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Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Speaker Nancy Pelosi looks clairvoyant for urging Democrats to drop the impeachment talk — and start obsessing about a 2020 election verdict.

The state of play: Now, the speaker must stare down members, donors and activists hell-bent on administering some Trump punishment, even after Mueller took a pass. "Our primary focus is on getting the underlying documents," a Pelosi aide said. "We think there's a lot there that helps inform these other investigations."

Mueller's hung jury on obstruction — assuming Attorney General William Barr distilled it accurately — could encourage some Democrats to dig in.

  • But the flip is that if Mueller couldn't conclusively prove it, a partisan investigation is even less likely to.
  • So obstruction could become the new Russia — the left's white whale.

Steve Elmendorf, a former top House Dem aide, told me Pelosi will be able to hold off impeachment fever, in part because the Twitter/cable world is "totally out of step with what people out in the country are really talking about."

  • Elmendorf said Pelosi "knows why she won in '18, and how to win again in '20" — by emphasizing kitchen-table issues like health care, not impeachment.

Go deeper: Trump claims vindication, eyes vengeance

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Go deeper

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Updated 9 mins ago - Sports

College football gone mad

Former Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly walks in front of his players. Photo: David Madison/Getty Images

In the span of two days, the head coaches of two of the biggest college football programs in America have jumped ship, wooed by even greater challenges — and the almighty dollar.

Driving the news: Lincoln Riley is ditching Oklahoma for USC in a deal reportedly worth $110 million. LSU poached Brian Kelly from Notre Dame with a reported 10-year, $100 million contract.

Media startups anxiously await BuzzFeed’s stock market debut

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Digital media companies considering going public are watching BuzzFeed's expected stock market debut next week to see how investors will respond.

Why it matters: A slowdown in SPACs (special purpose acquisition companies) earlier this year pushed some digital media companies that were considering going public via SPAC IPOs away from the idea, such as Vice.

Retail's IOU boom

Black Friday shoppers in Skokie, Ill. Photo: Joel Lerner/Xinhua via Getty Images

Here's a staggering stat: Americans' use of "buy now, pay later" options increased 438% between November 2019 and November 2021, according to an Adobe analysis reported by Retail Dive.

Why it matters: This is one of the biggest new trends in shopping right now. People are getting more and more comfortable with apps like Afterpay, Klarna and Affirm that facilitate "buy now, pay later," and let customers spread out the cost of purchases over a long period of time without a credit card.