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Evan Vucci / AP

President Trump held a listening session on the nation's opioid epidemic at the White House this morning, tapping New Jersey Governor Chris Christie — whom Trump branded an "immediate endorser" of his campaign — as the head of an initiative to tackle drug addiction. Also present were Cabinet members Jeff Sessions, Betsy DeVos, and John Kelly, as well as a broader group of politicians and experts that included New York Yankees legend Mariano Rivera.

Trump pledged to "[bring] together people terribly affected by this terrible epidemic" and promised an attendee whose son died of an overdose that "he will not have died in vain."

Christie branded addiction "a disease that can be treated," comparing it with cancer and diabetes while noting that "people are afraid and ashamed to talk about drug addiction."

Why Christie? He was an early advocate in the GOP primaries for changing how America deals with drug addicts.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - World

Islamic State claims responsibility for deadly bombing in southern Afghanistan

The mosque after the explosion in southern Kandahar province on Oct. 15. Photo: Murteza Khaliqi/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for a massive blast that tore through a crowded Shiite mosque in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar on Friday, killing at least 47 people and injuring dozens more, AP reports.

Why it matters: Friday's attack was the deadliest to strike Afghanistan since the U.S. withdrew its troops from the region and is the second major attack on a Shiite mosque in a week, underscoring the Taliban's growing security threat from other militant groups.

New wave of strikes will test worker power

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Thousands of John Deere workers hit the picket line this week after the union smacked down a new worker contract from the farm and equipment maker.

Why it matters: There’s a wave of worker angst spreading across the country. They wield new power that’s come with a historic worker shortage.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
5 hours ago - Technology

The smart city comes of age

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Better sensors, more intelligent AI, and the coming wave of 5G wireless could finally fulfill the promise of the smart city.

Why it matters: How we organize, run and power our cities will be increasingly important in the years ahead, as urbanization expands and the damaging effects of climate change compound.