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Photo: Axios Events

Businessman and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said during an Axios virtual event Friday that 3M is "arrogant" for not speaking up about respirator production in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak.

What he said: Cuban criticized the company for "making more globally than domestically," echoing a similar line from President Trump now that the U.S. is the epicenter of the pandemic. "You can't ghost the American people," he told Axios CEO Jim VandeHei from Dallas.

  • "It's great that they’re doubling their production to 2 billion masks a year, but when you look at what they're doing here in the U.S. — the country they’re based in, the country they were founded in — according to their own numbers, they produce 110 million masks a month globally, 35 million masks a month domestically," he added.

The big picture: It's not Cuban's first criticism of the company. Last month, he said that 3M's use of distributors to sell their respirators — and the subsequent lack of accountability for their pricing — was "wrong" and "criminal," per Bloomberg.

The state of play: Trump used the Defense Production Act against the company to spur additional respiration production this week — and requested that it stop its exports of American-made masks to Canada and Latin America.

  • 3M pushed back against the proposed export restrictions, saying they could have "significant humanitarian implications" as it is a "critical supplier of respirators" for those regions.
  • It also argued that restrictions could cause retaliation from other nations and actually decrease the overall number of respirators available in the U.S.

More from Cuban's interview:

  • On how companies can make the best of the pandemic: "This is a complete reset. All those things you were wondering about. I wonder if we tried this, I wonder if we tried that. Now we can try them. ... We have a chance to go into America 2.0."
  • On restarting the NBA season this year: "I hope so. I really do. But again, the NBA will put safety first. ... I’m hopeful, let’s just put it that way."
  • On a 2020 presidential run: "I doubt it, but you know, like I said, everything's a reset right now. You never say never. ... I'll keep an open mind, but I seriously doubt it."

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

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Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

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Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.