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Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of Blackstone Group and the leader of Trump's economic advisory council, has been receiving notes from his students at his new college in Beijing — a part of Tsinghua University — expressing their discontent with his new position, per Bloomberg.

There are 110 Schwarzman's Scholars, who come from all over — Romania, Mongolia, Zimbabwe and, of course, China and America — to study the geopolitical landscape of the 21st Century, with a heavy emphasis on understanding China's role in global trends. They also have a strong background in politics, public policy and international business, which is why they feel so strongly about Schwarzman's White House role.

In response to his students' criticism, Schwarzman sent an email to his students explaining why counseling Trump is so important:

  • Trump asked him to chair the President's Strategic and Policy Forum along with some of "the most capable business people" in the U.S. to give him "candid feedback." Schwarzman agreed as he believes the forum will be good for the country.
  • Schwarzman said he is "pleased" that the Forum, which has 18 members, is diverse and bi-partisan.
  • As for last week's controversial meeting, Schwarzman encouraged each member to bring 5 personal suggestions of policies and regulations that could be modified or eliminated.
  • In the last 3 weeks he's had "face-to-face conversations" with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Davos, U.K Prime Minister Theresa May, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the entire Canadian cabinet.
  • Concluded with stating he's shared this information so that his students can take on similar types of roles in their lives, as "having influence and providing sound advice is a good thing, even if it attracts criticism or requires some sacrifice."

Go deeper

Schumer's m(aj)ority checklist

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Capitalizing on the Georgia runoffs, achieving a 50-50 Senate and launching an impeachment trial are weighty to-dos for getting Joe Biden's administration up and running on Day One.

What to watch: A blend of ceremonies, hearings and legal timelines will come into play on Tuesday and Wednesday so Chuck Schumer can actually claim the Senate majority and propel the new president's agenda.

The dark new reality in Congress

National Guard troops keep watch at security fencing. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

This is how bad things are for elected officials and others working in a post-insurrection Congress:

  • Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said she had a panic attack while grocery shopping back home.
  • Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said police may also have to be at his constituent meetings.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) told a podcaster he brought a gun to his office on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 because he anticipated trouble with the proceedings that day.
Off the Rails

Episode 3: Descent into madness ... Trump: "Sometimes you need a little crazy"

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 3: The conspiracy goes too far. Trump's outside lawyers plot to seize voting machines and spin theories about communists, spies and computer software.

President Trump was sitting in the Oval Office one day in late November when a call came in from lawyer Sidney Powell. "Ugh, Sidney," he told the staff in the room before he picked up. "She's getting a little crazy, isn't she? She's really gotta tone it down. No one believes this stuff. It's just too much."