May 2, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Good afternoon: Tesla's revenue was $3.4 billion in the first quarter of the year, better than analyst estimates, while its losses were less than expectations as the company said it made "significant progress" on ramping up production of the Model 3. Dive in.

1 big thing: Trump's legal team shuffle

Emmet Flood, who is joining Trump's legal team. Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

The Trump legal team shakeup looks nearly complete today, with Emmet Flood replacing the retiring Ty Cobb and joining the newly-named Rudy Giuliani in defending the president from the Mueller investigation.

Why it matters, from Jonathan Swan: "Flood is a big coup. Top-tier lawyer. Rejected them last year. Don McGahn has long been interested in bringing Flood inside, and there had been separate discussions of him joining the White House Counsel’s office."

  • More from Swan: "Ty Cobb and McGahn had a relationship that was terrible from the outset and never improved. Cobb was seen as one of the few people internally who was skilled at communicating with Trump and calming him down. No idea how Flood will fare with this uniquely difficult client."

Flood's bio:

  • A lawyer (in a minor role) for Bill Clinton during the impeachment proceedings.
  • Was head of the White House Counsel's Office under President George W. Bush.
  • He represented President George W. Bush after his term in office in issues relating to executive privilege.
  • He also personally represented Vice President Dick Cheney in Valerie Plame's civil case against Bush administration senior officials.
  • Flood's firm represented Hillary Clinton during her email scandal, which was considered to be one of the reasons that he had turned down a White House job earlier this year, per Reuters.

Go deeper: "Can a president be forced to testify? While the Supreme Court has never definitively ruled on the subject, the answer appears to be yes." [AP]

2. What you missed

Donald Trump pats Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a ceremonial swearing in. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

  1. "Scouts BSA": Boy Scouts of America's flagship program for 11-to 17-year-olds will be changing its name in February 2019, as it begins to accept girls to the program. Go deeper.
  2. The two black men arrested at Starbucks settled with Philadelphia officials for $1 each and a pledge to create a $200,000 young entrepreneur program. Details.
  3. Hulu has reached 20 million subscribers and is renewing the Handmaid's Tale for a third season. More.
  4. Cambridge Analytica is closing up shop in the wake of revelations that it misused Facebook data to build a system to predict and influence choices at election polls, the Wall Street Journal reported.
  5. A Southwest Airlines flight made an emergency landing in Cleveland today because of a broken window. It's the second in the past month.
3. 1 fun thing

Serena Williams, owner of 23 grand slam titles and among the most dominant athletes of her generation, is the star of a forthcoming HBO documentary series, the AP's Howard Fendrich reports.

  • The five-part series includes footage from the "delivery room when Williams gave birth to her daughter on Sept. 1. And there are interviews, including with Williams; her husband, Reddit co-founder Alex Ohanian; her tennis-playing sister, Venus; another sibling; their mother; and Williams’ agent, Jill Smoller."
Mike Allen