Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) talks to Chuck Todd about congressional negotiations over Covid relief and the results of the 2020 election, during an exclusive interview with Meet the Press.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday disposed of the last of three cases brought to the justices by former President Donald Trump challenging his election loss, bringing a muted end to his futile quest in the courts to hold onto power. The court without comment rejected Trump's appeal challenging thousands of absentee ballots filed in Wisconsin, an election battleground that the Republican businessman-turned-politician lost to Democrat Joe Biden by more than 20,000 votes. Biden became president on Jan. 20.
- Business Insider
Sen. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, says he will fight for Republicans to get a say in Biden's infrastructure bill and block it if they don't
Sen. Manchin has become a pivotal figure in the finely-balanced Senate, and wants to see Democrats seek bipartisan backing for planned bills.
Joining hundreds of women in Istanbul to protest at China's treatment of Uighurs, Nursiman Abdurasit tearfully thinks of her jailed mother in Xinjiang and fears that Uighurs like her in Turkey may one day be sent back under an extradition deal. Beijing approved an extradition treaty between the two nations in December and with the deal awaiting ratification by Ankara's parliament, activists among some 40,000 Uighurs living in Turkey have stepped up efforts to highlight their plight.
- The New York Times
Most Republicans who spoke at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, avoided acknowledging the events of Jan. 6. But less than 30 seconds into his speech, Sen. Josh Hawley confronted them head on. That day, Hawley said, had underscored the “great crisis moment” in which Americans currently found themselves. That day, he explained, the mob had come for him. The “woke mob,” that is. In the weeks since, they had “tried to cancel me, censor me, expel me, shut me down.” To “stop me,” Hawley said, “from representing you.” Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times “And guess what?” he went on, his tempo building, the audience applauding: “I’m here today, I’m not going anywhere, and I’m not backing down.” The appeal from Missouri’s junior senator reflected what has become standard fare in a Republican Party still in thrall to Donald J. Trump. As Hawley’s audience seemed to agree, his amplification of the former president’s false claims of a stolen election was not incitement for the mob of rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan 6; it was a principled stand against the “radical left.” Yet to some of the senator’s earliest supporters, it was precisely for its ordinariness that the speech stood out, the latest reminder of the distance between the Josh Hawley they thought they had voted for and the Josh Hawley who now appeared regularly on Fox News. Against the backdrop of Trump’s GOP, the idea had been that Hawley was different. Sworn in at 39 years old, he ascended to the Senate in part by selling himself as an intellectual in a movement that increasingly seemed to shun intellect. Whereas Trump fired off brash tweets littered with random capitalizations and adverbs like “bigly,” Hawley published essays on subjects like medieval theology. Throughout his life, whether as a student at Stanford or a law professor in Missouri, Hawley had impressed people as “thoughtful” and “sophisticated,” a person of “depth.” And as a growing number of conservatives saw it, he also had the proper ideas. From the time he was a teenager, he had criticized the free-market allegiance at the center of Republican orthodoxy; when he arrived in Washington, he immediately launched into a crusade against Big Tech. The conservative think-tank class embraced him as someone who had the right vocabulary, the right suits and the right worldview to translate Trump’s vague populist instincts into a fresh blueprint for his party’s future — someone elite enough, in other words, to be entrusted with the banner of anti-elitism. Which is in part why, when Hawley became the first senator to announce that he would object to the certification of Joe Biden as president, many of his allies underwent a public mourning of sorts. They’d expected as much from, say, Ted Cruz — as one senior Senate aide put it, the Texas Republican, who had filibustered Obamacare while its namesake was still in office, had always been transparent about his motivations. But Hawley? To survey Hawley’s life is indeed to see a consistency in the broad strokes of his political cosmology. Yet interviews with more than 50 people close to Hawley cast light on what, in the haze of charm and first impressions, his admirers often seemed to miss: an attachment to the steady cadence of ascension, and a growing comfort with doing what might be necessary to maintain it. Hawley’s Stanford adviser, the historian David Kennedy, struggled to reconcile his memories with the now-infamous image of the senator, fist raised in solidarity with pro-Trump demonstrators shortly before they descended on the Capitol. “The Josh I knew was not an angry young person,” he recalled. “But when I see him now on television, he just always seems angry — really angry.” Kennedy acknowledged that Hawley was just one of many Republicans in the Trump era who had steeped their brand in “anger and resentment and grievance.” But for many of those once close to Hawley, that was the point: How did a man who seemed so special turn out to be just like everyone else? And what, they wondered, did Josh Hawley have to be so angry about? When Hawley arrived in Washington in January 2019 as Missouri’s junior senator, he positioned himself as the intellectual heir of Trumpism — the politician who could integrate the president’s populist