Poznan, Poland (@OnetWiadomosci via Twitter).

Strains of populism continue to rend Europe, as a Polish government move to weaken judicial independence triggered protesting crowds on Thursday night estimated at nearly 100,000 in Warsaw and other Polish cities, per Buzzfeed.

  • The protests broke out after the Sejm, the Polish parliament, okayed a bill that would compel all 83 of the country's Supreme Court judges to resign, apart from those appointed by the ruling Law and Justice Party. They would then be replaced by the Minister of Justice. The bill must now be approved by the Senate, which could vote as early as today, and signed by President Andrzej Duda.
  • Critics say the move will be fatal stroke against Polish democracy. Duda has disputed that, and attempted to compromise by saying he will veto any bill that excludes a 60% threshold for the approval of any new judge. But some EU officials say that, should the bill become law, Poland could trigger a suspension of its voting rights within the EU.
  • Why it matters: Along with Hungary, Poland has been drifting further and further away from the democracy established a quarter century ago with Eastern Europe's break from the Soviet Union. Their shift, along with Brexit, is complicating unity on hard political questions within the already-fractious EU.

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Sports

13 members of St. Louis Cardinals test positive for coronavirus

Photo: Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Seven players and six staff members from the St. Louis Cardinals have tested positive for the coronavirus over the past week, prompting the MLB to postpone the team's upcoming four-game series against the Detroit Tigers.

Why it matters: Seven consecutive Cardinals games have now been canceled after St. Louis became the second team to report a significant coronavirus outbreak, just two weeks into the season.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 18,149,860 — Total deaths: 690,624 — Total recoveries — 10,753,318Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 4,690,404 — Total deaths: 155,124 — Total recoveries: 1,468,689 — Total tests: 56,812,162Map.
  3. Politics: White House will require staff to undergo randomized coronavirus testing — Pelosi says Birx "enabled" Trump on misinformation.
  4. Business: Virtual school is another setback for retail — The pandemic hasn't hampered health care.
  5. Public health: Former FDA chief says MLB outbreaks should be warning sign for schools.
2 hours ago - Podcasts

White House adviser Peter Navarro talks TikTok

President Trump has relaxed his threat to immediately ban the popular social media app TikTok, giving Microsoft room to negotiate an acquisition from Chinese tech giant ByteDance.

Axios Re:Cap digs into the situation with Peter Navarro, the White House's top trade adviser and a noted China hawk, who suggests Microsoft should be forced to make unrelated concessions related to its China operations.