Politics & Policy

Why it matters: While Democrats fight to convince voters that they should be the ones tasked with taking down President Trump, the current administration is powering ahead on efforts to restrict immigration, unleash business and reshape the U.S. role in the world.

All politics & policy stories

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
3 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Wall Street fears stimulus is doomed

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The fight over a new Supreme Court justice will take Washington's partisan bickering to a new level and undermine any chance for needed coronavirus relief measures before November's election, Wall Street analysts say.

What we're hearing: "With the passing of Justice Ginsburg, the level of rhetorical heat has increased, if that seemed even possible," Greg Staples, head of fixed income for the Americas at DWS Group, tells Axios in an email.

Mike Allen, author of AM
34 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Matt Gaetz discusses post-Trump GOP in new book, "Firebrand"

Cover: Simon & Schuster

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), a rising conservative star, writes about traveling with President Trump from New Hampshire to Dover Air Force Base for the return of the remains of two constituents killed in Afghanistan in his book, "Firebrand," out Tuesday.

"He insisted we cut the politics short," Gaetz told Axios. "He said: 'Matt, we have to show the country the impact of these wars.' ... President Trump understands that to move people, you have to create scenes and use images. It's not enough to talk."

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
41 mins ago - Health

Before Ruth Bader Ginsburg died, 2020 wasn't much of a health care election

Data: NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll; Note: ±3.8% margin of error; Chart: Axios Visuals

Health care wasn't the top issue heading into the 2020 election — and then Ruth Bader Ginsburg died.

Between the lines: This poll was conducted in the days before her death, which has significantly increased the threat to the Affordable Care Act and thus the threat to the law's pre-existing conditions protections.

Updated 47 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 31,346,086 — Total deaths: 965,294— Total recoveries: 21,518,790Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 6,858,130 — Total deaths: 199,890 — Total recoveries: 2,615,949 — Total tests: 95,841,281Map.
  3. Health: CDC says it mistakenly published guidance about COVID-19 spreading through air.
  4. Media: Conservative blogger who spread COVID-19 misinformation worked for Fauci's agency.
  5. Politics: House Democrats file legislation to fund government through Dec. 11.
  6. World: U.K. upgrades COVID alert level as Europe sees worrying rise in infections — "The Wake-Up Call" warns the West about the consequences of mishandling a pandemic.
Mike Allen, author of AM
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

13 Nobel Prize-winning economists back Biden

Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Joe Biden's campaign released on Tuesday a letter signed by 13 winners of the Nobel Prize in economics who say that while their views are different, they all think his policies "will result in economic growth that is faster, more robust, and more equitable."

Our thought bubble, via Axios Hans Nichols: These economist letters are often little more than veiled job applications from academics hoping for a Fed or White House position. But given that these laureates are éminence grises of American economics, they probably just want to be on the record supporting Biden.

Mike Allen, author of AM
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Bill Stepien: Trump travel, grassroots campaigning worth $48 million a week

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

A stark difference between the Trump and Biden campaigns is Trump-Pence's aggressive continuation of traditional door-knocking amid the pandemic, while Joe Biden emphasizes virtual techniques. And President Trump travels more.

The state of play: Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien is now quantifying the difference, arguing in a new memo that candidate travel and the campaign's ground game give the president an advantage at a time when the airwaves are saturated.

The price of Washington's stimulus failure

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

America's elected representatives have failed America.

Why it matters: The bipartisan inability to deliver economic stimulus could impede economic growth for months to come. It will create widespread damage across America — from small businesses to large industries to schools and day cares — and leave many Americans without jobs or homes.

Congress passes bills to address missing and murdered Native Americans

Bills designed to address the issue of missing and murdered Native Americans that passed unanimously in the House Monday are headed to President Trump's desk to be signed into law.

Why it matters: The first bill, Savanna's Act, "addresses a tragic issue in Indian Country and helps establish better law enforcement practices to track, solve and prevent these crimes against Native Americans," said Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Chair John Hoeven (R-N.D.), who co-sponsored the bill, in a statement.

