Skimm'd after taking down our OOO

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JANUARY 03, 2019


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Skimm'd after taking down our OOO


"Why don't you die?" – An Australian man, screaming at a spider in his house and causing the police to show up. Leave that drama in 2018 please.


The Story

Meet the new Congress. First item on the agenda: get the gov back up and running.

What's the status?

It's day 13 of the partial shutdown. Hundreds of thousands of federal employees are working without pay or are on unpaid leave. The holdup is over the border wall. President Trump wants $5.6 billion to fund a wall (read: steel slats). And says the US needs a physical barrier to crack down on things like drugs, crime, and human trafficking. He may be willing to reach a deal on DACA in order to get the money. But refused any offer that doesn't match his asking price. He warned the shutdown could last "a long time."

How does the new Congress play into this?

Dems run the House starting at 12pm ET today. And plan to vote on legislation that would reopen the gov and include $1.3 billion for border security. But no new money for the wall – which isn't expected to fly with the Republican-run Senate or with Trump. This will also be the first of many tests for how newcomers handle the biggest item on Trump's domestic agenda: immigration. Last year, the issue involved the border wall, DACA, a zero-tolerance policy, migrant caravans, and the death of two migrant children. Just this week, border officers fired tear gas at dozens of migrants – some of whom were throwing rocks at US officials – trying to cross into San Diego. So no, the immigration talk isn't staying behind in 2018.

What else is on Congress's agenda?

Voting for a new House speaker (act surprised, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)). Next on House Dems' to-do list: investigating all-things Trump, trying to protect Obamacare, and campaign finance reform.


Today marks the beginning of a split Congress under President Trump. And new members are walking into a situation of complete gridlock. With hundreds of thousands of people feeling the effects of the government shutdown, we'll see what our elected officials decide to do.


What people are watching…

India. Yesterday, protests broke out in a southern state after two women entered a centuries-old Hindu temple. For years, women between 10 and 50 years old (aka when women typically have their periods) were banned from entering a temple that honors a celibate god. Last year, the country's supreme court lifted the ban, because discrimination. Some conservatives and priests protested, arguing that letting women in will make the temple impure, and have prevented women from entering for months. But yesterday, two women in their 40s went in. Cue more uproar. India's PM Narendra Modi seemed to side with the conservatives, saying this is about religious beliefs, not gender discrimination. But the local government (run by a different party) has been supportive of lifting the ban – and organized an estimated 5.5 million women to come out in support of gender equality earlier in the week. More protests are expected today.

What to say while feeling good about your New Year's resolution…

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is setting her sights on a 2020 resolution: becoming president. Earlier this week, she announced an exploratory committee – meaning she can start raising money for a potential campaign. She's the first big-name Dem to take this step, but expect a lot more Dems to throw their hats into the ring. Warren's not the only senator making headlines. Incoming Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) criticized President Trump in an op-ed, saying he hasn't "risen to the mantle of the office" and has "caused dismay around the world." Romney's gotten heat from Republicans like Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) who say this is a bad look for the GOP, and could make it harder to get things done in the chamber. Others are saying 'smells like 2020 spirit.' Oh and Romney's not the only one with opinions.

What people have questions about…

The arrest of Paul Whelan – a retired US Marine who was detained in Russia last week. His family says he was in Moscow for a wedding, but Russian officials say he was arrested "during an act of espionage." The details around all this are unclear, but the spy charges carry a max of 20 years in prison.

What to say after someone says 'no offense, but'…

This doesn't sound good. Yesterday, Apple warned investors that it's lowering expectations for its quarterly revenue. As in billions of dollars less than it was hoping to report. The main reason is because iPhone sales have been slow in China – which has been dealing with a slow economy, partially because of the trade war. This is the first time the Fruit's cut quarterly revenue expectations in more than 15 years. Speaking of China, today it says it became the first country to land a spacecraft on the "dark" (aka far) side of the moon. Cue up your Pink Floyd playlist.

What to say when you hear Netflix has reservations about the "Bird Box" challenge

People have reservations about Netflix.

What to say when you hear Kim and Kanye are adding one more to the family

Is it a girl or a boy meets world?


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