Feb 22, 2018

Rubio takes new gun control positions in intense town hall

Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

Sen. Marco Rubio was the lone Republican official to accept an invitation to participate in a CNN town hall with teachers, students and families affected by the mass shooting in Parkland Florida, and he faced intense questioning over his positions on gun control and NRA contributions.

Why it matters: Rubio expressed a new openness to certain gun control proposals. He didn't shift on two big issues — he won't support an assault weapons ban, and he won't pledge to turn down NRA donations. But he did say he'd be open to age limits and mental health checks for gun purchasers, as well as limiting the sizes of magazine clips. He also said he doesn't agree with arming teachers, which is something President Trump advocated for Wednesday.

Correction: This post previously said Rubio changed his position on gun violence restraining orders. He did not have a position on the issue until earlier this week, when he expressed support.

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Biden formally secures Democratic presidential nomination

Joe Biden speaks at Delaware State University's student cente on June 5. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden became the formal Democratic presidential nominee on Friday evening, per AP.

The big picture: Biden has been the presumptive frontrunner to take on President Trump since Sen. Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign in early April.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 6,724.516 — Total deaths: 394,018 — Total recoveries — 2,996,832Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 1,894,753 — Total deaths: 109,042 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: WHCA president says White House violated social-distancing guidelines to make reporters "a prop" — Jailing practices contribute to spread.
  4. Sports: How coronavirus could reshuffle the sports calendar.
  5. Jobs: Better-than-expected jobs report boosts stock market.
  6. Media: The Athletic lays off 8% of staff, implements company-wide pay cut.

Scoop: German foreign minister to travel to Israel with warning on annexation

Heiko Maas. Photo: Michael Kappeler/picture alliance via Getty Images

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is expected to travel to Israel next week to warn that there will be consequences if Israeli leaders move forward with plans to annex parts of the West Bank, Israeli officials and European diplomats tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli and European officials agree that if Israel goes ahead with unilateral annexation, the EU will respond with sanctions.