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House Majority Whip James Clyburn takes a selfie Wednesday with former President George W. Bush. Photo: Patrick Semansky-Pool/Getty Images

Former President George W. Bush credited Rep. James Clyburn with being the "savior" of the Democratic Party, telling the South Carolinian at Wednesday's inauguration his endorsement allowed Joe Biden to win the party's presidential nomination.

Why it matters: The nation's last two-term Republican president also said Clyburn's nod allowed for the transfer of power, because he felt only Biden had the ability to unseat President Trump.

What they're saying: “When Bill [Clinton] walked up, George [W. Bush] looked at Bill and said, 'This guy’s y’all savior,’” Clyburn told Axios, referring to himself.

  • Clyburn's endorsement helped Biden to win last year's pivotal South Carolina primary, convincing the rest of the Democratic field to get behind his candidacy.
  • During a call with local reporters, the powerful House majority whip revealed Bush made the additional comment about the move resulting in the transfer of power.

Go deeper

Obama, Bush and Clinton to Biden: "Your success is our country's success"

Former Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama during the Celebrating America Primetime Special on Wednesday. Photo: Handout/Biden Inaugural Committee via Getty Images d

Former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton wished President Biden well and spoke of coming together in a "peaceful transition of power" in a video organized by the inaugural committee Wednesday.

What they're saying: Obama noted "we can have a fierce disagreements and yet recognize each other's common humanity and that, as Americans, we have more in common than what separates us." Clinton said Biden had spoken form them in his unifying address, "now you will lead for us and we're ready to march with you." Bush added, "Your success is our country's success."

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Here come Earmarks 2.0

DeLauro at a hearing in May 2020. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The House Appropriations Committee is preparing to restore a limited version of earmarks, which give lawmakers power to direct spending to their districts to pay for special projects.

Why it matters: A series of scandals involving members in both parties prompted a moratorium on earmarks in 2011. But Democrats argue it's worth the risk to bring them back because earmarks would increase their leverage to pass critical legislation with a narrow majority, especially infrastructure and spending bills.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
2 hours ago - Energy & Environment

UN says Paris carbon-cutting plans fall far short

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Nations' formal emissions-cutting pledges are collectively way too weak to put the world on track to meet the Paris climate deal's temperature-limiting target, a United Nations tally shows.

Driving the news: This morning the UN released an analysis of the most recent nationally determined contributions (NDCs) — that is, countries' medium-term emissions targets submitted under the 2015 pact.