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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

The writing is on the wall, top Republicans tell us: Democrats will likely win the House and undoubtedly move to impeach President Trump.

The big picture: Assuming Democrats win the House, it is inconceivable charges that Trump illegally paid off two women to protect his political campaign, corroborated by two longtime loyalists under oath, alone would not provoke impeachment proceedings. It’s equally inconceivable Robert Mueller won’t provide much more impeachment fodder when he reports his findings.

This is where the insane run of politics could hit peak insanity: Trump knows all he will need is 34 Republican votes in Senate to save his presidency, if he were impeached by the House and tried by the Senate. It takes 67 of 100 senators to remove a president from office.

  • Trump’s political superpower is his willingness to say, do and endure things most humans would never tolerate.
  • So those who know Trump best fully expect he would never surrender and bet his base is so strong, and Republican senators so fearful, his red wall will hold, regardless of evidence.

This wall would include:

  • True Trump loyalists.
  • Newly elected senators who credit Trump for helping them win.
  • Republicans running for reelection in states Trump won by 20 or more points.
  • Republicans in Trump states not up for 2020 reelection.

Why it matters: Yes, this is premature. But also yes, the thinking around Trump is turning to survival in impeachment proceedings.

Be smart ... An experienced Senate vote-counter, on why no one is likely to be #34 to save Trump: "If you lose 10 Rs on something like impeachment, you’re going to lose them all. I think it’s [preserve the] majority [in November] or bust."

Go deeper ... From Axios PM, "Trump's hell week: fear and fury," by Jonathan Swan:

  • "For the first time, I’m hearing real fear and concern in the voices of Trump allies."
Subscribe to Axios AM/PM for a daily rundown of what's new and why it matters, directly from Mike Allen.
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Go deeper

Broncos and 49ers the latest NFL teams impacted by coronavirus crisis

From left, Denver Broncos quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Jeff Driskel during an August training session at UCHealth Training Center in Englewood, Colorado. Photo: Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the NFL season into chaos, with the Denver Broncos' quarterbacks sidelined, the San Francisco 49ers left without a home or practice ground and much of the Baltimore Ravens team unavailable, per AP.

Driving the news: The Broncos confirmed in a statement Saturday night that quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles had been identified as "high-risk COVID-19 close contacts" and will follow the NFL's mandatory five-day quarantine, making them ineligible for Sunday's game against New Orleans.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: McConnell temporarily halts in-person lunches for GOP caucus.
  3. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in DecemberAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  4. Education: U.S. public school enrollment drops as pandemic persists.
  5. Cities: Surge in cases forces San Francisco to impose curfew — Los Angeles County issues stay-at-home order, limits gatherings.
  6. Sports: NFL bans in-person team activities Monday, Tuesday due to COVID-19 surge — NBA announces new coronavirus protocols.
  7. World: London police arrest more than 150 during anti-lockdown protests — Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.

Tony Hsieh, longtime Zappos CEO, dies at 46

Tony Hsieh. Photo: FilmMagic/FilmMagic

Tony Hsieh, the longtime ex-chief executive of Zappos, died on Friday after being injured in a house fire, his lawyer told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He was 46.

The big picture: Hsieh was known for his unique approach to management, and following the 2008 recession his ongoing investment and efforts to revitalize the downtown Las Vegas area.