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  • 🇺🇸 Shutdown Snoozed

🇺🇸 Shutdown Snoozed

Plus, "ring of fire" on the horizon.

The Flag

Good morning, and happy Tuesday. In a highly improbable turn of events, a Florida family welcomed their third child to be born on the same date.

Plus, the 2023 solar eclipse is passing over the United States this year on October 14, giving millions of Americans in the northwest a chance to glimpse a “ring of fire.”

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Right: Biden Needs Censorship Regime To Hide His Lies Miranda Devine, New York Post

Right: Democrats' Fears Are Growing Amid Warning Signs for Biden Lucey & Thomas, The Wall Street Journal

Left: RFK Jr. Aided by GOP and Trump PAC Donors David Corn, Mother Jones

Left: Does Yaccarino Regret Teaming Up With Musk Yet? Arwa Mahdawi, The Guardian

Left: Biden Should Stop Focusing on the Economy Michael LaRosa, MSNBC


Feinstein Replacement, Trump’s Civil Suit, Thomas Recusal

US: Gov. Gavin Newsom chooses Laphonza Butler to fill Dianne Feinstein's Senate seat (NBC News)

US: Trump's civil fraud trial gets underway in New York as both sides lay out case (CBS News)

US: Clarence Thomas recuses himself as Supreme Court rejects ex-Trump lawyer John Eastman's appeal (NBC News)

World: Pioneers of mRNA COVID vaccines win medicine Nobel (Nature)

World: E.U. makes historic show of support for Ukraine after U.S. budget deal snub (NBC News)


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Shutdown Snoozed

Late Saturday, Congress voted to pass a continuing resolution (CR) that authorizes funding of the U.S. government until November 17, avoiding a shutdown. The bill passed the Senate 88-9, and the House 335-91. It notably doesn’t include further assistance to Ukraine, but does include $16 billion for assisting victims of natural disasters, per the Biden administration’s request.

Reporting from the Right: Senate passes stopgap measure in 88-9 vote, averting shutdown with three hours to spare (Fox News)

Reporting from the Left: Government shutdown averted with little time to spare as Biden signs funding before midnight (AP)

From The Flag: The agreement concludes a chaotic week where House Speaker Kevin McCarthy struggled to find a compromise, partially due to a group of Republicans who threatened to oust him from his speakership. Avoiding a shutdown ensures no federal workers will be laid off, and that assistance programs will continue uninterrupted. However, the resolution is only temporary, and Congress will likely find itself in this situation again in November. Here’s what both sides are saying.


McCarthy to Face Challenges Ahead

  • The implications of Speaker McCarthy’s decision to work with Democrats instead of Republicans alone highlight a notable shift.

  • Representative Gaetz and some House Republicans have verbalized their intention to remove McCarthy as the leader, though it seems unlikely they’d be successful.

  • The irony of Gaetz looking to oust McCarthy from his speakership for working with Democrats is that he would have to work with Democrats to remove McCarthy.

Why the Latest Continuing Resolution Changed More Than You Might Think Yuval Levin, National Review: “Until Saturday, Kevin McCarthy had managed to mostly keep his conference’s various factions together by avoiding any real governing choices. … It was always going to be very difficult to sustain that approach in the appropriations process because the objectives of a small but significant group of House Freedom Caucus members…were not going to be compatible with the objectives of the rest of the Republican conference. … On Saturday, McCarthy…put a bill on the floor that would easily get the support of a majority of the House, but a bipartisan majority and not a purely Republican one. … The Speaker thus finds himself…referring to himself on Saturday as “the adult in the room” and to the House Freedom Caucus as reckless and impractical. He isn’t wrong, but his move, and his rhetoric, effectively amounted to conceding that his attempt to find a different way…to thread the needle of leading House Republicans had failed.”

