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Saudi oil minister Khalid al-Falih (Michel Euler/AP)

Saudi oil minister Khalid al-Falih told BBC News that he welcomes the Trump administration as bullish for the oil industry.

Trump repeatedly blasted Saudi Arabia during his campaign, blaming the country for the 9-11 attacks and arguing that the U.S. must achieve "complete" energy independence and get out from under the influence of "our enemies and the oil cartels."

Why it matters: It's easy to criticize fundamentalist Saudi Arabia from the campaign trail for its human rights abuses and because it's the epicenter of Wahabi Muslim ideology, which fuels much of the world's religiously-inspired terrorism. But the Arabian kingdom remains an indispensable source of stability in the global energy markets and a geopolitical partner in the Middle East.

Fun fact: al-Falih said he's excited to work with new Energy Secretary Rick Perry, a fellow graduate of Texas A&M.

Go deeper

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

7 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.