instincts into a comprehensive ideology for the GOP. In his maiden speech, he summoned the lamentation of cultural erosion he’d been refining since high school, arguing that the “great American middle” had been overlooked by a “new, arrogant aristocracy.” For conservatives who felt Trump had identified uncomfortable truths about the party despite ultimately governing like a typical Republican, Hawley’s arrival was timely. That July, conservative writers and policy experts gathered at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington for the inaugural National Conservatism Conference, meant to map a departure from the corporate-class policies that for decades had defined conservatism. Hawley, who in his keynote speech decried the “cosmopolitan consensus,” was introduced as the fledgling movement’s “champion in the Senate.” He did not discourage whispers about 2024, and some younger Trump campaign aides, who saw him as the “refined” version of their boss, mused privately about working for him should he run. It wasn’t long before Donald Trump Jr. was inviting him to lunch at his father’s Washington hotel. Even so, he baffled his party’s leadership as he tried to derail the confirmation of some of Trump’s conservative judicial nominees, deeming their records on social issues like abortion and same-sex marriage insufficiently pure. But it was Trump’s refusal to accept the election results that offered the first real stress test for the brand Hawley had labored to cultivate — whether it was possible to be both the darling of the conservative intelligentsia and the “fighter” the party’s base craved. He had reason to believe it was. He was comfortable paying “the price of admission,” as one Republican official put it, to a place in Trump’s GOP, in part because nothing in his short political career had suggested there would ever be a cost. Early on, few had blinked when he embraced the president during a visit to Missouri. He had courted far-right figures during his campaign, yet still received plum speaking slots at high-minded conferences. And so on Dec. 30, Josh Hawley became the first Senate Republican to announce his intent to challenge Biden’s congressional certification. Hawley’s team was adamant that he had not been motivated by a potential presidential bid in 2024, but among other things had been moved by a December video conference with 30 constituents who said they felt “disenfranchised” by Biden’s victory. “He knows the state well after two campaigns, and I think he knew that Missourians supported the president,” said James Harris, a longtime political adviser to Hawley. He tried to thread the needle as he always had, wrapping his objection not in fevered “STOP THE STEAL” tweets but in questions about the constitutionality of mail-in voting in Pennsylvania. And, had there been no violence, perhaps his gambit would have worked. But when Hawley and others lent their voices to Trump’s lie of rampant voter fraud, people listened. Hawley spent much of Jan. 6 hiding with his colleagues in a Senate committee room as Trump supporters stormed the Capitol. He sat hunched against the wall, eyes fixed on his phone, as Republicans and Democrats alike blamed him for the madness. Later that evening, when senators safely reconvened to finish certifying the election, Hawley forged ahead with his objection. The reckoning was swift. Simon & Schuster dropped plans to publish his book, “The Tyranny of Big Tech.” Major donors severed ties. Yet something else happened, too. Hawley saw a surge in small-dollar donations to his campaign, making January his best fundraising month since 2018. As Axios first reported, the $969,000 he amassed easily offset defections from corporate political action committees. Added to that was the applause of the Senate Conservatives Fund, which has since bundled more than $300,000 for Hawley. As his advisers saw it, the lessons of the Trump era — that success in today’s GOP means never having to say you’re sorry — were clear. And Josh Hawley was nothing if not a star student. In the weeks since, Hawley has vowed to sue the “woke mob” at Simon & Schuster for dropping his book. He’s written for The New York Post about “the muzzling of America.” He has appeared on Fox News to discuss said muzzling. And while he said shortly after the riot that he would not run for president in 2024, his advisers have continued to hype him as “one of the favorites” of a potential Republican primary field. Hawley tested his new cri de coeur on a live audience on Feb. 26, at the gathering of the conservative faithful in Orlando. “You know, on Jan. 6, I objected to the Electoral College certification,” he began. “Maybe you heard about it.” The room erupted. “I did,” he went on, “I stood up —” His words were drowned out by cheers. It had not been the mood of his speech. But as he paused to take in the standing ovation, Hawley seemed happy. This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
- The Telegraph
New Zealand 'not likely' to become a republic in wake of Harry and Meghan interview, says Jacinda Ardern
New Zealand's prime minister says the country is “not likely” to become a republic in the wake of Prince Harry and Meghan's interview, as Commonwealth countries face calls for the removal of the Queen as Head of State. Jacinda Ardern was asked whether the unflattering picture of the British royal family painted by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had given her pause about New Zealand's constitutional ties to Britain. "I've said before that I've not sensed an appetite from New Zealanders for significant change in our constitutional arrangements, and I don't expect that's likely to change quickly," she said. New Zealand is a constitutional monarchy with The Queen as Sovereign. But discontent is bubbling elsewhere - #AbolishTheMonarchy was trending on Twitter on Monday morning.
