Monday, January 14

ByKevin Sheekey

From Bloomberg Politics today: Mueller Investigation Steals Focus Back From Trump Wall War (Bloomberg)
Even as the U.S. government shutdown officially clocks in as the longest ever, Democrats are refocused on Mueller’s 2016 election-meddling inquiry, insisting the investigation be completed without interference. They say they’ll be seeking those assurances from Attorney General nominee William Barr when he testifies this week before a Senate panel.

The FBI opened a probe in 2017 to determine whether Trump had worked, knowingly or unknowingly, on behalf of Russia, the New York Times reported Friday. The next day, the Washington Post said he went to great lengths to hide details of his discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On Eve of Crucial Vote: Theresa May Warns That Parliament Will Kill Brexit by Voting Down Her Deal (Bloomberg)
Read more: Where Brexit Could Go From Here (Bloomberg’s Brexit Bulletin)

Earnings Season Begins: Citi Fixed-Income Trading Slumps 21% in Bad Omen for Wall Street (Bloomberg)

Car Trouble: The Next American Car Recession Has Already Started (Bloomberg)

Mike Bloomberg: Government Shutdown a Failure of ‘Presidential Leadership’ (CNN)
“This has gone on for a few weeks. It’s a disgrace,” Bloomberg said at an event where he was giving out a climate award in Austin, Texas. He said he thinks it’s time for Trump to re-open the government and “work with Democrats to come up with real solutions to our immigration problems.”

“Instead, all we hear from the President is a lot of fear-mongering and lies, and sadly that has been the story of his presidency. And now I think he’s willing to hurt the American people by shutting down the government over an idea that would waste a lot of taxpayer money without doing anything to solve the real problem.”

Bloomberg Says He’d Self-fund Possible 2020 White House Bid (Associated Press)
“I ran [for mayor] three times. I used only my own money so I didn’t have to ask anybody what they wanted in return for a contribution. And, if I ran again, I would do the same thing. I think not having to adjust what you say and what you work on based on who financed your campaign is one of the things that the public really likes. I understand not everybody can be self-funded but those that can, I think, should.”

Bloomberg was in Austin to announce that the city had won funding to help combat climate change from his philanthropic foundation. He told reporters he won’t make a decision on a possible presidential bid for “another month or so.”

Mike Bloomberg in Texas:
-San Antonio is Balancing Climate and Growth
(San Antonio Express-News)
-Austin a Winner in Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge (CBS Austin)

Climate Change Impact: California Utility Giant’s CEO Departs as PG&E on Brink of Bankruptcy (Bloomberg)

The Cost of Climate Change for PG&E is a Warning to Big Business (Axios)
Companies are being forced to deal with the consequences of a changing climate, which is leading to more frequent and destructive wildfires and other types of disasters than ever before. PG&E’s situation is a warning to other power companies and businesses around the country.

‘Paris to Pittsburgh’ Documentary Shows What a Green New Deal Might Look Like (Curbed)

Editorial: Good News in Higher Education: More Colleges are Reaching Out to Lower-Income Students (Washington Post)
It’s welcome news that some of the nation’s top colleges and universities launched an effort to increase enrollment of these underrepresented students. The American Talent Initiative is backed by money from Bloomberg Philanthropies, but the schools, which commit to the collective goal while also setting individual goals, must raise money for scholarships and programs that support low- and moderate-income students. What’s been most encouraging is the growth in the American Talent Initiative from 30 founding members two years ago to 108 schools today.


Best of late night.

On the U.S. government shutdown:

“Due to the shutdown, the FDA has rolled back their food inspections. Or as romaine lettuce put it ‘I’m back baby!’”
— Jimmy Fallon

“Today, federal workers protested the shutdown outside the White House. It didn’t help when Trump rolled down a window and was like, ‘Don’t you have jobs to go to?’”
— Jimmy Fallon

“The Democrats say that this is a crisis manufactured by the president. The president said, ‘That’s not true — I only manufacture things in China. I would never do that here.’”
— Jimmy Kimmel

“A software company unveiled new technology this week that can track down Netflix users who share their passwords with others. “You caught me!” said literally every Netflix user.”
— Seth Meyers