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McBath and Neguse at an impeachment markup hearing in December. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Colo.) and Rep. Lucy McBath (D-Ga.) will ask President Biden to appoint a national director of gun violence prevention, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: The issue — which resonates in Colorado with its dark legacy of mass shootings — comes days after the White House began to push forward on an issue activists wanted to see prioritized in his first month.  

  • "If we are not doing everything we can to ensure another Columbine, another Aurora, another Highlands Ranch, does not happen again, then we are not doing enough," Neguse said in a statement.

What they're saying: In the letter, Neguse and McBath tell Biden that "a comprehensive government approach to address this violence, will help bring our nation out from under the depths of the gun violence crisis."

  • The pair notes that "disproportionate shares of this violence [fall] on communities of color" and that those who lost their lives to gun violence jumped 10% in 2020 from 2019.
  • They highlight that "federal efforts to combat gun violence, including research on the impacts and causes of gun violence and law enforcement efforts to combat it, are siloed across agencies."

Read the full letter:

This story first appeared in the Axios Denver newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.

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Go deeper

Students vandalize and steal from schools for viral TikTok challenge

TikTok logo displayed on a phone screen in Krakow, Poland on July 18, 2021. Photo: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

A viral TikTok challenge is leading students nationwide to shatter mirrors, steal fire alarms and intentionally clog toilets, The Washington Post reports.

Driving the news: Dubbed the the “Devious Licks challenge, students are showing off their "devious licks" on TikTok — with a sped-up version of "Ski Ski BasedGod" by rapper Lil’ B playing in the background.

Axios-Ipsos poll: People of color face more environmental threats

Expand chart
Data: Axios/Ipsos poll; Note: ±2.5% margin of error; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Americans of color are much less likely than white Americans to experience good air quality or tap water or enough trees or green space in their communities, and they're more likely to face noise pollution and litter, a new Axios-Ipsos poll finds.

The big picture: Our national survey shows Black and Hispanic Americans are more likely than their white counterparts to live near major highways or industrial or manufacturing plants — and to have dealt in the past year with water-boil notices or power outages lasting more than 24 hours.

18 hours ago - Health

FDA advisory panel recommends Pfizer boosters for those 65 and older

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Key Biscayne Community Center on Aug. 24, 2021. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday overwhelmingly voted against recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for younger Americans, but unanimously recommended approving the third shots for individuals 65 and older, as well as those at high-risk of severe COVID-19.

Why it matters: While the votes are non-binding, and the FDA must still make a final decision, Friday's move pours cold water on the Biden administration's plan to begin administering boosters to most individuals who received the Pfizer vaccine later this month.