Bernardo De Niz / AP

The issue:

23,000 people died in Mexico's drug wars in 2016, making it the second-deadliest country — just behind Syria, whose civil war claimed 50,000 casualties. And the number of homicides are continuing to grow as Mexico's drug wars increasingly become more violent, per CNN.

The facts:
  • War-torn countries like Iraq and Afghanistan had 17,00 and 16,00 casualties, respectively, in 2016.
  • Drug cartel rivalries became increasingly violent, leading to a rise in homicides in 22 of Mexico's 32 states during 2016.
  • U.S. drug sales in Mexico generate an estimated $19 to $29 billion annually for Mexican drug cartels.
Why it matters:

U.S. authorities have been fighting Mexican drug cartels since the beginning of the modern drug trade in the Americas. Meanwhile thousands of bystanders, people who refuse to join cartels, migrants, journalists, and government officials are increasingly being killed.

Go deeper

Supreme Court expands religious freedoms in schools, employment

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Supreme Court ended its term with a series of rulings on religion's role in schools, the workplace and access to health care.

Why it matters: The decisions elevated protections for people and employers of faith, while curtailing those of religion teachers, the nonreligious taxpayer and women who rely on their workplaces' health care plans for contraception.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 12,573,041 — Total deaths: 561,865 — Total recoveries — 6,915,740Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 3,213,902 — Total deaths: 134,420 — Total recoveries: 983,185 — Total tested: 38,919,421Map.
  3. Public health: Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter: "Please wear a mask to save lives" Fauci hasn't briefed Trump on the coronavirus pandemic in at least two months — We're losing the war on the coronavirus.
  4. Food: How the coronavirus pandemic boosted alternative meat.
  5. Sports: Charge of "money grab" by college football.
  6. World: India reimposes lockdowns as coronavirus cases soar.
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Rural America has its own coronavirus problem.

Scoop: Don Jr. plans convention-week Biden book

Cover via Don Jr.

Donald Trump Jr., in quarantine since girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle tested positive for the coronavirus, says he's used the time to finish a book that he'll self-publish the week of the Republican convention, at the end of August.

What he's saying: Don Jr., whose controversial blasts connect with President Trump's base, told me in a phone interview that "Liberal Privilege" will be his effort to paint a picture of Joe Biden and his record that the press ignores.