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AP file photo

A new idea has surfaced in the last 24 hours about what Senate Republicans might do if they can't pass anything else: they might pass a lowest-common denominator plan that only repeals a few pieces of the Affordable Care Act, the parts everyone hates. Vox has a good explainer about how this might work.

"Skinny repeal": If the Senate votes to start the debate, but it can't pass either its repeal-and-replace bill or a straight repeal bill, the last move might be something that just gets rid of the individual and employer mandates. It would be hard for any Republicans to vote against that. (We've also heard a third piece: the bill might also get rid of the ACA's tax on medical devices.)

The goal: Pass anything — anything at all — so the Senate can go to a conference committee with the House and work out a final version.

Why it matters: This is far from a decided plan, from what we can tell. But the fact that it's being floated at all shows how desperate Senate Republicans are not to let the ACA repeal effort collapse — and have to explain to voters why they couldn't do the thing they've been promising for seven years.

Go deeper

"Atmospheric river" swings Northern California from drought to flood

Satellite view of the bomb cyclone swirling off the coast of the Pacific Northwest and the atmospheric river affecting California on Oct. 24. Photo: CIRA/RAMMB

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are delivering historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest.

Why it matters: The atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, was causing Northern California to whiplash from drought to flood, as it slowly moved south overnight. It's triggered widespread power outages, flooding and mudslides.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

U.S. threatens to cut aid to Sudan after military takeover

Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok during a 2020 news conference in Khartoum, Sudan. Photo: Mahmoud Hjaj/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Sudan's civilian Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok was put under house arrest and several other ministers were detained Monday in what appears to be a military coup in the country, per local reports.

The latest: The head of the military faction of the Sudanese government, Gen. Abdul Fattah al-Burhan, said in a statement that he is announcing a state of emergency, suspending several parts of the interim constitution and dissolving the civilian government and interim sovereignty council — the highest governing body in the country.

Facebook's pivotal week

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

They're battening down the hatches at Facebook headquarters this week as the company faces a trifecta of tumult: a continuing wave of negative press coverage fueled by document leaks, a critical earnings report Monday and a reported name change looming.

The big picture: All this is unfolding as Mark Zuckerberg tries to transform Facebook from a social network into the prime mover behind a new "metaverse" of VR- and AR-driven remote work and play.