Fauci, Voter Registration, Immigration: Your Monday Evening Briefing
October 19, 2020
Here’s what you need to know at the end of the day.
By Victoria Shannon and Judith Levitt
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Good evening. Here’s the latest.
1. President Trump attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci as “a disaster” and said that people were “tired” of hearing about the coronavirus and wanted to be left alone.
In a call with campaign staff, Mr. Trump also called Dr. Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease specialist, a “nice” guy, but said, “He’s been here for 500 years,” adding, “Every time he goes on television, there’s always a bomb, but there’s a bigger bomb if you fire him. This guy’s a disaster.”
The U.S. has seen more coronavirus cases — over 8 million — and more deaths — nearly 220,000 — than any other nation in the world. Dr. Fauci, in an interview with “60 Minutes” that aired on Sunday, dismissed the president’s claim that the end of the pandemic was just around the corner.
Separately, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, was still in negotiations with the Treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, on an economic stimulus bill. But stocks fell as hopes that lawmakers would be able to pass a measure continued to wither.
2. Republicans see cause for hope in voter registrations.
They are looking to jumps in registrations in three critical states — Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania — and heavy turnout by those voters to help propel President Trump to a second term. But nationally, the president is trailing in the polls.
Florida opened up its polls for early voting today, with long lines, and Wisconsin kicks off its early period tomorrow. Both are considered must-win states for Mr. Trump. Other states to open at least some polling locations this week include Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, North Dakota, Utah and West Virginia. Above, early voters in North Carolina last week.
Through Election Day, our daily live politics briefings will be updated around the clock on weekdays. Our poll tracker and our analysis of the voting readiness of seven battleground states will also be continuously refreshed with the latest news.
3. The Supreme Court agreed to take on two of President Trump’s major immigration policies.
Lower courts had ruled that both policies — one requiring at least 60,000 asylum seekers to stay in Mexico, the other diverting $2.5 billion in Pentagon money for a border wall — were unlawful.