Jul 25, 2018

Boris Johnson and Steve Bannon are having secret talks ahead of EU elections

Boris Johnson arrives in Downing Street. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Former United Kingdom foreign secretary Boris Johnson and President Donald Trump's former chief adviser Steve Bannon have been secretly meeting to discuss plans that "could have a significant impact on European politics," BuzzFeed News reports.

The details: Bannon wants to start a nonprofit in Brussels to help far-right parties get elected to the European Parliament. An alliance with Johnson — a possible contender as the U.K.'s next prime minister — could catapult Bannon into the European political scene, BuzzFeed reports.

The background: Bannon has said publicly he wants Johnson to run against May in the next election.

  • Speaking to radio station LBC, Bannon said he’d always been "very impressed" with Johnson, explaining, "[i]f you look at Boris' resignation letter and if you look at him and his writing, if you look at his book on Churchill," per BuzzFeed.
  • Bannon has been meeting with populists and leaders including Belgian lawyer, Mischaël Modrikamen, whose Popular Party holds one seat in Belgium’s federal parliament, members of French far-right leader Marine Le Pen’s National Rally party and the leader of the Italy’s League party.

Yes, but: Bannon being a player in Europe's politics hasn't gone unnoticed by other politicians and they're making an effort to dodge him. Several politicians are unsure of his role or his motives as an American in the EU, Politico reports.

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Netanyahu says July 1 deadline for West Bank annexation won't change

Photo: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday at a Likud Party faction meeting at the Knesset, Israel's parliament, that his July 1 deadline for starting the process of annexation in the West Bank will not change, according to people in attendance.

Why it matters: The White House and the State Department have stressed over the last few weeks that the deadline set by Netanyahu is "not sacred" to the Trump administration — and that any discussion of annexation needs to be in the context of renewed Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

Trump threatens to move Republican convention from North Carolina if capacity reduced

President Trump on stage during the 2016 Republican National Convention in Ohio. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via Getty Images

President Trump threatened in a series of Monday tweets to move this summer's Republican National Convention from Charlotte if North Carolina's Democratic governor, Roy Cooper, doesn't allow the event to be held at full capacity.

The state of play: Mandy Cohen, the state's health and human services secretary, said last week that the GOP should "plan for the worst" as mass gatherings will be a "very big challenge" if the number of coronavirus cases in the state continues to increase, per NPR.

The wreckage of summer

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

We usually think of Memorial Day as the start of the summer, with all of the fun and relaxation that goes with it — but this one is just going to remind us of all of the plans that have been ruined by the coronavirus.

Why it matters: If you thought it was stressful to be locked down during the spring, just wait until everyone realizes that all the traditional summer activities we've been looking forward to are largely off-limits this year.