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Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The next month is arguably the most important since Trump took office. Steve Bannon reckons January will define his former boss's presidency — and that it's his last, best chance to make good on his most controversial campaign promises.

Why it matters: The issues that defined Trump's presidential campaign are coming to a head — with significant trade and immigration decisions due and an inevitable confrontation with China.

"It's trade, DACA, and the wall — but it's much beyond that," Bannon tells me. "This is the run-up, the last 20 days before the first anniversary of his inauguration, and it's all coming to a head: a spending bill of epic proportions, the test of a veto or a government shutdown, the China confrontation and Korea, all the immigration issues, infrastructure funding and welfare reform. All on the table, with their direction uncertain."

Bannon says January is make-or-break for three big issues:

  1. Trade with China (does Trump actually fight?)
  2. Building the wall
  3. Renewing DACA, which blocks the deportations of some immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children

The DACA fight may be the ugliest. Bannon is teaming up with the Freedom Caucus to demand that Trump refuse to protect DACA unless Congress ends so-called family migration (which lets green card holders bring their immediate family members to the U.S.). That trade-off appears dead on arrival, but Breitbart is already insisting it's the only way Trump can keep his campaign trail promise to end Obama's "executive amnesty."

Get more stories like this by signing up for our weekly political lookahead newsletter, Axios Sneak Peek.

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Dave Lawler, author of World
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How Biden might tackle the Iran deal

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Four more years of President Trump would almost certainly kill the Iran nuclear deal — but the election of Joe Biden wouldn’t necessarily save it.

The big picture: Rescuing the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is near the top of Biden's foreign policy priority list. He says he'd re-enter the deal once Iran returns to compliance, and use it as the basis on which to negotiate a broader and longer-lasting deal with Iran.

Kamala Harris, the new left's insider

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Progressive leaders see Sen. Kamala Harris, if she's elected vice president, as their conduit to a post-Biden Democratic Party where the power will be in younger, more diverse and more liberal hands.

  • Why it matters: The party's rising left sees Harris as the best hope for penetrating Joe Biden's older, largely white inner circle.

If Biden wins, Harris will become the first woman, first Black American and first Indian American to serve as a U.S. vice president — and would instantly be seen as the first in line for the presidency should Biden decide against seeking a second term.

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  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day — U.S. tops 88,000 COVID-19 cases, setting new single-day record.
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  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases.
  4. 🎧Podcast: The vaccine race turns toward nationalism.