Head-to-head: Former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis faced off last night in their first one-on-one debate. The occasion marked the last chance for the candidates to drag each other in such a setting before the Iowa caucuses next week. Here’s the highlights:

Haley is not evil enough: DeSantis did a good job of making Haley seem a lot more normal than she would like. He criticized her for once saying that Republicans should not call all undocumented immigrants “criminals,” and he said she did not support the border wall strongly enough. Haley, desperate to prove her disdain for immigrants, said DeSantis left out important context that actually makes her still heartless. 

Haley is CERTAINLY evil enough: Along the same lines, DeSantis said that Haley might be more liberal than Gavin Newsom. Ridiculous. Haley wants to ban gender-affirming care for minors, she wants to raise the age of retirement, and she supports abortion bans. Stfu, DeSantis.

No, I love Israel more: Haley and DeSantis both tried to frame each other as Palestine-sympathizers. Republicans hate to stand against genocide. Very unpopular in their party... and in the Democratic Party if I'm being real. Anyway, DeSantis called Haley out for once holding the obviously super far-left belief in a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine. Haley immediately backpedaled and reaffirmed her unwavering support for arming Israel in its attempts to eradicate Palestinians. Haley turned the conversation back on DeSantis, accusing him of guilt-by-association for campaigning with Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), who Haley called the most “anti-Israel Republican in Congress” because he voted against a resolution equating anti-Zionism to anti-Semitism.

And the winner is: Some sources thought DeSantis really found his stride in the one-on-one format. I personally find him about as charismatic as a doorknob. Some said Haley clearly won the night, appearing better informed and less of a jackass. But, to be soooooo real, it's silly to really consider either a winner when Trump didn't even show up and he's still leading in the polls.

Goodbye, Mr. Christie: Yesterday Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie announced he’s giving up on his presidential ambitions for 2024. According to the AP, Christie does not see a viable path to victory, and he recognizes that staying in the race may help Trump secure the nomination. Christie did not endorse either of his Republican opponents during the announcement, which seems like the very first thing you do when you drop out essentially for fear of vote-splitting. Instead, Christie shaded them on a hot mic, saying Haley was gonna get “smoked” and DeSantis was “petrified.” Who knows, if his goal is really to ice Trump, whose leaps and bounds ahead of Haley and DeSantis, then endorsing Biden might be his best bet. 

Weather? More like weathBRRRRR: Believe it or not, today Seattle will see its warmest weather before a week of major cold. So soak up the high of 40 degrees today at around noon because tomorrow temperatures will drop to the mid-20s, and we won’t break into the 40s again until next Wednesday. Winter’s here, bitches!

Need: Fuck beer, fuck cocktails. The only drink I want right now is hot cocoa. Thankfully, the fine people at EverOut already read my mind and compiled a list of the best places to get hot cocoa in Seattle. I swear EverOut has tapped my phone or something. I'm cool with it tbh. FWIW, I second their recommendation of Rey Amargo Chocolate Shop in Capitol Hill. That shit smacks. 

Waiting: The City of Tacoma promised to release its internal investigation of the cops who killed Manuel Ellis in 2020 today, but yesterday they announced that they will delay until next Tuesday. Last month, all three cops got acquitted in court, but on Tuesday, the Chief of Police will decide what consequences they will face at work. If you remember, in 2020, the Mayor of Tacoma called for all three to be fired. Personally, if I killed someone at my job, I would probably get fired! [Eds note: I didn't see shit.]

More delays: Yesterday the City of Seattle planned to release the names of the people who applied for the City Council vacancy left by Teresa Mosqueda. But, with more than 70 applicants, the City got overwhelmed and failed to post. Hopefully they can get a list up today, since tomorrow the council is scheduled to meet to narrow down that list to top contenders. I’ll keep you updated—probably on Twitter first and then the blog shortly after. 

Feeling a lil embarrassed: I told a friend of the blog that the list would be up yesterday and the City made a liar out of me. SMH.

You will be missed: News broke yesterday that the winningest coach in Seahawks history, Pete Carroll, will leave his position as head coach after 14 years for a different, less flashy position with the company. The fans seemed really shocked, but, keep in mind, Carroll is 72 years old. That’s the age when you really gotta start thinking about running for president.

You know it's bad when South Africa calls you out: Israel faces accusations of genocide from South Africa in World Court. After more than three months of bombardment, Israel has killed at least 23,000 Palestinians and has made Gaza uninhabitable. To South Africa, that does not feel like self-defense from Hamas' attack on Oct 7, when the militant group killed 1,200 Israelis. It sounds like a quest to "destroy" Gaza, said Tembeka Ngcukaitobi, advocate of the High Court of South Africa. Israel clapped back, calling South Africa "the legal arm of the Hamas terrorist organisation."

Get wrecked, Trump: Today, a New York court will hear final arguments in his civil fraud trial. That's the case about him lying about his property values, if you can't keep all his cases straight. 

As a wise woman once said, "Ariana run pop": On Friday, the drought will end and Ariana Grande will bless us with a new single, “Yes, And?” For now, enjoy the last masterpiece she sent into the world.