C.B. Schmelter/Chattanooga Times Free Press via AP

A watchdog group is suing the Trump administration to force the release of a letter to the House Freedom Caucus that might have outlined the regulatory steps the administration can take to loosen the Affordable Care Act's insurance rules. The lawsuit, to be filed by American Oversight in federal district court this afternoon, seeks the release of a March 23 letter administration officials reportedly gave to the Freedom Caucus to win its support for the House's health care bill, one day before leadership pulled that bill from the floor.

Why it matters: If the letter does exist — and if the group wins its release under the Freedom of Information Act — it could shed light on what kind of regulatory flexibility the Department of Health and Human Services thinks it can provide without any legislative changes. And that could be relevant if the Senate can't revive the stalled ACA repeal-and-replace bill, because then HHS would be sure to pursue those regulatory changes on its own.

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1 min ago - Axios on HBO

Preview: "Axios on HBO" interviews acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf

On the next episode of "Axios on HBO," acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf tells Axios co-founder Mike Allen why he "would be concerned" about Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in office.

Catch the full interview on Monday, August 17 at 11 p.m. ET/PT on all HBO platforms.

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 20,755,406 — Total deaths: 752,225— Total recoveries: 12,917,934Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 5,246,760 — Total deaths: 167,052 — Total recoveries: 1,774,648 — Total tests: 64,831,306Map.
  3. Politics: House Democrats to investigate scientist leading "Operation Warp Speed" vaccine projectMcConnell announces Senate will not hold votes until Sept. 8 unless stimulus deal is reached.
  4. 2020: Biden calls for 3-month national mask mandateBiden and Harris to receive coronavirus briefings 4 times a week.
  5. States: Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp to drop lawsuit over Atlanta's mask mandate.
  6. Business: Why the CARES Act makes 2020 the best year for companies to lose money.
  7. Public health: Fauci's guidance on pre-vaccine coronavirus treatments Cases are falling, but don't get too comfortable.

Trump says he intends to give RNC speech on White House lawn

President Trump speaking to reporters on South Lawn in July. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump told the New York Post on Thursday that he plans to deliver his Republican National Convention speech from the White House lawn, despite bipartisan criticism of the optics and legality of the location.

Why it matters: Previous presidents avoided blurring staged campaign-style events — like party conventions — with official business of governing on the White House premises, per Politico.