Jan 23, 2017

Key senator rolls out his tech agenda

Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP

Sen. John Thune, who chairs the Senate's powerful Commerce Committee, announced his tech plans for the next two years at conference on Monday:

  • Passing a bill to encourage the deployment of government-held wireless airwaves
  • Doing more to expand internet access through standalone laws and in President Trump's rumored infrastructure plan
  • Using legislation to settle the long-running debate over how to protect net neutrality, or the idea that all content should be treated equally by internet providers
  • Overhauling the laws governing the FCC
  • Keeping an eye on the development of self-driving cars.

The bigger picture: Many of Thune's priorities line up with those of his House counterpart, Oregon Republican Greg Walden. The question now is how they will work together on issues like broadband deployment and net neutrality. Thune will work closely with newly-named FCC chairman Ajit Pai, who also opposes net neutrality and has been in favor of overhauling the agency.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 6,800,604 — Total deaths: 396,591 — Total recoveries — 2,785,268Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 1,908,235 — Total deaths: 109,443 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: Some people are drinking and inhaling cleaning products in attempt to fight coronavirus Fauci: "Very concerned" about spread of virus amid George Floyd protests — Cities offer free testing for protesters.
  4. Tech: The pandemic is accelerating next-generation disease diagnostics — Robotics looks to copy software-as-a-service model as use of robots accelerates.
  5. Business: Sports, film production in California to resume June 12 after 3-month hiatus
  6. Education: Students and teachers flunked remote learning.

George Floyd updates

A protester holds a placard reading "Covid kills People, Racism kills Communities" as they attend a demonstration in Manchester, northern England, on June 6, to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of the killing of George Floyd. Photo: Paul Ellis/Contributor.

Thousands are gathering for a day of protests in Washington, D.C., almost two weeks after George Floyd's killing. Protesters in Australia and Europe staged anti-racism demonstrations on Saturday as well.

What's happening: A memorial service for Floyd is taking place in Raeford, North Carolina — near where he was born. Gov. Roy Cooper ordered all flags to fly at half-staff to honor Floyd until sunset. Thousands of demonstrators have gathered in Philadelphia and Chicago.

Buffalo police officers arrested after shoving 75-year-old protester

Photo: Mike Desmond/WBFO via AP

Two Buffalo police officers were charged with assault on Saturday after a video emerged of them shoving a 75-year-old protester while clearing a demonstration in the wake of George Floyd's killing, AP reports, citing prosecutors.

The state of play: Both officers pleaded not guilty to second-degree assault, and were released without bail. After the law enforcement officers were initially suspended without pay on Friday, all 57 officers on the Buffalo Police Department's Emergency Response Team resigned in a show of support for their fellow officers' suspensions.