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Photo: Patrick Smith / Getty Images

Three ex-presidents plan to attend the Atlanta funeral of Rep. John Lewis on Thursday, celebrating a man who fought against bigotry as the U.S. continues to reckon with racial injustice, according to two people familiar with the planning.

Why it matters: By attending the funeral, former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton lend presidential prestige to the civil rights icon's funeral that the current occupant of the White House, Donald Trump, seems determined to withhold.

  • Trump declined to pay his respects to Lewis' coffin while it was lying in the Capitol Rotunda. "I won't be going, no," the president told reporters earlier this week.
  • Trump joined Obama, Bush and Clinton, as well as former President Jimmy Carter, for the funeral of George H.W. Bush in December 2018, separated by their spouses.
  • Carter, who is 95, and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter will not attend Thursday's funeral.
    • A spokesperson told NBC News that the Carters "are not traveling these days but are sending their condolences in writing.”

Behind the scenes: Security concerns are always an issue when former presidents gather in a single, public space.

Obama plans to give a eulogy, according to NBC News.

Go deeper

Mike Allen, author of AM
Oct 6, 2020 - Politics & Policy

"Be on the right side of truth": Fauci's advice to young people

Photo: Alex Edelman/Pool/Getty Images

Axios' Margaret Talev interviewed Dr. Anthony Fauci yesterday during a Partnership for Public Service Zoom ceremony awarding him the top honor of the Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals.

Fauci had this advice to doctors, scientists or aides in government who may be under pressure to give upbeat or politically helpful assessments: "Whenever you walk into the White House, or to a congressional chamber, tell yourself that 'this might be the last time that I'm walking into that place ... I might have to say something that's going to get people to not like what they're hearing, and might have them not ask me back.'"

Oct 6, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Michelle Obama on Trump's actions in office: "Yes, it is racist"

Photo: Via the Biden campaign

Former first lady Michelle Obama is making her closing argument for Joe Biden this morning, arguing that President Trump has mismanaged the pandemic while "stoking fears about Black and brown Americans."

The big picture: In a video message, the former first lady, who remains wildly popular in the Democratic party, testifies to Biden's personal qualities while sharply criticizing Trump's handling of the racial unrest that has been roiling the country.

Biden will reverse Trump's attempt to lift COVID-related travel restrictions

Photo: Tasos Katopodis via Getty

The incoming Biden administration will reverse President Trump's last-minute order to lift COVID-19 related travel restrictions, Jen Psaki, the incoming White House press secretary, tweeted.

Why it matters: President Trump ordered entry bans lifted for travelers from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil and much of Europe to go into effect Jan. 26, but the Biden administration will "strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Jen Psaki said. Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Jan. 20 and Trump will no longer be president by the time the order is set to go into effect.

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