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In USA Today's banner story, "Nine steps to pave the 'nuclear path," Erin Kelly parses the mechanics of the high drama that's expected in the Senate late this week — "a complicated process that only a parliamentarian could love":

  • What's coming: Republicans plan to invoke the "nuclear option" to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court over the filibuster of Democrats — blowing up "both long-standing rules and bipartisanship in a chamber that has traditionally valued both."
  • The roadmap: The Congressional Research Service bases its steps on Dec. 6, 2013, action by former Majority Leader Harry Reid, "who used the nuclear option ... to change Senate rules so that lower court judges and Cabinet nominees could be confirmed by a simple majority, scuttling a Republican filibuster."
  • The steps before finally moving to an up-or-down vote: 1. Reconsider ... 2. Point of Order ... 3. Ruling of the chair ... 4. Appeal the ruling ... 5. Vote to overrule... 6. Democratic point of order ... 7. Ruling of the chair II ... 8. Vote to overrule II ... 9. Re-vote cloture (to end filibuster).

Go deeper

“You blew it”: GOP activist turns on corporations over vaccine mandates

The chairman of the American Conservative Union said on "Axios on HBO" he accepts "Joe Biden is my president, and I want him to succeed," but predicted Republicans retake the House and Senate in 2022 — with greater than 50% odds Donald Trump runs in 2024.

The big picture: In a joint interview with his wife, Mercedes, Matt Schlapp also refused to share their vaccination status. And he told corporate America "you blew it" by embracing vaccine mandates and liberal social stances that have alienated GOP voters and politicians.

50 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Pelosi expects “billionaire’s tax” to pay for Biden social spending

Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Sunday she expects the chamber to pass the bipartisan infrastructure plan by week’s end, and alternatives to corporate tax hikes and a “billionaires tax” will be used to finance President Biden’s promised expansion to the social safety net.

Why it matters: Pelosi’s comments come as House and Senate leaders try to wrap up a deal. What will get cut — and how the remainder will be paid — are linchpins to a final agreement.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
51 mins ago - Axios on HBO

FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried mystified by value of NFTs

Crypto exchange FTX, valued last week at $25 billion, recently launched an NFT marketplace by selling an image of the word "Test" for $270,000.

  • FTX founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried tells "Axios on HBO" that he doesn't quite understand the appeal, but adds that he doesn't personally appreciate many visual arts.