Everything to know about the McCarthy and Gaetz showdown heading to House floor this week Rachel Schilke, Washington Examiner: “Tensions between House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) have never been higher, setting the two up for a showdown this week… Rank-and-file Republicans have floated the idea of vacating the speakership if McCarthy went against their demands or collaborated with House Democrats to pass a clean continuing resolution — which he did. … Gaetz, who is a vocal opponent to McCarthy, told Jake Tapper on CNN's State of the Union on Sunday that he planned to put forward a motion to vacate sometime this week. … Reps. Dan Bishop (R-NC) and Eli Crane (R-AZ) have indicated that they would support a motion to vacate McCarthy. Bishop was one of the first House Republicans to threaten to oust McCarthy following the debt ceiling compromise with President Joe Biden. However, as of now, it doesn't appear as though Gaetz has enough Republican support to vacate the speaker, as centrist Republicans and allies of McCarthy will not likely join his cause.”

One more opinion piece from the Right: Kevin McCarthy and His Enemy The Editors, National Review


This Isn’t the End

  • “Democrats temporarily bailed out flailing GOP House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, but underlying chaos remains.”

  • The shutdown has been delayed but the fracturing among congressional Republicans remains, further entrenching dysfunction.

  • “The irony of the Speaker’s surprise last-minute move was that it was his only play all along.”

Congress Hits the Snooze Button to Stop Shutdown—for 45 Days Jeet Heer, The Nation: “Given the breakdown of the votes, it’s clear that the Democrats rescued the flailing leadership of the House speaker. McCarthy’s own caucus is divided between normal right-wingers and the extremist Freedom Caucus. Because of his control of the House rests on narrow margin of 10 seats, McCarthy is easily held hostage by the most extreme members of his caucus unless he’s willing to turn to Democrats for help. … This dysfunctional relationship between the Freedom Caucus and McCarthy’s leadership was what brought the United States to the brink of a shutdown. There’s no indication that the stopgap will improve unity within the GOP or give McCarthy any more skill in disciplining his strife-torn caucus. … The trouble is that the GOP remains beholden to its most extreme voices. The only real solution to this mess isn’t another bill but voting the Republicans out of power at all levels of national government in 2024.”

Shutdown Averted. Now What? Jonathan Bernstein, Bloomberg: “A failed attempt to defeat McCarthy at this point would expose Gaetz as a paper tiger and marginally strengthen McCarthy within the Republican conference, perhaps making the party slightly less dysfunctional. It would provide Gaetz with a talking point — that McCarthy is speaker because of Democratic votes — which would sell well in Republican-aligned media, which may be what the anti-McCarthy faction is most interested in anyway. If, however, dozens of Republicans turn against McCarthy, Democrats would be unlikely to bail him out. A new Republican speaker would start off in an even more precarious position than McCarthy given that Gaetz will have demonstrated his ability to punish those who cross him. It’s unclear how much interest House Republicans have in another round of brinkmanship. The truth is that forcing a shutdown without even having a set of demands was a terrible idea, even by the unimpressive standards of past shutdown showdowns.”

One more opinion piece from the Left: How Kevin McCarthy Defied the Freedom Caucus and Averted a Shutdown Jonathan Blitzer, The New Yorker


Americans Jaded With Nation’s Politics

A recent poll examined American views about the nation’s political climate. While it didn’t specifically ask about the potential of a government shutdown, it looked more broadly at the American public’s view of the state of our politics.

Notable findings include only 4% of US adults believing the political system is working extremely or very well. Just 16% of the public say they trust the federal government always or most of the time. Nearly three-in-ten (28%) express unfavorable views of both parties, the highest share in three decades of polling.

More than eight-in-ten Americans (86%) say the following is a good description of politics: “Republicans and Democrats are more focused on fighting each other than on solving problems” (Pew Research Center).

Which party do you believe bears greater responsibility for the near shutdown?

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Official Thanksgiving, Forgotten Dreams, NYC Sinking

On This Day in 1863: Expressing gratitude for a pivotal Union Army victory at Gettysburg, President Abraham Lincoln announced that the nation would celebrate an official Thanksgiving holiday on November 26, 1863.

Today I learned that New York City is sinking 1-2mm each year due to the weight of its skyscrapers, worsening the effects of rising sea levels and flooding.

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