Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Joe Biden's campaign is emphasizing that he really, really doesn't like subsidies for fossil fuels at a time when climate activists are blasting the removal of anti-subsidy language from the Democratic National Committee platform.

What they're saying: "[Joe Biden] continues to be committed to ending U.S. fossil fuel subsidies [and] then rallying the rest of the world to do the same — as was outlined in his climate plan last year," Biden policy director Stef Feldman tweeted Wednesday.

  • "Here at home, he'll use those dollars to instead invest in a clean energy future and create union jobs," she added.

The big picture: It's not clear why the language got dropped, but it's not really consequential in terms of future policy. Nonbinding party platforms aren't especially influential.

Why it matters: The kerfuffle is nonetheless important because it represents deeper tensions on the left that will play out if Democrats win the White House (and Senate) and have a chance to implement their wider climate agenda.

Politico's Zack Colman nicely explains why it touched a nerve, writing:

"The sparring over the fossil fuel language reflects a deeper mistrust between the DNC and progressive climate activists who contend the Democratic Party has failed to take aggressive positions against oil, gas and coal companies who have lobbied against policies to swiftly reduce greenhouse gas emissions."

The intrigue: The DNC told HuffPost, which broke the story, and other outlets that the anti-subsidy language was "incorrectly included" in a late July draft.

  • But in contrast, veteran Democratic insider John Podesta told my colleague Amy Harder that removal of the language was a procedural goof.
  • “Sometimes when you’re on Zoom and all that stuff, you just screw something up,” Podesta said. “It was really just a procedural screw-up, and they’ve ended up with egg on their face.”

Go deeper

10 hours ago - World

H.R. McMaster: Trump "making it easy" for Putin on U.S. election misinformation

Former National Security Adviser H. R. McMaster in Washington, D.C., in 2018. Photo: Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

H.R. McMaster told CNN Tuesday evening President Trump and other U.S. leaders are "making it easy" for Russian President Vladimir Putin to peddle conspiracy theories on the U.S. election and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

What he's saying: "It's just wrong ... it's really important for leaders to be responsible about this because, really, as you know Putin doesn't create these divisions in our society, he doesn't create these doubts, he magnifies them," Trump's former national security adviser told CNN's Jake Tapper.

Updated 7 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 31,647,930 — Total deaths: 971,711 Total recoveries: 21,776,599Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 6,897,661 — Total deaths: 200,818 — Total recoveries: 2,646,959 — Total tests: 96,612,436Map.
  3. Health: Hospitals want more time to repay pandemic loans — Supply shortages continue to plague testing.
  4. Business: The high-wage jobs aren't coming back
  5. Vaccines: Johnson & Johnson begins large phase 3 trial — The FDA plans to toughen standards.
  6. Sports: Less travel is causing the NBA to see better basketball.
Kendall Baker, author of Sports
50 mins ago - Sports

Less travel is causing the NBA to see better basketball

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

In addition to keeping out the coronavirus, the NBA bubble has also delivered a stellar on-court product, with crisp, entertaining play night in and night out.

Why it matters: General managers, athletic trainers and league officials believe the lack of travel is a driving force behind the high quality of play — an observation that could lead to scheduling changes for next season and beyond.

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