1/ Biden tested positive for Covid-19. The White House said Biden, who is vaccinated and received a second booster shot in March, has “very mild symptoms” and will “carry out all of his duties fully” while isolating and working remotely. Biden is receiving Paxlovid, an antiviral drug used to minimize the severity of Covid-19, for his fatigue, runny nose, and occasional dry cough. His physician, Kevin O’Connor, said he anticipates that Biden will “respond favorably, as most maximally protected patients do,” to the treatment. Jill Biden and Kamala Harris both tested negative. Biden, meanwhile, tweeted: “Folks, I’m doing great. Thanks for your concern.” (Axios / New York Times / Associated Press / CNBC / ABC News)
2/ The Jan. 6 committee will hold the eighth and final hearing tonight at 8 p.m. Eastern. The prime-time hearing will focus on the 187 minutes that Trump failed to act on Jan. 6, 2021, but instead “gleefully” watched TV news coverage at the White House despite pleas from aides, allies, and family to call off the attack. The committee plans to argue that Trump was derelict in his duties for “refusing to act to defend the Capitol as a violent mob stormed the Capitol.” The panel will hear testimony from two Trump White House advisers — former deputy national security adviser Matthew Pottinger and former deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews – about what went on in the West Wing on Jan. 6, as well as recorded testimony from Pat Cipollone, the former White House counsel. (New York Times / Associated Press / Wall Street Journal / CNN / Washington Post)
3/ Trump had “extreme difficulty” with his taped speech the day after Jan. 6, refusing to say the election was over and attempted to call the rioters patriots. In a three-minute speech on Jan. 7, Trump reluctantly condemned the violence and went to great lengths to not accuse the rioters of any wrongdoing. Adam Schiff said Jan. 6 committee will share some of the outtakes during the hearing, saying the recording show “all of those who are urging [Trump] to say something to do something to stop the violence. You’ll hear the terrible lack of a response from the President, and you’ll hear more about how he was ultimately prevailed upon to say something and what he was willing to say and what he wasn’t.” (Washington Post / CNN)
4/ The Homeland Security inspector general knew in Feb. 2021, that the Secret Service had deleted text messages related to the Jan. 6 attack, but chose not to tell Congress. Starting Jan. 27 2021, the Secret Service began resetting phones used by agents as part of a preplanned, agency-wide device-replacement program – shortly after text messages from Jan. 5 and 6 were requested by the Jan. 6 committee and the House and Senate Homeland Security Committees investigating the agency’s response to the Capitol riot. According to the Secret Service, the Homeland Security Inspector General Joseph Cuffari first requested the text messages on Feb. 26, 2021, and was informed that they had been erased. Cuffari, however, claimed the messages were erased after asking for the records. Regardless, Cuffari didn’t notify the Jan. 6 committee until July 2022 that the messages had been erased. Cuffari, meanwhile, directed the Secret Service to stop its internal investigations into what happened to the deleted text messages, saying it could interfere with his own criminal investigation into the agency’s destruction of text messages. The months-long delay in disclosing that Secret Service records had been deleted was flagged by two whistleblowers who worked with Cuffari. [Editor’s note: This is such a sad clusterfuck.] (Washington Post / CNN / NBC News)
5/ New unemployment claims rose to the highest level in more than eight months as more companies announced job cuts over fears of a recession amid high inflation and rising interest rates. Jobless claims, however, are still close to their levels before the coronavirus pandemic. Home prices, meanwhile, hit an all-time high in June as the median sales price climbed to $416,000 – up 13.4% on the year and the highest since records began in 1999. Mortgage applications, however, fell for the third week in a row and are at their lowest level in 22 years. The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage hit 5.51% this week – up from 2.88% from a year earlier. And the European Central Bank raised interest rates by half a percentage point – its first increase in more than a decade and a bigger jump than expected – as it attempts to tame record high inflation. (Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal / ABC News / The Hill)
6/ The House passed legislation to codify access to contraception nationwide with all but eight Republicans voting in opposition. The Right To Contraception Act would establish a federal right to purchase and use contraception without government restriction. The measure, however, is expected to fail in the evenly divided Senate, where the measure will need 60 votes to break a likely Republican filibuster. A federal appeals court panel, meanwhile, allowed a Georgia law banning abortions after about six weeks to go into effect. In the ruling, the panel wrote that the Supreme Court case that overturned Roe v. Wade “makes clear that no right to abortion exists under the Constitution, so Georgia may prohibit them.” The court’s opinion also referred to the health care providers who filed the lawsuit as “abortionists,” rather than “plaintiffs.” (NBC News / New York Times / Axios / Wall Street Journal)
poll/ 53% of Americans said they disapprove of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, while 30% approve. 60% want Congress to pass a law guaranteeing access to abortion nationwide. (Associated Press)
poll/ 57% of Americans blame Trump for the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. While 50% think Trump should be charged with crimes based on the evidence presented at the Jan. 6 committee hearings, 61% said they don’t think Trump will face any charges. (NPR)
poll/ 31% of American approve of the way Biden is handling his job, while 60% disapproved. 71% said they didn’t want Biden to seek a second term, while 64% said they didn’t want Trump run for president in 2024. (Quinnipiac)
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