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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump signed Friday a bipartisan $8 billion deal to provide emergency funding to combat the coronavirus outbreak.

The big picture: The Senate passed the bill 96-1 on Thursday, after it flew through the House 415-2 on Wednesday afternoon — marking a rare moment of congressional unity in the face of a public health crisis.

  • Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) and Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) were the only members of Congress to vote against the package.
  • Paul, a deficit hawk, sought to introduce an amendment that would take the funding from the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development, but it was voted down 80-16.

The bill includes:

  • $3 billion for developing treatments, including $300 million for the government to purchase drugs from manufacturers at “fair and reasonable” prices.
  • $2.2 billion for public health measures to help prevent its spread.
  • More than $1 billion to be sent overseas.

What they're saying: "This should not be about politics. This is about doing our job to protect the American people from a potential pandemic," said Senate Appropriations Chair Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), per NBC News.

  • "We worked together to craft an aggressive and comprehensive response that provides the resources the experts say they need to combat this crisis. I thank my colleagues for their cooperation and appreciate President Trump’s eagerness to sign this legislation and get the funding out the door without delay," Shelby said.

The state of play: The agreed-upon package is larger than the $2.5 billion that the Trump administration had originally asked for to combat the virus — and slightly less than the $8.5 billion counter offered up by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

  • The deal comes as the virus continues to spread domestically, with more than 100 confirmed cases and 11 deaths.

Go deeper: The latest developments with the coronavirus

Go deeper

27 mins ago - World

Jimmy Lai among Hong Kong pro-democracy leaders sentenced to prison

Students standing under a banner during a flag raising ceremony on the first annual National Security Education Day in Hong Kong. Photo: Vernon Yuen/NurPhoto via Getty Images

A Hong Kong court sentenced a group of pro-democracy activists to up to 18 months in prison Friday for organizing a massive unauthorized protest in August 2019 that drew an estimated 1.7 million people, AP reports.

Why it matters: Critics say the sentences send the message that even peaceful pro-democracy activism will be severely punished. They mark a continuation of Beijing's overhaul of Hong Kong's political structure, designed to crack down opposition to the Chinese Communist Party.

Local news moves to the inbox

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A slew of new companies are launching platforms for local newsletters, a shift that could help finally bring the local news industry into the digital era.

Driving the news: Substack, the email publishing platform for independent journalists, on Thursday announced a new local news platform.

J&J vaccine pause hurts its reputation

Reproduced from Economist/YouGov poll; Chart: Axios Visuals

Americans' confidence in the safety of Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine took a big dip this week after the pause in its use, per new YouGov polling, even though the risk of blood clots following the shot is extremely low, if it exists at all.

Why it matters: For the majority of people, particularly high-risk Americans, getting the J&J shot is almost certainly less dangerous than remaining vulnerable to the coronavirus.

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