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People take part in a rally at the steps of City Hall after New York City Council. Photo: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration issued a ban on Thursday on fruit and mint-flavored vaping cartridges like the pods made by Juul, but with exemptions for tobacco and menthol.

Why it matters: The ban is meant to curb e-cigarette use among children who have been attracted to cartridge vapes due to their flavors, cheap price and concealing features of size and small vape clouds.

"The United States has never seen an epidemic of substance use arise as quickly as our current epidemic of youth use of e-cigarettes. HHS is taking a comprehensive, aggressive approach to enforcing the law passed by Congress, under which no e-cigarettes are currently on the market legally.”
— Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar

The big picture: The Trump administration is keeping vape shop owners in mind with this new rule, which will not apply to the sale of flavored vials for tank vaping systems, the New York Times reports. President Trump has previously expressed concern for business owners.

  • Juul already announced months ago that it would no longer sell flavored cartridges in-store and online in anticipation of a federal ban.
  • The FDA said it still could authorize non-menthol or tobacco flavors if it meets "applicable standards."
  • Companies that don't cease sale of these products within 30 days risk FDA "enforcement actions," according to the new policy.

The other side: Heads of several major public health organizations who had met with President Trump in November said they were "disappointed" in the new guidelines and accused the administration of siding with industry and lobbyists.

  • On a media call Thursday, presidents and CEOs of physician and medical associations expressed concern that children will migrate to menthol and tobacco cartridges or that more will start using tank systems.
  • Matthew Meyers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids: "There is an illusion out there that vape shops don’t allow people of a certain certain age into them. ... More kids who purchase e-cigarettes today purchase them from vape shops and they have the worst track record for selling to underage youth. There’s no reason to think that’s going to change."
  • Meredith Berkman, co-founder of Parents Against Vaping E-cigs: "We sat in that meeting, all of us, and we heard from the president just how much he cared and how much he wanted to protect our kids. ... This really feels like a betrayal."

Go deeper:

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 10 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.”