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Photo: Joe Raedle

Federal authorities arrested a South Florida man on Friday after he allegedly made multiple death threats to several Democratic lawmakers.

Details: According to a complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida, John Kless left threatening voice messages on the office lines of Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.). Police have indicated that Kless has also been investigated for “profane/harassing calls” to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in which he spoke of “Congress taking away his guns, abortion, illegal immigration and Muslims in Congress."

Driving the news:

  • According to the affidavit, on Tuesday, Kless called Swalwell — a 2020 presidential candidate — cautioning him that taking Americans' guns would put him on his "death bed." Swalwell has made gun violence a focal point of his platform, calling for universal background checks and forced buy-backs of assault weapons.
  • Transcripts of the message Kless allegedly left for Booker, include racial slurs, and support for the white supremacist who drove his car into a crowd of protestors in Charlottesville in 2017.
  • In his message to Tlaib, police say Kless referred to the Muslim congresswoman from Michigan as a member of the Taliban.
  • Kless also reportedly referenced Rep. Ilhan Omar's (D-Minn.) comments about September 11.

Kless made his first appearance in court on Friday and has been released on bond, per the U.S. Attorneys Office.

Go deeper: Death threats target freshmen Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar

Go deeper

Scoop: FDA chief called to West Wing

Stephen Hahn. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has summoned FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn to the West Wing for a 9:30am meeting Tuesday to explain why he hasn't moved faster to approve the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, two senior administration officials told Axios.

Why it matters: The meeting is shaping up to be tense, with Hahn using what the White House will likely view as kamikaze language in a preemptive statement to Axios: "Let me be clear — our career scientists have to make the decision and they will take the time that’s needed to make the right call on this important decision."

Scoop: Schumer's regrets

Photo illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images   

Chuck Schumer told party donors during recent calls that the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the fact that Cal Cunningham "couldn't keep his zipper up" crushed Democrats' chances of regaining the Senate, sources with direct knowledge of the conversations tell Axios.

Why it matters: Democrats are hoping for a 50-50 split by winning two upcoming special elections in Georgia. But their best chance for an outright Senate majority ended when Cunningham lost in North Carolina and Sen. Susan Collins won in Maine.

Trump's coronavirus adviser Scott Atlas resigns

Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty

Scott Atlas, a controversial member of the White House coronavirus task force, handed in his resignation on Monday, according to three administration officials who discussed Atlas' resignation with Axios.

Why it matters: President Trump brought in Atlas as a counterpoint to NIAID director Anthony Fauci, whose warnings about the pandemic were dismissed by the Trump administration. With Trump now fixated on election fraud conspiracy theories, Atlas' detail comes to a natural end.

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