A Sam's Club membership card. Photo: Zhang Peng / LightRocket via Getty Images

Walmart is abruptly closing 63 of its Sam's Club stores, the company told Business Insider. Some locations shut their doors as early as Thursday morning, with some employees finding out about the closures via stores with locked doors.

Notable: The closures came just hours after Walmart announced that it was raising starting wages, giving out one-time bonuses and expanding employee benefits, citing the recent GOP tax cuts.

Details of closures:

  • 10 of the closed stores will be turned into e-commerce distribution centers. Affected employees will then be given the opportunity to apply for a position at the new locations.
  • The other 53 stores will stay open for the next several weeks before closing permanently.

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Updated 42 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Politics: Herd immunity claims by top Trump adviser are "pseudoscience," infectious-disease expert saysPelosi sets 48-hour deadline for White House on stimulus talks.
  2. Map: 38 states, D.C. see surge in cases.
  3. Health: Hispanic Americans only racial group to see increased COVID deaths over the summer, CDC says — Ex-FDA head explains why White House coronavirus strategy of waiting for vaccine is "problematic."
  4. States: New York deploys "micro-cluster strategy" to target coronavirus "block by block"
  5. Business: The industries that won't recover without a vaccine — Struggling retailers hope for a Christmas miracle.
  6. World: Restrictions grow across Europe.
2 hours ago - World

Israel and Bahrain sign agreement establishing diplomatic relations

Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani (R) and Israeli National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat bump elbows after a signing ceremony. Photo: Ronen Zvulun/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

MANAMA, Bahrain — Israel and Bahrain signed an agreement on establishing diplomatic relations in Manama on Sunday, one month after a historic ceremony at the White House.

Why it matters: The "joint communique on establishing peaceful and diplomatic relations" is an interim agreement on the path to a comprehensive peace treaty, paving the way for the two countries to open embassies and sign more cooperation agreements.

Cornyn says when he disagrees with Trump, he does so "privately"

Sen. John Cornyn speaks during a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting. Photo by Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

In an interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram editorial board, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said that he's disagreed with President Trump on trade agreements with China, budget deficits, COVID-19 stimulus aid, but he's always brought up his concerns privately — rather than publicly criticize the president.

The big picture: Cornyn is the latest Republican senator to distance himself from Trump amid fears of a potential electoral blowout. Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), for example, recently unloaded on the president in a call with constituents, questioning why Republicans thought "selling a TV-obsessed, narcissistic individual to the American people was a good idea?"