Morning Memo: Senators To Brief Biden On Stripped-Down Infrastructure Deal

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A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things.

GOP To Help On Popular Stuff While Dems Eat Spinach On Their Own

The bipartisan talks in the Senate have advanced enough for senators to brief President Biden today.

  • Key Takeaway: The contours of the bipartisan proposal are much more modest than Biden originally proposed.
  • The bipartisan proposal focuses on traditional public works and leaves the tax code reforms and “soft” infrastructure for Democrats to pass on their own later.
  • NYT: “Sealing a bipartisan deal would put Mr. Biden firmly on the path to a piecemeal approach to passing his $4 trillion economic agenda …”
  • Bloomberg: “The amount of new spending in the plan decreased to $559 billion from $579 billion.”
  • WaPo: The White House has tentatively agreed to the deal.
  • Psaki: “White House senior staff had two productive meetings today with the bipartisan group.”
  • The nitty gritty of the agreement remains publicly unknown. The “pay-fors,” a major sticking point in Republicans’ refusal to get on board with Biden’s sweeping infrastructure plan, haven’t been publicly detailed yet.

What Next? Dems would have to pass the rest of the Biden economic agenda using reconcilation in the Senate, which will require only a simple majority vote. More on that later.

More Jarring Footage Of Jan. 6

The Justice Department has release more disturbing body cam footage of the pro-Trump insurrectionists assaulting police officers as they breached the Capitol building.

Mic Drop

Watch the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, shut down GOP lawmakers’ rote complaints about the military’s efforts to combat racism in its ranks:

Enough Said

A sociologist who studies critical race theory (as in the academic concept and not the “anti-white” culture war meat Republicans are trying to distort it as) points out in an interview with writer Lyz Lenz how the GOP’s attacks on CRT is “actually kind of a terrifying irony in the sense that Critical Race Theory argues that racism is structured into the law,” so “with these laws banning Critical Race theory, they’re explicitly structuring racism into the law by attempting to ban discussions of it.”

History Repeats Itself?

Democracy Loses

Voting rights advocates scored big wins in recent years in their fight to allow millions of formerly incarcerated people to vote-but hardly any of them know they have that right, according to a new study by the Marshall Project.

  • A key point: Organizers have reportedly had to assure them that voting won’t automatically send them back to prison.


John McAfee, creator of the McAfee anti-virus software and self-styled “eccentric millionaire”-turned-conspiracy theorist, was found dead in his cell in a Spanish prison on Wednesday as he was awaiting extradition to the U.S. on tax evasion charges. The local authorities have said he may have died by suicide, but the investigation is ongoing.

  • McAfee popped up several times on TPM’s radar back when he launched a 2016 presidential campaign even as he was hunkered down in Central America. We even snagged an interview with him at the time.

Also, this happened after his death was announced:

What You Might Have Missed

The Supreme Court sided with a high school student in a free speech case in which she had been suspended for sending profane Snapchat messages while she was off school grounds.

  • “America’s public schools are the nurseries of democracy,” Justice Stephen Breyer wrote for the 8-1 majority opinion. Justice Clarence Thomas dissented.

Words Are Meaningless And So Is Existence

It’s nearly impossible to be surprised by anything hatemongerer Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) says these days, but she really stood behind a podium to tell America that her racist caricature of the border being invaded by migrants is so real people don’t even need to know things to know it’s real (???):

Meanwhile, Over At Fox Studios

But wait, it gets even better in the video. The Daily Mail reporter describes in detail an alleged photo of M&Ms stacked on Hunter Biden’s “manhood” while Tucker Carlson somberly observes, “That’s unusual”:

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