🏈 Happy Saturday! Today's Smart Brevity count: 996 words ... < 4 minutes.
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
President Trump always counted on the economy to carry him to re-election, but now he's testing it as a central argument against impeachment, Axios White House editor Margaret Talev writes.
Trump goaded Democrats on Twitter yesterday when jobs numbers showed the U.S. unemployment rate has fallen to a 50-year low: "Wow, America, lets [sic] impeach your President (even though he did nothing wrong!)."
The bottom line: Trump already plans to blame Democrats and impeachment if legislation on trade, prescription drug prices, gun safety and infrastructure stalls this fall.
Two New York Times opinion pieces get inside the minds of Republicans to help illuminate why voters and leaders so steadfastly defend President Trump:
1) David Brooks channels a Trump voter ("Flyover Man") talking to "Urban Guy":
2) Peter Wehner, who worked for the three previous Republican presidents, on why Republicans are "yet again circling the Trump wagon":
The top of tomorrow's Washington Post Outlook section has two sharp, interesting articles that help explain why Dems think they have a strong hand:
1) "Secondhand information often has severe legal consequences," writes former public defender Sarah Lustbader:
2) "I classified presidential calls. The White House is abusing the system," writes former National Security Council staffer Kelly Magsamen, who served under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama:
On Aug. 7, 1974, three top Republican leaders in Congress — Sen. Barry Goldwater (R-Ariz.), flanked in this photo by Senate Minority Leader Hugh Scott of Pennsylvania (left) and House Minority Leader John Rhodes of Arizona — paid a solemn visit to President Richard Nixon.
A similar drama is doubtful today because in Nixon's time, there were conservative Democrats and moderate Republicans, and compromise wasn't treated with scorn, AP's David Crary writes.
Go deeper: See our super-graphic, "Trump's red Senate wall."
The average U.S. household size has steadily declined since the 1850s, but new census data show the number of people residing in households has grown 6% since 2010, Rashaan Ayesh writes from a Pew Research Center analysis.
"Libraries battling to retain borrowers in the digital age are ending late fees, a change intended to ease the shame and dread of returning overdue books," The Wall Street Journal's Erin Ailworth and Ben Kesling write (subscription):
This week, Chicago became the largest American metropolis to end charges for overdue books, joining at least 150 library systems in the U.S. and Canada that have ended late-shaming fines ... So far this year, libraries in St. Paul, Minn., Dallas and Oakland, Calif., are among those that have joined the late-fee amnesty movement.
📱 Thanks for reading Axios AM. Please invite your friends to sign up here.