Brian Snyder / AP

Concerns are brewing in conservative pro-Israel circles about the State Department hiring Michael Ratney, who was a senior U.S. diplomat in Jerusalem under John Kerry.

While Obama officials like former Obama ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk are praising Ratney's hire, influential conservatives in the pro-Israel community are ready to unleash a major outcry if he's retained. Here, for instance, is Arthur Schwartz linking to a Conservative Review piece:

Why did you tap this guy to run @StateDept's Israel / Palestinian portfolio, @Reince45? We won the election. Why hire @JohnKerry's guys?— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) March 10, 2017

Reached for comment, Schwartz, who is known to consult for the Zionist Organization of America, said he was only speaking for himself.

But Axios has learned that pro-Israel conservative figures are reaching out to the White House behind the scenes. If Ratney remains in the job, you can expect a number of public breaks with the administration.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 20,755,406 — Total deaths: 752,225— Total recoveries: 12,917,934Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 5,246,760 — Total deaths: 167,052 — Total recoveries: 1,774,648 — Total tests: 64,831,306Map.
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  4. 2020: Biden calls for 3-month national mask mandateBiden and Harris to receive coronavirus briefings 4 times a week.
  5. States: Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp to drop lawsuit over Atlanta's mask mandate.
  6. Business: Why the CARES Act makes 2020 the best year for companies to lose money.
  7. Public health: Fauci's guidance on pre-vaccine coronavirus treatments Cases are falling, but don't get too comfortable.

Trump says he intends to give RNC speech on White House lawn

President Trump speaking to reporters on South Lawn in July. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump told the New York Post on Thursday that he plans to deliver his Republican National Convention speech from the White House lawn, despite bipartisan criticism of the optics and legality of the location.

Why it matters: Previous presidents avoided blurring staged campaign-style events — like party conventions — with official business of governing on the White House premises, per Politico.

Fauci's guidance on pre-vaccine coronavirus treatments

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Antibody drugs and various medicine cocktails against the coronavirus are progressing and may provide some relief before vaccines.

The big picture: Everyone wants to know how and when they can return to "normal" life, as vaccines are not expected to be ready for most Americans for at least a year. Two therapies are known to be helpful, and more could be announced by late September, NIAID Director Anthony Fauci tells Axios.