Mar 9, 2017

Energy and Commerce approves Obamacare bill after 27 hours

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

After a grueling session that lasted overnight and through the morning, the House Energy and Commerce Committee did what everyone knew it would do from the beginning: It approved its piece of the House Republican Obamacare replacement package on a party-line vote. The bill survived the marathon markup session basically unchanged, except for technical tweaks from the Republican side.

How it ended: Despite all of the bitter arguments about which was worse — Obamacare or the new bill — all of the anger seemed to be gone at the end, as dazed-looking Republicans and Democrats just wanted to get it over with. They all gave a round of applause to committee chairman Greg Walden and the committee staff members for making it through the night. Ranking Democrat Frank Pallone gave one last speech about how the GOP bill would "rip health care away from millions of Americans," but even his heart didn't really seem to be in it.

What's next: Rep. Joe Barton withdrew one important amendment he had expected to offer: ending Obamacare's Medicaid expansion at the end of this year rather than in 2020. That was a concession to conservatives, and has already been endorsed by groups like the Republican Study Committee. Barton said the White House is "looking at it" and that he has gotten a "considerable amount of positive feedback" in private conversations. So look for it to return later in the process.

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Morgan Stanley to buy E*Trade in a $13 billion deal

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Morgan Stanley is planning to buy E*Trade Financial Corp. in a $13 billion all stock deal, the Wall Street Journal reports, with plans to restructure the company known for helping everyday Americans manage their money.

Why it matters: The deal, which would be the largest by a major American bank since the financial crisis, signals Morgan Stanley‘s desire to bulk up in wealth management.

Go deeper: Six of the biggest U.S. banks have weaknesses in their crisis plans

The new not-normal: The Trump state

Photo Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photos: Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Donald Trump changed how to run for president. Next, he changed the Republican Party. Now, he’s changing the presidency and the boundaries of executive power. 

In the past week, Trump has purged internal dissenters, imported loyalists, pardoned political and financial criminals and continued a running commentary on live Justice Department criminal cases — despite an unprecedented public brushback from his attorney general.

Bloomberg's rough debut

Photo: John Locher/AP

Mike Bloomberg was booed during his debut debate as a Democratic presidential candidate — indicative of a rusty outing where the former New York mayor looked unprepared to respond to obvious lines of attack.

Why it matters ... The debate underscored the Bloomberg’s campaign biggest fear: It's hard to hide to his prickly demeanor. Bloomberg had all the time, practice and forewarning money could buy — and still struggled mightily on the public stage.