Stories by Shannon Vavra

Reversing criticism of Trump, Cuomo says "America has always been great"

Andrew Cuomo looks surprised.
Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo walked back his earlier statement this week that America "was never that great," during a phone call with reporters Friday, per the New York Post.

"The expression I used the other day was inartful, so I want to be very clear: Of course America is great and of course America has always been great... His philosophy is not just repugnant to New York, his philosophy is anti-American."
— Andrew Cuomo

Trump cuts funding for projects to stabilize Syria

Civil defense member in shadows extinguishes fire.
Civil defense member extinguishes fire in Idlib. Photo: Amir es Sami/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The Trump administration is ending up to $230 million in funding intended to help stabilize Syria, David Satterfield, the State Department's Acting Assistant Secretary for Near East Affairs, told reporters on a call Friday.

Why it matters: This is the latest in a string of cuts to Syrian stabilization funds the administration has been making following repeated complaints from President Trump about the cost of U.S. involvement. Axios reported in May that the State Department was ending funding to projects in northwest Syria after Trump requested they be reviewed.

House Commerce Committee wants Twitter CEO to testify

Jack Dorsey looks sad in a corner of the photo
Photo: Rolf Vennenbernd/picture alliance via Getty Images

The Chair of the House Commerce on Energy and Committee, Rep. Greg Walden (R-Oregon), formally invited (via a tweet) Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to appear before the committee over speech issues on the platform. Dorsey has already confirmed he will participate in a Sept. 5 Senate Intelligence hearing to discuss efforts to prevent Russian interference in the November midterms elections.

The upshot, per Axios’ David McCabe: “Jack is in a bind where he has satisfied neither the left, which isn't happy with their Infowars response, or the right, which wants him to testify on censorship, right as he needs lawmakers on his side when he goes up to Capitol Hill.”