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California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Jane Tyska/Digital First Media/The Mercury News via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday that the state will no longer pursue plans to build an estimated $77 billion high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco because the project "would cost too much and respectfully take too long," per the AP.

Driving the news: Newsrom said the state will instead focus on the Central Valley part of the route, from Merced to Bakersfield.

The big picture: The project was years behind schedule with an estimated completion date of 2033.

  • It had been hamstrung by political backlash in the state, and polling showed that a majority of Californians disapproved of the plan as costs ballooned.
  • Similar proposals for high-speed trains on the East Coast, including along the heavily trafficked Northeast Corridor between Washington, D.C., and Boston, have also fallen apart due to opposition and massive cost estimates, per the New York Times.

Go deeper: The U.S. still has a long way to go on high-speed rail

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Here come Earmarks 2.0

DeLauro at a hearing in May 2020. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The House Appropriations Committee is preparing to restore a limited version of earmarks, which give lawmakers power to direct spending to their districts to pay for special projects.

Why it matters: A series of scandals involving members in both parties prompted a moratorium on earmarks in 2011. But Democrats argue it's worth the risk to bring them back because earmarks would increase their leverage to pass critical legislation with a narrow majority, especially infrastructure and spending bills.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
2 hours ago - Energy & Environment

UN says Paris carbon-cutting plans fall far short

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Nations' formal emissions-cutting pledges are collectively way too weak to put the world on track to meet the Paris climate deal's temperature-limiting target, a United Nations tally shows.

Driving the news: This morning the UN released an analysis of the most recent nationally determined contributions (NDCs) — that is, countries' medium-term emissions targets submitted under the 2015 pact.

Biden condemns Russian aggression on 7th anniversary of Crimea annexation

Putin giving a speech in Sevastapol, Crimea, in 2020. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

President Biden reaffirmed U.S. support for the people of Ukraine and vowed to hold Russia accountable for its aggression in a statement on Friday, the 7th anniversary of Russia's 2014 invasion of Crimea.

Why it matters: The statement reflects the aggressive approach Biden is taking to Russia, which he classified on the campaign trail as an "opponent" and "the biggest threat" to U.S. security and alliances.