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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. 

Updated 6 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: How data and the pandemic have democratized the "high-performance lifestyle — "Twindemic" averted as flu reports plummet amid coronavirus crisis
  2. Vaccine: Pfizer begins study on 3rd vaccine dose as booster shot against new strains — Republicans are least likely to want the coronavirus vaccine
  3. U.S. news: California surpasses 50,000 deaths COVID-19 deaths, more than any other state — Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter return to church after receiving COVID-19 vaccines
  4. Local: Public transit ridership in Twin Cities dropped 53% amid pandemic — Data firm predicts "complete chaos" in next phases of Florida's vaccine rolloutAlaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy tests positive for the coronavirus

Acting Capitol Police chief: Phone logs show Jan. 6 National Guard approval was delayed

Pittman at a congressional tribute for fallen officer Brian Sicknick. Photo: Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images

Acting U.S. Capitol Police chief Yogananda Pittman testified on Thursday that cellphone records show former USCP chief Steven Sund requested National Guard support from the House sergeant-at-arms as early as 12:58pm on Jan. 6, but he did not receive approval until over an hour later.

Why it matters: Sund and former House sergeant-at-arms Paul Irving clashed at a Senate hearing on Tuesday over a dispute in the timeline for when Capitol Police requested the National Guard during the Capitol insurrection.