1/ The Supreme Court allowed abortion providers in Texas to challenge the new state law that essentially bans abortions after about six weeks. The law – the most restrictive in the country – remains in place while abortion providers challenge the law in federal court. But at the same time, the court limited which state officials could be sued by abortion providers to four licensing officials who are involved with enforcement of SB8. Separately, the court also dismissed a challenge to the law brought by the Justice Department. White House press secretary Jen Psaki, meanwhile, said Biden was “very concerned” about the ruling, which is “a reminder of how much these rights are at risk.” (NPR / CNN / New York Times / Washington Post / Politico / NBC News / ABC News / CBS News / USA Today / Associated Press)
2/ A federal appeals court rejected Trump’s effort to stop the congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol from obtaining his White House records. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit unanimously denied Trump’s request to block the National Archives from releasing roughly 800 pages of Trump documents, saying Biden’s decision not to invoke executive privilege over the material outweighed Trump’s residual secrecy powers. The court said Congress had a “uniquely vital interest” in studying the events of Jan. 6 and that Biden had made a “carefully reasoned” decision that the documents were in the public interest when he declined to assert executive privilege. “On the record before us, former President Trump has provided no basis for this court to override President Biden’s judgment and the agreement and accommodations worked out between the Political Branches over these documents,” the panel concluded. The court, however, paused its ruling for two weeks so that Trump could seek a Supreme Court intervention. (Associated Press / Washington Post / Wall Street Journal / New York Times / NBC News / Politico / CNN)
3/ The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol issued six new subpoenas to people involved in the planning of the rally that preceded the insurrection. In a statement, the committee said “some of the witnesses we subpoenaed today apparently worked to stage the rallies on January 5th and 6th, and some appeared to have had direct communication with the former president regarding the rally at the Ellipse directly preceding the attack on the U.S. Capitol.” Rep. Bennie Thompson, chairman of the committee, said the panel is seeking information from people involved with the rally’s planning or who witnessed the coordination of these plans. Among those subpoenaed were Max Miller, who was an aide to Trump and is now an Ohio congressional candidate, and Brian Jack, Trump’s former political affairs director. Kevin McCarthy hired Jack in March to direct the House Republicans midterm election efforts. (New York Times / Washington Post / Bloomberg)
4/ The New York attorney general is seeking to depose Trump early next year as part of her investigation into potential fraud inside the Trump Organization. Letitia James requested that Trump answer questions under oath on Jan. 7 in her New York office about his company’s business practices, including whether the Trump Organization committed tax fraud in the reported the value of certain properties to banks and tax authorities. James’ office is considering whether to file a civil suit against the company. (Washington Post / NBC News)
5/ The FDA authorized Pfizer’s Covid-19 booster shots for 16- and 17-year-olds. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, signed off on the move and strongly encouraged all 16- and 17-year-olds who have been vaccinated to get a booster as soon as they are six months past their second shot. Nearly 50 million Americans — about a quarter of those fully vaccinated — have gotten a booster shot. (New York Times / Washington Post)
6/ The Senate Republicans voted to roll back Biden’s vaccine and testing mandate for large employers with the help of two centrist Democrats: Joe Manchin and Jon Tester. The vote, however, is largely symbolic because the House is not expected to take up the measure, and the White House has said Biden will veto it if it reaches his desk. In September, Biden proposed a vaccination-or-testing rule that large private employers must require their workers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 or tested, or face losing their jobs. (NPR / New York Times / NBC News)
7/ Inflation hit a 39-year high in November, rising 6.8% from a year ago and the sixth straight month in which inflation topped 5%. Joe Manchin, meanwhile, said his concerns about inflation outweigh the benefits of Biden’s $1.7 trillion Build Back Better package, which focuses on reducing costs for child care and health care and fighting climate change. A report from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office showed that if the temporary benefit programs in the bill were made permanent, the bill would add $3 trillion in deficits over ten years – more than double its 10-year cost. The White House disputed the CBO report, arguing that over the long term, the bill would boost worker productivity and reduce inflation, and that Biden would only support expanding programs if they were fully paid for. Republicans, however, urged Manchin to kill the bill in the 50-50 Senate, pointing to the 6.8% annual gain in the consumer price index. (New York Times / Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal / Washington Post / CNBC / Politico / Associated Press)
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