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Sen. Kamala Harris excoriated President Trump in a speech pre-butting the final night of the GOP convention, accusing him and his Republican allies of ignoring "the reality" of an America facing crises of racial injustice, public health and economic despair.

Why it matters: Harris said throughout her presidential run — and again during her Democratic National Convention speech — that her goal is to "prosecute" the case against the Trump presidency. She made that case on Thursday by relentlessly attacking Trump and the Republicans for spending little time during their convention on the coronavirus pandemic.

What she's saying: "Unlike the Democratic convention, which was very clear-eyed about the challenges we are facing and how we will tackle them, the Republican convention is designed for one purpose: to soothe Donald Trump's ego," Harris said.

  • "We know the truth: Donald Trump has failed at the most basic and important job of a president of the United States. He failed to protect the American people. Plain and simple."
  • "Here's what you have to understand about the nature of a pandemic, it's relentless. You can't stop it with a tweet. You can't create a distraction and hope it will go away. It doesn't go away."
  • "By its nature, a pandemic is unforgiving. If you get it wrong at the beginning, the consequences are catastrophic. It's very hard to catch up. You don't get a second chance at getting it right. Well, President Trump, he got it wrong from the beginning and then he got it wrong again and again."

The bottom line: "Donald Trump stood idly by and, folks, it was a deadly decision," Harris said. "Instead of rising to meet the most difficult moment of his presidency, Donald Trump froze. He was scared and he was petty and vindictive."

Worth noting: Harris did not take questions from reporters after her speech.

Go deeper

Trump's 2024 begins

Trump speaking to reporters in the White House on Thanksgiving. Photo: Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump is likely to announce he'll run again in 2024, perhaps before this term even ends, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Trump has already set in motion two important strategies to stay relevant and freeze out other Republican rivals. 

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Updated 6 hours ago - Technology

A dark view of the future of autonomous weapons

A still from the video "If Human: Kill ( )." Image: Future of Life Institute

A new short film warns of the coming risks posed by the development and proliferation of lethal autonomous weapons.

Why it matters: Drones with the ability to autonomously target and kill without the assistance of a human operator are reportedly already being used on battlefields, and time is running out to craft a global ban of what could be a destabilizing and terrifying new class of weapon.

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus variant surveillance varies widely by state — Omicron cases confirmed in 5 U.S. states America probably won't lead the effort to understand Omicron.
  2. Vaccines: Omicron adds urgency to vaccinating world — Omicron fuels the case for COVID boosters — Moderna loses patent battles tied to COVID vaccine — Pfizer could have vaccine data for children under five by end of 2021, CEO says.
  3. Politics: Nevada to impose insurance surcharge on unvaccinated state workers — New Jersey GOP lawmakers defy statehouse COVID policy — Oklahoma sues Biden administration over Pentagon vaccine mandate — Omicron travel bans are sign of what's to come.
  4. World: WHO: Delta health measures help fight Omicron — COVID cases surge in South Africa in sign Omicron wave is coming — Germany approves new restrictions for unvaccinated people.
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.