Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

Divided government returned to America with a day of celebration for Democrats that swept Capitol Hill with new diversity and determination.

Driving the news: Seven and a half hours after Pelosi took the gavel, the newly empowered Democrats passed a plan to re-open the government without funding for President Trump's wall — a measure that's already dead because the Republican-controlled Senate won't take it up.

Pelosi told reporters at a news conference last night: "We're not doing a wall. Does anyone have any doubt that we're not doing a wall?"

"We've had so little joy in politics in these last months," historian Doris Kearns Goodwin said on MSNBC. "So, to see families together at this moment, to see the joy of new people thinking that maybe things will be different — that maybe there something will change and this fever will break."

Pelosi and a fellow Californian, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, the new leader of the House Republicans. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images
  • N.Y. Times Quotation of the Day ... McCarthy: "To the speaker of the House, Ms. Pelosi, I extend to you the gavel."
Pelosi celebrates with her grandchildren and other kids in the chamber. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
Photo: Pelosi greets a child with Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), the first Somali-American elected to Congress, during a ceremonial swearing-in. Alex Brandon/AP
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) takes a selfie with Rep. Ann McLane Kuster (D-N.H.) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.). Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

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Appeals court allows House Democrats to continue lawsuit for Don McGahn testimony

Don McGahn in an October 2018 Cabinet meeting. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

A D.C. appeals court on Friday allowed House Democrats to continue their case for testimony from former White House counsel Don McGahn before the House Judiciary Committee.

Why it matters: The ruling has broader implications beyond this specific instance, agreeing that Congress has the standing to sue to enforce subpoenas against executive branch officials even if the White House refuses to comply.

There's little consensus on TikTok's specific national security threat

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok has become a Rorschach test for how U.S. politicians view China, with little consensus on the specifics of its threat to homeland security.

The big picture: Much of what D.C. fears about TikTok is fear itself, and that's reflected in President Trump's executive order to ban the app by Sept. 20 if it's not sold by parent company ByteDance — alongside another focused on Chinese messaging app WeChat and its parent company Tencent.

U.S. sanctions Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam

Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images)

The Treasury Department on Friday placed sanctions on Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam, following months of tension as she has allowed continued overreach by Beijing to subvert Hong Kong's autonomy.

Why it matters: It's the toughest sanction yet imposed on China for its destruction of Hong Kong’s relatively free political system.