Feb 28, 2017

Trump on leak crackdown: “I would’ve done it differently"

Evan Vucci / AP

In an interview with Fox & Friends that aired early Tuesday morning, Trump said that he would've handled the crackdown on government leaks differently, having "one-on-one sessions with a few people," instead of the way White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer did it: in an "emergency meeting" for White House communications staffers where he asked them to dump their phones on the table for a "phone check" to prove they had nothing to hide.

More from the interview: Trump gives himself an A+ "in terms of effort," so far in his presidency, but for messaging only a C or C+; "My messaging isn't good ... Maybe I change that during the speech."

And he says Obama is "behind" the protests at GOP town halls and "possibly" some of the leaks.

Go deeper

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Countries where novel coronavirus cases are falling may be hit with a "second peak" if they relax restrictions too soon, World Health Organization emergencies chief Mike Ryan warned during a briefing Monday. "We're still very much in a phase where the disease is actually on the way up," he added.

By the numbers: Brazil on Monday recorded for the first time more deaths from the novel coronavirus in a single day than the United States, Reuters notes. Brazil reported 807 deaths from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, compared to 620 in the U.S. for the same period.

Palantir CEO reflects on work with ICE

Palantir CEO Alex Karp told "Axios on HBO" that there have "absolutely" been moments he wished the company hadn't taken a contract with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

  • "Did I suffer? ... I've had some of my favorite employees leave," Karp told "Axios on HBO."

Michigan governor won't apologize for coronavirus lockdown

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer defended the strictness of her state's coronavirus lockdown in an interview with "Axios on HBO," saying it was necessary — despite the protests that have drawn national attention — because of how quickly the state's cases were rising.

The big picture: Whitmer, who has been a frequent target of President Trump, insisted that she had to act in the face of a lack of federal leadership — and that thousands more people in her state would have died without the lockdown.