Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with the Axios AM and PM newsletters. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to the Axios Closer newsletter for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios Pro Rata

Dive into the world of dealmakers across VC, PE and M&A with Axios Pro Rata. Delivered daily to your inbox by Dan Primack and Kia Kokalitcheva.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with the Axios Sports newsletter. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Des Moines newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Tampa Bay newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Austin news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Austin newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Atlanta news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Atlanta newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Philadelphia news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Philadelphia newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Chicago news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Chicago newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top DC news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios DC newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo: Jennifer S. Altman/for The Washington Post via Getty Images

Attorney Michael Avenatti was at one point considered to be a rising Democratic star — one who was even contemplating a 2020 run after positioning himself as a champion of women’s rights and an outspoken foil to President Trump.

What's new: Avenatti is being sued for at least $9.5 million by a former client — a man who is paralyzed and claims the attorney siphoned $4 million from a settlement he had won. The claims underlying the suit are tied up in a federal prosecutors’ criminal case against Avenatti, over various matters in California and New York.

Timeline:

March–August 2018: Avenatti becomes a household name, dominating cable news shows to relentlessly taunt the president.

  • He files three lawsuits on behalf of Stephanie Clifford, "Stormy" Daniels: One seeks to nullify a nondisclosure agreement Daniels signed in 2016 prohibiting her from discussing an affair she had with Trump; one claims that former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen conspired with the president to keep her quiet; and the last accuses Trump of defaming Daniels on Twitter. 
  • He also seeks to position himself as the face of Democrats' opposition to Trump, giving fiery speeches in Democratic circles that often attract presidential hopefuls.

October 2018: Avenatti faces backlash after filing what many believe is a falsified sexual misconduct claim on behalf of a client against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Democrats say he hurts their case against Kavanaugh, while Senate Judiciary chair Chuck Grassley refer him and his client to the Justice Department for criminal investigation.

  • He is also scrutinized for telling Time magazine in an interview that the 2020 Democratic nominee "better be a white male." He says only a white man can be taken seriously.

November 2018: Avenatti is arrested in Los Angeles on suspicion of domestic violence, dealing the most significant blow yet to his political ambitions. After news breaks of his arrest, the Vermont Democratic Party cancels two events at which he was the featured speaker. Avenatti denies any wrongdoing. Next February, prosecutors will conclude that he won't face criminal charges for this.

December 2018: Avenatti announces on Twitter that he will not be running for president in 2020.

February 2019: Avenatti agrees to give up control of his longtime law firm after a former partner accuses him of "hiding millions of dollars from the court that oversaw its bankruptcy," the Los Angeles Times reports.

March 2019: Daniels says she has retained another attorney and she and Avenatti are parting ways, USA Today reports.

  • Federal prosecutors in New York later announce Avenatti is being charged for attempting to extort $20 million from Nike. Prosecutors in California also charge him with wire and bank fraud.

April 2019: Federal prosecutors in California announce 36 charges against Avenatti for fraud, perjury, tax evasion, embezzlement and other financial crimes. Per the L.A. Times, Avenatti would face a maximum sentence of 335 years in prison if convicted on all 36 counts — not including his cases in New York and Los Angeles.

  • Avenatti pleaded not guilty in California on April 30 to charges he stole millions of dollars from clients who were awarded settlements, per ABC News.

May 2019: Avenatti pleaded not guilty before a federal judge in New York on Tuesday, May 28 to charges of wire fraud and aggregated identity theft involving his former client Stephanie Clifford, "Stormy Daniels."

  • He also pleaded "100% not guilty!" on Tuesday to charges that he extorted Nike.

June 2019: Avenatti is being sued by a former client — a man who is paralyzed and claims the attorney siphoned $4 million from a settlement he had won, reports Reuters.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 3 hours ago - Science

This powerful new accelerator looks for keys to the center of atoms

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Nuclear physicists trying to piece together how atoms are built are about to get a powerful new tool.

Why it matters: When the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams begins experiments later this spring, physicists from around the world will use the particle accelerator to better understand the inner workings of atoms that make up all the matter that can be seen in the universe.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: FDA OKs antiviral drug remdesivir for non-hospitalized COVID patients — Walensky: CDC language "pivoting" on "fully vaccinated" — Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Teens and adults missed 37 million vaccinations during COVID — Team USA 100% vaccinated against COVID ahead of Beijing Olympics — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America — Annual COVID vaccine preferable to boosters, says Pfizer CEO.
  3. Politics: Arizona governor sues Biden administration over COVID funds tied to mandates — Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults — Beijing officials urge COVID-19 "emergency mode" before Winter Olympics.
  5. Variant tracker