Updated Aug 21, 2018

Texting is changing the game for political campaigns

A woman after a Bikers for Trump rally. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

"Texting is quietly changing American political campaigns while regulators, politicians, and the voters are scrambling to catch up," Vice News' Alex Thompson reports.

Why it matters: "Largely free of government regulation, texts could be the next pipeline for unaccountable money to flow into American politics, much like social media advertising in 2016."

What's new in 2018: The actual peer-to-peer texting tech allows political campaigns "to text tens of millions of people without asking permission first, a change from past text message advertising campaigns."

Bottom line: Texting “will be the difference between winning and losing a close race in 2018,” Gary Colby, director of digital advertising and fundraising for Trump in 2016 and co-founder of Opn Sesame, told Vice.

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America's future looks a lot like Nevada

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Today's Nevada caucus will foreshadow the future of American politics well beyond 2020.

Why it matters: The U.S. is in the midst of a demographic transformation, and the country's future looks a lot like Nevada's present. Today's results, in addition to shaping the 2020 race, will help tell us where politics is headed in a rapidly changing country.

Coronavirus spreads to more countries, and U.S. ups its case count

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus continues to spread to more nations, and the U.S. reports a doubling of its confirmed cases to 34 — while noting those are mostly due to repatriated citizens, emphasizing there's no "community spread" yet in the U.S. Meanwhile, Italy reported its first virus-related death on Friday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 2,359 people and infected more than 77,000 others, mostly in mainland China. New countries to announce infections recently include Israel, Lebanon and Iran.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 14 hours ago - Health