Ric Grenell will almost certainly be confirmed this week as President Trump's ambassador to Germany after months of being stalled in the Senate.

Details: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has moved to end debate on Grenell and a senior Republican aide told me he'll almost certainly be confirmed into the position before the end of the week.

Behind the scenes: Marc Short, the director of White House Legislative Affairs, told me Trump made it clear he wanted Grenell confirmed by the Senate before German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits Washington on Friday.

  • Flashback: We reported in Axios' Sneak Peek newsletter on Sunday that Grenell "was seen at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night talking to Trump... the president has let it be known he's impatient with the hold-up in the Senate over Grenell's confirmation and has told people he had wanted to get it done before Merkel's visit this week.

Background: Last month, the NYT's Maggie Haberman dove into the unusually loud and sustained campaign to confirm Grenell:

  • "Few drives for a confirmation vote have turned into a cause — supported by groups often on opposite sides of the political spectrum...
  • "Grenell, a Republican who worked with the incoming national security adviser, John R. Bolton, at the United Nations...[is] the president’s most prominent openly gay appointee.

Go deeper

Updated 57 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 31,1833,800 — Total deaths: 962,793— Total recoveries: 21,348,410Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 6,833,800 — Total deaths: 199,818 — Total recoveries: 2,615,949 — Total tests: 95,841,281Map.
  3. Health: CDC says it mistakenly published guidance about COVID-19 spreading through air.
  4. Media: Conservative blogger who spread COVID-19 misinformation worked for Fauci's agency.
  5. Politics: House Democrats file legislation to fund government through Dec. 11.
  6. World: U.K. upgrades COVID alert level as Europe sees worrying rise in infections — "The Wake-Up Call" warns the West about the consequences of mishandling a pandemic.

Sen. Cory Gardner on vacant Supreme Court seat: "I will vote to confirm"

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) will vote to confirm President Trump's nominee to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg, he announced in a statement Monday.

Why it matters: The development is a win for President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). It should mean Republicans are all but assured to have enough support to hold hearings for Trump's potential nominee.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Trump and Xi to give dueling speeches Tuesday at UN General Assembly

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

President Trump and China’s Xi Jinping will address the UN General Assembly just minutes apart on Tuesday morning — with Russia’s Vladimir Putin following soon thereafter.

The big picture: Trump has promised a “strong message on China.” Xi, meanwhile, is expected to laud global cooperation — with the clear implication that it can be led from Beijing.

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