Vulnerable House and Senate Democrats are distancing themselves from President Biden over Afghanistan, with one calling the evacuation "egregiously mishandled."
Why it matters: Biden's poll numbers have fallen as the Delta variant spread and the Afghanistan exit proved harrowing. Now, some Democrats in swing states and districts are publicly distancing themselves.
The next 20 years in Afghanistan will be dictated by what happens during the next 20 days, Rep. Peter Meijer (R-Mich.) tells Axios.
Why it matters: The Iraq war veteran visited Kabul exactly a week before the United States' impending withdrawal. "The best-case scenario is the country becomes like Iraq today; the worst-case scenario is it becomes like Syria today. I don't think we know right now what path it's going to take."
Top Biden officials have been excused from the ethics rules President Biden boasts about so they can do work involving large Wall Street banks, a leading defense contractor and prominent national media outlets, records show.
Driving the news: At least 16 Senate-confirmed officials have received waivers to ethics laws and regulations, according to an Axios review of their federal ethics paperwork.
Former U.S. ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro has joined the State Department's Iran team as a senior adviser, a senior State Department official tells Axios.
Why it matters: Israel is pressing the Biden administration to start discussing a “Plan B” in case diplomacy with Iran fails. Shapiro, who has a personal relationship with many Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, is equipped to play a key role in any such talks. His portfolio will be the regional aspects of the Iranian issue and coordination with Israel.
NIAID's Anthony Fauci said Sunday that the Biden administration is "sticking with" its recommendation for a third dose of the coronavirus vaccine eight months after receiving the original shots.
Why it matters: Fauci's statements on ABC's "This Week," come as the U.S. sees an uptick in COVID cases, largely due to the highly infectious Delta variant, and after the Biden administration announced it would begin offering booster shots to stay ahead of declining vaccine effectiveness.
President Biden and first lady Jill Biden met on Sunday with loved ones of the 13 service members killed in last week's Kabul airport attack and participated in a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base.
Why it matters: This is Biden's first visit as president to the Air Force base in Delaware to honor fallen troops. The base serves as the initial transit place for U.S. service members killed overseas.
An unvaccinated elementary school teacher in California infected more than half of her students with COVID-19, ultimately resulting in a community-wide outbreak in Marin County, a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found.
Why it matters: The outbreak, which took place in May, highlights the stakes surrounding a debate across the U.S. among school districts considering implementing stricter measures to curb the spread of the virus, like universal masking in schools.
The United States, along with 97 other countries, announced Sunday that they had reached an agreement with the Taliban to allow them to continue to get Afghan allies out of the country after the Aug. 31 withdrawal deadline.
Why it matters: "We are all committed to ensuring that our citizens, nationals and residents, employees, Afghans who have worked with us and those who are at risk can continue to travel freely to destinations outside Afghanistan," the joint statement said.
Around 250 Americans in Afghanistan still want to leave the country, the Department of State said on Sunday.
Why it matters: The Kabul evacuation mission, which was further complicated by a terrorist attack at Hamid Karzai International Airport last week, is rapidly approaching President Biden's Aug. 31 end date.
Why it matters: Quickly getting resources to remote communities made vulnerable by the earthquake is the focus of the $32 million U.S. relief effort. Aid efforts will be coordinated with several humanitarian groups already in the country.
The United States is "not likely" to have an “on-the-ground diplomatic presence” in Afghanistan after Aug. 31, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Sunday on "Meet the Press."
The big picture: "What is going to happen is that our commitment to continue to help people leave Afghanistan who want to leave and who are not out by Sept. 1, that endures,” Blinken told host Chuck Todd.
President Biden said on Saturday that U.S. commanders in Afghanistan told him earlier in the day that the threat of another terrorist attack near Kabul's airport was "highly likely in the next 24-36 hours."
Driving the news: Hours later, the U.S. Embassy in Kabul said in a new alert that Americans should "immediately" leave the airport area due to "a specific, credible threat."