Day 693: "Point of no return."
1/ Biden signed into law a bipartisan bill that codifies same-sex and interracial marriages. The landmark legislation replaces the Defense of Marriage Act – which defined marriage as between a man and a woman – with the Respect for Marriage Act, which prohibits states from denying the validity of out-of-state marriages based on sex, race or ethnicity. The legislation, however, doesn’t require states to issue marriage licenses for same-sex couples. “The road to this moment has been long, but those who believe in equality and justice, you never gave up,” Biden said, adding: “We got it done. We’re going to continue the work ahead. I promise you.” (NPR / New York Times / Wall Street Journal)
2/ Mark Meadows discussed plans for overturning the 2020 election with at least 34 Republican members of Congress. The exchanges took place over text message, which were turned over to the Jan. 6 committee. In total, Meadows received at least 364 messages from Republican members of Congress related to overturning the 2020 election. He sent at least 95 messages of his own. In one example, Ralph Norman texted Meadows three days before Biden was set to take office, urging him to have Trump declare martial law, saying “we are at a point of no return” and “Our LAST HOPE is invoking Marshall Law!! PLEASE URGE TO PRESIDENT TO DO SO!!” (Talking Points Memo)
3/ Special counsel Jack Smith subpoenaed election officials in Nevada, New Mexico, and Georgia for all communications involving Trump, his campaign, lawyers, aides or allies from June 1, 2020, through January 20, 2021. Smith subpoenaed Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger for his testimony before a grand jury on Dec. 29 or, alternatively, Raffensperger can turn over all of the subpoenaed records to the FBI. In a Jan. 2 phone call, Trump asked Raffensperger to “find” the votes needed to win Georgia. Smith also sent the subpoenas to the New Mexico secretary of state’s office, as well as the Clark County, Nevada, elections division. Similar requests were previously sent to officials in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Arizona. Smith was appointed last month to oversee both the Justice Department’s Jan. 6 investigation, as well as the Mar-a-Lago classified documents investigation. (Associated Press / CNN / Bloomberg)
4/ The Jan. 6 committee will hold its final public meeting on Monday and will vote on whether to refer any individuals to the Justice Department for prosecution. Bennie Thompson, the committee’s chairman, said the committee will consider referrals covering five or six “subject matter areas.” The panel’s full report will be released on December 21. The House Oversight Committee, meanwhile, asked the National Archives to determine whether Trump retained any additional presidential records at his storage facility in Florida. At least two classified items were recently found at the storage unit. (CNN / Bloomberg)
5/ Inflation rose less than expected in November, with the consumer price index increasing 7.1% from a year ago — the lowest reading since the end of 2021. Inflation peaked at 9.1% in June. On a month-to-month basis, prices rose 0.1% in November – down from 0.4% in October. Inflation, however, remains well-above the Federal Reserve’s 2% target despite the central bank raising interest rates from just above zero early this year to about 4%. The Fed is expected to raise rates by a half-point tomorrow, after four straight three-quarter-point increases. (Politico / CNBC / New York Times / Wall Street Journal / Axios)
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