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Elon Musk speaks at an unveiling event for the Boring Company test tunnel on Dec. 18, 2018 in Hawthorne, Calif. Photo: Robyn Beck-Pool/Getty Images

Las Vegas has awarded a $48.7 million contract to Elon Musk's Boring Company to build a high-speed autonomous shuttle underneath the city's remodeled convention center, per multiple reports.

Why it matters: Sin City is the first paying customer for Musk's hyperloop idea, which was "joke-tweeted" into existence two and a half years ago, Wired magazine writes. The transit system would shorten what would be a 15-minute walk to a one-minute ride.

Skepticism abounds, even from the city's mayor who voted against the deal, but the contract includes plenty of escape clauses if Boring fails to deliver on its promise to move at least 4,400 people per hour.

But, but, but: As Jalopnik notes, Boring seems to have abandoned plans for sled-mounted vehicles traveling on high-speed tracks, and instead is running "bus-looking Tesla electric cars" on pavement, which makes it an ordinary tunnel.

Go deeper: Elon Musk shows off his first Boring tunnel in LA

Go deeper

Scoop: Gina Haspel threatened to resign over plan to install Kash Patel as CIA deputy

CIA Director Gina Haspel. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

CIA Director Gina Haspel threatened to resign in early December after President Trump cooked up a hasty plan to install loyalist Kash Patel, a former aide to Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), as her deputy, according to three senior administration officials with direct knowledge of the matter.

Why it matters: The revelation stunned national security officials and almost blew up the leadership of the world's most powerful spy agency. Only a series of coincidences — and last minute interventions from Vice President Mike Pence and White House counsel Pat Cipollone — stopped it.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus deaths reach 4,000 per day as hospitals remain in crisis mode — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden says, "We will manage the hell out of" vaccine distribution — Biden taps ex-FDA chief to lead Operation Warp Speed amid rollout of COVID plan — Widow of GOP congressman-elect who died of COVID-19 will run to fill his seat.
  3. Vaccine: Battling Black mistrust of the vaccines"Pharmacy deserts" could become vaccine deserts — Instacart to give $25 to shoppers who get vaccine.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode againFed chair: No interest rate hike coming any time soon —  Inflation rose more than expected in December.
  5. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.

John Weaver, Lincoln Project co-founder, acknowledges “inappropriate” messages

John Weaver aboard John McCain's campaign plane in February 2000. Photo: Robert Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images)

John Weaver, a veteran Republican operative who co-founded the Lincoln Project, declared in a statement to Axios on Friday that he sent “inappropriate,” sexually charged messages to multiple men.

  • “To the men I made uncomfortable through my messages that I viewed as consensual mutual conversations at the time: I am truly sorry. They were inappropriate and it was because of my failings that this discomfort was brought on you,” Weaver said.
  • “The truth is that I'm gay,” he added. “And that I have a wife and two kids who I love. My inability to reconcile those two truths has led to this agonizing place.”