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Gun rights advocates rally outside the Virginia capital building Jan. 20 in Richmond, Virginia. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) on Friday signed five gun control bills into law and repealed the state's 24-hour waiting period for individuals seeking abortions.

The big picture: A stream of progressive legislation was expected in the state, after Democrats took control of the state House and Senate in Virginia's General Assembly last year.

  • Virginia is among the most restrictive states in the country for abortions, as women are required to undergo several steps before the procedure.

Details: The gun control bills require background checks on all firearm sales in the state, allow police to temporarily take someone's firearm if they present a danger to themselves or others, require gun owners to report lost or stolen weapons, and mandate that residents only buy one handgun per month.

  • Another bill signed by Northam on Friday stipulates that those seeking abortions do not have to undergo an ultrasound before the procedure.

Flashback: Thousands of people participated in a gun-rights rally outside the state Capitol in January to protest then-proposed gun restrictions. The protest ended peacefully after Northam temporarily banned firearms at the capitol and declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the event, saying he wanted to avoid a repeat of Charlottesville.

Go deeper: Northam temporarily bans weapons from Virginia Capitol amid threats

Go deeper

California to remove word "alien" from state laws

Gov. Gavin Newsom during a September news conference in Oakland, California. Photo: Jane Tyska/Digital First Media/East Bay Times via Getty Images

California is removing the word "alien" from its state laws and replacing it with words such as "noncitizen" and "immigrant," Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) announced.

Why it matters: The word "alien" began to be used in the 1990s "as a political dog whistle to express bigotry and hatred without using traditionally racist language," per a statement from Newsom's office.

6 hours ago - Health

Axios AM Deep Dive: Covid forever

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

It was 563 days ago that the WHO declared Covid-19 a pandemic. This Axios AM Deep Dive, led by healthcare reporter Caitlin Owens, looks at our Covid future.

Federal judge blocks vaccine mandate for NYC teachers

Students are dismissed from the first day of school at PS 133 in Brooklyn on Sept. 13. Photo: Michael Nagle/Xinhua via Getty Images

A federal appeals court judge on Friday temporarily blocked New York City schools from enforcing a vaccine mandate for school employees, days before it was set to take effect, AP reports.

Driving the news: The vaccine mandate was set to begin on Monday, prompting concerns over staffing shortages in schools across the nation's largest school system.