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

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Former Alaska Governor and 2008 Republican party Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin a in Denver, Colorado, in 2016. Photo: Jason Connolly /AFP via Getty Images

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) urged Americans to "use common sense to avoid spreading" COVID-19, including wearing masks, as she told People Magazine Wednesday that she previously tested positive for the virus.

Why it matters: The influential conservative firebrand and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee's comments come at a time when some GOP lawmakers have gone against health officials' guidance on face coverings and other suggested precautions.

"My case is perhaps one of those that proves anyone can catch this."

What she's saying: Palin said she tested positive for the coronavirus after her 12-year-old son showed symptoms, though she did not say when this was.

  • The 57-year-old revealed she lost her sense of taste and smell in the interview, during which she came out in support of wearing face masks.
  • "Through it all, I view wearing that cumbersome mask indoors in a crowd as not only allowing the newfound luxury of being incognito, but trust it's better than doing nothing to slow the spread,” she said.
  • "And history will show we Masked Singer visitors were masked before being masked was cool," Palin added, in reference to her appearance on the TV show.

Go deeper

The new cold war panic

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The world has seen a power struggle between nuclear powers before, and has seen those countries inch closer to military conflict. But it's never before seen a cold war between two countries as interconnected — with each other and with the rest of the globe — as the U.S. and China.

Why it matters: Escalating antagonism between the world's two superpowers is likely to hinder global cooperation to fight climate change, divert resources to costly arms and tech races, complicate diplomacy for U.S. allies, and victimize Chinese and American citizens living in each other's countries.

Parkland shooting victims' families settle suit with school district

A makeshift memorial outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on Feb. 14, 2020. Photo: Matias J. Ocner/Miami Herald/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Families and survivors of a 2018 mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Fla., reached a $25 million settlement in their lawsuit against the Broward County school district Monday, per the South Florida SunSentinel.

Why it matters: The deal was reached in the suit over the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High after the school district won a Florida Supreme Court ruling that could have capped damages at $300,000 in total without approval from the state legislature, AP notes.

Texas Republicans pass new congressional maps in their favor

Photo: Matthew Busch/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Texas House voted 84-59 late Monday to approve new congressional district maps that reduce the number of districts with Black and Hispanic majorities, per the Texas Tribune.

Why it matters: The legislation comes after recent census figures found Texas' growing diverse population doesn't bode well for Republicans, who then worked to protect incumbents with the redrawn maps.

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