1/ Trump urged Senate Republicans to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “without delay,” tweeting that filling the seat is an “obligation” they must consider. Trump, calling his shortlist of five candidates “the greatest list ever assembled,” said he plans to name his pick to replace Ginsburg “either Friday or Saturday.” Trump added that he wants the new justice confirmed before the November election, and promised that his nominee “will be a woman.” Two GOP senators, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, both said they don’t support voting on a new nominee before voters get to vote. Democrats need two more Republicans to defect in order to prevent a confirmation. (New York Times / NPR / ABC News / Wall Street Journal / Bloomberg / CNBC / Bloomberg / Washington Post / Wall Street Journal / NPR / The Guardian / New York Times / Washington Post / Associated Press)

  • 📌 Day 1339: RIP RBG. Ginsburg, who once called then-presidential candidate Trump a “faker” and more recently described this period of American history as “an aberration,” dictated the following statement days before her death: “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.”

  • Mitch McConnell vowed that Trump’s nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be put to the Senate floor for a vote and suggested it could be done before Election Day. Lindsey Graham, meanwhile, said he will vote for Ginsburg’s replacement before next election. ((Bloomberg / NPR / Politico / Axios)

  • Obama called for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s successor to be appointed by the election winner, saying she “left instructions for how she wanted her legacy to be honored.” (Medium – Obama /Vox)

  • Biden called on Senate Republicans to consider the will of the voters and not take up the Supreme Court vacancy until after the election, warning that a quick replacement of Ginsburg would “plunge us deeper into the abyss.” Biden, citing 2016 as precedent, said “There is no doubt, let me be clear, that the voters should pick the president and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider. This was the position of the Republican Senate took in 2016 when there were almost 10 months to go before the election. That’s the position the United States Senate must take today.” (Washington Post / NPR / Politico / Politico)

  • Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins said the vacancy left by the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg should be made after the presidential election, citing the proximity to Election Day. In a statement, Collins said “In fairness to the American people, who will either be re-electing the President or selecting a new one, the decision on a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court should be made by the President who is elected on November 3rd.” (NPR / CNN)

  • Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she will not support Trump’s nomination to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court before Election Day. Murkowski, the second GOP senator to publicly oppose voting on a Supreme Court nominee before the November election, said “For weeks, I have stated that I would not support taking up a potential Supreme Court vacancy this close to the election,” Murkowski said in a statement. “Sadly, what was then a hypothetical is now our reality, but my position has not changed.” (NBC News / CNBC)

  • Judge Amy Coney Barrett is considered to be the leading contender to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. If Judge Barrett were nominated and confirmed, she would be the sitting justice with the least courtroom experience, but one viewed as a home run by conservative Christians and anti-abortion activists. (New York Times / Bloomberg / New York Times / Washington Post)

  • [Insights] The 6 Republican senators who will decide the Supreme Court fight. “Some are facing difficult elections. Others are institutionalists. But they will play critical roles in replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” (Politico)

2/ By the time you read this, 200,000 people will be dead from the coronavirus in the United States. On March 30, Dr. Deborah Birx told Americans “If we do things together, well, almost perfectly, we can get in the range of 100,000 to 200,000 fatalities.” Experts, meanwhile, are predicting a new spike of coronavirus cases this fall. And, more than half of U.S. states are reporting a rise in coronavirus cases with 27 states and Puerto Rico all reporting test positivity rates above 5% – the threshold that the World Health Organization recommends municipalities hold steady for at least two weeks before businesses reopen. (NBC News / NPR / Wall Street Journal / Washington Post / New York Times / CNN)

3/ Trump’s political appointees tried to silence a top official at the CDC after she warned “we have way too much virus across the country.” Anne Schuchat, CDC principal deputy director, had appealed to Americans to wear masks, saying she hoped the country could “take it seriously and slow the transmission.” The next day in a June 30 email, Paul Alexander wrote to his boss, Michael Caputo, assistant secretary for public affairs at HHS, and reprimanded Schuchat, arguing that her comments contradicted Trump administration officials, including Pence. “Importantly, having the virus spread among the young and healthy is one of the methods to drive herd immunity,” Alexander added. “She is duplicitous.” (New York Times / Washington Post)

4/ The CDC reversed its previous guidance about how the coronavirus is transmitted, claiming that it had mistakenly posted a “draft” that stated that it was “possible” for the coronavirus to spread through airborne particles, which can remain suspended in the air and travel beyond 6 feet. The updated guidance, which was posted on the CDC’s website on Friday, said the virus can be transmitted through tiny, aerosolized droplets that are “produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, talks, or breathes.” It also recommended that people use air purifiers to prevent the disease from spreading indoors. On Monday, however, the agency reverted to its previous language, saying the guidance was “posted in error” and that the virus is thought to spread “between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).” It was the third major revision to CDC information or guidelines published since May. (NBC News / CNN / CNBC / Washington Post / Wall Street Journal / Bloomberg / CNN / Reuters)

5/ Heath and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar gave himself rule-making authority over the nation’s health agencies, including the FDA. In a Sept. 15 memo, Azar declared that power to sign any new rules related to the nation’s foods, medicines, medical devices and other products, including vaccines, “is reserved to the Secretary.” The memo requires the secretary of HHS to sign any new rule. (New York Times / Politico / Axios / NBC News)

