Trump hosts the Super Bowl champion Patriots at the White House. Photo: Andrew Harnik / AP

The Sunday morning conversation surrounding President Trump's criticism of football protesters and basketball stars.

  • NFL's Joe Lockhart tweets: "Tens of millions of Americans, and fans around the world, will come together today to celebrate our great game and our great country."
  • The Atlantic's Ron Brownstein, on CNN: Trump "has appealed, from the beginning, to the elements of white America that are most uneasy about racial and demographic change."
  • NYT "Sports of the Times" columnist Michael Powell, "As Trump Takes On Athletes, Watch Them Rise": "Just as the president lays his hand on the third rail of race, the athletes are responding. ... What's notable is how measured the athletes have tried to remain, until poked and prodded."
  • "NFL owners speak out in support of players, against Trump," by AP: "The Buffalo Bills were bothered enough ... to hold a voluntary team meeting ... with players, coaches, staff and ownership. ... At least seven team owners donated $1 million each to Trump's inaugural committee."
  • NBA Commissioner Adam Silver statement: "I am proud of our players for taking an active role in their communities and continuing to speak out on critically important issues."
  • National Review deputy managing editor Nicholas Frankovich: "[W]hile peevishness and carping are effete, magnanimity is manly and disarming. Manliness is a much derided concept these days ... Some men aspire to it but bluster, miss the mark, and end up being catty instead. It's called Twitter. In contrast, competition on the court can still be uplifting."
  • BBC headline: "NFL row ... Sports stars round on Trump."

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 12,528,449 — Total deaths: 560,921 — Total recoveries — 6,907,072Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 3,187,270 — Total deaths: 134,117 — Total recoveries: 983,185 — Total tested: 38,856,341Map.
  3. Public health: We're losing the war on the coronavirusThe reality of the coronavirus bites.
  4. Business: Trump says he's no longer considering phase-two trade deal with China because the pandemic damaged the two countries' relationship — How the coronavirus pandemic boosted alternative meat.
  5. 🎧 Podcast: Rural America has its own coronavirus problem.

Romney calls Stone commutation "historic corruption"

Sen. Mitt Romney. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Saturday tweeted a scathing response to President Trump's Friday night commutation of former associate Roger Stone's prison sentence, calling the move "[u]nprecedented, historic corruption."

Why it matters: Romney has emerged as the party's most prominent Trump critic. He sent shockwaves through Washington after announcing he would vote to convict Trump in the impeachment trial — becoming the only Senate Republican to break ranks and vote for the president's removal from office. Now he is the first major GOP lawmaker to condemn Trump's Friday night call regarding Stone.

5 hours ago - Health

We're losing the war on the coronavirus

Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

By any standard, no matter how you look at it, the U.S. is losing its war against the coronavirus.

Why it matters: The pandemic is not an abstraction, and it is not something that’s simmering in the background. It is an ongoing emergency ravaging nearly the entire country, with a loss of life equivalent to a Sept. 11 every three days — for four months and counting.