Of all the policies the Health and Human Services Department has actually finalized under President Trump, it's hard to think of a more significant rightward turn than the approval of Medicaid work requirements.

Driving the news: Judge James Boasberg is still not having it. He ruled against Kentucky's work requirements yesterday for the second time, citing many of the same reasons from his first opinion — namely, that HHS is not living up to Medicaid's legally defined purpose as a health care program.

  • He noted Kentucky and HHS' acknowledgements that fewer people will have Medicaid coverage as a result of these rules, and also criticized Gov. Matt Bevin for threatening to pull out of the expansion entirely if HHS loses this lawsuit.
  • "The Court cannot concur that the Medicaid Act leaves the Secretary so unconstrained, nor that the states are so armed to refashion the program Congress designed in any way they choose," Boasberg wrote.

Arkansas didn't fare much better, though that case is still earlier in the process than Kentucky's.

  • Boasberg began his Arkansas opinion with the story of a resident who does work, but didn't know he needed to report his compliance with the state's work requirements every month, and therefore lost his Medicaid coverage, got sick, and lost his job.
  • That's a clear sign, the ruling argues, that HHS didn't give sufficient weight to work requirements' burden on Medicaid's objectives as a source of health coverage.

What's next: New Hampshire's work requirements are also being challenged in court.

Go deeper: Medicaid work requirements aren't boosting work in Arkansas

Go deeper

Hurricane Zeta makes landfall in Mexico ahead of expected arrival in U.S.

Hurricane Zeta's forecast path. Photo: National Hurricane Center

Hurricane Zeta made landfall on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula as a Category 1 storm late Monday packing maximum sustained winds of 80 mph, per the National Hurricane Center.

The state of play: Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) declared a state of emergency Monday as Zeta strengthened into a hurricane earlier Monday.

Updated 57 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: The swing states where the pandemic is raging — Pence no longer expected to attend Barrett confirmation vote after COVID exposure.
  2. Health: 13 states set single-day case records last week
  3. Business: Where stimulus is needed most.
  4. Education: The dangerous instability of school re-openings.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota COVID cases traced to 3 Trump campaign events
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.
  7. Media: Fox News president and several hosts advised to quarantine.
Updated 1 hour ago - World

In photos: Unrest in Italy as coronavirus restrictions grow across Europe

An anti-government demonstration against the economic consequences of the new measures in Turin, Italy, where luxury stores were "ransacked," on Oct. 26, the Guardian reports. Photo: Diego Puletto/Getty Images

Protests in Italy against fresh COVID-19 pandemic restrictions that came into effect Monday descended into violence in Milan and and Turin, where police used tear gas to disperse demonstrators, per the Guardian.

The big picture: The protests in Italian cities still reeling from the first lockdown mark some of the biggest resistance against measures seen yet as restrictions return across Europe, which is facing a second coronavirus wave. From Denmark to Romania, this is what's been happening, in photos.