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Giuliani in the Rose Garden on July 29 in Washington, DC. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Rudy Giuliani, President Trump's personal lawyer, is continuing to encourage Ukraine's government to investigate the son of Joe Biden, Trump's current top-polling 2020 rival, the New York Times reports.

The impact: U.S. government officials who handle foreign policy related to Ukraine blame Giuliani for complicating Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's diplomatic visit to the White House, per the NYT. Trump and Zelensky have not yet met in person.

What's new: "Giuliani has spoken on the phone and held an in-person meeting, in Madrid, with a top representative" of Zelensky's to encourage Ukraine to investigate potential conflicts of interest involving the Biden family and whether the country "took steps during the 2016 election to damage" the Trump campaign, the NYT reports.

Flashback: The NYT previously reported that Giuliani also wanted to visit Ukraine to encourage Zelensky to investigate the origin of special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Giuliani canceled that trip in May, then met with a former Ukrainian diplomat in New York.

The other side: Ukraine's prosecutor general said in May that he has no evidence of wrongdoing by former Vice President Joe Biden or his son Hunter, regarding potential conflicts of interest involving the family's work with a Ukrainian company.

Go deeper: Giuliani cancels trip to Ukraine as Trump suggests investigating Biden

Go deeper

U.S. will now allow private citizens to sponsor Afghan refugees

A family boards a bus at the airport that will take them to a refugee processing center after being evacuated from Kabul. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Americans wanting to help vulnerable Afghan refugees now have a new way to get involved through a new U.S. private refugee sponsorship program announced Monday.

  • Groups of at least 5 adults can apply, complete background checks and start fundraising the $2,275 per refugee required.

Why it matters: It’s a big shift in the U.S refugee process, which has long relied on non-profits.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
41 mins ago - Energy & Environment

What we’re watching during the final countdown to COP26

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

This is shaping up as a critical week for climate policy in the U.S. and worldwide.

Driving the news: Democrats are in the final stages of trying to craft the big social spending and climate package they're trying to move on a thread-the-needle party-line vote.

"Atmospheric river" swings Northern California from drought to flood

Satellite view of the bomb cyclone swirling off the coast of the Pacific Northwest and the atmospheric river affecting California on Oct. 24. Photo: CIRA/RAMMB

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are delivering historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest.

Why it matters: The atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, was causing Northern California to whiplash from drought to flood, as it slowly moved south overnight. It's triggered widespread power outages, flooding and mudslides.