Trump and Merkel at Friday's press conference. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump said this afternoon that he "may go" to the opening ceremony of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem on May 14.

Why it matters: Trump's statement during a joint press conference with German chancellor Angela Merkel was somewhat surprising, because in the last few weeks, both the White House and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office said it was highly unlikely that Trump would be able to attend.

They cited Trump's schedule and the need to focus on other issues, like North Korea and the May 12 deadline to decide the future of the Iran nuclear deal.

The back story: I reported earlier this week that the administration even started preparing to send Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin as the head of the U.S. delegation, along with White House senior adviser Jared Kushner. Israeli officials told me on Sunday that the information they got from Washington was that Trump wasn’t coming to the ceremony and Mnuchin would lead the delegation.

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Updated 39 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 19,193,661 — Total deaths: 716,735 — Total recoveries — 11,611,029Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 4,918,927 — Total deaths: 160,737 — Total recoveries: 1,598,624 — Total tests: 59,652,675Map.
  3. Politics: White House recommends Trump issue executive orders on coronavirus aid.
  4. Education: Cuomo says all New York schools can reopen for in-person learning.
  5. Public health: Surgeon general urges flu shots to prevent "double whammy" with coronavirus — Massachusetts pauses reopening after uptick in coronavirus cases
  6. World: Africa records over 1 million coronavirus cases — Gates Foundation puts $150 million behind coronavirus vaccine production.

Trump: "We are going a different way" on coronavirus aid

President Trump. Photo: Jim Watsonn/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump tweeted on Friday that his administration is "going a different way" with coronavirus aid after negotiations with congressional Democrats stalled again, suggesting he will use an executive order to address stimulus spending.

What he's saying: "Pelosi and Schumer only interested in Bailout Money for poorly run Democrat cities and states. Nothing to do with China Virus! Want one trillion dollars. No interest. We are going a different way!" Trump tweeted.

Trump's swift, sweeping China offensive

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Trump's rhetoric on China has tended to run hotter than his actions — until now.

Why it matters: Even at the height of Trump's trade war, his administration never hit China as hard, as fast, and on as many fronts as it is right now.