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Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, a Republican, is coming to Washington, D.C. Tuesday to make the case for ethanol in planned meetings with Vice President Mike Pence and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.

Driving the news: She'll be defending a federal mandate that requires refineries to blend biofuels — mostly corn ethanol — into the nation's gasoline supply. Corn-rich Iowa is the nation's top biofuels producer, and also a pivotal political battleground.

Highlights from my chat with her:

  • Why she's meeting with them: "In Iowa, we have Obamacare failing citizens in the state, so we're also going to be talking about that. The RFS, that's our priority though."
  • Is President Trump just backing the mandate because Iowa is an important political state? "He traveled the country and listened to U.S. farmers, and we made our case and he supported it. I'm very appreciative of that."
  • Critics say biofuel backers aren't open to any compromise. "That's not true. There used to be subsidies and we got rid of that. We have changed along the way."
  • Are you worried electric cars could erode the need and support for biofuels, which are liquid like oil, in the longer term? "That's part of the future too and we're embracing that in Iowa."

Go deeper

: Check out my latest Harder Line column on

the latest ethanol fights

.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Key government agency says Biden transition can formally begin

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy. Photo: Alex Edelman/CNP/Getty Images

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy said in a letter to President-elect Joe Biden on Monday that she has determined the transition from the Trump administration can formally begin.

Why it matters: Murphy, a Trump appointee, had come under fire for delaying the so-called "ascertainment" and withholding the funds and information needed for the transition to begin while Trump's legal challenges played out.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Key information about the effective COVID-19 vaccines — Oxford and AstraZeneca's vaccine won't just go to rich countries.
  2. Health: U.S. coronavirus hospitalizations keep breaking recordsWhy we're numb to 250,000 deaths.
  3. World: England to impose stricter regional systemU.S. hotspots far outpacing Europe's — Portugal to ban domestic travel for national holidays.
  4. Economy: The biggest pandemic labor market drags.
  5. Sports: Coronavirus precautions leave college basketball schedule in flux.

Michigan board certifies Biden's win

Poll workers count absentee ballots in Detroit, Michigan on Nov. 4. Photo: Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The Michigan Board of State Canvassers certified the state's election results on Monday, making President-elect Joe Biden's win there official and granting him the state's 16 electoral votes.

Why it matters: Republican Party leaders had unsuccessfully appealed to delay the official certification, amid the Trump campaign's failed legal challenges in key swing states.