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Photo: Patrick Semansky/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump told reporters on Air Force One Thursday night that he was considering nominating Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) to be his next director of national intelligence, but Collins rebuffed that offer during an appearance on Fox Business' "Mornings with Maria" on Friday.

The state of play: Trump previously hinted he would intervene in the Senate race between Collins and Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.). The heated primary race between Collins and Loeffler has raised concerns among Republicans that Democrats could potentially win the special election for the Senate seat, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes.

  • The primary challenge from Collins, a top defender of Trump, has "sparked an intraparty Republican brawl."
  • Wealthy business executive Loeffler was appointed to the Senate by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp over Trump's objections when former Sen. Johnny Isakson retired.

Watch the video:

What he's saying: Collins said the position "is not a job of interest to me at this time. It's not one that I would accept, because I'm running a Senate race down here in Georgia."

The big picture: Trump is currently facing blowback for his appointment of Ric Grenell, a Trump loyalist and the ambassador to Germany, as acting DNI — despite the fact that he has never held a national security position in the past.

  • James Clapper, the longest-serving DNI from 2010 to 2017, told Axios' Dave Lawler that it's "very worrisome installing a partisan with no real intelligence experience in this position."
  • "I spent my life in intelligence, and found the DNI job the hardest thing I've ever tried to do. I can't imagine taking it on, and learning the ABC's of intelligence on an on-the-job basis," he added.

Worth noting, via Axios' Alayna Treene: Trump did not discuss nominating Collins for the DNI position before telling reporters Thursday night, sources familiar with the discussions said.

Go deeper: Rep. Doug Collins confirms Georgia Senate run, triggering GOP battle

Go deeper

SoCalGas agrees to $1.8 billion settlement for 2015 gas blowout

An evacuee with a Save Porter Ranch sign outside Southern California Gas Company's Aliso Canyon gate in Porter Ranch in January 2016 as the gas leak continued. Photos: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Southern California Gas Company and its parent company announced Monday they've agreed to pay up to $1.8 billion in settlement claims over the 2015 Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility blowout.

Why it matters: Some 100,000 tons of methane, ethane and toxic chemicals poured into the air for 112 days, forcing over 8,000 families to evacuate from their Los Angeles-area homes and sickening many with headaches, nausea and nosebleeds, per the L.A. Times.

Updated 5 hours ago - World

North Korea fires short-range missile to sea, slams "hostile" U.S. policy

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Photo: API/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said Tuesday that North Korea's military had fired a short-range missile toward its eastern sea, per AP.

Why it matters: North Korea's ambassador to the United Nations defended the latest launch in remarks to the UN General Assembly, demanding the U.S. and South Korea end their "hostile policy" against the country.

Arizona Judge: Adding mask mandates ban to budget bill unconstitutional

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) Photo: Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

An Arizona judge ruled Monday that the state's ban on mask mandates in schools, and other measures put into the state budget by Republicans, are unconstitutional, the Arizona Republic reports.

Why it matters: The sweeping ruling voids a ban on vaccine requirements for public universities, community colleges and local governments, and strikes down some non-COVID-related measures like a ban on teaching critical race theory in classrooms and anti-fraud measures for ballots.