May 7, 2019

Ex-Melania Trump aide denies firing, inaugural profiting claims: NYT

Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, Melania Trump and Donald Trump. File photo: Billy Farrell/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

First lady Melania Trump's former adviser Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, who worked on the president's inaugural committee, denied to The New York Times Monday suggestions she was was fired for profiting from her role.

Why it matters: Wolkoff, who's speaking to federal prosecutors about donations to President Trump's committee, was for the first time addressing claims her firm, WIS Media Partners, received $26 million for its inaugural work. A House panel has sought to question her about the issue. She's the latest former aide to speak out against the administration.

Was I fired? No. Did I personally receive $26 million or $1.6 million? No, Was I thrown under the bus? Yes."
— Stephanie Winston Wolkoff's statement to The New York Times

The big picture: The Southern District of Manhattan is investigating the inaugural committee's management of funds. Similar subpoenas were also issued in February by New Jersey’s attorney general and federal prosecutors in the District of Colombia.

Go deeper: Trump Organization may have overcharged inauguration committee

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Federal court temporarily halts "Remain in Mexico" program

Migrant wearing a cap with U.S. flagin front of the border between Guatemala and Mexico. Photo: Jair Cabrera Torres/picture alliance via Getty Image

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court's earlier injunction on Friday, temporarily stopping the Trump administration from enforcing the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) — known as the "Remain in Mexico" policy.

Why it matters: Tens of thousands of migrants seeking asylum have been forced to wait out their U.S. immigration court cases across the border in Mexico under the policy. The Trump administration has long credited this program for the decline in border crossings following record highs last summer.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus updates: WHO raises global threat level to "very high"

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The World Health Organization raised its global risk assessment for the novel coronavirus to "very high" Friday, its highest risk level as countries struggle to contain it. Meanwhile, National Economic Council director Larry Kudlow this morning tried to reassure the markets, which continued to correct amid growing fears of a U.S. recession.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,860 people and infected about 83,800 others in almost 60 countries and territories outside the epicenter in mainland China. The number of new cases reported outside China now exceed those inside the country.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health

Bernie's plan to hike taxes on some startup employees

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Sens. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) introduced legislation that would tax nonqualified stock options at vesting, rather than at exercise, for employees making at least $130,000 per year.

The big picture: Select employees at private companies would be taxed on monies that they hadn't yet banked.