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Photo: Chuck Kennedy / Axios

Aneesh Chopra, the United States' first chief technology officer under the Obama administration, told Axios' Mike Allen this morning that he believes expanding tech literacy is a "wildly bipartisan" issue in government today. Chopra specifically cited the work of the Jared Kushner-headed Office of American Innovation as something that "mirrors very nicely" his Obama-era tech initiatives.

A big quote: "While you'll generally see those of us in the Obama world sort of fret all of those decisions [by the Trump administration], on this topic you'll see a lot of alignment and a lot of support."

More from Chopra's conversation at Axios' Future Shapers event:

  • He noted a disconnect between the "tech frontier" of cutting edge government research and the "laggard" daily, dated tech struggles of the everyday federal employee.
  • Social media is both a benefit and risk for our society, according to Chopra, as Americans have access to a new "wealth of information" but still choose to "self select and filter out news that they don't necessarily agree with."
  • Chopra cited India's "frictionless digital society" as a goal for the United States, calling it "infrastructure for a modern age" with nationwide biometric ID cards. Of the U.S., he asked, "We have large swaths of the country that don't have any communications capacity…How are we going to add economic opportunity if we don't have basic communications infrastructure?"

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.