Carolyn Kaster / AP

Trump on Comey: "infuriated" ... "white hot" ... "enraged ... fuming about Russia" ... "impatient with what he viewed as his sanctimony" ... "There was 'something wrong with' Mr. Comey, he told aides."

Blows massive hole in White House account — WashPost's Philip Rucker, Ashley Parker, Sari Horwitz and Robert Costa: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein "threatened to resign after the narrative emerging from the White House on Tuesday evening cast him as a prime mover of the decision to fire Comey and that the president acted only on his recommendation."

Wall Street Journal's Shane Harris and Carol Lee: "Comey started receiving daily instead of weekly updates on the investigation, beginning at least three weeks ago ... Comey was concerned by information showing possible evidence of collusion."

WashPost: "Within the Justice Department and the FBI, the firing of Comey has left raw anger, and some fear ... Trump had 'essentially declared war on a lot of people at the FBI' one official said. 'I think there will be a concerted effort to respond over time in kind.'"

Key Republicans agree the firing intensified the investigations ... From an L.A. Times analysis, "By firing Comey, Trump may have fanned the flames he hoped to control," by David Lauter:

"In an email lament circulated among prominent Republicans, A.B. Culvahouse Jr., former Reagan White House counsel and head of Trump's vice presidential search effort, said the firing 'both prolongs the FBI/DOJ investigation and undermines the credibility of the Trump campaign's denials of no conspiracy with Putin.' 'We could be talking about Russian hacking in the mid-terms at this rate.'"

N.Y. Times' Matthew Rosenberg and Matt Apuzzo: "Comey's firing appears to have imbued the Senate Intelligence Committee with a renewed sense of urgency."

Go deeper

Apple's antitrust fight turns Epic

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Millions of angry gamers may soon join the chorus of voices calling for an antitrust crackdown on Apple, as the iPhone giant faces a new lawsuit and PR blitz from Epic Games, maker of mega-hit Fortnite.

Why it matters: Apple is one of several Big Tech firms accused of violating the spirit, if not the letter, of antitrust law. A high-profile lawsuit could become a roadmap for either building a case against tech titans under existing antitrust laws or writing new ones better suited to the digital economy.

Survey: Fears grow about Social Security’s future

Data: AARP survey of 1,441 U.S. adults conducted July 14–27, 2020 a ±3.4% margin of error at the 95% confidence level; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

Younger Americans are increasingly concerned that Social Security won't be enough to wholly fall back on once they retire, according to a survey conducted by AARP — in honor of today's 85th anniversary of the program — given first to Axios.

Why it matters: Young people's concerns about financial insecurity once they're on a restricted income are rising — and that generation is worried the program, which currently pays out to 65 million beneficiaries, won't be enough to sustain them.

Axios-SurveyMonkey poll: Doubts over fair election results

SurveyMonkey poll of 2,847 U.S. adults conducted Aug. 11–12, 2020 with ±3% margin of error; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

One in four Americans is worried their ballot won't be accurately counted this year, and four in 10 worry mail-in voting could yield less reliable results, according to a new Axios-SurveyMonkey poll.

The big picture: Partisan identification is a massive driver of distrust in both categories — and the stakes are huge this year.