Michael Cohen. Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Never before has a sitting president been hit by so many blistering books, so many times, in a one-month period. 

Why it matters: President Trump's niece and his former fixer paint a devastating portrait of a corrupt, racist, dishonest commander in chief, just two months before the election. Michael Schmidt, a top N.Y. Times investigative reporter, begins with a quote from "King Lear" in his new book reporting that Trump's Russia ties have never been fully investigated.

What's next: Bob Woodward, armed with a reported 17 interviews with Trump himself, will be out Sept. 15 with "Rage," which Trump is already attacking.

The latest: Michael Cohen — the longtime fixer who used to instantly put reporters on the phone with Trump — writes in "Disloyal," out Tuesday, that Trump admired Vladimir Putin because he "had the balls to take over an entire nation and run it like it was his personal company."

  • "I will never get the Hispanic vote,” Cohen quotes Trump as saying, per AP, which obtained an early copy. "Like the blacks, they’re too stupid to vote for Trump. They’re not my people."

The White House calls the book "fan fiction," saying in a statement that Cohen "readily admits to lying routinely but expects people to believe him now so that he can make money from book sales."

  • "It’s unfortunate that the media is exploiting this sad and desperate man to attack President Trump."

Go deeper

The apocalypse scenario

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Democratic lawyers are preparing to challenge any effort by President Trump to swap electors chosen by voters with electors selected by Republican-controlled legislatures. One state of particular concern: Pennsylvania, where the GOP controls the state house.

Why it matters: Trump's refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power, together with a widely circulated article in The Atlantic about how bad the worst-case scenarios could get, is drawing new attention to the brutal fights that could jeopardize a final outcome.

Sanders: "This is an election between Donald Trump and democracy"

Photo: BernieSanders.com

In an urgent appeal on Thursday, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said President Trump presented "unique threats to our democracy" and detailed a plan to ensure the election results will be honored and that voters can cast their ballots safely.

Driving the news: When asked yesterday whether he would commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses, Trump would not, and said: "We're going to have to see what happens."

America on edge as unrest rises

Louisville on Wednesday. Photo: Jon Cherry/Getty Images

Rarely have national security officials, governors, tech CEOs and activists agreed as broadly and fervently as they do about the possibility of historic civil unrest in America.

Why it matters: The ingredients are clear for all to see — epic fights over racism, abortion, elections, the virus and policing, stirred by misinformation and calls to action on social media, at a time of stress over the pandemic.

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