Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa Bay news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Charlotte news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo: Chuck Kennedy / Axios

Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell, who is a leader in the fight against revived GOP efforts to allow oil exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), said modest oil prices could deter development, but cannot replace a federal drilling ban. "I just worry that that's the security of last resort," she said when asked whether oil markets could thwart development even if restrictions are lifted. "I don't think they are going there," she added.

Why it matters: Cantwell's comments come amid questions about how much oil companies will be willing to spend money on Arctic exploration if prices remain modest and amid opportunities for lower cost production in the lower-48 states.

Cantwell, the top Democrat on the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, spoke ahead of a hearing this morning in her committee on ANWR drilling. She criticized the GOP proposal to raise revenues from leasing in the region, saying Republicans need money in order to "give a tax break to millionaires."

Republicans are using the budget process to enable legislation to open ANWR to drilling that's not subject to Senate filibusters. Cantwell warned against policies she said could "destroy" the refuge.

Yes, but: Oil industry officials have long maintained they can develop the coastal plain of the refuge with a minimal environmental footprint.

What's next: Cantwell refused to concede that Republicans definitely have enough votes, despite the failure of her floor amendment last month to strip provisions from the budget resolution that pave the way for drilling legislation.

  • "We have talked to some [Republicans] who voted that way who said, 'oh, I didn't really consider your amendment the final vote on that,' so we will have to see," she said of the 52-48 defeat of the amendment last month.

Go deeper

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Kellyanne Conway's parting power pointers

Kellyanne Conway addresses the 2020 Republican National Convention. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

Kellyanne Conway has seen power exercised as a pollster, campaign manager and senior counselor to President Trump. Now that his term in office has concluded, she shared her thoughts with Axios.

Why it matters: If there's a currency in this town, it's power, so we've asked several former Washington power brokers to share their best advice as a new administration and new Congress settle in.

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

GOP holdouts press on with plans to crush Cheney

Screenshot of emails to a member of Congress from individuals who signed an Americans for Limited Government petition against Rep. Liz Cheney. Photo obtained by Axios

Pro-Trump holdouts in the House are forging ahead with an uphill campaign to oust Rep. Liz Cheney as head of the chamber's Republican caucus even though Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told them to back down.

Why it matters: What happens next will be a test of McCarthy's party control and the sincerity of his opposition to the movement. Cheney (R-Wyo.) is seen as a potential leadership rival to the California Republican.

Democrats aim to punish House GOP for Capitol riot

Speaker Nancy Pelosi passes through a newly installed metal detector at the House floor entrance Thursday. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House Democrats plan to take advantage of corporate efforts to cut funding for Republicans who opposed certifying the 2020 election results, with a plan to target vulnerable members in the pivotal 2022 midterms for their role in the Jan. 6 violence.

Why it matters: It's unclear whether the Democrats' strategy will manifest itself in ads or earned media in the targeted races or just be a stunt to raise money for themselves. But the Capitol violence will be central to the party's messaging as it seeks to maintain its narrow majorities in Congress.