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Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The White House is setting up yet another group for members of Congress as part of its larger committee of business and thought leaders to reopen the economy from the coronavirus shutdown.

The state of play: Per two sources with direct knowledge, senators and House members have received emails telling them they’ve been selected for this new yet-to-be-named group.

  • "I am writing to inform you that the president has selected you to serve on a task force comprised of senators and members of the House of Representatives," reads the email from the White House, obtained by Axios.
  • "The purpose of the task force is to provide counsel to the president on the re-opening of America in the wake of COVID-19. The formal name of this task force has not yet been announced," it adds.

The big picture: The new group, first reported by Politico, is in addition to the larger collective of more than 200 CEOs and other business figures who the White House says will advise the administration on the forthcoming economic restart.

  • That rollout earlier this week experienced some problems, with some participants telling Axios' Dan Primack that they knew few specifics about the structure or nature of their roles.

Who's in: The Opening up America Again Congressional Group will be made up of bipartisan members of both houses of Congress.

  • Some of the Democrats invited include Sens. Dick Durbin (Ill.), Dianne Feinstein (Calif.) and Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) as well as Rep. Henry Cuellar (Texas) and Ro Khanna (Calif.).
  • Some of the Republicans invited include Sens. Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), Rob Portman (Ohio) and Josh Hawley (Mo.) as well as Rep. Steve Scalise (La.)
    • All Senate Republicans except Mitt Romney were asked to join the group.

What they're saying: Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), who was also invited to join, said in a statement that his priority "will be to ensure the federal government’s efforts to reopen our economy are bipartisan, data-driven, and based on the expertise of public health professionals."

Go deeper

45 mins ago - Health

U.S. tops 88,000 COVID-19 cases, setting new single-day record

Expand chart
Data: COVID Tracking Project; Chart: Axios Visuals

The United States reported 88,452 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, setting a single-day record, according to data from the COVID Tracking Project.

The big picture: The country confirmed 1,049 additional deaths due to the virus, and there are over 46,000 people currently being hospitalized, suggesting the U.S. is experiencing a third wave heading into the winter months.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day.
  2. Politics: Top HHS spokesperson pitched coronavirus ad campaign as "helping the president" — Space Force's No. 2 general tests positive for coronavirus.
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases.
  4. Sports: MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.
  5. 🎧Podcast: The vaccine race turns toward nationalism.

The norms around science and politics are cracking

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Crafting successful public health measures depends on the ability of top scientists to gather data and report their findings unrestricted to policymakers.

State of play: But concern has spiked among health experts and physicians over what they see as an assault on key science protections, particularly during a raging pandemic. And a move last week by President Trump, via an executive order, is triggering even more worries.