* Erica Werner and Damian Paletta report that we could still be heading for a shutdown:
Key lawmakers are meeting Monday afternoon in a late-stage bid to avert another government shutdown, trying to revive talks that derailed over the weekend amid a dispute on immigration enforcement rules.
House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita M. Lowey (D-N.Y.), Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), Rep. Kay Granger (R-Tex.) and Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) will attend the meeting, two congressional aides said. The lawmakers lead a bipartisan committee charged with striking a border security deal to stave off a government shutdown at week’s end.
White House officials and congressional aides are watching the outcome of the afternoon meeting closely, believing that it will be a pivotal juncture and may determine whether the talks can be rescued.
Lawmakers had hoped to reach an agreement by midday Monday, a timeline they thought was sufficient to win House and Senate approval this week. But talks broke down over the weekend, leading to acrimonious finger-pointing and angry outbursts from President Trump.
It will soon be time to initiate protocol “Capricorn One” to convince Trump that he got his wall.
* Rachael Bade, Kristine Phillips, Meagan Flynn, and Reis Thebault report that Rep. Ilhan Omar has now been put in her place:
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) apologized Monday afternoon for what many saw as anti-Semitic comments perpetuating the stereotype that Jews control politics with money.
Omar’s mea culpa came as prominent members of both parties denounced the first-term congresswoman’s statements and urged her to apologize.
"Anti-Semitism is real and I am grateful for Jewish allies and colleagues who are educating me on the painful history of anti-Semitic tropes,” Omar said on Twitter. “We have to always be willing to step back and think through criticism, just as I expect people to hear me when others attack me for my identity. This is why I unequivocally apologize.”
Earlier Monday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and other Democratic leaders said in a statement that Omar’s use of “anti-Semitic tropes and prejudicial accusations about Israel’s supporters is deeply offensive,” but added that her critiques of Israel’s policies and its treatment of Palestinians are protected by free speech.
In her apology, which she prefaced by saying she’s “listening and learning, but standing strong,” Omar reiterated her criticism of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, an influential pro-Israel lobbying group.
One of the tweets in question was problematic. But this controversy is being whipped up by Republicans operating in complete bad faith and their clueless Democratic allies, as they try to spread the lie that any criticism of AIPAC — which is a lobby for the right-wing Likud government in Israel — or Israeli policies themselves must necessarily be anti-Semitic.
* Michael Hiltzik has a good piece examining the coverage of Elizabeth Warren’s launch and of Trump’s disgusting tweet mocking the Trail of Tears as a sign of the journalistic malpractice we’re going to see in 2020.
* David Drucker reports that Republicans are hoping Democratic scandals in Virginia will hamper Gov. Ralph Northam’s ability to resist their demands in the next round of redistricting in the state. That could have real long-term ramifications.