3. The speech
Trump consumes 99 percent of Capitol Hill's oxygen this week, with Republicans eagerly anticipating his address a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night.
What you won't hear: Trump endorsing, in specific terms, the two most contentious House Republican plans: the $1 trillion border adjustment tax and the House GOP's Obamacare repeal and replace plan.
What you will hear: A big picture speech — we're told it'll be "optimistic and uplifting" ... we'll see — that'll focus on "safety, sovereignty, and economic opportunity."
Reality: House leaders know exactly where they are with Trump on Obamacare. It's helping a huge amount that Trump's point man is HHS Secretary Tom Price, who is close to Ryan and helped develop the House's plan. Tax reform is a different story. The future of border adjustment remains very much in doubt.
Three things the White House is doing to prepare the echo chamber:
- Briefing allies: Trump's communication staffers Jessica Ditto and Raj Shah held a conference call Saturday with the RNC, NRCC and congressional leadership offices. They didn't give them specifics about the speech, but assured them there'll be fact sheets and talking points galore.
- Outreach to regional media: Tomorrow night, the President and Press Secretary Sean Spicer will dine with regional TV and radio affiliates. It's part of a macro strategy to get the message ringing around the 2018 battleground states and beyond.
- WhiteHouse.gov will redirect to a "joint address" page so people can watch the live stream and follow all the social media posts.