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Left: Trump in Charlotte (Sean Rayford/Getty Images). Right: Obama in Vegas (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

President Trump and President Obama have gleefully turned Tuesday's midterms into a proxy fight over their legacies, while President Clinton is sidelined during a season when he had dreamed of being back in the spotlight.

Both presidents are on sprints: Trump is hitting 11 rallies in eight states in six days. Obama will hit Illinois and Indiana tomorrow, after stops yesterday in Florida and Georgia.

Trump and Obama, each a human turnout machine for their parties, have poured on the multi-stop days, and clearly relish trolling each other across the battlegrounds:

  • Trump: "I heard President Obama speak today. I had to listen. I was in the plane. I had nothing else to do."
  • Obama: "Everything I say, you can look up on the internet. ... Here's your chance to vote for people who actually know what the internet is."
  • Trump: "I listened to President Obama today. He had a very small crowd, I have to be honest. They don’t tell you that. Y'know, they don't tell you that."
  • Obama: "Right now, Republicans are all: 'Look, the economy is so good.' Where do you think that started? When did that start?”

The N.Y. Times' Peter Baker writes that Obama looks energized as he violates the tradition of his predecessors, who have rarely directly attacked their predecessors:

  • "Obama’s voice has a way of lifting into a high-pitched tone of astonishment when he talks about his successor, almost as if he still cannot believe that the Executive Mansion he occupied for eight years is now the home of President Trump."

Trump has stuck to the friendly contours of Trump country, mostly traveling to "counties that are whiter, less educated and have lower incomes than the rest of the United States, according to Census Bureau data," per AP's Josh Boak:

  • "[H]e’s primarily been jet-setting to smaller places such as Elko, Nevada (population 20,078). Or, Mosinee, Wisconsin (population 4,023). Or, Belgrade, Montana (population 7,874)."
  • "Since March, Trump has crisscrossed the country like a salesman with a set territory. The majority of his trips have been to just nine states. They are Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Indiana, West Virginia and Nevada. Trump won eight of those states in 2016, but not Nevada."

And then there's President Clinton. "No One Wants to Campaign With Bill Clinton Anymore," the N.Y. Times' Lisa Lerer writes under a nostalgic Little Rock dateline:

  • "There are no plans for him ... to appear publicly with any Democrat running in the midterm elections."
  • "Younger and more liberal voters find little appeal in Mr. Clinton’s reputation for ideological centrism on issues like financial regulation and crime."

Be smart: Guess who's enjoying the show. Rhymes with George W. Bush.

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Go deeper

Fed signals it could yank economic support quicker as inflation sticks around

Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell testifies during a hearing before Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee today. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Federal Reserve will consider pulling back economic support sooner "as the threat of persistently high inflation has grown," chair Jerome Powell said during a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

Why it matters: This is the biggest signal yet the Fed is backing away from its stance that soaring prices would be fleeting — a change that could shift its policies that underpin the economy.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Updated 3 hours ago - Economy & Business

Crypto meets the real world

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

The two largest countries in the world seem intent on effectively banning their citizens from participating in crypto, which poses a serious threat to the crypto agenda.

Why it matters: The crypto world is global — but the real world is fragmented into nation-states, each of which claims control of what happens within its borders.

Meadows cooperating with House Jan. 6 select committee

Mark Meadows. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is cooperating with the House select committee in charge of investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, the panel said Tuesday.

Driving the news: Meadows, who failed to appear before the panel earlier this month, is believed to have insight into former President Trump's role in efforts to stop the certification of President Biden's election win.

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