Sep 25, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen
1 big thing: Trump's latest juxtaposition

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

What a juxtaposition: President Trump spent part of his day at the UN General Assembly saying Brett Kavanaugh's second accuser lacked credibility because she was drunk at the time of the incident, while a female Republican senator warned her colleagues against pushing through the nomination without seriously vetting the accusations.

  • Trump: "The second accuser has nothing. She thinks maybe it could have been him, maybe not. She admits that she was drunk. She admits that there are time lapses... This is a con game being played by the Democrats."
  • Sen. Lisa Murkowski to the N.Y. Times: "We are now in a place where it’s not about whether or not Judge Kavanaugh is qualified... It is about whether or not a woman who has been a victim at some point in her life is to be believed."

Why it matters: Republicans have only one vote to spare, down from 52 after sexual misconduct allegations cost them a traditionally safe seat in Alabama.

What's next: The Senate Judiciary Committee has retained an unnamed female lawyer to handle the questioning on Thursday's hearings, Politico reports. All the Republicans on the committee are male.

  • Mitch McConnell to reporters today: "We’re going to be moving forward. I’m confident we’re going to win, confident that he’ll be confirmed in the very near future."

Go deeper: Inside the Democrats' Kavanaugh prep

Bonus: Tweet du jour

Here's Beto O'Rourke's Twitter reaction to his opponent being harassed into leaving a D.C. restaurant by anti-Kavanaugh protesters:

Screenshot: Twitter
2. What you missed
  1. At the UN today, Trump pledged more sanctions on Iran, further steps in the trade war with China, and a review of U.S. foreign assistance. He also provoked a laugh from the audience after boasting about his presidential achievements. Go deeper. (Richard Haass weighs in for Axios)
  2. Bill Cosby has been sentenced by a Pennsylvania judge to 3 to 10 years in state prison.
  3. Qualcomm says new evidence shows Apple made improper use of its modem technology to help Qualcomm rival Intel develop a more competitive alternative. Go deeper.
  4. The FDA is considering a ban on the online sale of e-cigarettes, Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said at an Axios News Shapers event this morning. New limits on flavored products are also on the table.
  5. Axios published the full text of the Rod Rosenstein exit statement, drafted by Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores in the voice of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and sent to the White House Monday morning. Go deeper.
3. 1 🎧 thing
"Something smells rotten in Menlo Park, where Facebook used to have a reputation for being the big tech company that founders wanted to sell to."
— Axios' Ina Fried on the Axios Pro Rata Podcast

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Mike Allen