- The Independent
Queens-born septuagenarian arrives back at former Fifth Avenue residence following four year absence
- Business Insider
Biden nominates female generals who were passed over by the Pentagon because they feared Trump's reaction
Pentagon officials reportedly believed former president Donald Trump would oppose the promotion of female generals.
Tyler Perry provided Harry and Meghan a home and security in Los Angeles after their royal support was removed
The couple stayed at Perry's home in California for three months after leaving Canada when their royal security detail was removed.
- LA Times
Oprah Winfrey's interview with Meghan and Harry hasn't aired yet in Britain, but that hasn't stopped commentators from weighing in, mostly negatively.
- Associated Press
Before posting a selfie with her COVID-19 vaccination card on Twitter, Aditi Juneja debated whether to include an explanation for why she was eligible for a shot. “The first draft of the tweet had an explanation,” says Juneja, a 30-year-old lawyer in New York City. After some thought, she decided to leave out out that her body mass index is considered obese, putting her at higher risk of serious illness if infected.
- The Week
When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle got married on May 19, 2018, at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, it was their second time around. During an interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired Sunday night, Markle revealed that the pair actually were married three days before their wedding, which was televised to millions of people around the globe. The private ceremony was conducted in their backyard by the Archbishop of Canterbury, with no one else present. "This spectacle is for the world," Markle said. "But we want our union for us." She added that on the day of their wedding at Windsor Castle, the couple tried to keep things "fun and light and remind ourselves that this was our day — but I think we were both really aware, even in advance ... that this wasn't our day. This was the day that was planned for the world." A year after their wedding, Markle and Harry welcomed their son, Archie. The pair announced last month that they are expecting their second child this summer, and shared with Winfrey that it is a girl. More stories from theweek.comLindsey Graham says his revived friendship with Trump is an attempt to 'harness' his 'magic'7 spondiferously funny cartoons about the Dr. Seuss controversyBritain's tabloids, vilified by Harry and Meghan, are all agog over the 'devastating' Oprah interview
- The Telegraph
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have revealed they will be having a baby girl. The couple disclosed the gender of their second child during their interview with Oprah Winfrey. Asked whether it would be a boy or a girl, the Duke responded: "It's a girl." Ms Winfrey asked him how he felt when he saw the ultrasound scan, and he said: "Amazing." The Duke said: "[I'm] just grateful to have any child. Any, one or two, would have been amazing but to have a boy and then a girl what more can you ask for? "Now we've got our family, we got the four of us and our two dogs." The Duchess said the baby is due "in the summer". Asked if they were "done" with two children, the Duke said "done". The Duchess added: "Two is it."
