Susan Walsh / AP

There'll be no pivots, no moderation of any sort so long as Steve Bannon remains in President Trump's White House. That's the message Trump's chief strategist delivered Thursday in a rare public appearance at CPAC alongside chief of staff Reince Priebus.

What we learned: Bannon has softened not one bit since entering the White House. If anything he's more committed to economic nationalism, more hostile to the media, and more determined to protect the President from moderating forces in the Republican Party.

The most important things Bannon said:

  • On priorities: He divides the Administration's priorities into three lines of work (all have a populist nationalist bent): 1. "National security and sovereignty"; 2. "Economic nationalism"; 3. "Deconstruction of the administrative state."
  • On trade: "One of the most pivotal moments in modern American history was his immediate withdrawal from TPP [the Trans-Pacific Partnership)."
  • On the media: He framed the "corporatist globalist media" as hostile to the national interest (the same framing Trump is using.)
  • His most extraordinary quote: "If you think they're [the media] going to give you your country back without a fight you are sadly mistaken."

Why this matters: Republican leaders hope the harsh realities of governing force Trump closer to establishment positions on trade and immigration. They also wish he'd tone down his attacks on the media. Bannon is the guy telling Trump that he can — and must — remain the same guy inside the White House as he was on the campaign trail.

Moderation inside the Trump White House? So long as Bannon's there, don't bet on it.

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Jeff Sessions loses Alabama Senate primary runoff

Jeff Sessions. Photo: Michael DeMocker/Getty Images

Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions has lost the Republican nomination for Senate to Tommy Tuberville in Alabama in Tuesday night’s primary runoff, AP reports.

Why it matters: Sessions had been the underdog in the race against former Auburn University head football coach Tommy Tuberville, who had the backing of President Trump. Tuberville will now face off against Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.) in November, who is considered to have one of the most vulnerable Democratic Senate seats in the country.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 13,273,537 — Total deaths: 577,006 — Total recoveries — 7,367,106Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 3,424,304 — Total deaths: 136,432 — Total recoveries: 1,049,098 — Total tested: 41,764,557Map.
  3. Politics: Biden welcomes Trump wearing mask in public but warns "it’s not enough"
  4. Public health: Four former CDC heads say Trump's undermining of agency puts lives at risk — CDC director: U.S. could get coronavirus "under control" in 4–8 weeks if all wear masks.

Bank CEOs brace for worsening economic scenario

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon. Photo: J. Lawler Duggan/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Wells Fargo swung to its first loss since the financial crisis — while JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup reported significantly lower profits from a year earlier — as the banks set aside billions of dollars more in the second quarter for loans that may go bad.

Why it matters: The cumulative $28 billion in loan loss provisions that banks have so far announced they’re reserving serves as a signal they’re preparing for a colossal wave of loan defaults as the economy slogs through a coronavirus-driven downturn.