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Biden says he spoke with Jacob Blake by phone for 15 minutes

Joe Biden spoke with Jacob Blake by phone on Thursday for 15 minutes during a private meeting with Blake's family in Wisconsin.

Driving the news: This was Biden's third time out on the campaign trail this week — the former VP has largely stuck to virtual events until now. He spent most of his time in Wisconsin listening to residents about their concerns and hopes for the way forward as the community reels from Blake's shooting.


Why it matters: Wisconsin is not just a key battleground state in this election, but now is a symbol of the racial injustice that's driving people to the streets and reshaping the contours of the presidential race.

  • Thursday was Biden's first visit to the Badger State since becoming the Democratic nominee. He met with Blake's family for over an hour and then attended a listening session at a Kenosha-based church.
  • President Trump visited Wisconsin on Tuesday, where he met with business leaders and local law enforcement, but didn't mention Blake in his remarks.

What they're saying: Biden relayed that Blake is now out of the ICU, where he was after being shot seven times in the back by a Kenosha police officer.

  • Biden said Blake explained that "whether he walked again or not, he was not going to give up." "He talked about how nothing was going to defeat him," Biden told Kenosha residents at Grace Lutheran Church during Thursday's community listening session.
  • "I can’t understand what it’s like to walk out the door, to send my son out the door or my daughter, and worry that just because they’re Black they might not come back," Biden told attendees at the church. "I can intellectually understand it, but I can’t feel it."
  • Blake's lawyer, Ben Crump, released a statement on the phone call:
  • "The family was grateful for the meeting and was very impressed that the Bidens were so engaged and willing to really listen," Crump said. "Jacob's mother led them all in prayer for Jacob's recovery. They talked about changing the disparate treatment of minorities in police interactions, the impact of selecting Kamala Harris as a Black woman as his running mate, and Vice President Biden's plans for change."

The big picture: Trump and Biden have been battling over "law and order" in the wake of ongoing protests against systemic racism and continued examples of police brutality against Black Americans.

A hinge moment for America's role in the world

The world may be living through the last gasps of America First— or just getting a taste of what's to come.

Why it matters: President Trump's message at this week's virtual UN General Assembly was short and relatively simple: global institutions like the World Health Organization are weak and beholden to China; international agreements like the Iran deal or Paris climate accord are "one-sided"; and the U.S. has accomplished more by going its own way.

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New York daily coronavirus cases top 1,000 for first time since June

New York on Friday reported more than 1,000 new coronavirus cases for the first since June.

Why it matters: The New York City metropolitan area was seen as the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic throughout the spring. But strict social distancing and mask mandates helped quell the virus' spread, allowing the state to gradually reopen.

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America on edge as SCOTUS, protests and 2020 collide

Rarely have national security officials, governors, tech CEOs and activists agreed as broadly and fervently as they do about the possibility of historic civil unrest in America.

Why it matters: The ingredients are clear for all to see — epic fights over racism, abortion, elections, the virus and policing, stirred by misinformation and calls to action on social media, at a time of stress over the pandemic.

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The long-term pain of the mental health pandemic

A less visible but still massive trauma caused by the coronavirus is becoming clear: our mental health is suffering with potentially long-lasting consequences.

Why it matters: Mental health disorders that range from schizophrenia to depression and anxiety exert a severe cost on personal health and the economy. Addressing that challenge may require out-of-the-box solutions.

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Preview: "Axios on HBO" interviews Bob Woodward

On the next episode of "Axios on HBO," journalist Bob Woodward tells Axios National Political Correspondent Jonathan Swan why he spoke out about President Trump being the "wrong man for the job."

  • "I did not want to join the ranks of the Senate Republicans who know that Trump is the wrong man for the job, but won't say it publicly," Woodward said.

Catch the full interview on Monday, Sept. 28 at 11 p.m. ET/PT on all HBO platforms.

Trump picks Amy Coney Barrett to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Supreme Court

Judge Amy Coney Barrett — expected to be named by President Trump today to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the Supreme Court, and an edge on issues from abortion to the limits of presidential power.

The big picture: Republicans love the federal appeals court judge's age — she is only 48 — and her record as a steadfast social conservative.

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Biden pushes unity message in new TV wave

Via Joe Biden for President

A fresh Joe Biden ad, "New Start," signals an effort by his campaign to make unity a central theme, underscoring a new passage in his stump speech that says he won't be a president just for Democrats but for all Americans.

What he's saying: The ad — which began Friday night, and is a follow-up to "Fresh Start" — draws from a Biden speech earlier in the week in Manitowoc, Wisconsin:

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Trump to announce Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court replacement

President Trump is preparing to nominate federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett of Indiana, a favorite of both the social conservative base and Republican elected officials, to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Republican sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: If confirmed, Barrett — just 48 years old — would move the court notably to the right, perhaps for a generation.

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