Left Photo: Evan Vucci/AP, Right Photo: John Amis/AP

Trump's tweet: "Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!"

LeBron James' response: "U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain't going! So therefore ain't no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!"

  • Chris Paul of the Houston Rockets responded as well:

With everything that's going on in our country, why are YOU focused on who's kneeling and visiting the White House??? #StayInYoLane — Chris Paul (@CP3) September 23, 2017

And I doubt he's man enough to call any of those players a son of a bitch to their face... — Chris Paul (@CP3) September 23, 2017

  • Former L.A. Laker Kobe Bryant tweeted:

A #POTUS whose name alone creates division and anger. Whose words inspire dissension and hatred can't possibly "Make America Great Again" — Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 23, 2017

Trump's criticism last night of "those people taking the knee when they are playing our great national anthem" also drew criticism from a number of NFL players. He doubled down on his criticisms on Saturday afternoon:

If a player wants the privilege of making millions of dollars in the NFL,or other leagues, he or she should not be allowed to disrespect.... — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017

...our Great American Flag (or Country) and should stand for the National Anthem. If not, YOU'RE FIRED. Find something else to do!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017

  • DeMaurice Smith, head of the NFL Players Association

We will never back down. We no longer can afford to stick to sports. pic.twitter.com/Ec3Bc4qt9h — DeMaurice Smith (@DeSmithNFLPA) September 23, 2017

  • Lesean McCoy of the Buffalo Bills

It's really sad man ... our president is a asshole — Lesean McCoy (@CutonDime25) September 23, 2017

  • Eric Ebron of the Detroit Lions

Does anyone tell trump to stick to politics, like they tell us to stick to sports? Smh. — Eric Ebron (@Ebron85) September 23, 2017

  • Zach Brown of the Washington Redskins

Trump stay in ur place... football have nothing to do wit u smh — Zach Brown (@ZachBrown_55) September 23, 2017

  • Chris Conley of the Kansas City Chiefs

“Stick to sports boy... Sit down and do what your told. Say or do something we don't like and your fired" Well I hate to break it to ya... — Chris Conley (@_flight17_) September 23, 2017

  • Benjamin Watson of the Baltimore Ravens

It is a sad day when the #POTUS seeks to disregard and punish American citizens for peacefully exercising their constitutional rights. https://t.co/QPvrKDS29D — Benjamin Watson (@BenjaminSWatson) September 23, 2017

  • Bishop Sankey of the Minnesota Vikings

It's a shame and disgrace when you have the President of the US calling citizens of the country sons of a bitches. — Bishop Sankey (@BishopSankey) September 23, 2017

  • Michael Thomas of the Miami Dolphins

Continue to use your voices and your platforms for racial equality and to stop injustices in our communities. This is bigger than us!!! ✊🏿 — Michael Thomas (@Michael31Thomas) September 23, 2017

  • George Iloka of the Cincinnati Bengals

I can't take anything our Celebrity in Chief says seriously. He's a real life clown/troll 🤡 — George Iloka (@George_iloka) September 23, 2017

  • Rishard Matthews of the Tennessee Titans

I'm a full supporter of the Flag & This country! Trust Me! But this can't be real! https://t.co/GAPkZPB8hz — Rishard Matthews (@_RMatthews) September 23, 2017

  • Chris Baker of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

So the BLACK NFL PLAYERS are SON OF A BITCH now WOW — Chris Baker (@cbakerswaggy) September 23, 2017

  • Devin McCourty of the New England Patriots

Ppl said it was disrespectful not going to the White House..I'm sure they are quiet about us being called “sons of bitches" 🤦🏿♂️(D-Mac) — Devin&Jason McCourty (@McCourtyTwins) September 23, 2017

  • Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks

The behavior of the President is unacceptable and needs to be addressed. If you do not Condemn this divisive Rhetoric you are Condoning it!! — Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) September 23, 2017

  • Adewale Ogunleye, former player

WHITE SUPREMACIST IN THE OVAL OFFICE!!! Donald J Trump — Adewale Ogunleye (@aotheprince93) September 23, 2017

  • Lance Moore, former player
  • So Trumpster is more mad at "son of a bi!@&" athletes than he was the neo-nazi's in Charlottesville. How am I not surprised? — Lance Moore (@LanceMoore16) September 23, 2017

Go deeper

20 Republican former U.S. attorneys endorse Biden, call Trump "a threat to the rule of law"

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Twenty Republican former U.S. Attorneys on Tuesday endorsed Joe Biden while saying that "President Trump's leadership is a threat to rule of law" in the U.S., the Washington Post reports.

What they're saying: In the letter, the former prosecutors criticize Trump's use of the Department of Justice, saying the president expects the DOJ to "to serve his personal and political interests."

  • "He has politicized the Justice Department, dictating its priorities along political lines and breaking down the barrier that prior administrations had maintained between political and prosecutorial decision-making," the letter says.
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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Axios-Ipsos poll: Federal response has only gotten worse — The swing states where the pandemic is raging.
  2. Health: The coronavirus is starting to crush some hospitals — 13 states set single-day case records last week.
  3. Business: Winter coronavirus threat spurs new surge of startup activity.
  4. Media: Pandemic causes cable and satellite TV providers to lose the most subscribers ever.
  5. States: Nearly two dozen Minnesota COVID cases traced to 3 Trump campaign events.
  6. World: Unrest in Italy as restrictions grow across Europe.

Ted Cruz defends GOP's expected return to prioritizing national debt

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told "Axios on HBO" on Monday that he wishes reining in the national debt was a higher priority for President Trump.

Why it matters: Trump pledged during the 2016 campaign to reduce the national debt and eliminate it entirely within eight years, though he also deemed himself "the king of debt" and said there were some priorities that required spending. In the fiscal year that ended in September, the deficit reached a record $3.1 trillion.