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Gov. Andrew Cuomo (L) and President Donald Trump. Photos: John Lamparski/WireImage; Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump railed against New York Governor Andrew Cuomo twice on Friday for claiming that America "was never that great" — which Cuomo later walked back — saying that he "already MADE America Great Again."

"Wow! Big pushback on Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York for his really dumb statement about America’s lack of greatness. I have already MADE America Great Again, just look at the markets, jobs, military- setting records, and we will do even better. Andrew 'choked' badly, mistake! ... When a politician admits that 'We’re not going to make America great again,' there doesn’t seem to be much reason to ever vote for him. This could be a career threatening statement by Andrew Cuomo, with many wanting him to resign-he will get higher ratings than his brother Chris!"
— President Trump

The backdrop:

“We are not going to make America great again. It was never that great,” Mr. Cuomo said. “We have not reached greatness. We will reach greatness when every American is fully engaged.”
— Cuomo in a Wednesday speech, which focused heavily on Trump

After feeling the heat from several GOP critics for his jab, from New York to the White House, Cuomo's press secretary Dani Lever clarified in a statement that the “governor believes America is great, but that the country has yet to reach its "maxmium potential."

What to watch: Cuomo, who has been a very public critic of Trump, has been floated as a possible 2020 Democratic presidential candidates.

Go deeper

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Report: Pentagon watchdog finds Ronny Jackson drank on duty and harassed staff

Rep. Ronny Jackson walking through the Canon Tunnel to the U.S. Capitol in January. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) allegedly made "sexual and denigrating" comments about a female staffer, drank alcohol and took sleeping medication while working as White House physician, according to a report obtained by CNN Tuesday night.

Driving the news: The Department of Defense inspector general's report stems from a years-long investigation. Jackson has called the allegations "false and fabricated."

DOJ pressed to enforce Al Jazeera foreign agent ruling

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Justice Department is being pressed to enforce its own demand that the U.S. arm of Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera register as a foreign agent.

Why it matters: The launch of Al Jazeera's new right-of-center U.S. media venture, Rightly, has refocused attention on the media company's alleged links to Doha, and DOJ's efforts to crack down on media outlets viewed as foreign interest mouthpieces.

Poll: Immigration is America's most-polarizing issue

Data: The American Aspirations Index/Populace; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Immigration was found to be the most polarizing issue in America based on new polling from Populace.

Why it matters: Americans have surprisingly similar priorities for the U.S., but immigration stands out as one of the few issues with clear partisan differences. It underscores the challenge for advocates and lawmakers hoping to pass immigration reform in the coming weeks amid narrow margins in Congress.