The 7The 7

Friday briefing: What we learned about Mike Pence at the Jan. 6 hearing; Julian Assange ruling; NBA Finals; polar bears; and more

(Jordan Robertson for The Washington Post)
3 min


The Jan. 6 committee held its third public hearing yesterday.

  • Big takeaway: President Donald Trump and his advisers knew plans to use Vice President Mike Pence to deny Joe Biden the presidency were probably illegal, witnesses said.
  • Key moments: John Eastman, a pro-Trump lawyer who pushed to overturn the 2020 election, asked for a pardon, an email showed. We also heard about Trump’s anger toward Pence for defying him.
  • Up next: The fourth hearing is set for Tuesday.


Mortgage rates had their biggest one-week jump in decades.

  • The numbers: The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage stands at 5.78%, up from barely 3% in November. These charts show how it could cost home buyers hundreds of thousands of dollars.
  • The cause: The Federal Reserve hiked interest rates this week. The move also unsettled financial markets and raised fears of a recession.
  • What else to know: The White House is exploring ways to respond to rising gas prices, such as sending rebate cards to drivers to help them pay.


Senators missed a key deadline in talks over a gun-control deal.

  • What happened? Negotiations ended yesterday without a firm agreement, meaning it might be too late to set up votes for next week and pass legislation before a recess.
  • What’s at stake: A bipartisan deal, coming after a string of mass shootings in the U.S., that could significantly expand national gun laws for the first time in three decades.


The leaders of France, Germany, Italy and Romania visited Ukraine.


Britain said Julian Assange can be sent to the U.S. to face spying charges.

  • Who is he? The founder of WikiLeaks. He faces 18 U.S. criminal charges related to the site’s publishing of thousands of diplomatic cables and classified files in 2010.
  • What’s next? Assange is expected to appeal the British government’s decision, which was announced today.


The Golden State Warriors won their fourth NBA championship in eight years.

  • Last night: The Warriors defeated the Celtics, ­103-90, in Game 6 of the Finals in Boston. Golden State used a 21-0 first-half run to take the lead for good.
  • The star: Stephen Curry scored 34 points and won his first Finals MVP award.


Some polar bears found a way to survive without sea ice.

  • How: They evolved. Isolated for hundreds of years in the southeast corner of Greenland, the bears can now hunt and travel on glacial ice that sticks out from the ice sheet.
  • What’s happening: Climate change is shrinking sea ice. These polar bears adapted, but they aren’t immune from warming — glacial ice is disappearing, too, just at a slower pace.

And now … what to watch this weekend: The latest “Toy Story” spinoff, “Lightyear,” which is in theaters today. Here’s our review.

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