has inflation over 100% and is set for a recession. Pragmatist Massa is pledging a unity government and more gradual change to solve the crisis that has worsened on his watch.”

Bloomberg says Milei continues to hold a slight polling edge over Massa, 49% to 45%.

 “The House may consider a resolution this week that aims to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas after a push by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) to do so,” The Hill reports.

Despite losing the 2020 election, Donald Trump came to believe a fringe conspiracy theory that he could be reinstated long after leaving office and before the next election, a new book Jonathan Karl reveals, ABC News reports.

The idea was not based in law and was clearly unconstitutional, but it was supported by some of Trump’s most devout followers, MyPillow CEO Michael Lindell chief among them.

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

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