Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke speaks during the Democratic Presidential Debate on September 12, 2019 in Houston, Texas.

Beto O’Rourke's presidential campaign reported a tweet from a Texas state lawmaker to the FBI on Friday after the candidate described it as "a death threat," a campaign spokesperson told the Guardian.

The big picture: Briscoe Cain, a 34-year-old Republican who represents a district outside of Houston, tweeted "My AR is ready for you Robert Francis" after O’Rourke pledged during the third Democratic debate to enact a mandatory buyback program of all military-style rifles if elected.

What they're saying: Cain violated Twitter's rule that “You may not threaten violence against an individual or a group of people," a Twitter spokesperson told the Guardian. The platform removed the post.

  • Cain defended the tweet, saying it was a a version of "Come and take it," a popular slogan among American gun rights activists.

Of note: Security escorted Cain out of Texas' 2018 Democratic convention in Fort Worth after he appeared to carry a sidearm as part of a prank, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Go deeper: Where 2020 Democrats stand on gun control

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Pence chief of staff Marc Short tests positive for coronavirus — COVID-19 looms over White House Halloween celebrations
  2. Health: Fauci says maybe we should mandate masks if people don't wear them — America was sick well before it ever got COVID-19
  3. World: Polish President Andrzej Duda tests positive for COVID-19.

Pence chief of staff Marc Short tests positive for coronavirus

Marc Short with Katie Miller, Vice President Pence's communications director, in March. Photo: Doug Mills/The New York Times via Reuters

Marc Short, Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, tested positive for the coronavirus Saturday and is quarantining, according to a White House statement.

Why it matters: Short is Pence's closest aide, and was one of the most powerful forces on the White House coronavirus task force.

5 hours ago - World

Opposition leader Leopoldo López flees Venezuela

Venezuelan opposition politician Leopoldo López outside the Spanish embassy in Caracas, in 2019. Photo: Juan Barreto/AFP via Getty Images

Leopoldo López, a former political prisoner and prominent Venezuelan opposition leader, has left the country, his Popular Will party confirmed in a statement Saturday.

Why it matters: He's been an influential force in the push to oust President Nicolás Maduro's regime and a mentor to opposition leader Juan Guaidó. He'd been in the Spanish ambassador's Caracas residence since escaping house arrest in April 2019 following a failed military uprising.

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