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Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images.

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) told Bloomberg in an interview Sunday that there could immediately be a push to try to impeach Joe Biden over his actions in Ukraine if he's elected president, despite no evidence of wrongdoing by the former vice president.

Why it matters: Republicans have argued that attempting to remove President Trump from office in a partisan fashion sets a dangerous precedent of politicizing impeachment. Ernst, who said earlier Sunday that she will vote to acquit Trump, told Bloomberg that "this door of impeachable whatever has been opened" and that "Joe Biden should be very careful what he’s asking for."

The big picture: Biden, who was tasked by President Obama with fighting corruption in Ukraine, demanded the firing of former prosecutor general Viktor Shokin in 2016. At the time, Biden's son Hunter was serving on the board of Ukrainian gas company Burisma, which was owned by an oligarch who had been investigated for corruption.

  • The removal of Shokin was a policy supported by the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and many bipartisan members of Congress. However, Republicans have alleged that Biden had Shokin fired because he was investigating Burisma.
  • There's no evidence to support this claim, and no members of Congress expressed concern about Shokin's ouster until last year, when the allegations were first promoted by Trump and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

Between the lines: Iowa, Ernst's home state, will host its Democratic caucuses Monday. Polls show a tight race between Biden, former Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

  • Ernst suggested last week that information about the Bidens surfaced during the impeachment trial could hurt his chances.
  • "I’m really interested to see how this discussion today informs and influences the Iowa caucus voters, those Democratic caucus-goers," she said. "Will they be supporting Vice President Biden at this point? Not certain at that."

Go deeper ... Fact check: What Joe and Hunter Biden actually did in Ukraine

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect that Ernst said "people" could push to impeach Biden, not Republicans specifically..

Go deeper

Trump bump: NYT and WaPo digital subscriptions tripled since 2016

Data: Axios reporting and public filings; Chart: Axios Visuals

The New York Times and The Washington Post have very different strategies for building the subscription news company of the future.

The big picture: Sources tell Axios that the Post is nearing 3 million digital subscribers, a 50% year-over-year growth in subscriptions and more than 3x the number of digital-only subscribers it had in 2016. The New York Times now has more than 6 million digital-only subscribers, nearly 3x its number from 2016.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
1 hour ago - Energy & Environment

Biden's emerging climate orbit

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

As of Tuesday morning, we know a lot more about President-elect Joe Biden climate personnel orbit, even as picks for agencies like EPA and DOE are outstanding, so here are a few early conclusions.

Why it matters: They're the highest-level names yet announced who will have a role in what Biden is promising will be a far-reaching climate and energy agenda.

Janet Yellen is back

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Hannelore Foerster/Getty Images

A face familiar to Wall Street is back as a central player that this time will need to steer the country out of a deep economic crisis.

Driving the news: President-elect Joe Biden is preparing to nominate former Fed chair Janet Yellen to be Treasury secretary.