Background check states have lower gun death rates

While Congress has been caught in a perpetual argument over whether to require background checks for all gun sales, several states have already acted. Those that have added additional background check laws regarding private gun sales tend to have lower gun death rates.

Data: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Everytown; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

Why it matters: Of course, correlation doesn't equal causation, but typically trends like this at least spark smart, nuanced research. Gun deaths are comparatively under-researched, and gun debates on Capitol Hill are based more on emotions than the facts and trends we do know.

“There is research that does suggest that background checks can be effective in reducing firearm violence.”
— Michael Siegel, professor at Boston University School of Public Health
Dan Primack 35 mins ago
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Why the stock markets are tanking

Stock market trader adjusts his glasses.
Photo by Xinhua/Wang Ying via Getty Images

Stock markets are down sharply on Thursday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average off around 1.25% as of 2 p.m. EST.

Three key drivers: Tariffs, inter-bank lending rates and Facebook's troubles.

Caitlin Owens 2 hours ago
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How Congress missed yet another chance for an immigration deal

Congressional leaders with President Trump
Congressional leaders with President Trump. Photo: Olivier Douliery - Pool / Getty Images

Congressional leaders and the White House failed to come to an agreement on temporary protections for Dreamers over the past week as part of the giant spending bill, leaving the issue unresolved.

Why it matters: After all of the fighting over President Trump's decision to end DACA — including a government shutdown over it — the White House and Congress ended up with nothing. The issue is currently tied up in the courts. And though both sides agree it's better to give Dreamers more certainty over their future, they just can't agree how to do it.