Several Stories Caught Our Eye This Morning
Author: Greg Valliere
June 18, 2021
LOTS GOING ON, HERE’S WHAT CAUGHT OUR EYES THIS MORNING —
WILL JOE BIDEN TALK WITH XI JINPING SOON? On the heels of a constructive meeting with Vladimir Putin, President Biden reportedly is planning a phone conversation with Chinese President Xi Jinping. This probably would be frostier than the Putin summit but would focus on some positives; agricultural trade between the two nations is still robust, for example.
OBAMACARE IS HERE TO STAY: Yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling pretty much shuts the door on efforts to kill Obamacare. In its 7-2 ruling, some conservatives threw in the towel: Clarence Thomas, Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh and John Roberts voted to uphold the law. Starting now, the focus will be exclusively on expanding Obamacare.
IRANIAN SHIPS REPORTEDLY CARRYING ARMS to Venezuela have reversed course, sources are reporting this morning. After blunt U.S. threats to Iran, Venezuela and Cuba, this potential crisis apparently has been defused — which may improve prospects for a nuclear deal between the U.S. and Iran.
WHEN WILL JOE MANCHIN GIVE UP? After piously insisting that bipartisanship is the key to good government, moderate Democrat Joe Manchin got smacked down by Mitch McConnell yesterday. The Senate Minority Leader essentially ruled out any compromise on the election reform bill; Manchin had been trying to strike a deal.
SO MANCHIN HAS HIS ANSWER on bipartisanship, which could prompt him to more realistically view an infrastructure bill. A $1 trillion deal could bypass McConnell and pass in a 50-50 tie broken by Kamala Harris via the budget reconciliation process. That could appeal to Manchin a bit more, now that McConnell has signaled an unwillingness to compromise.
IS TODAY A HOLIDAY? The Juneteenth bill was signed yesterday by President Biden and will take effect immediately, making June 19 a federal holiday, commemorating the end of slavery. Since June 19 falls tomorrow, some federal workers will get today off; the Federal Reserve’s offices will be closed, for example.
U.S. FINANCIAL MARKETS will be open today, but probably will be closed next year, with three holidays — Memorial Day, Juneteenth and July 4 — jammed into a six week period. The U.S. will now have 12 national holidays, still well behind the global record of 28 in Cambodia.
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