- The Independent
Prince Harry says he feels ‘really let down’ by Charles as he reveals father stopped taking his calls
Prince Charles allegedly only took two calls with Prince Harry about so-called “Megxit” before no longer picking up
- The Telegraph
Harry and Meghan's Oprah interview: Queen and Philip not members of Royal family that asked about Archie's skin tone
Blow-by-blow: Prince Harry and Meghan's claims Royal family discussed Archie's skin colour 'Kate made me cry' says Duchess of Sussex Harry and Meghan expecting baby girl Couple secretly married three days before Royal wedding Camilla Tominey | Forget hiding behind sofa, Royals need bulletproof vest It was not the Queen nor Prince Philip who voiced concerns about Archie's skin tone, it can be revealed. Buckingham Palace is under pressure to investigate claims of racism after Harry and Meghan's bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey in which it was claimed a member of the Royal family asked about how dark their firstborn's skin would be. The host appeared on CBS This Morning, and said: "He [Prince Harry] did not share the identity with me but he wanted to make sure that I knew and if I had an opportunity to share it that it was not his grandmother nor his grandfather were a part of those conversations." In other key developments during the two-hour interview, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex told Oprah: Prince of Wales "stopped taking" Harry’s calls after their royal departure Meghan contemplated suicide, saying she "just didn't want to be alive any more" Duchess of Cambridge made the Duchess of Sussex cry before her wedding, she claimed Couple had a private marriage ceremony three days before their wedding officiated by the Archbishop of Canterbury Sussexes wanted Archie to be a prince so he would have security Queen wasn’t “blindsided” by their departure the Duke insisted Couple are expecting a baby girl during the summer Princess Diana foresaw his departure from the Royal family, Prince Harry claimed Royal family has an "invisible contract" with the tabloid press, Harry claimed Follow our live blog for a play-by-play of the explosive interview and the global reaction.
- Associated Press
Security forces shot dead two people in northern Myanmar on Monday, local media reported, as the military government continued its attempt to stamp out opposition to its Feb. 1 coup. The Irrawaddy newspaper said the victims were shot in the head during anti-coup protests in Myitkyina in Kachin State. Graphic video on social media showed protesters in the street backing away from tear gas, responding with rocks, then fleeing after a fusillade of what seemed to be automatic gunfire.
- The Week
The House is expected to clear President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 stimulus bill on Tuesday, after the Senate narrowly passed it Saturday morning, following a lengthy negotiation with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) over unemployment benefits. The narrow Democratic majority is now discussing how to pass other legislative priorities, and Manchin said Sunday he's open to reforming the filibuster. "The filibuster should be painful, it really should be painful, and we've made it more comfortable over the years," Manchin said on Fox News Sunday. "Maybe it has to be more painful." One solution could be to require a "talking filibuster," where senators can block legislation temporarily through feats of endurance. "If you want to make it a little bit more painful, make him stand there and talk," Manchin said on NBC's Meet The Press. "I'm willing to look at any way we can, but I'm not willing to take away the involvement of the minority." Manchin repeated that he's "not going to change my mind" on ending the filibuster, but his comments were still greeted positively by filibuster opponents. The talking filibuster "preserves some ability for the minority to slow a bill as long as they physically hold the floor, but then allows an up-or-down vote once they give up," Demand Justice executive director Brian Fallon tweeted. "This is the Jimmy Stewart model." Manchin also expressed an openness to exploring other ways to sidestep blanket GOP opposition, suggesting that perhaps the budget reconciliation process could be used to pass voting-rights legislation — it can't — or other priorities. "But I'm not going to go there until my Republican friends have the ability to have their say also," he said. "I'm hoping they will get involved to the point where we have 10 of them that will work with 50 of us." "If we continue to see obstruction from our Republican colleagues — as we saw through this COVID relief package — I think the patience is going to wear thin, even on moderate Democrats," Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Calif.) said Sunday on CNN. "But we'll see." More stories from theweek.comLindsey Graham says his revived friendship with Trump is an attempt to 'harness' his 'magic'7 spondiferously funny cartoons about the Dr. Seuss controversyBritain's tabloids, vilified by Harry and Meghan, are all agog over the 'devastating' Oprah interview
- USA TODAY
'I'm Jake, not Chuck': Sen. Joe Manchin flubs CNN host Jake Tapper's name 3 times amid Sunday show blitz
Manchin, amid a media blitz explaining his push for certain provisions in the latest round of federal stimulus, repeatedly misnamed CNN's Jake Tapper.
- USA TODAY
Wolf hunting policies in some states are taking an aggressive turn, as GOP lawmakers and conservative hunting groups push to curb their numbers.
- Business Insider
A Trump appointee who was arrested over the Capitol riot asked a judge if he could be transferred to a cell with no cockroaches
Authorities arrested Federico Klein on Thursday, saying in an affidavit that he was seen attacking police officers during the January 6 insurrection.
Princess Diana's chief of staff says Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal rift echoes the past - and responsibility for reconciliation lies with 'senior palace management'
Ahead of bombshell Oprah interview, Patrick Jephson told CNN that previous tell-all interviews with the royal family "in all cases" has "backfired."