Louisville police declare state of emergency as Breonna Taylor decision looms

A demonstrator holds up a sign of Breonna Taylor during a protest in Louisville, Kentucky. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

The Louisville police chief declared in a memo obtained by news outlets a "state of emergency" for the department on Monday to prepare for Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron's expected announcement on the Breonna Taylor case.

Of note: Louisville has witnessed more than 115 days of protests over the police killing of Taylor, an unarmed Black woman, with calls for all the officers involved to be charged.

Pence: Trump has "an obligation" to name new Supreme Court nominee

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence told "CBS Evening News" on Monday that President Trump has "an obligation under the Constitution" to put forward a nominee to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

The state of play: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has vowed to give Trump's nominee a vote, despite opposing then-President Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland following Justice Antonin Scalia's death in 2016, on the grounds that voters should decide in the next election who is appointed to the court.

Updated 13 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Where key GOP senators stand on replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell talks to reporters on Capitol Hill last Thursday. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With President Trump planning to nominate his third Supreme Court justice nominee this week, key Republican senators are indicating their stance on replacing the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with less than 50 days until Election Day.

The state of play: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) has vowed that "Trump's nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate." Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), who's facing a difficult re-election race, announced Monday he will vote to confirm Trump's nominee, meaning Republicans are all but assured to have enough support to hold hearings.

Trump meets with Supreme Court frontrunner Amy Coney Barrett

Amy Coney Barret. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

President Trump met with Judge Amy Coney Barrett Monday afternoon at the White House, days before he is set to announce his pick to fill the Supreme Court seat vacated by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, two sources familiar with meeting tell Axios.

Between the lines: Barrett, a 48-year-old U.S. circuit court judge who has long been seen within Trumpworld as the frontrunner on the president's short list, is known widely within the White House and well-liked.

Judge extends deadline for Wisconsin ballots postmarked by Election Day

A polling location in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Photo: DEREK R. HENKLE/AFP via Getty Images

A federal judge in Wisconsin on Monday extended the state's deadline for counting absentee ballots until up to six days after the Nov. 3 election if they are postmarked by Election Day, AP reports.

Why it matters: The ruling, unless overturned, "means that the outcome of the presidential race in Wisconsin likely will not be known for days after polls close," according to AP.

Kamala Harris' Supreme opening

Sen. Kamala Harris during a campaign stop in Philadelphia. Photo: Michael Perez/AP

President Trump's Supreme Court plans have created a major opportunity for Sen. Kamala Harris to go on offense.

Why it matters: A confirmation fight puts Harris back in the spotlight thanks to her role on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Updated 15 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Cornyn: "Of course" Senate would confirm SCOTUS pick in lame-duck session if Biden wins

Cornyn speaks during the Senate Select Intelligence Committee hearing. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told CNN on Monday that "of course" Senate Republicans would confirm President Trump's Supreme Court nominee in a lame-duck session even if Joe Biden wins the November election.

Why it matters: Democrats need only two more Republican senators to oppose voting on a Supreme Court nominee before the election to force Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to hold a vote in the lame-duck session of Congress.

15 hours ago - Politics & Policy

"Just too convenient": Trump again suggests Ginsburg's dying wish was fabricated

President Trump suggested for the second time on Monday that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg did not actually tell her granddaughter that her dying wish was to "not be replaced until a new president is installed," claiming it is "just too convenient."

Driving the news: Trump told "Fox & Friends" on Monday morning, "I don't know that she said that, or was that written out by Adam Schiff, and Schumer and Pelosi. I would be more inclined to the second, OK, you know, that came out of the wind, it sounds so beautiful. But that sounds like a Schumer deal or maybe a Pelosi or shifty Schiff."

Graham says he has "different view" of SCOTUS confirmations after Kavanaugh

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said in a letter to his Democratic colleagues on Monday he has a "different view" of the judicial confirmation process "after the treatment of Justice Kavanaugh" during his 2018 confirmation fight.

Why it matters: Graham opposed holding a vote President Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland following Justice Antonin Scalia's death in 2016, arguing that voters should get to decide in the next election who is appointed to the court.

