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Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

President Trump enjoyed yesterday's episode of "The Trump Show": He played the president he sometimes fantasizes being — a post-partisan leader, bigger than Republican or Democrat, a celebrity dealmaker with no firm attachments, who’d overwhelm Washington through the sheer strength of statecraft and deal-cutting genius. A real Davos man. P.T. Barnum with a pulpit. 

His presidency hasn’t lived up to that vision. Trump’s victories have been partisan victories — unwinding regulations, appointing conservative judges, withdrawing from the Paris climate deal, passing a Republican tax bill and repealing the cornerstone of Obamacare. 

But Trump yesterday showed the side we often hear about from behind closed doors:

  • He opened an immigration negotiation session to reporters for 54 minutes. During the meeting, he floated that he wanted a comprehensive immigration deal — something that scares the living daylights out of the right wing of his party. (N.Y. Times lead story: "Trump Receptive to Working Out Citizenship Path ... 'I’ll Take the Heat,’ He Says, Seeming to Back a Broader Deal.")
  • He lamented about how the two parties don’t get along, and can’t cut deals like they did in the good old days.
  • He said that maybe Congress should bring back earmarks — a.k.a. “pork” — another Republican apostasy.
  • We learned that he'll attend Davos — the clubby globalist conference in Switzerland (60 heads of state or government, plus top CEOs and over 1,000 leaders from civil society, academia and media).

Why this matters: When Trump is in these moods, he’s at his most unpredictable (and therefore most dangerous, in the eyes of Republican leaders.)

  • Trump is in the middle of high stakes negotiations to avoid a government shutdown, and his lack of attachment to any ideology or principles means he could easily veer into Chuck and Nancy’s arms.

Go deeper

A tale of two jobs reports

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

Whatever you think about the economy, you’ll find something in this morning’s conflicting jobs report to reinforce your views: America's job market is white-hot and the labor market is anemic.

Between the lines: The conflict comes from the two separate surveys the government uses to compile the report.

Elon Musk's mega-billion bounty

Photo: Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

Here's how insanely rich Elon Musk is: He has unloaded $10 billion of his stock in the past month — and could do that 15+ more times given his silos of shares.

Ina Fried, author of Login
5 hours ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

Huawei sanctions snarled chip supply chains

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The largely successful U.S. effort to hobble China's Huawei has benefitted a host of other tech companies — from smartphone makers such as Apple and Xiaomi to chipmakers like Qualcomm to network vendors including Nokia and Ericsson.

Yes, but: The massive disruption to the industry furthered an industry wide mismatch between supply and demand, exacerbating the global chip shortage.