The Morning Dispatch: All Eyes on Georgia

Happy Tuesday! The Chicago Bears exist purely to inflict pain on the unlucky souls foolish enough to root for their success.

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • Preliminary data from Moderna Inc. show that the biotech company’s COVID-19 vaccine is 94.5 percent effective at preventing the disease. Moderna plans to apply for emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration within weeks.

  • Republicans in Washington are increasingly coming around to the reality of President-elect Joe Biden. Sens. John Cornyn, Kevin Cramer, Marco Rubio, Mike Rounds, and Jim Risch hinted at as much yesterday, and Robert O’Brien—President Trump’s own National Security Adviser—promised a “very professional transition” if Biden is determined to be the winner. “Obviously things look that way now,” O’Brien said.

  • President Trump is reportedly preparing to order the Pentagon to reduce the number of American troops in Afghanistan (from 4,500 currently to 2,500) and Iraq (3,000 to 2,500) by January 15. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell urged Trump to reconsider: “A disorganized retreat would jeopardize the track record of major successes this Administration has worked hard to compile,” he said in a statement.

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