Trump's sit-down interview with Jeanine Pirro aired tonight on her Fox News show "Justice with Judge Jeanine" and, unsurprisingly, James Comey was still a hot topic of discussion. They talked about Trump's presidency and a bit about his policies, but Pirro went for the Comey questions right at the start — and Trump revealed two somewhat surprising things:

  1. He thought the Democrats would be happy about firing Comey, which suggests he was motivated by that presumed bipartisan support.
  2. He said he was considered firing Comey on Jan. 20, but admitted he didn't want that news to overshadow the inauguration. "Let's say I did it on January 20, the opening, right, and that would have been the big story as opposed to the inauguration. I was thinking about it then. I was thinking about it during this period of time."

Why it matters: As Trump told Pirro, "Look, it's all politics." His responses about Comey suggest he was the one who was showboating — he told Lester Holt that Comey was a "showboat" and a "grandstander") — whether keeping the focus on his inauguration or trying to make what he anticipated would be a strategic move with Democrats.Other highlights from the interview:"I guess I was a little bit surprised, because all of the Democrats, I mean they hated Jim Comey. They didn't like him. They wanted him fired or whatever. And then all of a sudden, they come out with these glowing reports."Comey 3.0: " I mean, he gave her a free pass like nobody's ever, ever gotten a free pass. ...Then he came out with Comey two, and then he came out with Comey three, and the ultimate thing is, he gave her a free pass."AHCA wasn't a failure: "And we're doing very well with healthcare. By the way — well, it wasn't really an initial failure. It was just a continuation of a negotiation."Health care predictions: "And I think the Senate is going to come up with some really, really great additions and changes, and we're going to have a plan that's going to be really great."He says he made friends while trying to pass AHCA: " made so many friends. I was in business, and I didn't know a lot of these Congressmen and Congresswomen. They're great people. I met so many people that I really like." He also said he was speaking to "30, 40, 50" people — members of the Freedom Caucus, the Tuesday Group, and House Republican — each day trying to pass AHCA.

Go deeper

Microphones will be muted during parts of Thursday's presidential debate

Photos: Jim Watson and Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Commission on Presidential Debates adopted new rules on Monday to mute microphones to allow President Trump and Joe Biden two minutes of uninterrupted time per segment during Thursday night's debate, AP reports.

Why it matters: In the September debate, Trump interrupted Biden 71 times, compared with Biden's 22 interruptions of Trump.

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Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

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  2. Health: Coronavirus hospitalizations are on the rise — 8 states set single-day coronavirus case records last week.
  3. States: Wisconsin judge reimposes capacity limit on indoor venues.
  4. Media: Trump attacks CNN as "dumb b*stards" for continuing to cover pandemic.
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Supreme Court denies Pennsylvania GOP request to limit mail-in voting

Protesters outside Supreme Court. Photo: Daniel Slim/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Monday denied a request from Pennsylvania's Republican Party to shorten the deadlines for mail-in ballots in the state. Thanks to the court's 4-4 deadlock, ballots can be counted for several days after Election Day.

Why it matters: It's a major win for Democrats that could decide the fate of thousands of ballots in a crucial swing state that President Trump won in 2016. The court's decision may signal how it would deal with similar election-related litigation in other states.

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