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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

At first, it was just the Silicon Valley tech giants embracing remote work forever. Now, firms in other industries are jumping on board.

Driving the news: The Ford Motor Company is offering permanent telework as an option to all of its white-collar workers who are able to complete the tasks of their jobs remotely. That's about 30,000 of its 186,000 employees, per CBS.

Why it matters: Ford is the largest non-tech employer to double down on remote work, and the company's move is yet another sign that the pandemic has changed the way America works for good.

But Ford's move raises questions about "what the long-term effect will be of having classes of workers separated," says Jane Oates, president of WorkingNation, a nonprofit that raises awareness about the challenges facing U.S. workers, and a former Labor Department official.

  • "Will engineers be as effective if they don’t interact with line workers?"

Meanwhile, some of the companies that were quick to support telework are now calling workers back to the office.

  • Microsoft is inviting 57,000 employees back to headquarters in Redmond, Washington, according to the New York Times. Of course, they can choose to continue working from home.

Go deeper

Updated 6 hours ago - World

Death toll mounts as fighting between Israel and Hamas intensifies

Palestinian Muslims exchange wishes for Eid al-Fitr, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, near a razed building in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Lahia, on May 13. Photo: Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

At least 109 Palestinians and seven people in Israel have been killed since recent fighting between Israel's military and Hamas began Monday.

The big picture: Israel began massing troops on its border with Gaza on Thursday, launching attacks from the air and ground as Hamas continued to fire rockets into Israel.

By the numbers: Where the earmarks are wanted

Expand chart
Data: House Committee on Appropriations; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The Dallas-Fort Worth area is being targeted for the largest collective earmark request in the country, according to a detailed breakdown of overall requests released by the House Appropriations Committee.

Why it matters: House appropriators are trying to balance bipartisan momentum for infrastructure investment with "pork-barrel" spending's checkered political history. The data dump is an effort to provide transparency for what are now termed "community project funding" requests.

Democrats open to user fees for infrastructure deal

President Biden sits Thursday with Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) as they discuss his $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal. Photo: T.J. Kirkpatrick/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Some Senate Democrats are open to paying for a compromise infrastructure package by imposing user fees, including increasing the gas tax and raising money from electric car drivers through a vehicle-miles-traveled charge.

Why it matters: By inching toward the Republican position on pay-fors, some Democrats are bucking President Biden's push to offset his proposed $2.3 trillion plan by focusing only on raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy.