Photo: Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday decided to take up the Trump administration's bid to close a lawsuit filed by three foreign-born men who say they the FBI put them on the federal government's no-fly list for refusing to serve as informants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: The justices will hear the administration's appeal of a lower court ruling from 2018 that allowed the Muslim men, each of whom is a U.S. citizens or permanent resident born abroad, to sue under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. They are seeking monetary damages, arguing they were put on the no-fly list without evidence that they threatened the airline or safety of passengers.

  • The 1993 federal religious freedom law says the U.S. government cannot “substantially burden” any person's exercise of religion without demonstrating "compelling governmental interest."
  • The men have not been removed from the list that bans them from air travel.
  • Arguments are expected for March, AP notes.

Go deeper: What's at stake as the Supreme Court takes up immigration

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Chris Christie: Wear a mask "or you may regret it — as I did" — Senate Democrats block vote on McConnell's targeted relief bill.
  2. Business: New state unemployment filings fall.
  3. Economy: Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet).
  4. Health: FDA approves Gilead's remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment How the pandemic might endMany U.S. deaths were avoidable.
  5. Education: Boston and Chicago send students back home for online learning.
  6. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

Early voting eclipses 2016 total with 12 days until election

People stand in line to vote early in Fairfax, Virginia in September. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Americans have cast more than 47.1 million ballots in the 2020 presidential election, surpassing the total early-vote count for 2016 with 12 days left until Election Day, according to a Washington Post analysis of voting data.

Why it matters: The election is already underway, as many states have expanded early and mail-in voting options because of the coronavirus pandemic.

What to expect from the final debate of the 2020 election

Trump and Biden at the first debate. Morry Gash-Pool/Getty Image

Watch for President Trump to address Joe Biden as “the big guy” or “the chairman” at tonight's debate as a way of dramatizing the Hunter Biden emails. Hunter's former business partner Tony Bobulinski is expected to be a Trump debate guest.

The big picture: Trump's advisers universally view the first debate as a catastrophe — evidenced by a sharp plunge in Trump’s public and (more convincingly for them) private polling immediately following the debate.

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