Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Guests pay respects to the late Rep. Elijah Cummings as his remains lie in state outside the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol Oct. 24. Photo: Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images

From literary giants like Nobel laureate Toni Morrison to longtime civil servants and rights advocates like Rep. Elijah Cummings, many influential figures and pioneers left us in 2019.

Go deeper: Here are the some of the most notable from AP's "final goodbye" tribute to the leading luminaries we lost in 2019.

Frank Robinson: The first African American manager in Major League Baseball and the only player to be named MVP in the National League and the American League.

Frank Robinson's statue in Cleveland, Ohio before the 2019 MLB All-Star Game. Photo: Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

Valery Bykovsky: The pioneering Soviet-era cosmonaut flew to space three times. His first launch was in 1963.

Valery Bykovsky aboard the Salyut 6 space station during the 1978 Soyuz 31 mission. Photo: Sovfoto/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Peter Mayhew: He graced "Star Wars" fans as tall, furry, and lovable Chewbacca from "A New Hope" to 2015's "The Force Awakens."

Peter Mayhew at the world premiere of "Solo: A Star Wars Story" in May 2018. Photo: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Disney

I.M. Pei: The architect who adorned the Louvre with its iconic giant glass pyramid and designed the bold, geometric Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

I.M. Pei at the 2016 Asia Game Changers, at the United Nations New York Headquarters. Photo: Mark J Sullivan/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Murray Gell-Mann: The Nobel Prize-winning physicist helped discover subatomic particles and developed the strangeness theory and eightfold way theory.

Murray Gell-Mann during a lecture in Huazhong Normal University in 2010 in Wuhan, China. Photo: Visual China Group via Getty Images

Patricia Bath: A pioneering inventor and ophthalmologist. She was the first African American female doctor to receive a medical patent and the first African American to finish an ophthalmology residency.

"Sexism, racism, and relative poverty were the obstacles which I faced as a young girl growing up in Harlem. There were no women physicians I knew of and surgery was a male-dominated profession..."
— Bath, in a Q&A session with the National Institutes of Health

Lee Iacocca: The auto executive behind Ford's Mustang the only executive in modern times to run two of the Big Three automakers..

Lee Iacocca with the Mercedes-Benz Maybach 57 S in Beverly Hills, California. Photo: Mathew Imaging/FilmMagic

Pernell Whitaker: A four-division boxing champion and Olympic gold medalist regarded as "one of the greatest defensive fighters ever," per AP.

Pernell Whitaker at a Los Angeles press conference in 2011. Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

John Paul Stevens: Former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court "who unexpectedly emerged as the Supreme Court’s leading liberal" after being nominated as a Republican, per AP.

John Paul Stevens sits for a portrait in May 2019 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Photo: Scott McIntyre/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Edith Irby Jones: A physician, the first woman president of the National Medical Association, and the first African American student to enroll at an all-white medical school in the South, per AP.

"But I was gonna be a different kind of doctor. I was gonna be a doctor in which money wasn’t gonna to make any difference with me — that I was gonna particular see that those who did not have money — those who were less fortunate —would get the kind of care that they needed ..."
— Jones in a 2006 interview at the University of Arkansas.

Chris Kraft: Founder of NASA’s mission control and American aerospace engineer.

President Ronald Reagan briefed by Christopher Kraft at the Johnson Space Center's Mission Control Center in 1981. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Harold Prince: A Broadway director and producer who changed 20th century theater with "The Phantom of the Opera," "Cabaret," "Company" and "Sweeney Todd." He who won 21 Tony Awards.

Hal Prince at the Manhattan Theatre Club's Broadway Premiere of 'Prince of Broadway' in 2017. Photo: Walter McBride/Getty Images

Toni Morrison: A legendary American author who unblinkingly examined and exhumed America's relationship with race.

Toni Morrison at New York City's Ambassador Theatre in 2015. Photo: Kris Connor/Getty Images

Phyllis Newman: The first woman to host “The Tonight Show” and a Tony Award-winning Broadway veteran, who won the 1962 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical.

Phyllis Newman in 2015 in New York City. Photo: Monica Schipper/FilmMagic

Alexei Leonov: The Soviet cosmonaut who became the first person to perform a spacewalk.

Alexei Leonov at a 2017 news conference. Photo: Andrei Makhonin\TASS via Getty Images

Elijah E. Cummings: A sharecropper's son and civil rights champion, Cummings served in Congress for 23 years. He was head of the House Judiciary Committee and one of President Trump's strongest critics.

Cummings at the National Press Club in D.C. in August 2019. Photo: Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Sadako Ogata: Former United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and former President of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), and one of the first Japanese to hold a top job at an international organization, per AP.

Sadako Ogata receives receives the Atlantic Council's 2012 Global Citizen Award in New York. Photo: Stan Honda/AFP/GettyImages

Go deeper

Updated 42 mins ago - Health

California surpasses 50,000 COVID-19 deaths

A man prepares a funeral arrangement in in Los Angeles, California, Feb. 12. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

California's death toll from COVID-19 surpassed 50,000 on Wednesday, per Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: It's the first state to record more than 50,000 deaths from the coronavirus.

2 hours ago - Technology

Facebook bans Myanmar military

A protester holds a placard with a three-finger salute in front of a military tank parked aside the street in front of the Central Bank building during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar. Photo by Aung Kyaw Htet/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Facebook said on Wednesday it would ban the rest of the Myanmar military from its platform.

The big picture: It comes some three weeks after the military overthrew the civilian government in a coup and detained leader Aung San Suu Kyi, causing massive protests to erupt throughout the country. Military leaders have been using internet blackouts to try to maintain power in light of the coup.

It's harder to fill the Cabinet

Data: Chamberlain, 2020, "United States of America Cabinet Appointments Dataset" Chart: Will Chase/Axios

It's harder now for presidents to win Senate confirmation for their Cabinet picks, an Axios data analysis of votes for and against nominees found.

Why it matters: It's not just Neera Tanden. The trend is a product of growing polarization, rougher political discourse and slimming Senate majorities, experts say. It means some of the nation's most vital federal agencies go without a leader and the legislative authority that comes with one.

You’ve caught up. Now what?

Sign up for Mike Allen’s daily Axios AM and PM newsletters to get smarter, faster on the news that matters.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!