Mar 5, 2019

Rand Paul equates mandatory vaccinations with "giving up liberty"

Sen. Rand Paul. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), an ophthalmologist, equated government-mandated vaccinations to "giving up on liberty for a false sense of security" at a Senate Health Committee hearing on Tuesday.

"I'm not here to say don't vaccinate your kids. If this hearing is for persuasion I'm all for the persuasion. I've vaccinated myself and I've vaccinated my kids. For myself and my children I believe that the benefits of vaccines greatly outweigh the risks, but I still don't favor giving up on liberty for a false sense of security."
— Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)

Details: The hearing sought to address the role vaccines play in preventable disease outbreaks, and included witnesses such as Ethan Lindenberger, who had himself inoculated at 18 against his parents' wishes. At chairman Lamar Alexander's (R-Tenn.) prompting, the hearing also addressed the now-retracted 12-person study published in 1998 that is partly responsible for the ongoing false belief that the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine causes autism.

Go deeper: Long-term measles vaccine study shows no link with autism — again

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Trump administration backs Oracle in Google fight

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo via The Washington Post.

The Trump administration is siding with Oracle in the database giant's dispute with Google before the Supreme Court — a move that comes as Oracle's founder hosts a high-dollar fundraiser for the president.

Why it matters: Billions of dollars — and, Google argues, the future of software innovation — are at stake as a long-running copyright dispute between the two giant companies heads to the Supreme Court next month.

Established VCs turn to "super angels" to grow their network

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Thanks to companies like AngelList and Carta that make it easier than ever to set up small VC funds, a new generation of so-called “super angels” is cropping up — and established venture funds are backing them.

Why it matters: Just like the boom in scout programs a number of years ago, it’s all about the deal flow.

Scoop: Top NSC official reassigned to Energy Department amid "Anonymous" fallout

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates will be reassigned as a senior adviser to Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette, the National Security Council said Thursday — and a senior White House official said that the administration "rejects" the rumors that she is "Anonymous."

Why it matters: Coates has battled claims that she is the still-unknown Trump administration official that penned a New York Times op-ed and book critical of President Trump.