  • Medicare won’t cover the cost of administering a coronavirus vaccine approved for emergency use. While lawmakers passed the Cares Act in March to ensure free coronavirus vaccine coverage, Medicare doesn’t cover costs for drugs approved under emergency use designations. (Wall Street Journal)

6/ A federal judge ordered Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to prioritize election mail and restore overtime for U.S. Postal Service employees, saying that “managerial failures” at the agency undermined the public’s faith in mail-in voting. An injunction issued by U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero directs the USPS to pre-approve all overtime from Oct. 26 to Nov. 6, and to give first-class treatment to all election mail beginning Oct. 15. (Bloomberg / CNN)

  • The USPS saw a decline in the rate of on-time delivery for first-class mail after Louis DeJoy took over as postmaster general in June. According to new data, the changes implemented by DeJoy shortly after he took over led to reductions in the amount of First-Class mail that was delivered on time. The reductions in on-time deliveries and delivery speeds persisted even after DeJoy announced in August that he would suspend the changes until after the election. (The Guardian)

  • A judge dismissed the Trump campaign’s lawsuit against Nevada over its plan to mail ballots to all registered voters. The judge called the campaign’s allegation that mailing ballots would lead to massive fraud “impermissibly speculative.” (Bloomberg)

  • A group of Trump supporters illegally disrupted early voting at a polling location in Virginia. The group formed a line to force voters to walk around, while changing “four more years” and waving Trump flags. In Virginia, it is illegal to “hinder or delay a qualified voter in entering or leaving a polling place,” and that any kind of political advocacy is prohibited within 40 feet of any entrance to a polling place. (New York Times)

poll/ 50% of voters said the winner of the presidential election should pick the next justice “since the election is fewer than 50 days away,” while 37% said Trump should pick the next justice “since he is the current president.” 12% had no opinion. (Politico)

poll/ 62% of Americans want the winner of the November presidential election to name a successor to Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court. Eight out of 10 Democrats and five in 10 Republicans agreed that the appointment should wait until after the election. (Reuters)

poll/ 60% of likely voters under the age of 30 say they will vote for Biden, compared with 27% for Trump. 56% of likely voters who support Trump are “very enthusiastic” about voting for him, compared with 35% of likely voters who support Biden when asked about their enthusiasm. (NPR)

poll/ 62% of registered Latino voters nationwide say they plan to vote for Biden, compared with 26% who say they’re voting for Trump. 59% say Biden will be better at addressing the concerns of the Latino community, while 18% say Trump will be better. 41% say Biden will do better when it comes to handling the economy, compared with 39% who say Trump will be better. (NBC News)


✏️ Notables.

  1. The Justice Department labeled New York City, Seattle, and Portland, Oregon “anarchist jurisdictions” and threatened to withhold federal funding for “permitting violence and destruction of property” during protests over racism and police brutality. In a statement, Attorney General William Barr claimed the jurisdictions were “permitting anarchy” and that “We cannot allow federal tax dollars to be wasted when the safety of the citizenry hangs in the balance.” It’s unclear if the administration can legally withhold federal funding. (Washington Post / NBC News / The Guardian / Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal)

  2. The doctor who performed unwanted hysterectomies at an ICE facility is not a board certified OB-GYN. A whistleblower accused Dr. Mahendra Amin of conducting unnecessary or unwanted gynecological procedures on women detained at the Irwin County Detention Center in Ocilla, Georgia. (Daily Beast)

  3. The Treasury Department opened an investigation into allegations of “rampant racism” at the U.S. Mint. A group of Black employees at the Mint asked Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to intervene in June. (Wall Street Journal)

  4. Former FBI Director James Comey will testify publicly before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 30. Lindsey Graham’s committee is conducting a review of the FBI’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election. (Politico / CNN)

  5. Rudy Giuliani’s associate, Lev Parnas, was indicted on new federal fraud charges. “Prosecutors said Mr. Parnas persuaded an array of investors to pump more than $2 million into the company, which was intended to offer an insurance-like product to protect consumers. But Fraud Guarantee never got off the ground.” (New York Times)

  6. Trump approved a deal that will allow TikTok to continue operating in the U.S. Oracle will become TikTok’s cloud provider and give it control over the company’s U.S. data. TikTok’s Chinese-based parent company, ByteDance, will continue to own about 80% of the company and maintain control over the algorithm. (Bloomberg / Politico)

  7. A woman suspected of sending a letter containing the deadly poison ricin to the White House and several federal prisons was arrested. She was taken into custody as she was trying to enter the United States from Canada in New York state. U.S. prosecutors in Washington, D.C., are expected to bring charges against her. It is unclear when the letter was sent or where it was intercepted. The identity of the woman is also unknown at this time. The ricin was confirmed in field and laboratory tests. (NBC News / CNN / Wall Street Journal / New York Times)

  8. Government funding runs out in nine days. The House Democrats unveiled a short-term spending bill that would keep the government funded through Dec. 11, which Senate Republicans called shameful because it omits a $30 billion bailout for farmers. Democrats oppose the bailout money because they view it as a payoff to farmers hurt by Trump’s trade policies. (Washington Post)


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