AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File

For the past decade, Google has been quietly funding academic research papers that support its defense against regulatory oversight, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Google has reportedly paid stipends ranging from $5,000 to $400,000 for papers on topics such as the legality of its user data collection, though its financial backing hasn't always been disclosed by researchers.

Why it matters: The program is yet another facet of the tech giant's efforts to influence Washington and its business interests. And as WSJ points out, Google is not the only tech company to do this — others like Microsoft and Qualcomm have also sought to gain influence by funding academic papers.

Update: Google has responded to the latest report by the Campaign for Accountability (in part funded by Oracle) in a blog post. The report was part of the WSJ's reporting.

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Mayors plan multifront attack on census shutdown

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A growing number of mayors are banding together to fight what they consider to be an inaccurate and abruptly curtailed 2020 census, using an arsenal of legal, legislative and congressional efforts.

Why it matters: The outcome may determine whether President Trump or Joe Biden controls the redistricting process, which governs everything from congressional representation and redistricting to funding for schools and Head Start.

Moderator Kristen Welker will not control mics during final presidential debate

President Trump and Joe Biden at the first presidential debate in September. Photo: Scott Olson via Getty Images

A producer from the Commission on Presidential Debates will manage the operation of the candidates' microphones during Thursday's final presidential debate — not the event's moderator, NBC's Kristen Welker — a source with knowledge of the event told Axios.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Alexi McCammond: Given President Trump's accusations of partisanship against the other debates' moderators, it makes sense that Welker would want to steer clear of any such optics during her stint in the chair.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Chris Christie: Wear a mask "or you may regret it — as I did" — Senate Democrats block vote on McConnell's targeted relief bill.
  2. Business: New state unemployment filings fall.
  3. Economy: Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet).
  4. Health: Many U.S. deaths were avoidable — The pandemic is getting worse again.
  5. Education: Boston and Chicago send students back home for online learning.
  6. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.