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Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

It's Day 39 of the Trump administration, and Press Secretary Sean Spicer has gone from trying to control the stories out of the White House to becoming the story from the White House.

Day 1: He had a rough start, holding a shouting match at the press on his first day on the job in a grey suit. To make it worse, Trump demanded he change his suit to a darker color, as Axios reported.

Then: SNL made Spicer a household name with Melissa McCarthy's impersonation:

Last week: Information leaked from a meeting with some of Spicer's communication officers.

Friday: Spicer held a gaggle with the press, but wouldn't allow several media companies to attend.

Yesterday morning: Politico reported that Spicer was trying to crack down on leakers. He even had a random "phone check" at a meeting with his communications people. That, of course, leaked to the press too.

Today: Axios reported that Spicer personally connected officials with reporters to try to put the NYT's story about contacts with Russia to rest. This included connecting CIA Director Mike Pompeo and Senate Select Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr with reporters from The Washington Post and Wall Street Journal.

Go deeper

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day — U.S. tops 88,000 COVID-19 cases, setting new single-day record.
  2. Politics: States beg for Warp Speed billions.
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases.
  4. 🎧Podcast: The vaccine race turns toward nationalism.

Technical glitch in Facebook's ad tools creates political firestorm

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: SOPA Images / Contributor

Facebook said late Thursday that a mix of "technical problems" and confusion among advertisers around its new political ad ban rules caused issues affecting ad campaigns of both parties.

Why it matters: A report out Thursday morning suggested the ad tools were causing campaign ads, even those that adhered to Facebook's new rules, to be paused. Very quickly, political campaigners began asserting the tech giant was enforcing policies in a way that was biased against their campaigns.

7 hours ago - Health

States beg for Warp Speed billions

A COVID-19 drive-thru testing center yesterday at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. Photo: David Santiago/Miami Herald via AP

Operation Warp Speed has an Achilles' heel: States need billions to distribute vaccines — and many say they don't have the cash.

Why it matters: The first emergency use authorization could come as soon as next month, but vaccines require funding for workers, shipping and handling, and for reserving spaces for vaccination sites.

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