The boxes of counterfeit N95 masks seized by Customs and Border Protection officers in Chicago. Photo: Customs and Border Protection.

Customs and Border Protection officers have seized 500,000 counterfeit N95 masks at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, in a shipment bound for a firm in Manalapan, New Jersey, from Schenzhen, China, the agency announced Monday.

Why it matters: Health officials say they're facing shortages of N95 masks used to prevent COVID-19's spread, per a September AP/Frontline/Global Reporting Centre report. The CDC tested 30 of the masks seized on Sept. 10 and found 10% of the respirators had a filter efficiency rating below 95%. The "faulty" face coverings risked "jeopardizing the health and well-being of everyone," said Shane Campbell, port director for the Chicago area, in a statement.

Go deeper

Sep 18, 2020 - Politics & Policy

What might have been: Massive USPS coronavirus face mask operation called off

In April, the Postal Service "drafted a news release announcing plans to distribute 650 million masks nationwide, enough to offer five face coverings to every American household," the Washington Post reports, based on documents obtained by American Oversight, a watchdog group that requested them under FOIA.

  • What's happening: The idea originated at HHS, "which suggested a pack of five reusable masks be sent to every residential address in the country, with the first shipments going to the hardest-hit areas," per The Post.

Why it matters: Imagine if five months ago, Americans not only got a signal from their government that they should wear masks, but even had them handed to them. Incalculable loss — human and economic — could have been avoided.

Senate Republicans release report on Biden-Ukraine investigation with rehashed information

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Senate Republicans, led by Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), on Wednesday released an interim report on their probe into Joe Biden and his son's dealings in Ukraine.

Why it matters: The report's rushed release ahead of the presidential election is certainly timed to damage Biden, amplifying bipartisan concern that the investigation was meant to target the former vice president's electoral chances.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
46 mins ago - Economy & Business

The high-wage jobs aren't coming back

Reproduced from Indeed; Chart: Axios Visuals

The pandemic has caught up with high-wage jobs.

The big picture: Early on, the pandemic walloped hiring across the wage spectrum and in every sector. Now, states have opened up, and the lower-wage retail and restaurant jobs have slowly come back — but higher-paying jobs are lagging behind.

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