Apr 19, 2017

Sessions hints DOJ will keep fighting Obamacare subsidy case

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals

(Alex Brandon / AP)

Attorney General Jeff Sessions suggested the administration will keep appealing the House lawsuit on the legality of Obamacare insurer subsides in an interview on Fox News on Wednesday.

When asked by an interviewer whether he would "continue to allow the legal process to continue for another judge to take a look at this case," or whether he'll take a "step back from it," Sessions chose the former. "The legal process will continue," he said, indicating the administration will continue to challenge a district court ruling saying the payments are illegal.

Why this matters: The subsidies have become a huge issue as insurers make decisions about the 2018 enrollment period. This doesn't give them much new certainty about what will happen long-term, but it seems to suggest the payments will at least continue while the appeal plays out.

Go deeper

Secret Service blocks off area surrounding White House after protests

Trump walks through an area recently cleared of protesters before arriving at St. John's Church. Photo: Brendan SmialoskiI/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. Secret Service has closed the streets immediately on all four sides of the White House, with an agent telling Axios they'll remain closed "probably until the riots become peaceful, or stop."

Why it matters: Protesters near the White House were aggressively dispersed with tear gas and shields last night, before President Trump walked across Lafayette Park to St. John's Church. This decision will presumably force any protests to take place farther from the White House.

Updated 32 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 6,299,759 — Total deaths: 376,177 — Total recoveries — 2,714,972Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 1,811,277 — Total deaths: 105,147 — Total recoveries: 458,231 — Total tested: 17,340,682Map.
  3. Public health: Protests against police brutality threaten coronavirus response.
  4. Business: Coronavirus could lower GDP by $15.7 trillion — More than 1 in 6 black workers lost jobs between February and April.
  5. Federal government: Trump lashes out at governors, calls for National Guard to "dominate" streets.
  6. Media: Interest in the George Floyd protests has soared past the coronavirus

More than 1 in 6 black workers lost jobs between February and April

Adapted from EPI analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

As is often the case, the staggering job losses in the coronavirus-driven recession have been worse for black workers.

By the numbers: According to a report from the Economic Policy Institute, titled "Racism and economic inequality have predisposed black workers to be most hurt by coronavirus pandemic," more than 1 in 6 black workers lost their jobs between February and April.