Every issue of the Punchbowl News newsletter, including our special editions, right here at your fingertips.
Join the community, and get the morning edition delivered straight to your inbox.
It’s Friday morning.
Breaking news: Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has died after being shot Friday. Abe was 67.
Abe, the longest serving prime minister in post-war Japanese history, was giving a speech in Nara on behalf of Liberal Democratic Party candidates for this Sunday’s election when he was shot, according to Japanese public broadcaster NHK.
CNN reported Abe “suffered a gunshot wound to the right side of his neck, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications in Tokyo.”
Two gunshots can be heard on videos from the incident. A suspect was detained at the scene and later charged with attempted murder. The weapon used in the attack was reportedly homemade. Guns are banned in Japan and are very difficult to obtain.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida canceled his own campaign events and returned to Tokyo for emergency meetings.
Abe twice served as Japan’s prime minister, including from 2012 to 2020. Abe left office in Aug. 2020 due to chronic health problems.
Abe hailed from a politically powerful family. His grandfather was Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, while his father, Shintaro Abe, served as Japan’s foreign minister.
It’s jobs day – and a big month for Dems
We’re going to focus on the U.S. economy and what’s going to be a big few weeks politically as Senate Democrats try once more to craft a pre-election reconciliation package.
The Labor Department will release the latest jobs data this morning. This number is being very closely watched on Wall Street and in Washington for signs of where the economy is headed.
And next Wednesday morning, the Bureau of Labor Statistics will release June’s CPI report. It’s the first such report since the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by 75 basis points last month. While inflation hawks inside the central bank want to raise rates by another 75 basis points in July, there are signs that the U.S. economy is slowing down – or already in a recession. Mortgage rates have fallen slightly due to recession fears, while consumer spending is starting to cool off. The investment arm of one major bank thinks the recession has started.
All of this is unfolding as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) are trying to hash out a deal on a roughly $1 trillion reconciliation package.
Manchin has publicly declared his concerns over inflation, the federal deficit and government spending for months, citing these issues as his reason for opposing the Build Back Better Act in December. Schumer and Manchin are now negotiating over a “scaled-back better” reconciliation bill – Build Back Manchin – that could include hundreds of billions of dollars in new spending, as well as the full or partial repeal of the 2017 GOP tax cut.
Schumer has filed a Medicare prescription drug pricing proposal agreed to by all 50 Senate Democrats with the Senate parliamentarian in order to determine whether it complies with the Byrd Rule, which controls the reconciliation process.
Senate Democrats are also negotiating on a plan to raise taxes on high-income individuals, with those funds being used to boost Medicare’s solvency, the AP’s Alan Fram reported on Thursday.
Yet raising taxes with a possible recession looming is a big political risk, which brings us back to the latest economic indicators. Republicans are hammering Democrats and the White House on this issue, and it will only get more heated if Schumer, Manchin, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and the White House actually do come together on a reconciliation package.
Here’s Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas, the top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee:
“As Americans suffer in President Biden’s cruel economy, Senate Democrats are reportedly trying to revive more tax hikes and spending that will only fuel higher prices, rob crucial investment needed to fix America’s supply chain crisis, and surrender the U.S. economy to foreign competitors.
“How much more can Americans take? With a looming recession, many families dipping into their savings to pay for inflation, and others delaying their retirement due to terrible White House mistakes, this ‘slimmed-down’ Build Back Better couldn’t come at a worse time.”
We’ll note there’s no deal yet on reconciliation, despite all the talk of Schumer and Manchin moving forward. There are big unresolved questions over tax policy and environmental provisions, including tax credits for electric vehicles and clean energy programs. And would House Democrats back a tax increase? We remain unconvinced – for now.
Also: Schumer is hosting administration officials for a classified briefing on USICA next week. USICA is in peril for several reasons, not the least of which is that Senate Democrats are pressing forward on reconciliation again.
Bicameral negotiations on the mammoth tech bill are at a bit of an impasse, with labor and trade provisions left undone. Axios reported Thursday evening that House Democrats are considering passing the Senate-passed legislation. This would be a victory for both Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, since each of them voted for it. President Joe Biden would take this too – quite happily.
