Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Venezuela's National Assembly head Juan Guaidó at a mass opposition rally against leader Nicolás Maduro on Jan. 23. Photo: Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump has taken a firm position on Venezuela by officially recognizing opposition leader and National Assembly head Juan Guaidó as the country's president. This declaration could mark a moment either to draw a red line and walk away or to further amplify the U.S.' voice through a multilateral approach in opposing Nicolás Maduro.

The big picture: Maduro is already claiming the anti-gringo mantle, despite the rise of a domestic opposition leader legally empowered to demand his removal. To ensure long-term stability, the U.S.' most promising approach is to work with regional allies who together will bolster Guaidó's efforts to legally succeed Maduro.

Between the lines: Because Maduro's anti-gringo card is his key to survival, Trump would have to take actions that maintain the legitimacy of Guaidó’s position without adding risk by raising the American profile. There could be several dimensions to such a strategy:

  1. Economic and political incentives: A robust economic aid package dependent on a new leader being installed could make it clear to Venezuelans that their economic pain will subside once Maduro is gone. Amnesty to those willing to switch sides against Maduro could also be offered.
  2. Humanitarian assistance: The U.S. could signal that it stands with Venezuelans by increasing humanitarian assistance to refugees and expediting its asylum process.
  3. Non-militarism: A call for non-violence is critical. Maduro and his cronies should know that they will be held accountable for any violence on their part. Any hint of U.S. military activity could play into Maduro’s hands.

Multilateralism has been effective and remains the clearest path to resolving the crisis. It will ensure that those who can actually achieve the goal of displacing Maduro — the Venezuelan people, armed forces and politicians — are viewed as legitimate both inside the country and abroad.

What to watch: The next step for the U.S. is to build a robust package activities backed by regional partners — and potentially the UN — that further incentivize Venezuelans to push out Maduro. There's a real sense of urgency, as Venezuelans themselves will face greater risks without support from the international community.

Joel Rubin is the president of the Washington Strategy Group and the former deputy assistant secretary of state for the House of Representatives.

Go deeper

Tim Scott hopes to reintroduce version of GOP police reform bill

Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) told reporters Wednesday he plans to reintroduce his police reform bill or a similar proposal in the coming weeks and that he has discussed a potential compromise with Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) and Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

Why it matters: Eyes have again turned to Washington to take steps to address police reform in the wake of Derek Chauvin's guilty verdict Tuesday, after efforts stalled in Congress last year.

Biden announces small business tax credits for vaccine PTO

Photo: Doug Mills/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden on Wednesday called on all employers to provide workers paid time off to get vaccinated or recover from COVID side effects, and said he'll include a paid tax credit for small businesses that do so.

Why it matters: The Biden administration sees workplaces as highly influential in making shots more convenient for working adults who are in high-risk industries.