Jul 10, 2020

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Good afternoon: Today's PM — edited by Justin Green — is 412 words, a 2-minute read.

1 big thing: Reality bites

National Airport in D.C. Photo: Daniel Slim/AFP/Getty Images

It feels like mid-March in America again.

  • The coronavirus is surging, deaths are climbing and the country is dreading a fresh wave of disruptions, less than four months since the first round started.

The big picture: Lingering under all the happy talk of future plans is the reality of this virus — which thrives in potential super-spreader conditions like mass gatherings.

  • You see it in the sports reopening plans, especially for fans who want to attend games this fall. Colleges keep having to delay their training camps, and conferences are preparing for the possibility of no sports this fall.
  • You see it in the school reopening plans, with K-12 and higher education sounding hopeful but facing growing staff revolts.
  • You can see it in the Sun Belt: While governors aren’t giving in to a complete state closure like the first time around, many with hotspot areas have reversed or paused reopening policies that could encourage mass gatherings, Axios' Marisa Fernandez tells me.
  • You even see it far in the future, where the Tokyo 2021 Olympics planners insist the games will start in July of next year — but the Japanese public overwhelmingly disagrees, the AP reports. A recent poll found 77% believe the games can't be held next year.

The bottom line: The U.S. may be implicitly adopting a national herd immunity strategy, but that doesn't mean every facet of life won't be painfully disrupted until we get there — or until an effective treatment or vaccine is widely distributed.

Go deeper: Rural America's coronavirus problem (Axios Re:Cap podcast)

2. Pic du jour
Photo: Michael DeMocker/Getty Images

The statue of slaveholder John McDonogh is removed by city workers after it was pulled from its pedestal in Lafayette Park in New Orleans.

3. Catch up quick
  1. Trump's outdoor New Hampshire rally postponed due to weather. Go deeper.
  2. California is suing the Trump administration over guidance released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement this week that could force some foreign students to leave the U.S. Go deeper.
  3. Latinx politicians decried Goya Foods CEO Bob Unanue after the executive spoke in support of Trump. Go deeper.
  4. A Turkish court has ruled that Istanbul's Hagia Sophia must be converted back into a mosque. Go deeper.
4. 1 fun thing: Snack of the summer

Grilled chocolate sandwiches. Photo: James Ransom. Licensed by Axios.

Behold the grilled chocolate sandwich, "a longtime favorite snack of children in Spain. Star chef and humanitarian hero José Andrés has popularized a dish of fancy chocolate on grilled bread drizzled with olive oil," Bloomberg reports.

  • "Inspired by him, [food writer Charlotte] Druckman arrived at her version."

Why it matters: It's chocolate subbed in for cheese — what's not to like?

Mike Allen