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Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden on stage at a rally in Dallas, Texas, Monday.

Driving the news: O'Rourke is the third former 2020 competitor to endorse Biden Monday. Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who dropped out of the race Sunday, also endorsed Biden at the rally. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who ended her campaign earlier Monday, did the same.

We need someone who can bring us together and heal us. We need Joe Biden."
— Beto O'Rourke at Biden's Texas rally
  • The endorsements come just hours before polls open on Super Tuesday. Sen. Bernie Sanders holds a narrow lead in delegates over Biden, but moderates coalescing around Biden could give him a vital boost.

What he's saying: At the rally, Biden praised the gun control advocacy of O'Rourke — who campaigned for buybacks of assault weapons and who declared last year, "Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47.

  • "You're gonna take care of the gun problem with me, you're gonna be the one who leads this effort," Biden told O'Rourke. "I'm counting on you, we need you badly."

The big picture: O'Rourke dropped out of the 2020 race in November after multiple attempts to rebrand himself in the Democratic field. He'd once been the buzz of the Democratic Party after making a splash in the 2018 midterms while running against incumbent GOP Sen. Ted Cruz.

Go deeper: Joe Biden's sudden, shocking surge

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details from the rally.

Go deeper

20 Republican former U.S. attorneys endorse Biden, call Trump "a threat to the rule of law"

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Twenty Republican former U.S. Attorneys on Tuesday endorsed Joe Biden while saying that "President Trump's leadership is a threat to rule of law" in the U.S., the Washington Post reports.

What they're saying: In the letter, the former prosecutors criticize Trump's use of the Department of Justice, saying the president expects the DOJ to "to serve his personal and political interests."

  • "He has politicized the Justice Department, dictating its priorities along political lines and breaking down the barrier that prior administrations had maintained between political and prosecutorial decision-making," the letter says.
Updated 35 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Axios-Ipsos poll: Federal response has only gotten worse — The swing states where the pandemic is raging.
  2. Health: The coronavirus is starting to crush some hospitals — 13 states set single-day case records last week.
  3. Business: Winter coronavirus threat spurs new surge of startup activity.
  4. Media: Pandemic causes cable and satellite TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota COVID cases traced to 3 Trump campaign events.
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.

Ted Cruz defends GOP's expected return to prioritizing national debt

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told "Axios on HBO" on Monday that he wishes reining in the national debt was a higher priority for President Trump.

Why it matters: Trump pledged during the 2016 campaign to reduce the national debt and eliminate it entirely within eight years, though he also deemed himself "the king of debt" and said there were some priorities that required spending. In the fiscal year that ended in September, the deficit reached a record $3.1 trillion.