Jul 27, 2017

Sanders couldn't say whether Trump has confidence in Priebus

Jacquelyn Martin / AP

Press Secretary Sarah Sanders faced a series of questions about the reported tense relationship between Trump's new White House Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci, and Chief of Staff Reince Priebus during Thursday's WH briefing. Her response? "I think the President as always enjoys healthy competition and conversation."

She later dodged questions on whether Trump still has confidence in Priebus, given the president's reported disappointment with his inaction, and instead stated that the Trump WH is one that "has a lot of different perspectives because the president hires the very best people." And as for Scaramucci's suggestion on firing those responsible for the leaks coming out of the White House? "I'm not going to comment on Anthony's suggestion. I'll let him speak for himself," she said.

Other highlights from the on-camera briefing:

  • On implementation of Trump's ban on transgender people serving in the military: The WH still has to work with the DoD "to fully implement" the president's transgender policy, "and do so in a lawful manner." Sanders added that there is currently "no specific timeline" for when the policy change will be rolled out.
  • Health care update: "The president is looking forward to [Senate Republicans] keeping their promise tonight." She also said that the president wants them to replace the ACA with a "freedom" health care bill.
  • On Sessions' thoughts about the Russia probe: "Attorney General Sessions knows better than anybody that the president and his campaign had nothing to do with Russia."
  • Russia sanctions bill: Sanders said the WH has to see the final language before Trump decides whether to veto it or not.
  • On Trump "stepping on his own message" on Twitter: "I think the President's aware that he can walk and chew gum at the same time."

One fun Sanders quote: "No, I cannot confirm whether or not Sean Spicer will be on 'Dancing With the Stars' upon leaving the white House."

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Intelligence community watchdog suggests Trump fired him for doing his job

Michael Atkinson, Inspector General of the Intelligence Community,at the Capitol in October. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson suggested in a statement Sunday President Trump fired him for acting impartially in carrying out his duties following a whistleblower complaint.

Why it matters: Atkinson alerted Congress last September to the complaint on Trump's correspondence with Ukraine's president, triggering an inquiry that resulted in the president's impeachment.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 6 mins ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll passes 9,500

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Recorded deaths from the novel coronavirus surpassed 9,500 in the U.S. Sunday evening, per Johns Hopkins data. The death toll in the U.S. has risen over 1,000 every day since April 1.

Why it matters: U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said on Sunday this upcoming week will be "the hardest and saddest week of most Americans' lives" — calling it our "our Pearl Harbor, our 9/11 moment."

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 1,273,794 — Total deaths: 69,419 — Total recoveries: 260,193Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 337,274 — Total deaths: 9,633 — Total recoveries: 17,449Map.
  3. Federal government latest: Surgeon general says this week will be "our Pearl Harbor, our 9/11 moment." The USDA confirms that a Bronx zoo tiger tested positive for coronavirus.
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. Biden says DNC may have to hold virtual convention.
  5. States updates: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the state is "literally going day-to-day" with supplies.
  6. World update: Queen Elizabeth II urges the British people to confront pandemic with "self-discipline" and "resolve" in rare televised address.
  7. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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