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The sky over the Capitol was lit up at dawn Thursday. (AP's J. Scott Applewhite)

Advertising interest groups are applauding the tax bill passed by both the House and Senate this week for not using advertising taxes as a "pay-for" to offset other tax cuts. Rumors had circulated that lawmakers were considering eliminating some advertising deductions as much as 50% over 10 years.

Why it matters: Eliminating some advertising deductions would have had a particularly negative impact on local media that relies heavily on small business advertising. For months, ad interest groups have also been urging lawmakers to reconsider the potential impact a potential "pay-for" tax would have on jobs and economic growth.

The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) is happy that the new bill did not disrupt a decades-long precedent:

  • "For over a century, advertising has been a regular, deductible business expense under the U.S. tax code. Businesses of every size and scope rely on advertising as a critical ingredient for driving sales, and the American economy relies on it for growth, says Dan Jaffe, Group Executive Vice President of Government Relations for the ANA.
  • "The deductibility of advertising costs has been under serious attack for several years in the Congress. Preserving our tax treatment in the context of tax reform is a major victory for the entire marketing community."

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) is relieved that the tax code won't put local publishers out of business:

  • "Local TV and radio stations and our network broadcast partners salute leaders of Congress for recognizing the importance of advertising as a principal driver of commerce by preserving the full and immediate deductibility of advertising expenses." — NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith:

Go deeper

Updated 32 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.
1 hour ago - Health

Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate

Golden Gate Park. Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty

Counties around the San Francisco Bay Area will adopt California’s new regional stay-at-home order amid surges in cases and ICU hospitalizations, health officials said Friday.

The big picture: California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a three-week stay-at-home order on Thursday that would go into effect in regions with less than 15% ICU capacity. Despite the Bay Area’s current 25.3% ICU capacity, health officials from Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Clara, San Francisco and the city of Berkeley are moving ahead with a shelter-in-place mandate in the hopes of reducing risk.

2 hours ago - Podcasts

Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reviewing two emergency use authorization requests for COVID-19 vaccines, with an outside advisory committee scheduled to meet next Thursday to review data from Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech.

Axios Re:Cap digs in with former FDA commissioner Rob Calif about the EUA process, the science and who should make the final call.