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Axios

Trump, on Sunday: "Whenever you see the words 'sources say' in the fake news media, and they don't mention names, it is very possible that those sources don't exist but are made up by fake news writers. #FakeNews is the enemy!"

Trump, on Tuesday: Retweeted a Fox News article citing anonymous sources to claim that Jared Kushner had not suggested a communications channel with Russia in a meeting, which goes against most of the reporting on the subject.

Why it matters: Back in January, Axios asked Trump if he was worried that calling the media "fake news" would cause problems down the line when he needed people to believe a piece of reporting. At the time, Trump replied: "I hadn't thought of it that way, no."

Why reporters use anonymous sources: They're often the only way journalists can get important, insider information that the public should know. Sources aren't likely to put their career or safety on the line to provide a scoop. But in an age of rampant mistrust of the media and fake news sites, unnamed sources don't help media companies secure trust.

The caveat: Trump has proved that he doesn't need the media's positive coverage in order to win over a significant portion of the country. For many voters, Trump's Twitter is the only media source they trust, and they'll stay that way no matter what.

Go deeper

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Health: Most vulnerable Americans aren't getting enough vaccine information — Fauci says Trump administration's lack of facts on COVID "very likely" cost lives.
  2. Politics: Biden unveils "wartime" COVID strategyBiden's COVID-19 bubble.
  3. Vaccine: Florida requiring proof of residency to get vaccine — CDC extends interval between vaccine doses for exceptional cases.
  4. World: Hong Kong to put tens of thousands on lockdown as cases surge.
  5. Sports: 2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck.

Trump impeachment trial to start week of Feb. 8, Schumer says

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: The Washington Post via Getty

The Senate will begin former President Trump's impeachment trial the week of Feb. 8, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Friday on the Senate floor.

The state of play: Schumer announced the schedule after reaching an agreement with Republicans. The House will transmit the article of impeachment against the former president late Monday.

5 hours ago - Health

CDC extends interval between COVID vaccine doses for exceptional cases

Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty

Patients can space out the two doses of the coronavirus vaccine by up to six weeks if it’s "not feasible" to follow the shorter recommended window, according to updated guidance from the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention.

Driving the news: With the prospect of vaccine shortages and a low likelihood that supply will expand before April, the latest changes could provide a path to vaccinate more Americans — a top priority for President Biden.