Axios

Sean Spicer's past as the White House Easter Bunny is well-known enough to have been parodied on Saturday Night Live this weekend. He visited his old stomping grounds at the White House Easter Egg Roll earlier this morning, but he headed back to the podium for his first briefing of the week, taking questions on North Korea, China, and transparency.

  • On North Korea: "Drawing red lines hasn't really worked in the past."
  • On China: "They haven't been manipulating their currency since he's been in office. That's a fact."
  • On Trump's tax returns: Spicer said Trump won't release his 2016 taxes due to an ongoing audit, and won't ask the IRS to confirm the audit is ongoing. So, will he ever release his tax returns? "We'll have to get back to you on that."
  • On White House visitor logs: Spicer said the WH would follow "the policy that has existed since the beginning of time," blasting the Obama admin's policy of turning over the logs with some names redacted as "a faux attempt" to be transparent.

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Pelosi "absolutely" would skip August recess to reach coronavirus stimulus deal

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told CNN on Tuesday she would "absolutely" be willing to forego the House's August recess to reach a deal for another relief package to help the country battle the health and economic crises caused by the coronavirus.

The big picture: Pelosi indicated the package would earmark money for coronavirus testing and contact tracing, as well as assistance for state and local governments whose budgets are in dire financial straits due to revenue shortfalls caused by the recession.

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The U.K. was the most-prepared country for a pandemic — until it wasn't

Photo: Julian Simmonds/WPA Pool/Getty Images

One country was easily the best-prepared in the world to respond quickly to and mitigate the spread of an epidemic, according to the 2019 Global Health Security Index: Great Britain.

Reality check: When the coronavirus struck, the U.K. had arguably one of the least effective responses among rich countries, despite decades of preparation for just such an event. Its death toll ranks behind only the U.S. and Brazil.

Competitors ready to pounce on TikTok bans

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Growing security and privacy concerns over Chinese-owned short-video app TikTok have given a lift to alternatives like Byte and Dubsmash, which have seen spikes in downloads from smartphone users recently, according to data from SensorTower.

Why it matters: If TikTok's meteoric rise in popularity among U.S. youth gets slowed by rising tensions with China, or ended by a threatened ban by the Trump administration, American teens will still have to get their hits of meme-laden video somewhere.