Susan Walsh / AP

The Senate moved unanimously to block President Trump from making appointments during the August break Thursday evening. Democrats had said they'd make such a move after reports emerged that Trump was considering replacing Attorney General Jeff Sessions during the recess.

  • The Senate agreed to hold pro forma sessions throughout the recess. This procedure was also used to block appointments during the Obama administration.
  • Worth noting: the announcement was made by moderate Republican Lisa Murkowski, who split from Trump over health care. The Senate also made a slew of confirmations and passed several measures before shutting down for the summer.
  • Another update: The Senate will not hold any legislative sessions until September. Mitch McConnell had previously intended to delay the break until August 11 to allow the now-stalled health care plan to move forward.

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Axios-SurveyMonkey poll: Harris boosting Biden ticket with key voters

Data: SurveyMonkey poll of 2,847 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 11–12, 2020 with ±3% margin of error; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

Kamala Harris is accomplishing what Joe Biden's campaign hoped she would in her first two days as his running mate — doing no harm, while exciting parts of the base with whom Biden needs the most help.

The big picture: Black women especially, but also Black men, Hispanics and Democrats and independents across the board say they are more likely to vote for Biden with Harris on the ticket, according to a new Axios-SurveyMonkey poll.

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Epic sues Apple over developer tax as Fortnite is pulled from App Store

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Fortnite maker Epic Games on Thursday escalated its battle over Apple's App Store tactics, suing the tech giant over antitrust claims while also baiting Apple into dropping Fortnite from the App Store.

The big picture: Epic is just one of several developers clashing with Apple. They argue the company harms competition by taking a cut of up to 30% on in-app purchases and subscriptions and blocking most developers from getting around the tax by charging their users directly.

Biden calls for 3-month national mask mandate: "Be a patriot"

Joe Biden called on governors to issue a three-month mandatory outdoor mask mandate on Thursday, telling reporters after receiving a coronavirus briefing that experts say it could save over 40,000 lives.

Why it matters: Biden was more aggressive and specific than he has been in previous calls to wear a mask, arguing that it will allow children to return to school sooner, businesses to reopen and help "get our country back on track."