Good morning! Welcome to 10 Things in Politics. I’m Brent Griffiths. Sign up here to get this newsletter in your inbox each day.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. THE GOP’S BACKSTOP: Republicans may be locked out of power in Washington. But outside of the Beltway, GOP officials are readying for legal battles by unearthing their Obama-era playbook. The reality is the President Joe Biden’s agenda doesn’t just have to thread thin majorities in Congress. He’ll also have to survive lawsuits that can trigger sweeping judicial rulings that will grind his actions to a halt — in some cases just days after the president orders them.
My colleagues Tina Sfondeles and Robin Bravender explore this in an exclusive report this morning on the 12 most important Republican attorneys general to keep an eye on.
- Key quote: “You’re going to see a lot of AGs step up and begin to file lawsuits, and unfortunately, be involved in pretty deep litigation over the president’s top initiatives,” West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey told them. He and five other Republican AGs sent a letter to Biden during the president’s first week in office warning of potential suits.
- We’re already seeing what this can bring: Texas attorney general Ken Paxton was able to secure a decision that temporarily halted Biden’s 100-day moratorium on deportations of some undocumented immigrants. Paxton previously supported Texas’s effort to overturn the election, results, which was also backed by other Republican AGs.
2. Democrats are set to release a $3,000-per-child benefit plan: The proposal is part of Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus plan. Republican Sen. Mitt Romney released a proposal last week that calls for permanent payments to families while cutting or eliminating other pre-existing programs.
- The party’s plan would only exist for one year, but Democrats have vowed to fight to make it permanent: The IRS would administer the payments beginning in July. The payments “would make a major dent in childhood poverty,” The Washington Post reports. The Post first reported the plan’s details.
3. Trump’s second impeachment trial starts tomorrow: House Democrats plan to present a more streamlined case featuring frequent videos in an effort to avoid boring and antagonizing the Republican senators they need to convince if they are to avoid an all-but-certain acquittal, per The New York Times. Their case rests heavily on how those accused of rioting responded to Trump’s actions.
- The former president’s defense: Trump’s legal team is said to favor the argument that it’s unconstitutional to impeach a former president.
4. The top things for your calendar, all times Eastern:
- 9:30 a.m.: Biden arrives back at the White House after a weekend in Delaware.
- 11:00 a.m.: The White House pandemic team and public health officials hold a news briefing.
- 12:00 p.m.: Press secretary Jen Psaki holds the White House daily news briefing.
- 2:30 p.m.: Biden and Vice President Harris virtually tour a vaccination site in Glendale, Arizona.
- 5:30 p.m.: The Senate holds a confirmation vote on Denis McDonough’s nomination to head the Veterans Affairs department.
- All day: President Trump’s legal team and House managers must file their final respective briefs before the trial begins.
5. Liz Cheney says Trump isn’t the GOP’s leader: The Wyoming Republican also said Trump’s actions should be investigated as part of the ongoing criminal probe into the Capitol riot. Her stinging criticism of the former president comes after her state Republican Party censured her and pro-Trump GOP lawmakers led an unsuccessful effort to oust her.
- Another shot?: Cheney said that the party “should not be embracing the former president,” which is exactly what House Minority Kevin McCarthy did when he visited Trump at Mar-a-Lago.
6. The US is expected to move to rejoin the UN’s Human Rights Council: Secretary of State Antony Blinken and a senior US diplomat plan to announce the move later today. The Trump administration removed the US from the council in 2018, citing a number of criticisms including the council’s treatment of Israel. The US will be rejoining with observer status, the Associated Press reports.
7. Dr. Anthony Fauci rejects the idea of releasing second doses: Fauci said the data is “solid” on why the US needs to prioritize getting Americans their second shot instead of using those supplies to inoculate more people with a first dose. Medical experts are currently debating the best approach.
8. Remembering George Schultz: “Former Secretary of State George P. Shultz, a titan of American academia, business and diplomacy who spent most of the 1980s trying to improve Cold War relations with the Soviet Union and forging a course for peace in the Middle East, has died. He was 100,” the Associated Press’s Matthew Lee reports.
9. Trump’s D.C. hotel is hiking prices for March 4: This also happens to be the day that QAnon conspiracy followers think Trump will be sworn in. Forbes, which initially reported the story, said the price hike appears to be limited to the Trump International Hotel.
10. Forever young: Tom Brady is now the oldest quarterback (41) to win a Super Bowl. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians is the oldest coach to win a ring at 67. The Bucs demolished the Chiefs in a 31-9 victory.
Today’s trivia question: We’re back in the world of politics with today’s question. Monday marks the 230th anniversary of the creation of the first Bank of the United States. What state was the bank located in? Hint it’s not far from another famous building. Email your response and a suggested question to me at firstname.lastname@example.org