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Susan Walsh / AP

"The percentage of U.S. adults without health insurance grew in the second quarter of 2017 to 11.7%," according to Gallup:

  • That translates into nearly 2 million Americans who became uninsured. The rate, measured by the Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index, hit a record low of 10.9% last year. The current rate is still 6 points lower than it was at its peak of 18% in 2013, just before the health insurance exchanges opened.
  • Why it's happening: "Rising insurance premiums could be causing some Americans to forgo insurance, especially those who fail to qualify for federal subsidies. ... [S]ome insurance companies are leaving the ACA marketplace, and the lack of competition could be driving up the cost of plans for consumers."
  • Why it matters: "The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that 22 to 23 million Americans could lose health coverage under the House and Senate proposals."

Go deeper

33 mins ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.

Scoop: Biden weighs retired General Lloyd Austin for Pentagon chief

Lloyd Austin testifying before Congress in 2015. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Joe Biden is considering retired four-star General Lloyd Austin as his nominee for defense secretary, adding him to a shortlist that includes Jeh Johnson, Tammy Duckworth and Michele Flournoy, two sources with direct knowledge of the decision-making tell Axios.

Why it matters: A nominee for Pentagon chief was noticeably absent when the president-elect rolled out his national security team Tuesday. Flournoy had been widely seen as the likely pick, but Axios is told other factors — race, experience, Biden's comfort level — have come into play.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: WHO: AstraZeneca vaccine must be evaluated on "more than a press release."
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York COVID restrictions.
  3. World: Thailand, Philippines sign deal with AstraZeneca for vaccine.
  4. Economy: Safety nets to disappear in December Black Friday shopping across the U.S., in photosAmazon hires 1,400 workers a day throughout pandemic.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.