Axios PM

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January 03, 2022

Good afternoon: Today's PM β€” edited by Justin Green β€” is 382 words, a 1.5-minute read.

⚑Breaking: New York AG Letitia James issued subpoenas for two of former President Trump's children, Don Jr. and Ivanka, as part of a civil investigation, according to court documents. Go deeper.

1 big thing: Changing car buying forever

Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

American car buying could soon look a lot more like it does in Europe, Joann Muller writes from Detroit for Axios What's Next.

  • Some companies plan to capitalize on the current inventory crunch by permanently shifting to an order-based system.

Why it matters: Packing lots with large numbers of cars, trucks and SUVs is a huge drain on profits for both dealers and automakers.

How European car buying works: Order the exact car you want β€” color, features, bells and whistles β€” then wait a month or so for delivery.

How it works: The pandemic finally made it possible to complete your car purchase online without setting foot in a showroom.

2. πŸ“· Senate snow day

Photo: Andrew Solender/Axios

Senate President Pro Tem Pat Leahy (D-Vt.), a longtime amateur photographer, and Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) gave Axios' Andrew Solender and a couple of other reporters this view from a Capitol balcony.

  • Baldwin, who was due to preside over the mostly empty Senate chamber, said she had a longer walk than usual because part of the complex was closed off from fallen tree branches.
  • "I had to keep walking around until I finally talked to a police officer who let me in," she recalled. "I said, 'I'm late! I’m late for a very important date!'"
Photo: Andrew Solender/Axios

Snow in the D.C. area mostly ranged from 5 to 10 inches, with about 500,000 customers losing power in Maryland and Virginia because of flakes or wind gusts. (The Washington Post)

3. Fire reignites at South African Parliament

Photo: Obed Zilwa/AFP via Getty Images

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) β€” The fire that has already destroyed South Africa's main Parliament chamber flared up again today about 36 hours after it started in the 130-year-old complex of historic buildings.

Photo: Nardus Engelbrecht/AP

The fire had already burned down the chamber in the National Assembly building where South African legislators meet to pass laws.

4. Parting shots: Goat rodeo

Before:

Photo: Philipp Schulze/dpa via Getty Images

In Lower Saxony, Germany, about 700 sheep and goats moved toward pieces of bread that were laid out today in the shape of a 100-yard-long syringe.

After:

Photo: Philipp Schulze/dpa via Getty Images

This drone photo shows the result β€” a pro-vaccine tableau.