Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed to lawmakers on Friday that President Trump will invoke an emergency provision allowing him to bypass Congress to sell nearly $8 billion worth of weapons that would benefit Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, reports the Washington Post.

Why it matters: The "rare" move to declare an emergency in an effort to push through 22 arms deals is troubling to both Republican and Democratic lawmakers who are concerned that the White House is tipping the system of checks and balances, per the Post. Some fear that selling weapons to Gulf nations could fan the flames of tension between the U.S. and Iran, per the New York Times.

The context:

  • The U.S. has previously sold weapons to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. What worries lawmakers is the use of these weapons against civilians in Yemen, per the New York Times.
  • Both the House and Senate passed a resolution to cut off American support for Saudi Arabia in Yemen, but Trump vetoed the legislation.
  • Saudi Arabia has been using American-made weapons against Iranian-backed groups in the Yemeni Civil War.

What they're saying: The Senate Foreign Relations Committee ranking member Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) has been blocking the sale of weapons and released a statement saying Trump is ignoring long-term U.S. security interests and "granting favors to authoritarian countries like Saudi Arabia," per the Washington Post.

Go deeper: Why the U.S. got (and stayed) involved in Yemen's brutal war

Go deeper

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Data: Compiled from state health departments by Axios; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

At least 15 states broke their single-day novel coronavirus infection records this week, according to state health department data reviewed by Axios.

The big picture: The number of coronavirus cases increased in the vast majority of states over the last week, and decreased in only two states plus the District of Columbia, Axios' Andrew Withershoop and Caitlin Owens report.

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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In photos: America celebrates July 4 during global pandemic

Photo: Francine Orr/Los Angeles Times/Getty Images

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The state of play: Axios' Stef Kight writes public parades and fireworks displays around much of the country are being canceled to prevent mass gatherings where the virus could spread. Hot-dog contests and concerts will play to empty stands and virtual audiences — all while American pride treads an all-time low.