Dec 14, 2017

Pence delaying Israel visit

Photo: Scott Applewhite / AP

Vice President Mike Pence's visit to Israel, which was to begin on Sunday, will be postponed by two days because of next week's tax-reform vote, Israeli and U.S. officials say.

  • The reason: U.S. officials tell Axios that Pence is likely to remain in Washington until Tuesday in order to be present for final Senate passage of tax reform, which he has been intimately involved in.
  • The change: Pence originally was to leave Saturday night. He is likely to add one day at the end of the trip.

According to the current schedule, Israeli officials tell me:

  • Israeli officials say Pence is due to arrive from Cairo on Wednesday evening.
  • On Thursday morning, he will have a welcoming ceremony at the prime minister's office and a working meeting with Netanyahu.
  • Afterwards Pence will visit the Israeli parliament – the Knesset — and deliver a speech to the Israeli people.
  • In the evening Pence will arrive at the prime minister's residence for dinner with Netanyahu.
  • On Friday morning Pence will meet with Israeli president Rivlin and visit the Holocaust memorial site – Yad Vashem. He will leave Israel around noon on Friday.

U.S. officials say Pence is still likely to visit the Western Wall.

  • Palestinians refused to see Pence as a result of Trump's announcement on Jerusalem from last week.

Go deeper

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll surpasses 14,800

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The novel coronavirus has now killed more than 2,000 people for the second day in a row, and it's infected more than 432,000 others, per Johns Hopkins data.

Where it stands: More than 14,800 people have died of COVID-19 in the U.S. — including over 4,500 in New York. The state's death toll surged to its highest one-day total on Wednesday — beating the previous day's record. 779 people died in New York in 24 hours. N.Y. has reported more cases than the most-affected countries in Europe.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

World coronavirus updates: U.K. PM "stable, improving" in intensive care

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is "stable, improving, sat up and engaged with medical staff" in the intensive care unit of London's St. Thomas' Hospital, where he is being treated for the coronavirus, Culture Minister Oliver Dowden told the BBC Thursday.

Zoom in: The update comes as ministers meet to discuss whether to extend the United Kingdom's lockdown and after the country's health officials reported Wednesday the highest daily rise in COVID-19 deaths — 938, taking the total to over 7,300. London Mayor said Wednesday the U.K. is "nowhere near lifting the lockdown," with the virus not expected to peak there until next week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 1,484,811 — Total deaths: 88,538 — Total recoveries: 329,876Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 432,132 — Total deaths: 14,817 — Total recoveries: 23,906Map.
  3. Federal government latest: Top Trump administration officials had been developing a plan to give cloth masks to huge numbers of Americans, but the idea lost traction amid heavy internal skepticism.
  4. States latest: New York has reported more cases than the most-affected countries in Europe. Chicago's Cook County jail is largest-known source of coronavirus in U.S.
  5. Business: One-third of U.S. jobs are at risk of disappearing, mostly affecting low-income workers.
  6. World: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged countries to put politics aside "if you don’t want to have many more body bags.”
  7. Environment: COVID-19 is underscoring the connection between air pollution and dire outcomes from respiratory diseases.
  8. Tech: A new report recommends stimulus spending to help close the digital divide revealed by social distancing.
  9. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.