Biden Finally Ditches Plan To Nominate Anti-Abortion Judge–But Not For The Right Reason

INSIDE: Indiana Mall Shooting ... UK Heat Wave ... Cruz
President Joe Biden speaks to the media at a hotel in Seoul, Korea on May 22, 2022. (SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)
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A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.

Slow Clap

Biden won’t be going through with his shocking plan to nominate Chad Meredith, an anti-abortion Federalist Society Republican, to a federal judgeship in Kentucky, the White House announced on Friday – but not because the president finally realized the nomination was a terrible idea.

  • No, it was because Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) refused to give the White House the “blue slip” consenting to Meredith’s nomination. That’s right, it was a Republican who scuttled the whole thing.
  • And Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told the New York Times that he hadn’t promised Biden anything in exchange for Meredith’s appointment. It would’ve just been Biden extending a “personal friendship gesture” to McConnell, according to the GOP leader:

Heartwarming stuff!

Key Analyses

“Just 3 Weeks Post-Roe, The Stories Emerging Are Worse Than Anyone Imagined” – Jezebel

“The False Piety of the Anti-Abortion Movement” – New York Magazine

3 Left Dead After Gunman Opens Fire In Indiana Mall

A gunman killed three people and injured two others after shooting up a food court at a mall in Greenwood, Indiana on Sunday, local authorities reported.

  • The suspect was fatally shot by an armed bystander, according to the police.
  • The gunman’s identity and motive have not been determined, the mayor of Greenwood reported.

A local reporter spoke to a store employee who said she left the entrance gate open to let in people fleeing from the shooting:

Texas House Report Details Utter Failings Of Cop Response To Uvalde

The Texas House committee tasked with investigating law enforcement’s feeble response to the Uvalde elementary school shooting released a 77-page report on Sunday detailing the “systemic failings” by not just the local school police chief, but also by state and federal officers during the massacre, which went on for 77 minutes before any of them went into the classroom to stop the shooter.

Previewing Jan. 6 Panel’s Potentially Last Hearing

The House Jan. 6 Committee will be holding what could be its final public hearing on Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, the panel’s first hearing to be held during primetime since its inaugural session last month. This is some of what we know based on what the committee members said during yesterday’s morning shows:

  • The focus of the hearing: How Trump stood by and did nothing while the Capitol was under attack by his own riled-up supporters.
  • The committee will comb through “pretty much minute by minute” of the period between Trump leaving his rally to the Capitol attack, according to Rep. Elaine Luria (D-VA), who’ll be leading the hearing with Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL).
  • The panel members made it clear that their investigation isn’t over, even if this ends up being the last public hearing. New witnesses and information are still coming in, according to Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA).

Bannon To Face The Music

After repeatedly failing to put it off, ex-Trump White House crony Steve Bannon will be having his criminal contempt trial today for refusing to cooperate with the House Jan. 6 Committee, which had subpoenaed him ten months ago.

  • Bannon potentially at least 30 days in jail for each of the two charges if he’s found guilty.
  • Prosecutors hope to keep this short, saying they’ll be presenting their case against Bannon over just a few days.

Europe Endures Massive Heat Wave

The U.K. has declared a national emergency as the country faces record-breaking heat of 41°C/106°F on Monday, its hottest temperature yet.

  • The British government directly attributed the crisis to climate change, with a researcher at the U.K.’s Met Office saying that the chances of seeing 40°C days in the country “could be as much as 10 times more likely in the current climate than under a natural climate unaffected by human influence.”
  • Thousands of people in Spain, France and Portugal are expected to evacuate to escape wildfires caused by the heat.

Cruz Says SCOTUS Should’ve Never Legalized Gay Marriage

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) made it clear during his podcast on Saturday that if he, like Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, had his way, gay marriage would still be illegal in states that had banned it before the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in the Obergefell v. Hodges case.

  • Cruz compared Obergefell to Roe v. Wade as rulings that “ignored two centuries of our nation’s history” and decided on issues that should’ve been left to the states. Obergefell was “clearly wrong when it was decided,” the Republican argued.

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