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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images

Just hours before President Trump is set to announce his pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) offered a preview of the impact a conservative justice could have on the court, including rolling back abortion rights or the Affordable Care Act.

"It is near impossible that President Trump would select a nominee who isn’t hostile to our health care law and health care ... who isn't hostile to a woman's freedom to make her own health care decisions."
— Schmer said on the floor

Schumer also used his address to swing at Leonard Leo of the Federalist Society — who helped craft and vet Trump’s list of judicial prospects — citing conservatives' longtime goal of overturning Roe v. Wade.

The big picture: In describing how Kennedy's successor will have a crucial vote on a number of consequential issues, Schumer appears to be playing into a new Democratic strategy surrounding the SCOTUS debate, one which the party's leaders hope will energize their base ahead of the midterm elections.

The other side: Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-Ky.) later characterized Schumer’s remarks as "fear-mongering" and "far-left scare tactics."

"Decade after decade, nominee after nominee, the far-left script hardly changes at all. Anyone and everyone of Republican president nominates to the Supreme Court is some kind of threat to the public."
— Mitch McConnell

Go deeper

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. sounds alarm on Ukraine

Conscripts line up at a Russian railway station yesterday before departing for Army service. Photo: Sergei Malgavko/TASS via Getty Images

The Biden administration is "deeply concerned" by new intelligence — detailed for Axios and other outlets — showing Russia stepping up preparations to invade Ukraine as soon as early 2022.

Why it matters: Most of this was known from public sources and satellite imagery, but the administration is sending a stronger signal by releasing specific details from the intelligence community.

10 hours ago - Economy & Business

CNN fires Chris Cuomo

Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for CNN

CNN said Saturday evening it has fired one of its star anchors, Chris Cuomo, following new revelations from a legal review made by the company into Cuomo's involvement in the management of his brother's sexual harassment scandal.

Why it matters: Saturday's firing speaks to how much pressure CNN was under by employees and critics to address Cuomo's behavior.

Updated 12 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Electric car prices could go up before they come down

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The secret to affordable electric vehicles is cheaper batteries. But after years of falling prices, battery costs are now headed in the wrong direction.

Why it matters: Costlier batteries could drive up the price of electric vehicles — threatening the auto industry's transition away from fossil fuels, and, in turn, society's fight against climate change.

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