– John Bresnahan and Jake Sherman
PRESENTED BY IBM
With diverse members from both the public and private sectors, ASIC brings together America’s best and brightest to deliver groundbreaking chip advancements.
JAN. 6 COMMITTEE
Inside Cipollone’s interview today
Former White House Counsel Pat Cipollone will testify today behind closed doors to the Jan. 6 select committee, one of the most highly anticipated moments in the panel’s probe.
Remember: Former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson testified that Cipollone was very vocal on Jan. 6. Hutchinson testified that Cipollone warned White House officials that if former President Donald Trump marched to the Capitol with the rioters, he could be charged with criminal behavior. Hutchinson also testified that Cipollone raised alarm bells about protestors chanting that then Vice President Mike Pence should be hanged, and he sought a forceful statement from Trump to help quell the attack.
Sources tell us that the select committee does not have an agreement with Cipollone about what investigators can or cannot ask him. Prior to Hutchinson’s testimony, the panel had discussed an arrangement with Cipollone for an on-the-record interview, but Cipollone backed away from it, sources tell us. Cipollone is expected to claim executive privilege over conversations he had with Trump, but there is plenty that the committee is interested in outside of that category. For example, we expect Cipollone will be asked about conversations with former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.
The select committee is expected to hold two public hearings next week – a midday hearing on Tuesday, followed by a Thursday night primetime session. Sources tell us the committee will not announce witnesses for Tuesday’s hearing until after investigators finish the Cipollone interview today.
– Jake Sherman
PUNCH POWER MATRIX
The Power Matrix typically runs in the Midday edition Friday, which goes out to Premium subscribers. The Midday and PM editions are off this week.
— Max Cohen
PRESENTED BY IBM
An advanced research hub like the National Semiconductor Technology Center requires a technology network led by industry in close collaboration with government and academia — that’s what ASIC can deliver.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Pols at the swanky Sun Valley media conference
This week is the Allen & Co. media conference in Sun Valley, Idaho. This is the confab where media deals are made, and elites hobnob at an upscale resort. We trolled the Getty photo wire for political attendees and found a few interesting ones.
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.).
Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).
Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.)
Also in attendance: Former Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas), a managing director for Allen & Co.
→ Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) is endorsing Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) in the crowded Democratic primary in New York’s 10th District. Jones is running against former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou, among many others.
→ Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington, one of the ten House Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump in 2021, is up with a new reelection ad that doesn’t mention his impeachment vote. Notably, Newhouse is not facing a Trump-endorsed challenger in Washington’s Aug. 2 open primary.
The spot features a retired police chief from Kennewick, Wash., praising Newhouse as “a great supporter of law enforcement.”
→ Democrat Cheri Beasley is out with a new spot in her Senate campaign against Rep. Ted Budd (R-N.C.). The ad doesn’t mention Beasley’s party affiliation and contains plenty of nonpartisan appeals.
Beasley vows to “hold Washington accountable,” rails against “special interests,” highlights her work as a judge holding “dangerous offenders accountable” and says “neither political party is getting it right.”
In a tough year for Democrats, Beasley faces an uphill battle in winning in North Carolina.
→ The July 19 Maryland primary is less than two weeks away and the ad wars in the Democratic primary for the state’s 4th District are heating up. The two main contenders are former Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) and Glenn Ivey. It’s another race featuring big spending from groups involved in Israel policy.
Two Jewish-aligned groups — J Street and the United Democracy Project — are up with new attack ads.
J Street Action Fund, the political arm of a progressive Jewish organization that backs a two-state solution in Israel, is paying for a new ad that slams Ivey as a lobbyist for big business. The spot also takes aim at Ivey’s backers, labeling his “biggest supporter” a “super PAC backed by two Republican billionaires.”
This, of course, is AIPAC’s super PAC, United Democracy Project. UDP is airing an ad blasting Edwards’ previous tenure in Congress as a failure. Here’s how the ad kicks off:
“When Donna Edwards was in Congress, she was rated the least effective Democrat. Not one of her bills was passed into law. Zero in eight years.”
What makes this race unique is that while UDP is attempting to portray Edwards as a progressive outcast, the former representative enjoys broad institutional support. Speaker Nancy Pelosi is notably endorsing Edwards and even recorded a video message praising the five-term lawmaker as “one of the most effective members in Congress.”
