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Evan Vucci / AP

A hot D.C. parlor game is speculating whether President Trump goes off-script. In his inaugural address, we'll see the tension between Trump's impulsive, improvisational style and the intellectual architecture his top aides are trying to build around it.

A top Trump source told us three big ideas behind the words:

  1. "The speech is an attempt to address the deep structural problems facing American society. … We're talking here about decades-long problems."
  2. The speech is "not ideological": "It's a rejection of ideological thinking. Ideological thinking is always looking at the world through a strictly dogmatic prism. It's having a set of beliefs that are uncompromising."
  3. The speech will convey "that a nation and its people and its affairs are like a family and you need to take care of them."

We're told it will be on the short side: More JFK length (1,366 words) than Clinton (2,155 at his second inaugural).

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Go deeper

Airlines call for Biden admin's "immediate intervention" in 5G deployment

Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The CEOs of leading U.S. air cargo and passenger carriers on Monday warned the Biden administration there could be "catastrophic disruption" after AT&T and Verizon deploy a new 5G service this week.

Driving the news: They said in a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and other top federal officials ahead of the C-Band 5G service's deployment Wednesday that "the nation's commerce will grind to a halt" and "could potentially strand tens of thousands of Americans overseas."

Updated 3 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Thousands without power as "hazardous" winter storm lashes East Coast

Satellite imagery of the Northeastern U.S. taken by NOAA on Jan. 17. Photo: NOAA

A major winter storm lashed much of the East Coast Sunday and Monday, causing widespread power outages and disrupting travel over the holiday weekend.

The latest: Authorities in North Carolina confirmed that two people died in a car crash and that they responded 600 vehicle accidents during the storm on Sunday, per the Washington Post.

5 hours ago - Health

CDC director says COVID-19 messaging should have been clearer

Rochelle Walensky. Photo: Stefani Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images

Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that the messaging around the COVID-19 pandemic and changing guidance should have been clearer.

State of play: Walensky is being coached by media experts and is planning to have more press briefings by herself in order to ensure that CDC is seen as an independent, scientific entity, rather than as a political one, the Journal reports.