Susan Walsh / AP

Senate Democrats are prepared to block any Trump Supreme Court nominee.

Sen. Jeff Merkley told Politico on Monday that he will filibuster any pick that is not Merrick Garland, and that the vast majority of his caucus will oppose any nomination.

This is a stolen seat. This is the first time a Senate majority has stolen a seat ... We will use every lever in our power to stop this.

Why this matters: Mitch McConnell has said he wants to confirm a SCOTUS nominee without invoking the nuclear option, which would allow Republicans to push a nominee through with 51 votes. If Democrats won't cooperate, he'll be forced to decide between setting precedent and allowing Democrats to deny Trump a SCOTUS nominee.

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Updated 16 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 18,340,451 — Total deaths: 695,318 — Total recoveries — 10,946,462Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 4,727,879 — Total deaths: 155,814 — Total recoveries: 1,513,446 — Total tests: 57,543,852Map.
  3. States: New York City health commissioner resigns in protest of De Blasio's coronavirus response.
  4. Public health: 40% of Americans continue to put off medical care.
  5. Politics: Trump tells "Axios on HBO" that pandemic is "under control," despite surges in infections and uptick in deaths.
  6. Business: Low-income households are struggling to pay energy bills — Construction spending falls for 4th straight month.

Trump's new TikTok threat

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump said twice Monday that the U.S. Treasury would need to get a portion of the sale price of TikTok, as a condition of regulatory approval.

Why it matters: This is akin to extortion — the sort of thing you'd expect to hear on a wiretap, not from the White House in front of reporters.

Ford names James Farley as new CEO amid ongoing turnaround effort

James Hackett, left, is retiring as Ford CEO. Jim Farley, right, takes over Oct. 1. Photo: Ford

Ford announced Tuesday that James Farley will take over as its next CEO, replacing James Hackett, 65, who is retiring after three years in the job.

Why it matters: It leaves Farley to complete the company's ongoing turnaround effort. The transition will be that much harder as the industry tries to navigate the coronavirus-induced economic slowdown which shuttered Ford plants for two months on the eve of some of its most important vehicle launches.