Hey Influence Traders:
We’ve had some action in DC this week … and its only Thursday.
Just Say NO!
Biden’s controversial nominee for Comptroller of the Currency is OUT!
Saule Omarova pulled herself from consideration after admitting that her nomination was “untenable."
Despite her stated desire to fundamentally dismantle the banking system as we know it, Biden continued to defend Omarova as “a strong advocate for consumers and a staunch defender of the safety and soundness of our financial system.”
Can’t make that disconnect up.
No replacement has been named, but my hope is that Biden goes with a pro-democracy, pro-capitalist, pro-banking nominee this time as opposed to an avowed Marxist.
A federal judge in Georgia has temporarily halted the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal contractors across the country while the issue is litigated.
Meanwhile Dem Sens. Manchin and Tester voted with all 50 Republican senators to nullify Biden’s vaccine mandate for large employers.
It’s chance of passing in the House is slim, and even if it does, Biden is sure to veto it.
Since Republicans don’t have enough votes to override the veto, they’ll have to settle for a symbolic win.
Speaking of Marxist, Mayor DeBlasio has instituted draconian new vax requirements for NYC.
The entertainment and restaurant industries are not happy.
They think that they will take a bigger hit than they’ve already suffered.
But Wait, There’s Money in COVID
Pfizer (Ticker: PFE) announced that a third dose of its COVID-19 vaccine neutralizes the omicron variant.
Who saw that coming?!?!?
And GlaxoSmithKline (Ticker: GSK) shared data that its COVID antibody treatment, Sotrovimab, is effective against all the new mutation variants.
The drug was cleared by UK regulators this past month and looks to provide 79% reduction in hospitalization and death for people with mild to moderate symptoms.
Late Tuesday, the House passed legislation that paves the way for Congress to raise the debt limit.
Raising it is imperative to prevent a federal default.
The plan is intended to allow Democrats to circumvent a GOP filibuster in the Senate.
The procedural language allowing Democrats to raise the debt limit by a simple majority is part of a bill that also averts automatic Medicare cuts.
It’s not a done deal yet, as the bill will still be subject to a Senate filibuster that will require 60 votes to proceed.
Senate Minority Leader McConnell is “confident” that he can get 10 GOP senators on board this week … but I’m sure he’s scrambling.
On Tuesday the House passed a compromise version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by a vote of 363-70.
Fifty-one Democrats and 19 Republicans voted against the bill.
Democrats want to get the Defense Bill wrapped up to clear the way for the Build Back Better boondoggle bill.
The measure now heads to the Senate where Senate Majority Leader Schumer will bring the compromise to the floor for a vote without debate.
The $768.2 bill includes $740 billion for the Department of Defense, $27.8 billion for national security programs within the Department of Energy, and $378 million for defense-related activities (as well as a 2.7% increase in military basic pay).
The NDAA is a policy bill and does not authorize spending, meaning an appropriations bill would still need to be passed.
Inflation continues to haunt DC Dems.
It is the primary issue that voters remain focused upon.
It’s causing fights within the Dem party and could stall their priorities.
The Biden admin has been downplaying the impact of inflation, but the progressives are focused on the impact on the middle class.
Build Back Better
Senate Democrats hope that taking care of the defense bill will clear the way for the Build Back Better plan, which they’d like to get a vote on by the end of the year.
Despite growing infighting regarding the contents of the boondoggle bill, Senate Majority Leader Schumer informed colleagues bright and early Monday morning that he intends to get the bill passed before Christmas.
But Sen. Joe Manchin continues to stymie those plans.
Manchin is keeping a close eye on boondoggle bill costs and the impact on inflation.
On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics will release November inflation data.
Adding potential fuel to the fire, many states and localities that are flush with cash from government expenditures are considering lowering taxes, which will put more cash in pockets that will … further drive inflation.
Manchin will also be watching an upcoming Congressional Budget Office report that is expected to show that the nearly $2 trillion bill will cost more than $4 trillion over 10 years if all provisions are extended over a decade.
Renewable Energy Orders
Through a series of executive orders on Wednesday, Biden required the federal government to stop buying gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035 and to have its buildings powered by wind, solar or other carbon-free electricity by 2050.
The orders impact 300,000 buildings, 600,000 cars and trucks, and annual purchases of $650 billion in goods and services.
By 2030, Biden wants the federal government to purchase electricity produced only from sources that do not emit carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases and by 2032 he wants to see the emissions produced by buildings cut in half.
I Like EV Trucks
Trading guru Andrew Giovinazzi and I have been keeping an eye on Lordstown Motors (Ticker: RIDE).
RIDE is an American electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer focused on developing light-duty electric trucks primarily for industrial fleet customers.
Despite losing one government contract, they could see money under the new orders.
RIDE has a strategic partnership with General Motors (Ticker: GM) and a very competitive EV pickup truck product.
And let’s not forget about our good friends at Ford (Ticker: F).
The F-150 remains one of the most widely used fleet vehicles, and the F-150 lightning EV truck is getting a lot of attention.
Cutting Through The Noise For You,