Michael Cohen, personal lawyer and confidante for President Donald Trump, exits the United States District Court Southern District of New York. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

AT&T late Tuesday confirmed that it had contracted a corporation tied to Trump lawyer Michael Cohen and his alleged payment to adult entertainer Stormy Daniels.

Why it matters: AT&T is currently locked in a court battle with the Trump Justice Department, which sued to block its proposed $85 billion merger of Time Warner a month before AT&T says it ended the relationship with the Cohen LLC.

What they're saying: "Essential Consultants was one of several firms we engaged in early 2017 to provide insights into understanding the new administration. They did no legal or lobbying work for us, and the contract ended in December 2017," said an AT&T spokesperson.

Stormy Daniels' lawyer Michael Avenatti released a document on Tuesday detailing payments to Essential Consultants, LLC. The firm is at the center of Avenatti's claim that Cohen paid of Daniels over an alleged affair between the actress and Trump.

  • The document alleges that AT&T made four payments to the company, the first in October, 2017 and the last one in early January, 2018, totaling $200,000. The Justice Department sued to block the Time Warner merger in November, 2017.

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In photos: Virginians line up for hours on first day of early voting

Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

In some parts of Virginia, people waited in line up to four hours to cast their ballots on the first day of early voting, according to the Washington Post.

The big picture: The COVID-19 pandemic seems to already have an impact on how people cast their votes this election season. As many as 80 million Americans are expected to vote early, by mail or in person, Tom Bonier, CEO of TargetSmart, a Democratic political data firm, told Axios in August.

Updated 41 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4:30 p.m. ET: 30,306,469 — Total deaths: 948,147— Total recoveries: 20,626,515Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4:30 p.m. ET: 6,705,114 — Total deaths: 198,197 — Total recoveries: 2,540,334 — Total tests: 92,163,649Map.
  3. Politics: In reversal, CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people.
  4. Health: Massive USPS face mask operation called off The risks of moving too fast on a vaccine.
  5. Business: Unemployment drop-off reverses course 1 million mortgage-holders fall through safety netHow the pandemic has deepened Boeing's 737 MAX crunch.
  6. Education: At least 42% of school employees are vulnerable.

Court battles shift mail-in voting deadlines in battleground states

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Michigan joins Pennsylvania in extending mail-in ballot deadlines by several days after the election, due to the coronavirus pandemic and expected delays in U.S. Postal Service.

The latest: Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled that all ballots postmarked before Nov. 2 must be counted, so long as they arrive in the mail before election results are certified. Michigan will certify its general election results on Nov. 23.