May 1, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Kayleigh McEnany holds first White House press briefing in over a year

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump's new press secretary Kayleigh McEnany held her first White House briefing on Friday, the first official press briefing since March 11, 2019.

Driving the news: McEnany announced that she plans to continue holding on-camera press briefings moving forward, a regular practice that ended during Sarah Sanders' tenure. Stephanie Grisham, McEnany's predecessor, did not hold a single briefing.

  • "I will never lie to you. You have my word on that," McEnany promised reporters.

The highlights: McEnany announced that the Trump administration will provide $12 billion to 395 hospitals across the country that have been hardest hit by the coronavirus. New York, New Jersey, and Illinois will receive the most money.

  • On China’s coronavirus response: McEnany said Trump's assertion that the coronavirus originated in a Wuhan lab is consistent with what analysts think, though the intelligence community said this week that its origin is still under investigation.
  • On the sexual assault allegation against Joe Biden: "We are pleased with the former vice president to go on the record," she said.
  • On Michael Flynn: When asked whether Trump still believes his former national security adviser lied to the FBI and Vice President Mike Pence in light of new documents released this week, McEnany said: "I would point you to the vice president's statement, that he is implying to believe that Flynn did not mislead him." Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in 2017, though he has been attempting to withdraw that plea.

Go deeper

Updated 48 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Updates: George Floyd protests continue past curfews

Police officers wearing riot gear push back demonstrators outside of the White House on Monday. Photo: Jose Luis Magana/AFP via Getty Images

Protests over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black people continued Tuesday across the U.S. for the eighth consecutive day, prompting a federal response from the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection.

The latest: Even with early curfews in New York City and Washington, D.C., protesters are still out en masse. Some protesters in D.C. said they were galvanized by President Trump's photo op in front of St. John's Church on Monday and threat to deploy U.S. troops in the rest of country if violence isn't quelled, NBC News reports.

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Trump backs off push to federalize forces against riots

Photo: Brendan Smialowski /AFP via Getty Images

A day after threatening to federalize forces to snuff out riots across the country, the president appears to be backing off the idea of invoking the Insurrection Act, sources familiar with his plans tell Axios.

What we're hearing: Aides say he hasn’t ruled out its use at some point, but that he's “pleased” with the way protests were handled last night (apart from in New York City, as he indicated on Twitter today) — and that for now he's satisfied with leaving the crackdown to states through local law enforcement and the National Guard.

What we expect from our bosses

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Workers — especially millennials and Gen Zers — are paying close attention to the words and actions of their employers during national crises, such as the protests following the killing of George Floyd in police custody.

Why it matters: American companies have an enormous amount of wealth and influence that they can put toward effecting change, and CEOs have the potential to fill the leadership vacuum left by government inaction. More and more rank-and-file employees expect their bosses to do something with that money and power.