David Friedma at the 2019 AIPAC conference. Photo: Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images

U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman said the country is gaining strength in part because "Israel is on the side of God," the New York Times reports.

The big picture: The Trump administration has ratcheted up policy and rhetoric in support of Israel by recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and eliminating the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem. Friedman has played a major role in creating Trump's promised proposal regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The other side: Daniel C. Kurtzer, the U.S. ambassador to Israel under former President George W. Bush, called this "an extremely inappropriate comment." Palestine Liberation Organization leaders also reacted harshly to the statement.

The backdrop: Many Palestinians have boycotted the Trump administration since December 2017 over the president's Jerusalem embassy announcement, and contact between Trump and the Palestinians has been almost completely severed.

Go deeper: U.S. ambassador to Israel says Trump's peace plan is months away

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 30,782,337 — Total deaths: 957,037— Total recoveries: 21,032,539Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 6,764,962 — Total deaths: 199,258 — Total recoveries: 2,577,446 — Total tests: 94,211,463Map.
  3. Politics: In reversal, CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people.
  4. Health: The dwindling chances of eliminating COVID-19.
  5. World: Guatemalan president tests positive for COVID-19 — The countries painting their pandemic recoveries green.

The positions of key GOP senators on replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell talks to reporters on Capitol Hill last Thursday. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With President Trump planning to nominate his third Supreme Court justice nominee by next week, key Republican senators are indicating their stance on replacing the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg just over six weeks out from Election Day.

The big picture: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) has vowed that "Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate." But Sen. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) told Alaska Public Media, "I would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee. We are 50 some days away from an election."

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

ActBlue collects a record $91 million in hours after Ginsburg's death

A makeshift memorial in honor of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on Sept. 19. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

ActBlue received a record $91.4 million in the 28 hours following Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's death, the Democratic donation-processing site confirmed to Axios late Saturday.

Why it matters via the New York Times: "The unprecedented outpouring shows the power of a looming Supreme Court confirmation fight to motivate Democratic donors."