Photo: Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

There was a lot behind yesterday's announcement that General Motors will idle five North American plants and lay off over 14,000 employees. American car consumer tastes shifting away from sedans? Check. Making good on a threat made when Trump first announced his tariff plans? Check. Formally establishing that GM believes electric is how future cars will be powered (despite killing off the Volt)? Check.

But the biggest takeaway here should be how GM is indirectly predicting an economic slowdown. GM, which declined to make senior executives available for interview, basically pledged coming out of bankruptcy that it would maintain profitability in good times and bad — something it has largely done. Cutting these jobs and factories now is GM's way of saying that the consumer boom-times may have peaked (or nearly peaked), and that it must conserve resources in order to realize on its electric, autonomous future.

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The many divisions over Trump's methane rollback

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

EPA's decision to cut regulation of methane is laying bare an oil-and-gas industry divide and setting the stage for political battles this fall and beyond.

Why it matters: Methane is an extremely powerful greenhouse gas and the industry is a key emissions source.

Kushner says Trump didn't promote false Kamala Harris birtherism theory

White House senior adviser Jared Kushner told "CBS This Morning" on Friday that he does not believe President Trump promoted a baseless claim that Sen. Kamala Harris is ineligible to be vice president.

Driving the news: During a press briefing on Thursday, Trump did not question the veracity of a Newsweek op-ed that inaccurately claimed Harris may be ineligible for the office due to her parents' naturalization status at the time of her birth. Harris is an American citizen and was born in Oakland, Calif.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 20,952,811 — Total deaths: 760,235— Total recoveries: 13,015,397Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 5,254,878 — Total deaths: 167,253 — Total recoveries: 1,774,648 — Total tests: 64,831,306Map.
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