Andrew Harnik/AP

The Senate Finance Committee has approved Tom Price's nomination for Health and Human Services secretary, as well as Steven Mnuchin's nomination for Treasury secretary, after suspending the rules to be able to vote with no Democrats present. Senate Finance Committee chairman Orrin Hatch told reporters that "the parliamentarian told us this is what we have to do," and said all committee members were notified in advance.

Democrats boycotted the vote because they say they still want Price to answer questions about his stock trades, since they believe he hasn't been straight with them about his purchases in Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian biotech firm.

In a statement, Sen. Ron Wyden, the top Democrat on the committee, said it was "deeply troubling to me that Republicans on the Finance Committee chose to break the rules in the face of strong evidence of two nominees' serious ethical problems."

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8 hours ago - Health

Fauci says if people won't wear masks, maybe it should be mandated

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Graeme Jennings- Pool/Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN on Friday evening that if "people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it."

Why it matters: Fauci made the comments the same day the U.S. hit its highest daily COVID-19 case count since the pandemic began.

Harris to Black voters: Casting a ballot is about honoring your ancestors

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris speaks at a "Get Out The Vote" rally at Morehouse College. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris appealed to Black voters in Georgia on Friday, urging them to "honor the ancestors" by casting ballots, and again calling President Trump a "racist."

Why it matters: The U.S. saw a significant decline in African-American voter turnout between 2012 and 2016, reaching its lowest point since 2000. Higher turnout among Black Americans this year could tip the balance in favor of Democrats in key battleground states, including Georgia.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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