Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. 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 Axios Closer 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!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

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 Axios Sports. 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 Axios Des Moines

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 Axios Tampa Bay

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!

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!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

AP / Evan Vucci

President Trump is seriously considering withdrawing from the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS), sources familiar with the matter tell Axios.

Administration sources have cautioned that no final decision has been made, but the leaking of these deliberations has startled many in the U.S. business and pro-trade communities, who were under the impression that KORUS withdrawal was not in the cards for 2017.Why this matters: More than $100 billion of annual trade between U.S. and Korea in goods — and billions more in services — hangs in the balance as Trump weighs this decision. Withdrawing from the trade deal would also damage relations between the U.S. and a key ally in Asia at the same moment the North Korean threat is escalating to historic proportions.Questions the business and pro-trade communities are asking today:Is this a legitimate threat or is Trump trying to play the Koreans and the U.S. business community (to convince the Koreans to take seriously that he wants major changes to the deal)? It's one thing for the president to get mad at the first round of trade negotiations with Korea and order an official to draft up a withdrawal notice. It's another thing to go through with it.The legal questions: What is Congress going to do if Trump follows through with this threat?The economic issue: What will happen to billions of dollars of annual trade, including deals, contracts, and business investments made months ago under the assumption that the current trading conditions between the countries are relatively stable?How this story broke out:On Friday night, Inside U.S. Trade published a story headlined "Sources: U.S. could begin process of withdrawing from KORUS next week." The Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal followed up with similar stories today.A senior administration official told Axios: "As you know, the joint committee met last month after Amb. Lighthizer called a special session. Discussions are ongoing but we have no announcements at this time."Important backstory:In the spring, USTR and White House officials quietly reassured the business community that despite certain pronouncements during the campaign, KORUS was on nobody's radar screen. They had bigger fish to fry with the North American Free Trade Agreement, and withdrawing from KORUS was not on the table.Then, in late June, Trump said during a joint press conference with the South Korean president: "We are renegotiating a trade deal right now as we speak with South Korea and hopefully it will be an equitable deal..." The business community scrambled.USTR initiated a dialogue with the Koreans, which is allowed under the agreement. It's intended for relatively minor tweaks to the deal.We're told the first set of U.S.-Korea meetings, in the summer, didn't go well. The USTR apparently lectured the Koreans about the trade imbalance, and the Koreans had no idea what to say in response to these attacks.The conventional wisdom that emerged from the first round of meetings was that they'd figure out a few things to tweak but that nothing drastic would happen this year.A potentially major problem for Trump: There's now a legal debate raging — which came up in the NAFTA discussions, but is equally relevant for KORUS — about whether Trump has the authority to withdraw from these trade deals without getting Congress's approval. The laws governing these processes are a mess and have never been rigorously tested.What happens, law professors and other experts are asking, when you have a president withdrawing from an agreement that Congress approved?Congress has the constitutional Commerce power and Trump doesn't have the power to terminate the underlying law.Would Congress sue the president? Would business groups or importers do so?Nobody has ever resolved these blatant issues; and few bothered looking at it because the president was always thought to be the most free trade guy in the room.

Go deeper

The biggest headline from Biden's town hall

President Biden greets attendees during a commercial break in Baltimore last night. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

What matters from President Biden's town hall with CNN's Anderson Cooper at Baltimore Center Stage on Thursday, via Axios night owl Hans Nichols:

The biggest headline: Biden is jettisoning the corporate tax increases that White House officials have insisted, for the past 10 months, are wildly popular across the country. He admitted he doesn't have the votes.

Trump, your 2024 GOP nominee

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Former President Trump is telling most anyone who'll listen he will run again in 2024 — and poll after poll shows the vast majority of Republicans would gladly cheer him on and vote for him. 

Why it matters: Trump is the heart, soul and undisputed leader of the Republican Party and will easily win the nomination if he wants it, the polls make unmistakably clear.

Ina Fried, author of Login
1 hour ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

How smartphone cameras became the best cameras

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

For years, the smartphone has been the most convenient camera, and in recent years it has also become the easiest and most versatile camera. But this year's high-end smartphones have taken things to a new level — capturing images that would be either tough or impossible even with a high-end digital camera.

Between the lines: Traditional cameras have the advantage of bigger sensors and better lenses, but smartphone cameras are rivaling and even surpassing them by tapping computational power.