Apr 26, 2019

Maria Butina sentenced to 18 months in prison

Maria Butina speaks during a press conference in Moscow in 2013. Photo: STR/AFP/Getty Images

Maria Butina, the first Russian national convicted for seeking to influence U.S. politics during the 2016 campaign, was sentenced to 18 months in prison — with credit for nine months already served — on Friday.

The backdrop: Butina pled guilty last year to working with her American boyfriend, Republican operative Paul Erickson, to infiltrate the NRA and other conservative circles for the purpose of influencing U.S. policy on behalf of the Kremlin. As reported by NPR, Butina's case was handled separately from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Go deeper: The curious case of the alleged American "spy" detained in Russia

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Coronavirus stress tests drug industry's dependence on China

A Hong Kong commuter wears a face mask. Photo: Miguel Candela/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

It's unclear whether the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus will actually result in prescription drug shortages, but it has undoubtedly highlighted the potential vulnerabilities of having the supply chain for American drugs so dependent on China.

Driving the news: About 150 prescription drugs — including antibiotics, generics and some branded drugs without alternatives — are at risk of shortage if the coronavirus outbreak in China worsens, per two sources familiar with a list of at-risk drugs compiled by the Food and Drug Administration.

Go deeperArrow31 mins ago - Health

Bernie's path to the presidency

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks yesterday during a rally at Houston University. Photo: Mark Felix/AFP via Getty Images

Lots of Democrats are in full panic that Bernie Sanders will win the nomination and get clobbered in the general election — and bring the party down, too. But the evidence, particularly the polling, doesn't back those doomsday warnings.

Why it matters: Virtually every national and swing state poll shows Sanders tied with or beating President Trump.  And, unlike every rival, he has a huge base of fervent, unshakable supporters he can only grow.

These swing voters don't like Trump’s environmental rollbacks

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Swing voters in four battleground states decisively oppose President Trump’s sweeping rollbacks of environmental regulations — but it’s unlikely to sway their votes.

Why it matters: It’s voters living in states like these, including Florida and Pennsylvania, who fill pivotal roles electing America’s presidents, so we should listen.