Welcome to Sneak Peek, our weekly lookahead from both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, plus our best scoops.
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Tonight's newsletter is 1,979 words, a 7.5-minute read.
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
The White House plans to shift its coronavirus messaging toward boosting the economy and highlighting "success stories" of businesses, reducing its public emphasis on health statistics, according to two officials familiar with the planning.
Driving the news: The Coronavirus Task Force — and the doctors who've become household names, Deborah Birx and Anthony Fauci — "will continue but take a back seat to the forward-looking, 'what's next' message," a White House official told Axios.
What we're hearing: "Expect to see a pivot from the White House in the days ahead, focusing on the economy and a more hopeful, forward-looking message," one of these officials said.
The big picture: The U.S. has now passed 54,000 confirmed deaths from the virus. New York City alone has suffered vastly more death than other dense global cities of similar size and even more death from the virus than most countries. Some cities and states in the U.S. have flattened the curve, but that hasn't happened nationally yet.
What's next: The White House briefings will eventually scale back and come to an end. But in the meantime, Trump's team plans to build his calendar around events that highlight a "safe" reopening of the economy.
Behind the scenes: A number of Trump's most trusted advisers, inside and outside of the White House, grew increasingly alarmed at his marathon daily briefings and some told him they could harm his re-election chances.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images
One of the more surprising recent political moments was when President Trump publicly lambasted Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp. It's rare — and politically damaging — for a Republican official to get steamrolled the way Kemp did last week.
Why it matters: Trump was encouraging governors to "liberate" their states, which anti-lockdown protesters saw as an endorsement. He offered guidelines for reopening the economy safely but said he'd leave it up to the governors to decide what was right for their states.
Behind the scenes: Two sources who've discussed Kemp with Trump told me there's more to it than a simple policy disagreement.
Between the lines: Both sources who spoke to Trump about Kemp said the president remained irritated by Kemp's earlier decision to ignore Trump's recommendation to appoint Rep. Doug Collins to the vacant senate seat in Georgia.
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Why it matters:
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Some advisers to President Trump have been envying Joe Biden's comparative invisibility in the daily news cycle, watching with unease as Biden seems to benefit from his lower profile during the coronavirus crisis.
Driving the news: The presumptive Democratic nominee is beating Trump in national and key state polls, Neal Rothschild, Alexi McCammond and I report. This week, a barrage of swing-state polls showed Biden's position strengthening as he remains largely out of the public eye:
Between the lines: The data most bothering Trump's advisers is the president's softening standing among senior citizens — a cohort most vulnerable to the coronavirus.
Meanwhile, Biden's favorability with older voters is helping him.
What Trumpworld is seeing: Trump is no longer benefiting from being a leader in a crisis.
Several advisers to Trump argue that these polls will likely be Biden's high watermark.
The other side: TJ Ducklo, national spokesman for Biden campaign, told Axios, “Donald Trump spending less time in the briefing room is a welcome development for Americans' anxiety levels, but cannot erase the truth that will haunt him until November: He ignored early warnings about the virus and thousands of Americans lives have been lost that didn't have to be."
Another White House press shop exit: this time, one of the more well-traveled members of the Trump administration.
Between the lines: It's the latest shuffle in the White House's press and communications teams after Mark Meadows took over as chief of staff. One of Meadows' first acts was replacing former press secretary Stephanie Grisham with Trump campaign spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany.
Photo: Liu Jie/Xinhua via Getty Images
The House is on recess through May 4. Discussions over a phase 4 coronavirus funding bill will continue among leadership, Axios' Alayna Treene reports.
The Senate is also on recess through May 4.
The White House did not provide a copy of President Trump's schedule, but a White House official told Axios that the daily coronavirus task force briefings are expected to continue. It's still fluid how often Trump will participate.
Tuesday: Vice President Mike Pence visits the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
Thursday: Pence will travel to a GM plant in Kokomo, Indiana.