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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg knows there is pressure on him to testify before Congress and believes he is likely to do so in the coming weeks, according to a source familiar with his thinking. And Facebook has been having conversations with committee staffers for days about setting up a Zuckerberg appearance, a congressional source familiar with the matter told Axios.

Why it matters: This will be a major confrontation between Zuckerberg and his DC critics. The company's data practices have been under scrutiny since it was revealed that the Trump-linked Cambridge Analytica illicitly gathered its users information. It also puts pressure on Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to appear, as well.

CNN reported earlier in the day that the social network founder was anticipating having to face lawmakers.

Yes, but: No committees have said publicly that Zuckerberg is confirmed. Details are important here. That includes what committees Zuckerberg agrees to talk to — three have invited him so far, possibly with more to come — and whether anyone appears alongside on him.

  • Bloomberg reported that he would appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on April 12, two days after a hearing that the Senate Judiciary Committee wants Zuckerberg to attend.
  • The House panel's spokesperson, Elena Hernendez, threw some cold water on that report in a statement: "Reports of Mr. Zuckerberg’s confirmed attendance are incorrect. The committee is continuing to work with Facebook to determine a day and time for Mr. Zuckerberg to testify."

Go deeper

Updated 6 hours ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 7 hours ago - Science

This powerful new accelerator looks for keys to the center of atoms

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Nuclear physicists trying to piece together how atoms are built are about to get a powerful new tool.

Why it matters: When the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams begins experiments later this spring, physicists from around the world will use the particle accelerator to better understand the inner workings of atoms that make up all the matter that can be seen in the universe.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: FDA OKs antiviral drug remdesivir for non-hospitalized COVID patients — Walensky: CDC language "pivoting" on "fully vaccinated" — Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Teens and adults missed 37 million vaccinations during COVID — Team USA 100% vaccinated against COVID ahead of Beijing Olympics — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America — Annual COVID vaccine preferable to boosters, says Pfizer CEO.
  3. Politics: Arizona governor sues Biden administration over COVID funds tied to mandates — Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults — Beijing officials urge COVID-19 "emergency mode" before Winter Olympics.
  5. Variant tracker