Sep 19, 2017

Gorka's new gig

Sebastian Gorka at the White House. Photo: Susan Walsh / AP

Sebastian Gorka has found a new home. It's called the "MAGA Coalition" — a new outside group to support political candidates that will "compete against globalist corporatists interests."

Little is known about the group. A source familiar with Gorka's arrangements tells me he's signing on as "chief strategist," the same title his former boss Steve Bannon held when the two worked together in the White House.

Gorka's first outing with the group: He's co-headlining a rally with Sarah Palin in Montgomery, Alabama on Thursday night. The Palin-Gorka rally will promote Roy Moore, the controversial anti-establishment candidate running against incumbent Sen. Luther Strange.

The MAGA Coalition is co-sponsoring the Palin-Gorka rally with Great America Alliance, the Bannon-aligned outside group.

Why this matters: Think about this. A month ago, Gorka and Steve Bannon were working in President Trump's White House. Now they are preparing to go head-to-head against the president to support a candidate who is loathed by the same establishment that originally loathed Trump.

The backdrop: Some of the noisiest elements of Trump's base — including Breitbart — view the Alabama contest as a flashpoint in their war against Mitch McConnell. Luther Strange is McConnell's chosen candidate and Trump has put his weight behind him, first with an endorsement, and now with plans to hold a rally in Alabama on Saturday night to give Strange a last minute boost before next Tuesday's election. Moore currently leads Strange by anywhere between 8 and 13 percentage points, according to independent polls.

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Coronavirus dashboard

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 5,463,392 — Total deaths: 344,503 — Total recoveries — 2,195,325Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 1,653,904 — Total deaths: 97,948 — Total recoveries: 366,736 — Total tested: 14,163,915Map.
  3. World: Italy reports lowest number of new cases since February — Ireland reports no new coronavirus deaths on Monday for the first time since March 21 — WHO suspends trial of hydroxychloroquine over safety concerns.
  4. 2020: Trump threatens to move Republican convention from North Carolina — Joe Biden makes first public appearance in two months.
  5. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks over Memorial Day.
  6. Economy: New York stock exchange to reopen its floor on Tuesday — White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Charities refocus their efforts to fill gaps left by government.
  7. What should I do? Hydroxychloroquine questions answeredTraveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Italy reports lowest number of new coronavirus cases since February

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The Italian government reported 300 new cases of coronavirus on Monday, the lowest daily increase since Feb. 29.

Why it matters: Italy, the first country in Europe to implement a nationwide lockdown after emerging as a hotspot in March, appears to have finally weathered its coronavirus outbreak. Italy has reported nearly 33,000 total deaths, the third-highest total behind the U.S. and U.K.

Joe Biden makes first public appearance in over two months

Photo: Oliver Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden made his first in-person appearance in over two months on Monday to honor Memorial Day by laying a wreath at a Delaware veterans park, AP reports.

Why it matters: Biden, the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee, has taken the unprecedented step of campaigning from his home during the coronavirus pandemic, ever since canceling a rally in Cleveland on March 10.