Terry Renna / AP

Don't take my word for it — check out this piece that posted today from MIT Technology Review, that shameless clickbait factory. No, it's not something that's happening right now, and the piece doesn't give any evidence that NASA is actively considering it. But it is something that a few scientists are starting to think about — because it might be a way to solve some of the health hazards of long-term space travel:

  • You can't send people to Mars without radiating them to a crisp.
  • That's one of the biggest problems to solve if people ever want to visit Mars, other than how to physically get there.
  • But what if someone could be genetically re-engineered to be radiation-proof?

Yes, but: Where to begin? It's a long way off, sort of far-fetched, and it raises all of the ethical concerns scientists are already worrying about with gene editing. But some futurists say they should make an exception for space travel. "You can't send someone to another planet without genetically protecting them if you are able to," said Weill Cornell Medicine's Christopher Mason, one scientist who's thinking about it. "That would also be unethical."

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Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m. ET: 33,832,124 — Total deaths: 1,010,642 — Total recoveries: 23,507,536Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m. ET: 7,227,779 — Total deaths: 206,859 — Total recoveries: 2,840,688 — Total tests: 103,155,189Map.
  3. Education: School-aged children now make up 10% of all U.S COVID-19 cases.
  4. Health: The coronavirus' alarming impact on the body.
  5. Business: Real-time data show economy's rebound slowing but still going.
  6. Sports: Steelers-Titans NFL game delayed after coronavirus outbreak.

Over 73 million people watched the first debate on TV

Data: Nielsen; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

More than 73.1 million people watched the first presidential debate on television on Tuesday night, according to Nielsen ratings.

Why it matters: While that's a sizable audience for any American TV program, it's down more than 13% from the record number of TV viewers who tuned in for the first debate of the 2016 election. The chaotic nature of the debate and the overall uncertainty around this year's election may have pushed some viewers away.

Senate passes bill funding government through December

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnel. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The Senate on Tuesday passed legislation to fund the federal government through Dec. 11, by a vote of 84-10.

Where it stands: The legislation will avert a government shutdown before funding expires Wednesday night and before the Nov. 3 election. The House passed the same measure last week by a vote of 359-57 after House Democrats and the Trump administration agreed on the resolution.

  • Both sides agreed early in negotiations that the bill should be a "clean" continuing resolution — meaning each party would only make small changes to existing funding levels so the measure would pass through both chambers quickly, Axios' Alayna Treene reported last week. The bill now goes to President Trump for his signature.