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John Earnest. Photo: Nelvin C. Cepeda-Pool/Getty Images

John Earnest pleaded not guilty to federal hate crime charges on Tuesday after allegedly opening fire on a synagogue in Southern California last month, reports AP.

Context: Earnest, 19, is suspected of killing 1 woman and injuring 3 others at the Chabad of Poway synagogue on April 27. The affidavit indicates that Earnest called 911 after driving away from the synagogue and said: “I just shot up a synagogue,” explaining to the police dispatcher that he did it “because Jewish people are destroying the white race.” He has pleaded not guilty to state murder charges and separately to state and federal charges of arson at an Escondido, California, mosque. Prosecutors have not determined whether they will pursue the death penalty.

Go deeper: Shooting at California synagogue during Passover celebration

Go deeper

Updated 52 mins ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Dave Lawler, author of World
1 hour ago - World

Biden holds first phone call with Putin, raises Navalny arrest

Putin takes a call in 2017. Photo: Handout/Anadolu Agency/Getty

President Biden on Tuesday held his first call since taking office with Vladimir Putin, pressing the Russian president on the arrest of opposition leader Alexey Navalny and the Russia-linked hack on U.S. government agencies.

The state of play: Biden also raised arms control, bounties allegedly placed on U.S. troops in Afghanistan and the war in Ukraine, according to a White House readout. The statement said Biden and Putin agreed maintain "consistent communication," and that Biden stressed the U.S. would "act firmly in defense of its national interests in response to actions by Russia that harm us or our allies."

Biden signs racial equity executive orders

Joe Biden prays at Grace Lutheran Church in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on September 3, 2020, in the aftermath of the police shooting of Jacob Blake. PHOTO: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Joe Biden on Tuesday signed executive orders on housing and ending the Justice Department's use of private prisons as part of what the White House is calling his “racial equity agenda.”

The big picture: Biden needs the support of Congress to push through police reform or new voting rights legislation. The executive orders serve as his down payment to immediately address systemic racism while he focuses on the pandemic.