U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services naturalization ceremony. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

About 13,400 employees from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will be furloughed by August due to a decline in revenue from immigration and visa application fees that help fund the agency, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: President Trump's administration has implemented many immigration policies that blocked non-Americans from entering the country's borders, separated families and delayed visas, drying up the agency's revenue.

  • Administration officials blame the pandemic for a 50% drop in fees from applications since March.
  • But, applications to USCIS by U.S. citizens seeking to bring immediate relatives to the U.S. have decreased by almost 30% from 2017 to 2019, according to the Migration Policy Institute.

Driving the news: The Trump administration announced last week it will expand entry bans into the U.S. for foreigners on certain temporary work visas — including high-skilled H-1B visas— through the end of the year.

By the numbers: The agency has turned to Congress, asking for emergency funds of $1.2 billion. Of the agency’s $4.8 billion budget, 97% comes from fees.

  • Both Democrats and Republicans said they want to prevent the furloughs and that it was possible to include additional aid into another coronavirus relief package, per NYT.

What to watch: Russell Vought, the acting White House budget director, told lawmakers the agency’s fee receipts could decrease by more than 60% by Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year.

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Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
Oct 8, 2020 - Health

Science is winning over politics on coronavirus vaccines

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Science has won out over politics in the race for a coronavirus vaccine — for now.

Why it matters: The Food and Drug Administration's end run around the White House on vaccine guidance earlier this week may end up boosting public confidence, which is very important in light of widespread vaccine skepticism.

Updated 1 hour 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: FDA approves Gilead's remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment How the pandemic might endMany U.S. deaths were avoidable.
  5. Education: Boston and Chicago send students back home for online learning.
  6. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

Early voting eclipses 2016 total with 12 days until election

People stand in line to vote early in Fairfax, Virginia in September. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Americans have cast more than 47.1 million ballots in the 2020 presidential election, surpassing the total early-vote count for 2016 with 12 days left until Election Day, according to a Washington Post analysis of voting data.

Why it matters: The election is already underway, as many states have expanded early and mail-in voting options because of the coronavirus pandemic.