Temperature anomalies for Jan. 19–26 from the GFS model. Adapted from the Climate Re-Analyzer, U. Maine.

The polar vortex, which typically keeps the coldest air in the Northern Hemisphere effectively locked up in the Arctic, has split into three pieces. Now, Arctic air is poised to blast across the Canadian border and into the Midwest and East Coast, along with a major winter storm.

Why it matters: A coast-to-coast storm during the next several days could deposit feet of snow in parts of the West and Northeast, while ushering in the coldest air of the season. This will yield travel headaches and economic impacts — and the storm won't be the last of this event.

The big picture: Computer model projections show repeat rounds of below-average temperatures surging into the eastern half of the U.S. from late January through much of February.

  • In fact, some projections show the colder-than-average pattern, which will favor the development of significant East Coast winter storms along with potent weather systems in Western Europe, could last off and on through early March.

The bottom line: Residents of some cities — like Boston, where people have been asking, "Where's winter?" — may soon regret having uttered that question.

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Lawyers crystal-ball the Google antitrust case

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The Justice Department's antitrust suit against Google is a strong, straightforward monopoly case, competition lawyers and experts tell Axios. But that doesn't mean it'll be an easy journey for the government.

The big picture: Winning any antitrust case is a heavy lift. It's even more of a challenge to pull off victory in a future-looking case that seeks to make room for potential new competition to flourish.

The pandemic is getting worse again

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Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Note: Due to a database error, Missouri had a 3 day gap in reporting from Oct. 11-13; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Every available piece of data proves it: The coronavirus pandemic is getting worse again, all across America.

The big picture: As the death toll ticks past 212,000, at a moment when containing the virus ought to be easier and more urgent than ever, we are instead giving it a bigger foothold to grow from.

SurveyMonkey poll: Young voters' red-state blue wall

Data: SurveyMonkey; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

There are only five states in the U.S. where voters younger than 35 embrace President Trump over Joe Biden, and none are swing states, according to new 50-state SurveyMonkey-Tableau data for Axios.

Why it matters: These scattered red spots in a sea of blue vividly illustrate Trump's peril if young people were to actually turn out this year. Put another way, Trump's path to re-election depends heavily on younger adults staying home.