May 15, 2017

Senate Dems want special prosecutor before FBI Director

Carolyn Kaster / AP

Richard Blumenthal, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Monday he believes an independent special prosecutor should be appointed to the Trump-Russia probe before a vote is held on the next FBI Director.

Join the club: Blumenthal joins Senate Intel Committee Vice Chairman Mark Warner, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Minority Whip Dick Durbin, Kirsten Gillibrand and Dianne Feinstein.

Democrats aren't agreeing on who should appoint the special prosecutor — Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would normally be responsible for appointing one, but role he played James Comey's firing has raised red flags for some Dems.

  • Blumenthal followed up by tweeting "if Deputy AG won't step up, I'll introduce a bill" to start the process, indicating he thinks the ball is in Rosenstein's court.
  • But Schumer said last week that Rosenstein should not appoint the special prosecutor.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 1,502,618 — Total deaths: 89,915 — Total recoveries: 339,775Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 432,554 — Total deaths: 14,829 — Total recoveries: 24,213Map.
  3. Business: The Fed will lend up to $2.3 trillion. — Another 6.6 million jobless claims were filed last week
  4. Federal government latest: Congress' $250 billion PPP injection could come too late for some businesses.
  5. Public health latest: Anthony Fauci said social distancing could reduce the death toll to 60,000.
  6. Poll: 1 in 10 Americans believe the economy will never return to normal.
  7. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers 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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Fed will lend up to $2.3 trillion amid coronavirus crisis

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell at a press conference in March. Photo: Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images

The Federal Reserve announced Thursday that it will support the coronavirus-hit economy with up to $2.3 trillion in loans to businesses, state and city governments — made possible in part by Treasury funds set aside in the government stimulus package.

Why it matters: The Fed has taken more action amid the coronavirus outbreak than it has in any other financial crisis in U.S. history in an effort to blunt the effects of the resulting economic shutdown.

DetailsArrowUpdated 17 mins ago - Economy & Business

Senate Democrats block Republicans' $250 billion PPP injection

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Before the Paycheck Protection Program formally launched last Friday, we knew two things: The rollout would be rocky, and the initial $250 billion wouldn't be enough for America's small businesses.

The state of play: Banks and government officials have been working to smooth out the process. On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's attempt to pump another $250 billion into the program via unanimous consent was blocked by Democrats, who are proposing an alternative that includes billions more for hospitals and states.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 19 mins ago - Economy & Business