→ Rep. David Trone (D-Md.) loaned his campaign account $10 million on June 27, according to a new campaign finance filing. Trone is the wealthy founder of Total Wine and Spirits.
→ Paul Singer, the CEO of Elliott Investment Management, gave Team McConnell, Mitch McConnell’s joint fundraising vehicle, $255,500. Marc Rowan, the CEO of Apollo, gave McConnell $250,000.
— Max Cohen and Jake Sherman
We’re wrapping up Canvass week! Thanks for following along with the latest edition of The Canvass: K Street, our anonymous survey of senior downtown figures alongside the independent polling firm Locust Street Group.
This was fun. We asked senior K Street leaders who they believe is most likely to succeed Speaker Nancy Pelosi as the ranking member of House Democrats – when and if she leaves. The results fell in line with our polling of senior Capitol Hill staffers in May.
83% of downtowners believe Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) will be the next House Democratic leader after Pelosi.
We also asked respondents who would serve as House Republican leader if not Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. K Street leaders and Capitol Hill staffers agree that House Minority Whip Steve Scalise is next up behind McCarthy.
Unsurprisingly, with the GOP potentially on the brink of the House majority, K Street leaders believe Republican staffers are more in demand with companies and organizations that are hiring.
– Christian Hall
PRESENTED BY IBM
ASIC will propel the U.S. as a global chip innovation leader.
9:30 a.m.: President Joe Biden will get his daily intelligence briefing.
11:30 a.m.: Biden will speak about abortion.
Noon: Karine Jean-Pierre will brief.
1:55 p.m.: Biden will leave the White House for CIA headquarters. He’ll speak there at 3:40 p.m., and will return to the White House at 4:30 p.m.
7:45 p.m.: Biden will leave the White House for Rehoboth Beach, Del. He will arrive at 8:40 p.m.
→ News Analysis: “Johnson’s Lies Worked for Years, Until They Didn’t,” by Sarah Lyall
→ “‘Not your grain’: Blinken at G-20 tells Russia to end Ukraine blockade,” by John Hudson in Nusa Dua, Indonesia
→ “Elon Musk’s deal to buy Twitter is in peril,” by Faiz Siddiqui and Gerrit De Vynck
→ “Shell Has Big Plans to Drill in the Gulf of Mexico Despite Climate and Political Debate,” by Jenny Strasburg in London and Benoit Morenne in Houston
→ “Stocks Close Higher as Investors Parse Economic Data,” by Chelsey Dulaney and Akane Otani
→ “Biden Set to Meet With Advisers to Discuss Cutting China Tariffs,” by Jenny Leonard
→ “G-20 diplomats face unity headwinds on Ukraine, war’s impact,” by Matthew Lee in Nusa Dua, Indonesia
→ “Biden isn’t running out of ideas, Dems fear. He’s running out of time,” by Jonathan Lemire and Chris Cadelago
Los Angeles Times
→ “California deepens water cuts to cope with drought, hitting thousands of farms,” by Ian James and Sean Greene
→ “As Abbott orders state police to return migrants to border, critics on the right say it’s not enough,” by Jasper Scherer and Benjamin Wurmand
PRESENTED BY IBM
The Future Of Tech Is Collaborative: Fostering an open ecosystem that brings key technology partners together and creates opportunities for close collaboration, education, and innovation is a crucial step to bolstering the U.S. as the global semiconductor leader.
Editorial photos provided by Getty Images
Crucial Capitol Hill news AM, Midday, and PM—5 times a week
Join a community of some of the most powerful people in Washington and beyond. Exclusive newsmaker events, parties, in-person and virtual briefings and more.Subscribe to Premium
The Canvass Special Report
Analysis of how sentiment on Capitol Hill evolved this year. And what senior aides believe will happen in 2022.Check it out
Every single issue of Punchbowl News published, all in one placeVisit the archive
THE PREMIUM COMMUNITY AT
Experience regular online and offline events with Anna Palmer, Jake Sherman and John Bresnahan, special Premium content and so much more. Check out our full list of benefits for Premium membership!