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President Trump said in a pool spray with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Thursday that he does not believe Iran intentionally shot down an unmanned U.S. drone flying in international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz, claiming it was probably "a mistake made by somebody who shouldn't have been doing what they did."

"I think it could have been somebody who was loose and stupid that did it. We'll be able to report back and you'll understand exactly what happened. It was a very foolish move. That I can tell you."

Why it matters: Fears over how the Trump administration will respond to the latest Iranian provocation have reached a new high. Before welcoming Trudeau, Trump met with national security adviser John Bolton, Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to discuss next steps.

  • Asked if the U.S. was prepared to strike Iran, Trump told reporters: "You'll find out."
  • The White House is invited Democratic and Republican leaders to attend a briefing on Iran this afternoon.

Of note: The Pentagon released a statement before Trump spoke calling the drone incident "dangerous and escalatory, claiming it was "an unprovoked attack on a U.S. surveillance asset that had not violated Iranian airspace." The Pentagon also released a video of the drone attack.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Go deeper

Biden gets mixed grades on revolving door

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden is getting mixed marks for his reliance on industry insiders to staff his administration during its first 100 days.

Why it matters: Progressives have leaned on the new president to limit the revolving door between industry and government. A new report from the Revolving Door Project praises him on that front but highlights key hires it deems ethically questionable.

Exclusive: Sen. Coons sees new era of bipartisanship on China

Sen. Chris Coons. Photo: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The Jan. 6 insurrection was a "shock to the system," propelling members of Congress toward the goal of shoring up America's ability to compete with China, Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) told Axios during an interview Thursday.

Why it matters: Competition between China's authoritarian model and the West's liberal democratic one is likely to define the 21st century. A bipartisan response would help the U.S. present a united front.

By the numbers: States weighing voting changes

Data: Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law; Cartogram: Michelle McGhee/Axios

Georgia is not alone in passing a law adding voting restrictions, but other states are seeing a surge in provisions and proposals that would expand access to the polls, according to data from the Brennan Center for Justice.

Driving the news: Just Wednesday, the New York State Assembly passed a bill to restore voting rights to convicted felons who have been released from prison.