May 4, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Note from Mike: 🎣 I’m off the grid in Maine for a few days, catching fish and clearing my mind. Axios News Editor Justin Green, who edits PM, is doing the honors today. 

1 big thing: Rudy's first Trump walk back

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Rudy Giuliani has walked back that Fox News interview.

Trump this morning on Rudy: "He'll get his facts straight... There has been a lot of misinformation. I say, You know what? Learn before you speak. It's a lot easier."

Giuliani's statement, issued this afternoon:

  • "There is no campaign violation. The payment was made to resolve a personal and false allegation in order to protect the President’s family. It would have been done in any event, whether he was a candidate or not."
  • "My references to timing were not describing my understanding of the President’s knowledge, but instead, my understanding of these matters."
  • "It is undisputed that the President’s dismissal of former Director Comey – an inferior executive officer – was clearly within his Article II power. "

P.S. Trump's memorable lines today:

  • "[I]f you take a look.. at the Rod Rosenstein letter to me, prior to the firing of James Comey, just read it; put it in the air.  Your viewers don’t know about it.  Put that letter on the air."
  • On a potential Mueller interview: "I would love to speak. I would love to.  Nobody wants to speak more than me — in fact, against my lawyers, because most lawyers, they never speak on anything. I would love to speak, because we've done nothing wrong.
  • "Thank you Kanye": Trump said West "must have some power" after a new poll he saw showed his support among African Americans jumped from 11% to 22%.

Go deeper: More Trump quotes to the NRA.

2. What you missed
Expand chart
Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals
  1. Jobs numbers: The U.S. unemployment rate fell to to 3.9% in April, and added 164,000 jobs last month. More.
  2. Walmart's India coup: The retail giant appears to have beaten out Amazon for a majority stake in Indian e-commerce giant Flipkart in a $15 billion deal that reportedly includes a $3 billion co-investment from Alphabet. More.
  3. America's big demand to China: Cut the trade deficit by $200 billion by 2020. Go deeper.
  4. China's demand to the U.S.: "Ease national-security reviews of Chinese investments." Read up. [WSJ paywalled]
  5. The Trump administration is ending temporary protected status (TPS) for Hondurans, the New York Times reports, a status which has safeguarded more than 50,000 Hondurans following a devastating hurricane in 1999.
  6. Synthetic opioids were involved in close to half of all opioid deaths in 2016 and 30% of overdose deaths overall. By the numbers.
3. 1 fun thing: "gamer's thumb"

The rise of Esports has led to its inevitable conclusion: doctors who specialize in treating injuries caused by hours of sitting in front of TV screens and using video game controllers, John Gaudiosi writes for Variety:

  • "One injury you won’t find in any traditional sport is 'gamer’s thumb,' which [Dr. Levi Harrison] called an interesting pathology caused by the locking of the thumb and trigger finger. It’s rare, but in the worst cases gamers can’t bend or extend their thumb because it’s spent so many hours holding a console controller."
Mike Allen

Thank you for reading. Megan Murphy is the 1 Big Guest for tomorrow's Axios AM.