Russian President Putin. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov / Getty Images

In a series of interviews with Russian state television, detailed by the AP, Russian President Vladimir Putin showered President Trump in compliments, calling him a "great communicator" and noting he "made a very good impression on me."

Yes, but: Putin said the U.S. political system is a different story.

"[The U.S. political system] has demonstrated its inefficiency and has been eating itself up... It’s quite difficult to interact with such a system, because it’s unpredictable."
— Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday

Highlights:

  • The rift between Russia and the West: "We are a great power, and no one likes competition," said Putin. He later added, “Those who serve us with poison will eventually swallow it and poison themselves."
  • Russia's growing power: "If we play strongly with weak cards, it means the others are just poor players, they aren’t as strong as it seemed, they must be lacking something.”
  • Russia's expanding nuclear arsenal: “If someone makes a decision to destroy Russia, then we have a legitimate right to respond... Yes, it will mean a global catastrophe for mankind, for the entire world. But as a citizen of Russia and the head of Russian state I would ask: What is such a world for, if there were no Russia?”

Go deeper

Updated 49 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m. ET: 32,673,978 — Total deaths: 990,738 — Total recoveries: 22,535,056Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m. ET: 7,065,019 — Total deaths: 204,249 — Total recoveries: 2,727,335 — Total tests: 99,488,275Map.
  3. States: New York daily cases top 1,000 for first time since June — U.S. reports over 55,000 new coronavirus cases.
  4. Health: The long-term pain of the mental health pandemicFewer than 10% of Americans have coronavirus antibodies.
  5. Business: Millions start new businesses in time of coronavirus.
  6. Education: Summer college enrollment offers a glimpse of COVID-19's effect.

Confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee set to start Oct. 12

Sen. Lindsey Graham, chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Sept. 24. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee are tentatively scheduled to begin Oct. 12, two Senate sources familiar with the plans told Axios.

Why it matters: The committee's current schedule could allow Senate Republicans to confirm the nominee weeks before November's election. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell currently has enough votes to confirm Circuit Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett, who is expected as the president's pick.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

A hinge moment for America's role in the world

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Getty Images photo: Saul Loeb/AFP

The world may be living through the last gasps of America First — or just getting a taste of what's to come.

Why it matters: President Trump's message at this week's virtual UN General Assembly was short and relatively simple: global institutions like the World Health Organization are weak and beholden to China; international agreements like the Iran deal or Paris climate accord are "one-sided"; and the U.S. has accomplished more by going its own way.