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Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

"House Republican candidates are blanketing the airwaves with TV ads embracing a hard line on immigration — a dramatic shift from the midterm elections in 2014," USA Today reports.

Why it matters: "The competing messages demonstrate how far apart the two parties are. They’re not just talking about issues differently; they’re touting completely different issues to motivate activists and win hotly contested primaries."

  • "Republicans have aired more than 14,000 campaign ads touting a tough Trump-style immigration platform this year," according to a USA Today analysis of data from Kantar Media.
  • "Democratic candidates have focused overwhelmingly on health in their advertising, running more than 26,000 ads on the subject. Of those, more than 8,500 Democratic spots promise to protect or expand Medicare."
  • In 2014, immigration "was not among the top 10 issues Republicans spent their ad dollars on at this point ... In that cycle, GOP contenders attacked President Obama, bashing the Affordable Care Act and promising to rein in government spending."

Go deeper

Updated 28 mins ago - Health

New Zealand aims to create smoke-free generation with tobacco ban

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at a December news conference in Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

New Zealand officials announced Thursday legislative plans to outlaw smoking by making it illegal to sell or supply tobacco products to the next generation as part of a lifetime ban.

Why it matters: "People aged 14 when the law comes into effect will never be able to legally purchase tobacco," Associate Health Minister Ayesha Verrall said in a statement announcing the proposed law, part of the Smokefree 2025 Action Plan.

California father and son accused of "reckless arson" in Calder Fire

Firefighters at the Caldor Fire along Highway 89 west of Lake Tahoe, California, in September. Photo: Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

California officials said they arrested a father and son Wednesday on suspicion of starting the Caldor Fire, which threatened the Lake Tahoe area as it burned for over two months earlier this year. They deny any wrongdoing.

Why it matters: The wildfire was the 15th-biggest ever recorded in California, razing more than 1,000 structures, forcing thousands to evacuate and injuring five people as it burned across nearly 222,000 acres of land in El Dorado, Amador and Alpine counties.

FDA approves AstraZeneca COVID drug for people with immune problems

Photo: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization for an AstraZeneca COVID-19 antibody drug for people with compromised immune systems.

Why it matters: The drug, Evusheld, is the first antibody therapy authorized in the U.S. to prevent coronavirus symptoms before virus exposure.