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Photos: Getty Images

President Trump's pivot on China has some of his most loyal supporters spooked.

Why it matters: Several people outside the White House who have Trump's ear — FOX Business Network's Lou Dobbs and Fox News' Laura Ingraham — are publicly dissenting. And, internally, trade hardliners Peter Navarro and Robert Lighthizer are concerned about a Mnuchin-led deal that could give up on nailing China for its nefarious industrial practices.

The backdrop...

  • In March, the Commerce Department banned American companies from selling parts to ZTE for seven years because the Chinese phone maker violated American sanctions by selling equipment with American parts to Iran and North Korea. The sanctions strangled ZTE and prompted the firm to halt operations.
  • But Trump tweeted Sunday that he's working with Chinese President Xi Jinping to save Chinese telecom giant ZTE, saying "too many jobs in China lost."

What they're saying...

  • Lou Dobbs: "China wins If U.S. Globalists prevail in this so-called 'bargain' with ZTE: China will simultaneously gut WH trade initiatives and Trump Iran doctrine."
  • Laura Ingraham:
    • "Hold the line, Mr. President. Also know you’re under huge pressure from biz interests who say you’re being too hard on China & NoKo deal to balance ... China has a plan to dominate the world in every major facet of innovation and manufacturing. An overly conciliatory approach merely facilitates China’s 'Made in 2025' plan."
    • "Big global interests at home & abroad want the ban on @ZTEDevice Chinese telecom giant lifted--this would be calamitous for U.S. long-term interests. When @GoldmanSachs is happy abt a @realDonaldTrump move on China, Americans shd be worried."
  • DRUDGE headline: "Trump Vows to Protect ZTE Jobs -- in China?"

And a rare clarification from the White House on Trump's tweet, via deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters:

"The President’s tweet underscores the importance of a free, fair, balanced, and mutually beneficial economic, trade and investment relationship between the United States and China. The administration is in contact with China on this issue, among others in the bilateral relationship. President Trump expects Secretary Ross to exercise his independent judgment, consistent with applicable laws and regulations, to resolve the regulatory action involving ZTE based on its facts."

Go deeper: Trump's grand bargain on China ... Top White House officials feud over China

Go deeper

Updated 51 mins ago - Technology

Mayors see cryptocurrency as a way to address income inequality

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

At the U.S. Conference of Mayors' meeting in D.C. this week, there's buzz around the idea of giving cryptocurrency accounts to low-income people.

Why it matters: Cities have been experimenting with newfangled ways to address income inequality — like guaranteed income programs — and the latest wave of trials could involve paying benefits or dividends in bitcoin, stablecoin or other digital currencies.

Updated 53 mins 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" — Fauci: "Confident" Omicron cases will peak in February
  2. Vaccines: 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" on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: 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
Updated 3 hours ago - Sports

Experts predict major boom for North American sports stadiums

Rendering of the $375 million Moody Center on the UT-Austin campus. Photo courtesy of Moody Center

Stadium and arena construction in North America will total a relatively tame $5.8 billion this year, a 12% decrease from 2021.

The big picture: What the industry lacks in construction it expects to make up for in design, with experts predicting a sports venue boom over the next half-decade, SBJ reports.