Jan 12, 2018

Obama: Presidential behavior is important

Former President Obama gives a speech in Chicago. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Former President Obama is the first guest on a new Netflix original talk show series, "My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman," launching globally today. The episode was taped last fall:

Why it matters: “One of the things that Michelle figured out, in some ways faster than I did — was part of your ability to lead the country doesn’t have to do with legislation, doesn’t have to do with regulations, it has to do with shaping attitudes, shaping culture, increasing awareness," Obama said, per Politico.

Other highlights:

  • Obama: "The stereotype of former presidents is you’re kind of sitting around your house and waiting for somebody to call — lonely and don’t know what to do."
  • Letterman: "No, that’s me."

Obama turned to "long-term trends that are still a problem":

  • "You still have growing inequality."
  • "The combination of technology and globalization. It means ... categories of jobs that are being eliminated."
  • "The cost of college, the cost of healthcare are still going up, although not as fast, as they were when I came into office.
  • "And so, in that environment, if all the money’s going to a handful of people at the top and they’re investing in all kinds of stuff because they wanna maximize their return, that’s how you start getting bubbles, that’s how you start getting, an overheated financial system."
  • "The challenge that we still have to address is how do we make an economy in this globalized technological environment that’s working for everybody?" 

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 5,682,389 — Total deaths: 354,944 — Total recoveries — 2,337,385Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 1,697,459 — Total deaths: 100,271 — Total recoveries: 391,508 — Total tested: 15,192,481Map.
  3. Public health: Fauci says data is "really quite evident" against hydroxychloroquine — Nearly half of Americans say someone in their household has delayed medical care.
  4. Business: African American business owners have seen less relief from PPP, Goldman Sachs saysDisney plans phased reopening on July 11Author Ann Patchett says bookstores are innovating to stay connected with customers.
  5. Tech: AI will help in the pandemic — but it might not be in time for this one.
  6. 1 🎶 thing: Local music venues get rocked by coronavirus.
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Trump vs. Twitter ... vs. Trump.
  8. What should I do? When you can be around others after contracting the coronavirus — Traveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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

Updated 18 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Top Senate Democrat says State Dept. is working on new Saudi arms deal

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo briefs reporters on May 20. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/pool/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Foreign Relations ranking member Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) wrote in a CNN op-ed on Wednesday that he learned that the State Department is currently working to sell thousands of additional precision-guided bombs to Saudi Arabia.

Why it matters: Democrats say that Steve Linick, the State Department inspector general who was ousted on Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's recommendation, was investigating the administration's previous effort to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia without congressional approval.

U.S. coronavirus death toll crosses 100,000

Data: Johns Hopkins University; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

More than 100,000 Americans have died of the coronavirus, according to data from Johns Hopkins — a terrible milestone that puts the death toll far beyond some of the most tragic events in U.S. history.

By the numbers: The death toll from COVID-19 now stands at more than 34 times the number of people who died on 9/11.