NYPD officer charged with feeding information on Tibetans to China

The New York City Police Department logo. Photo: Alexandra Schuler/picture alliance via Getty Images

Federal prosecutors on Monday charged a New York City police officer with acting as an illegal agent of China and feeding information on ethnic Tibetans in New York City to the Chinese consulate, court documents show.

The big picture: China's Communist Party has for years responded with heavy-handed tactics against Tibetan calls for independence.

16 hours ago - Health

Conservative blogger who spread COVID-19 misinformation worked for Fauci's agency

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Kevin Dietsch-Pool/Getty Images

The managing editor of the conservative blog RedState, who under a pseudonym has attacked officials leading the U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic, was actually a public affairs specialist for the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), The Daily Beast reports.

Why it matters: Under the pseudonym "strieff," William B. Crews has written several articles on RedState that directly contradict guidelines issued by the White House coronavirus task force and other government agencies. This includes misinformation that NIAID director Dr. Anthony Fauci and other leaders have warned undermine the U.S. response to the pandemic.

16 hours ago - Podcasts

RBG and the future of American health care

Before her death, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg was preparing to hear a case that could determine the availability of affordable health insurance for around 20 million Americans. Plus for those with pre-existing conditions.

Axios Re:Cap digs into the case and what happens next with University of Michigan law professor and Supreme Court expert Nicholas Bagley.

16 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell: Senate has "more than sufficient time" to process Supreme Court nomination

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said in a floor speech Monday that the chamber has "more than sufficient time" to confirm a replacement for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg before the election, and accused Democrats of preparing "an even more appalling sequel" to the fight over Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation.

Why it matters: Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has said "nothing is off the table next year" if Republicans push ahead with the confirmation vote before November, vowing alongside Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) to use "every procedural tool available to us to ensure that we buy ourselves the time necessary."

Sen. Kelly Loeffler compares herself to Attila the Hun in campaign ad

Sen. Kelly Loeffler's (R-Ga.) campaign released an ad on Monday describing her as "more conservative" than ancient ruler Attila the Hun, who is depicted grunting orders to "fight China," "attack big government" and "eliminate the liberal scribes."

The state of play: Loeffler, a millionaire GOP donor who was appointed to her seat by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp last year, is up against Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) and 19 other candidates in a November special election.

House Democrats file legislation to fund government through Dec. 11

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

House Democrats on Monday released their proposal for short-term legislation to fund the government through December 11.

Why it matters: This is Congress' chief legislative focus before the election. They must pass a continuing resolution (CR) before midnight on Oct. 1 to avoid a government shutdown — something both Hill leaders and the White House have claimed is off the table.

Updated 19 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Ruth Bader Ginsburg will lie in state in Capitol's National Statuary Hall

Photo: Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Monday that the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will lie in state in the Capitol's National Statuary Hall on Friday, making Ginsburg the first woman to ever receive the honor.

The state of play: The Supreme Court also announced Monday that Ginsburg will lie in repose on the front steps of the building on Wednesday and Thursday, allowing the public to pay respects to the late justice outside.

Exclusive: Conservative group launches $2M Supreme Court ad

Screengrab of ad, courtesy of Judicial Crisis Network.

The Judicial Crisis Network is launching a $2.2 million ad campaign to put pressure on vulnerable Senate Republicans in battleground states to support a quick confirmation when President Trump announces his Supreme Court nominee.

The big picture: "Follow Precedent," previewed by Axios, is one of the first national and cable television ads to run following Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg's death Friday.

Updated 19 hours ago - Politics & Policy

CDC says it mistakenly published guidance about COVID-19 spreading through air

CDC Director Robert Redfield. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Pool/Getty Images

The CDC has removed new guidance that acknowledged airborne transmission of the coronavirus, posting in a note on its website that the guidance was only a draft and had been published in error.

Why it matters: The initial update — which was little noticed until a CNN story was published Sunday — had come months after scientists pushed for the agency to acknowledge the disease was transmissible through the air. The CDC previously said that close person-to-person contact was the bigger concern, and the language has been changed back to erase the warning about airborne transmission.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
23 hours ago - Energy & Environment

The climate stakes of the Supreme Court fight

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Ruth Bader Ginsburg's death and the battle over her vacant Supreme Court seat have real implications for energy and climate policy.

