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Chuck Kennedy

The German Ambassador said "If America abdicates its leadership role, there will be a vacuum and other countries might step in. It might be Russia, it might be China," while speaking with Mike Allen Wednesday morning at an Axios News Shapers event.

German Ambassador Peter Wittig:

  • What Merkel said on the Paris deal: "Europe must take its fate into its own hands…We should not always think that we can rely on others."
  • On Germany's upcoming election: "We are less polarized than other countries in Europe…We have new right wing anti-immigration party and that has bothered us for a while. The rise of right-wing populism has peaked."

Jordanian Ambassador Dina Kawar:

  • On Trump's foreign trip in the Middle East: "Many Arabs were happy to see that was the first trip he did."
  • On intel sharing with the U.S. and terrorism: "We've managed to become one of the countries with the most [information]…we're sharing a lot of information."
  • "Jordanians open their homes" to refugees: "We managed to take around 1.4 million which is around 20% of our population increase…That's like asking the population of Canada to move into the United States...It has been a burden on our economy [but] we could not close the borders…Jordanians open their homes…It's not controversial."

Singaporean Ambassador Ashok Mirpuri:

  • On meeting Trump: "It was interesting to have a chat with him. He was familiar with the world, he spoke about Singapore, he was familiar with Singapore."
  • The importance of getting out of D.C.: "I have traveled to 42 states in the United States…I always find it's good to get outside of Washington, D.C. People are very generous with their time, that gives a good idea of what is happening in the United States."

Go deeper

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Health: Most vulnerable Americans aren't getting enough vaccine information — Fauci says Trump administration's lack of facts on COVID "very likely" cost lives.
  2. Politics: Biden unveils "wartime" COVID strategyBiden's COVID-19 bubble.
  3. Vaccine: Florida requiring proof of residency to get vaccine — CDC extends interval between vaccine doses for exceptional cases.
  4. World: Hong Kong to put tens of thousands on lockdown as cases surge.
  5. Sports: 2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck.

Trump impeachment trial to start week of Feb. 8, Schumer says

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: The Washington Post via Getty

The Senate will begin former President Trump's impeachment trial the week of Feb. 8, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Friday on the Senate floor.

The state of play: Schumer announced the schedule after reaching an agreement with Republicans. The House will transmit the article of impeachment against the former president late Monday.

4 hours ago - Health

CDC extends interval between COVID vaccine doses for exceptional cases

Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty

Patients can space out the two doses of the coronavirus vaccine by up to six weeks if it’s "not feasible" to follow the shorter recommended window, according to updated guidance from the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention.

Driving the news: With the prospect of vaccine shortages and a low likelihood that supply will expand before April, the latest changes could provide a path to vaccinate more Americans — a top priority for President Biden.