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Lazaro Gamio / Axios

New White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci is already making his presence felt, telling Politico's Tara Palmeri today that he'll fire Michael Short, a loyalist to Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. And don't be confused by last week's public bromance: Scaramucci and Reince aren't friends. It's totally phony.

  • Why it matters: Reince has a very small number of loyalists left in the White House, with most of them in the press shop. Scaramucci has been given carte-blanche firing authority by Trump.
  • What to watch: What happens if Scaramucci fires another Reince loyalist in the press shop? And then another one? Then Reince is exposed and in a situation where his clout is tested with Trump.
  • How not to read this: Mooch keeps saying "everybody" will get fired, but he has a very friendly relationship with the Trump originals, the campaign veterans who aren't tied to the RNC. In particular, that means Hope Hicks and Dan Scavino.

Go deeper

Rachel Levine sworn in as first openly transgender 4-star officer

Rachel Levine testifies at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Feb. 25, 2021. Photo: Caroline Brehman-Pool/Getty Images

Rachel Levine was sworn in on Tuesday as the admiral of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, making her the nation's first openly transgender four-star officer, the Department of Health and Human Services said.

The big picture: Levine, the assistant secretary for health, made history in March when she became the first openly transgender federal official to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Biden's carbon emissions-cutting pledge faces tough climb

Image from the Rhodium Group study "Pathways to Paris." Courtesy of the Rhodium Group.

The verdict is in: President Biden's U.S. emissions-cutting pledge isn't a fantasy, but the path to meeting it is very difficult and relies on forces outside of White House control.

Driving the news: The Rhodium Group just released an analysis of policy combinations that could close the gap between the current U.S. trajectory and Biden's vow under the Paris Agreement to cut emissions in half by 2030.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Updated 1 hour ago - Economy & Business

Johnson & Johnson pulls the trigger on Texas talc gambit

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

It's official: Johnson & Johnson has invoked a Texas legal loophole in an attempt to protect the bulk of its corporate assets from claims that its baby powder caused ovarian cancer and mesothelioma.

Why it matters: It's the biggest and boldest invocation yet of the so-called Texas two-step defense. But it's still not clear whether it's going to work.

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