Jockeying for the two vacant FCC seats — one Republican and one Democrat — has begun.

The front-runner: Indiana state senator Brandt Hershman, who has close ties with Vice President Pence, TVNewsCheck reports and Axios confirmed with industry insiders.

Other potential candidates include Republicans who served on the FCC transition team for Trump. They all have ties to the American Enterprise Institute:

  • Jeffrey A. Eisenach
  • Mark A. Jamison
  • Roslyn Layton

Long-shot candidates, according to the report:

  • David Quinalty, an aide to Sen. John Thune
  • David Redl, aide for the House Energy and Commerce Committee
  • Keith Murphy, government relations executive at Viacom

The Democratic seat will likely go to Jessica Rosenworcel, the long-time Democratic commissioner whose term expired in December.

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Updated 21 mins ago - Politics & Policy

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President Trump has not attended a White House coronavirus task force meeting in “several months,” NIAID director Anthony Fauci told MSNBC on Friday.

Why it matters: At the beginning of the pandemic, the task force, led by Vice President Mike Pence, met every day, but in the "last several weeks," members have held virtual meetings once a week, Fauci said, even as the number of new cases continues to surge in the country.

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How to help save 130,000 lives

People wear face masks outside Grand Central Terminal in New York City. Photo: Noam Galai/Getty Images

Nearly 130,000 fewer people will die of COVID-19 this winter if 95% of Americans wear face masks in public, according to research published Friday.

Why it matters: “Increasing mask use is one of the best strategies that we have right now to delay the imposition of social distancing mandates," Dr. Christopher Murray of the University of Washington told the N.Y. Times.