Oct 27, 2017

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

You're invited ... On Monday at 8 a.m. in D.C., Bradley Whitford (Josh Lyman on "The West Wing"), AOL pioneer Jean Case, NBC's Steve Kornacki and Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff will join me for a conversation about access to the Internet, tech and media, and the impact on culture and politics. RSVP here.

1 big thing: the Puerto Rico contract

The $300 million contract electric utility repair contract made with Whitefish Energy Holdings in Montana to fix the power grid in Puerto Rico keeps drawing attention, as Axios' Stef Kight and Alexi McCammond write.

  • White House spokesperson Raj Shah said in a statement today, "Our understanding is the decision to give a contract to Whitefish Energy was made exclusively by Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority. The White House is not aware of any federal involvement in the selection."
  • Why it matters: The company only had two full-time employees and little experience before Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico.
  • Go deeper: A breakdown of what makes the contract suspicious.
2. What you missed
  1. Catalonia heats up: The Spanish Senate authorized the government Friday to use unprecedented measures to sack Catalonia's self-run government. Background.
  2. For your Fed chair radar: The White House says they'll have news next week. Quotes.
  3. Many gig economy startups have shut their doors, but two on-demand cleaning companies (Handy and Managed by Q) are showing signs of economic viability. Details.
  4. One tech thing: Company stock soars after adding "blockchain" to name. Blame algorithms.
  5. Facebook announced details around a feature to make all ads, including political ads, visible to users on its platform in the coming months. Go deeper.
3. Two smart things

Two Axios videos worth your time:

  1. David McCabe on big tech going through the ringer.
  2. Shannon Vavra on what to watch as the Trump travel bans go through the courts.
Mike Allen