Why it matters: If President Trump replaces her, the court will likely become more skeptical of regulations that claim expansive federal power to regulate carbon under existing law, and perhaps new climate statutes as well.

Mike Allen, author of AM
Updated 24 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump's next moves in Supreme Court fight

Photo: Peter Zay/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

President Trump told "Fox & Friends" on Monday that he plans to announce his pick to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court on Friday or Saturday.

The state of play: Axios has heard that Trump's choices to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg are down to two women, both federal appeals court judges. The frontrunners are Amy Coney Barrett of Chicago, the early favorite, and Barbara Lagoa, who is viewed as easier to confirm. The Senate confirmed Lagoa 80-15 last year, so many Democrats have already voted for her.

Top Mueller prosecutor: "We could have done more"

Former special counsel Robert Mueller. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Andrew Weissmann, one of former special counsel Robert Mueller's top prosecutors, says in his new book, "Where Law Ends: Inside the Mueller Investigation," that the probe "could have done more" to take on President Trump, per The Atlantic.

Why it matters ... Weissmann argues that the investigation's report didn't go far enough in making a determination regarding Trump's potential obstruction of justice: "When there is insufficient proof of a crime, in volume one, we say it. But when there is sufficient proof, with obstruction, we don’t say it. Who is going to be fooled by that? It’s so obvious."

Mike Allen, author of AM
Sep 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bloomberg's top editor talks the pandemic's long-tail risk to the West

Cover: HarperCollins

A new book, "The Wake-Up Call" — by Bloomberg News editor-in-chief John Micklethwait and The Economist political editor Adrian Wooldridge — warns the West about what can happen to great powers that mishandle a pandemic.

Axios talked to Micklethwait on Friday night, on his ride from Bloomberg's tower in London to the English countryside:

Updated Sep 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden has $141 million more on hand than Trump

Combination images of President Trump and his 2020 presidential rival Joe Biden. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images/Alex Wong/Getty Images

Joe Biden's campaign, the Democratic National Committee and joint fundraising committees had $466 million in cash on hand, the presidential candidate's team announced late Sunday.

Why it matters: President Trump's campaign had $325 million cash on hand, his campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh announced Friday.

AOC and Schumer vow "unprecedented" action to fight Trump's Supreme Court plans

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer during an April press conference in New York City. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called on voters Sunday to contact senators and urge them to honor the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's wish that she not be replaced until a new president is installed.

Details: Schumer noted during their news conference "we only need two more senators who will abide by RGB's wish," after Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins said they'd oppose holding a Senate confirmation vote on President Trump's nomination to replace the late Supreme Court justice before November's election.

Sep 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Virtual Emmys address chaotic year

Emmy Host Jimmy Kimmel during rehearsals Friday for the 72nd Annual Emmy Awards at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Photo: Al Seib/ Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The Emmy Awards Sunday night addressed the major U.S. issues this year — including the protests on systemic racism and police brutality, the wildfires engulfing parts of the West Coast, the census, the pandemic, essential works and the election.

Why it matters: Award shows have always addressed wider cultural issues, but this year — amid unprecedented stress and uncertainty — that trend has accelerated.

Sep 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump likens judges to "golden nuggets" in Woodward interview

Photo: Twitter/CNN

Journalist Bob Woodward released new audio clips that aired on CNN Sunday night in which President Trump said he expects to have appointed "more than 50% of the federal judges in the country" by the time he leaves office.

Why it matters: The tapes from December to this summer offer insights into the importance Trump places on judicial appointments in his presidential legacy. In one interview, he described federal judges in one interview as being "like golden nuggets."

Arrest over letter to Trump containing poison ricin

President Trump returning to the White House from Minnesota on Sept. 18. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

A suspect was arrested for allegedly "sending a suspicious letter" after law enforcement agents intercepted an envelope addressed to President Trump containing the poison ricin, the FBI confirmed in an emailed statement to Axios Sunday.

Details: The suspect, a woman, was arrested while trying to enter New York from Canada, law enforcement sources said.

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