Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

In his book, "Let Me Finish," Chris Christie answers a question about Donald Trump that has long perplexed me: Why are his ties so ridiculously long?

What he's saying: Christie, who was the first high-profile Republican elected official to endorse Trump's 2016 campaign, describes what Trump was like backstage before rallies. "Donald choreographed every last detail...he produced me, too, or tried to," Christie writes.

  • 'I want your tie to be longer,' he said. 'It's slenderizing.'
  • 'I'm not retying my tie,' I told him. 'My tie is fine. I think yours is too long.'
  • 'No, no,' he shot back at me. 'Mine is the perfect length. It makes you look thinner.'

Bonus: Christie describes a completely bonkers scene from Trump's 2016 debate prep. General Michael Flynn, whom Christie describes as "a train wreck from beginning to end," suggested that Trump pivot back to being pro-choice to "knock Clinton off guard."

  • "No sir," interjected Kellyanne Conway, according to Christie. "That's not a good thing to do."
  • Our thought bubble: Had Trump followed Flynn's advice, we would now be writing about President Hillary Clinton. Trump would've still achieved a record evangelical vote in 2016 — but instead of a record high, it would've been a record low for a Republican.

Go deeper ... Trump 101: He is definitely not a health nut

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In photos: Virginians line up for hours on first day of early voting

Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

In some parts of Virginia, people waited in line up to four hours to cast their ballots on the first day of early voting, according to the Washington Post.

The big picture: The COVID-19 pandemic seems to already have an impact on how people cast their votes this election season. As many as 80 million Americans are expected to vote early, by mail or in person, Tom Bonier, CEO of TargetSmart, a Democratic political data firm, told Axios in August.

Updated 57 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4:30 p.m. ET: 30,306,469 — Total deaths: 948,147— Total recoveries: 20,626,515Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4:30 p.m. ET: 6,705,114 — Total deaths: 198,197 — Total recoveries: 2,540,334 — Total tests: 92,163,649Map.
  3. Politics: In reversal, CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people.
  4. Health: Massive USPS face mask operation called off The risks of moving too fast on a vaccine.
  5. Business: Unemployment drop-off reverses course 1 million mortgage-holders fall through safety netHow the pandemic has deepened Boeing's 737 MAX crunch.
  6. Education: At least 42% of school employees are vulnerable.

Court battles shift mail-in voting deadlines in battleground states

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Michigan joins Pennsylvania in extending mail-in ballot deadlines by several days after the election, due to the coronavirus pandemic and expected delays in U.S. Postal Service.

The latest: Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled that all ballots postmarked before Nov. 2 must be counted, so long as they arrive in the mail before election results are certified. Michigan will certify its general election results on Nov. 23.