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Josh Hawley. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) sent a letter to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver condemning the league's decision to apologize to the Chinese government for a tweet by Rockets general manager Daryl Morey that expressed support for pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong.

"I write today to express my disgust about the position of the National Basketball Association (NBA) with respect to Hong Kong and the freedom of the Chinese people. Doing business in China is one thing, but for the NBA to kowtow to the demands of one of the world's most brutal regimes in the pursuit of profit is, frankly, revolting. You know better. And the people of this country deserve better."

The big picture: Hawley is one of a number of high-profile politicians and commentators who have directed criticism toward the notably progressive NBA after Silver issued a statement saying that the league recognizes Morey's comments "have deeply offended many of our friends and fans in China, which is regrettable."

  • The Chinese government, the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) and multiple Chinese businesses have severed ties with the Rockets as a result of the tweet.
  • Hawley called on the NBA to apologize to Morey and "cancel all exhibition games in China pending a peaceful resolution to the crisis in Hong Kong."
"Remember that some things are more important than money. Remember your responsibility. You may not think of your league as an American undertaking, but whatever you think, what you say and do represents America to the world. "

Go deeper: The NBA's geopolitical crisis with China started by a single tweet

Go deeper

Scoop: Border officials project 13,000 child migrants in May

The "El Chaparral" border crossing at Tijuana. Photo: Stringer/Picture Alliance via Getty Images

A Customs and Border Protection staffer told top administration officials Thursday the agency is projecting a peak of 13,000 unaccompanied children crossing the border in May, sources directly familiar with the discussion told Axios.

Why it matters: That projection would exceed the height of the 2019 crisis, which led to the infamous "kids-in-cages" disaster. It also underscores a rapidly escalating crisis for the Biden administration.

1 hour ago - World

U.S. strikes Iran-backed militia facilities in Syria

President Biden at the Pentagon on Feb. 10. Photo: Alex Brandon - Pool/Getty Images

The United States on Thursday carried out an airstrike against facilities in Syria linked to an Iran-backed militia group, the Pentagon announced.

The state of play: The strike, approved by President Biden, comes "in response to recent attacks against American and Coalition personnel in Iraq, and to ongoing threats to those personnel," Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said in a statement.

Senate parliamentarian rules $15 minimum wage cannot be included in relief package

Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

The Senate parliamentarian ruled Thursday that the provision to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour cannot be included in the broader $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.

Why it matters: It's now very likely that any increase in the minimum wage will need bipartisan support, as the provision cannot be passed with the simple Senate majority that Democrats are aiming to use for President Biden's rescue bill.