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"Xi Jinping has more clout than Donald Trump," The Economist writes in its cover editorial. "The world should be wary Do not expect Mr Xi to change China, or the world, for the better."

  • "China's economy is still second in size to America's and its army, though rapidly gaining muscle, pales in comparison. But economic heft and military hardware are not everything."
  • "The leader of the free world has a narrow, transactional approach to foreigners and seems unable to enact his agenda at home."
  • "The United States is still the world's most powerful country, but its leader is weaker at home and less effective abroad than any of his recent predecessors, not least because he scorns the values and alliances that underpin American influence."
  • "The president of the world's largest authoritarian state, by contrast, walks with swagger abroad. His grip on China is tighter than any leader's since Mao. And whereas Mao's China was chaotic and miserably poor, Mr Xi's is a dominant engine of global growth."
  • "The world does not want an isolationist United States or a dictatorship in China. Alas, it may get both."

Go deeper

Biden plans to ask public to wear masks for first 100 days in office

Joe Biden. Photo: Mark Makela/Gettu Images

President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris sat down with CNN on Thursday for their first joint interview since the election.

The big picture: In the hour-long segment, the twosome laid out plans for responding to the pandemic, jump-starting the economy and managing the transition of power, among other priorities.

The quick FCC fix that would get more students online

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

As the pandemic forces students out of school, broadband deployment programs aren't going to move fast enough to help families in immediate need of better internet access. But Democrats at the Federal Communications Commission say the incoming Biden administration could put a dent in that digital divide with one fast policy change.

State of play: An existing FCC program known as E-rate provides up to $4 billion for broadband at schools, but Republican FCC chairman Ajit Pai has resisted modifying the program during the pandemic to provide help connecting students at home.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

America's hidden depression

Biden introduces his pick for Treasury secretary, Janet Yellen, on Dec. 1. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President-elect Biden faces a fragile recovery that could easily fall apart, as the economy remains in worse shape than most people think.

Why it matters: There is a recovery happening. But it's helping some people immensely and others not at all. And it's that second part that poses a massive risk to the Biden-Harris administration's chance of success.