Show an ad over header. AMP

O'Malley Dillon's line that GOP are "f-ckers" worries some Biden aides

Some advisers close to President-elect Joe Biden are frustrated over a Glamour magazine interview in which incoming White House deputy chief of staff Jen O'Malley Dillon referred to Republicans on Capitol Hill as "f*ckers."

Why it matters: Biden campaigned for the presidency by promising to "restore the soul of America" and not to question the motives of political opponents, whom he insists aren't enemies. Fighting words from a high-level staffer could give Republicans ammunition to cast doubt on Biden's sincerity.

  • After the Electoral College affirmed Biden's victory on Monday, he promised to "turn the page" on the campaign and "heal" the country.
  • Some donors want O'Malley Dillon, his campaign manager, to apologize — to Biden and perhaps to congressional Republicans.

Between the lines: This is one of the first signs of division in a team that's prided itself through the campaign and transition on unity, message discipline and minimal leaks, and is now preparing to govern.

  • “For those of us who, from Day One, bought into Biden’s calls for civility and a return to normalcy, this isn’t just beyond the pale — it’s plain stupid,” said one Biden donor.

The other side: “Could she have used a different adjective, sure," said one Biden official. "But if you know Jen...she is real, she is authentic, she says it how it is."

O'Malley Dillon didn't respond to a request for comment.

  • After Axios sought a response from the transition team, Biden communications director Kate Bedingfield posted a tweet saying that O'Malley Dillon "would be the first to tell you her mom doesn't approve of spicy language" but that "the point she was making ... unity and healing are possible — and we can get things done."

Details: In the interview, O'Malley Dillon also called Senate Majority Mitch McConnell "terrible."

  • But she didn't foreclose the possibility of working with Republicans, and she suggested that Biden won, in part, because of his optimism: "The president-elect was able to connect with people over this sense of unity."
  • On Sunday, she and Mike Donilon, who will serve as a White House counselor, laid out Biden's governing approach, with Donilon saying Biden has "made it clear that he intends to work, if possible, across the aisle."
  • Biden wants to project a message that Republicans aren't bad people and that when Donald Trump departs the scene they may have an "epiphany."

Be smart: Biden confidants don't necessarily disagree with O'Malley Dillon's darker sentiments; they disagree with her decision to say them for public consumption.

  • There is deep skepticism among Democrats that Republicans actually want to work with them, even as Biden genuinely believes that his dealmaking skills can prevail.

Biden administration seeks to allow separated migrant families to reunite in the U.S.

Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced Monday that the Biden administration will explore "lawful pathways" to allow migrant families separated under the Trump administration to reunite in the U.S.

Why it matters: Biden has pledged to reunite the hundreds of families still separated as a result of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy, and signed an executive order last month creating a family separation task force chaired by Mayorkas.

Keep reading... Show less

CDC director warns "now is not the time" to lift COVID restrictions, citing stalled progress

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky warned states on Monday that "now is not the time" to lift public health restrictions, as the recent dramatic declines in coronavirus cases and deaths "appear to be stalling."

Why it matters: While the average of 70,000 new infections and 2,000 daily deaths is nowhere near the extremely high levels recorded at the start of 2021, the figures are still a poor baseline to "stop a potential fourth surge" — especially with the threat posed by more contagious new variants, Walensky warned.

Keep reading... Show less

Sen. Elizabeth Warren introduces "ultra-millionaire" wealth tax bill

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on Monday introduced a bill in the Senate that would impose a new tax on the assets of America's wealthiest individuals.

Why it matters: The plan, which Warren introduced along with Reps. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) and Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.) is similar to a proposal that was the centerpiece of Warren's campaign for the presidency in 2020.

Keep reading... Show less

Private equity firms dodge cost-cutting and aim for revenue growth

Private equity is mimicking venture capital, banking on revenue growth instead of cost-cutting.

Why it matters: PE firms may struggle to maintain historical returns, particularly if the bull market slows its rampage and they're stuck with overpriced and overleveraged portfolios.

Keep reading... Show less

Former French President Sarkozy sentenced to jail for corruption

A court in Paris on Monday sentenced former French President Nicolas Sarkozy to one year in prison and a two-year suspended sentence, after he was found guilty of trying to bribe a magistrate, the AP reports.

Driving the news: Sarkozy, who was president from 2007 to 2012, is the first president in France’s modern history to have gone on trial for corruption, per AP. He was charged with corruption and influence-peddling.

Keep reading... Show less

Canceled NFL Scouting Combine puts 40-yard dashes on the backburner

Top NFL prospects would normally be gathering in Indianapolis this week for the annual Scouting Combine. But due to the pandemic, this year's event has been canceled.

What they're saying: No combine means no 40-yard dash times making headlines. Former scout and current NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah thinks that could be a glimpse of the future:

Keep reading... Show less

J&J CEO "absolutely" confident in vaccine distribution goal of 100 million doses by June

Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky said Monday that he is "absolutely" confident that the company will be able to meet its distribution goals, which include 100 million doses by June and up to a billion by the end of 2021.

Driving the news: J&J is already in the process of shipping 3.9 million doses this week, just days after the FDA issued an emergency use authorization for the one-shot vaccine. Gorsky said he expects vaccines to be administered to Americans "literally within the next 24 to 48 hours."

Keep reading... Show less

The spike in global bond yields is setting up a clash between the world's top central bankers

While Fed chair Jerome Powell is brushing off the seismic rise in government bond yields and a corresponding decline in stock prices, a group of central bankers in the Pacific are starting to take action.

Driving the news: Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda told parliament on Friday the BOJ would not allow yields on government debt to continue rising further above the BOJ's 0% target.

Keep reading... Show less



Get Goodhumans in your inbox

Most Read

More Stories