July 6, 2020

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), a Purple Heart recipient and Iraq War veteran, has emerged as a serious contender to be former Vice President Joe Biden's running mate, three people with knowledge of the matter told The Washington Post.

Duckworth is a "highly decorated woman," former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) told the Post, and the Biden team is taking a close look at her. Biden has promised to choose a woman as his running mate, and said he would reveal his pick by Aug. 1.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.), and Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) have all been vetted, the Post reports, and many Biden allies view Harris as the favorite. Some people with knowledge of the matter told the Post that while Duckworth is a strong choice, they don't believe she'll ultimately be selected.

Duckworth is of Thai Chinese descent, and in the wake of the anti-racism protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, many people are pushing Biden to choose a Black woman as his running mate. During an interview on CNN's State of the Union on Sunday, Duckworth said Black female voters are "a key to the victory for Democrats" and she is certain Biden "will pick the right person to be next to him as he digs this country out of the mess that Donald Trump has put us in."

Republicans are ready to pounce on Biden's eventual running mate, the Post reports, as many believe this person will be an easier target than Biden. Dan Eberhart, an oil executive and one of President Trump's donors, told the Post the GOP is "more likely than ever to hammer the Democratic vice presidential nominee. Biden is boxed in by the progressives in the party — he has to pick a woman and someone who is relatively far to the left of himself. That's going to provide natural openings for the campaign to draw contrasts." Catherine Garcia

June 30, 2020

Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper won the state's Democratic Senate primary on Tuesday, and will face off against Sen. Cory Gardner (R) in November.

Hickenlooper, who briefly ran for president last year, defeated Andrew Romanoff, a former speaker of the Colorado House. In recent weeks, Hickenlooper was fined $3,000 after an independent ethics commission said he violated state law as governor by accepting rides on a private jet and limo, and was criticized for a comment he made in 2014 comparing elected officials to Roman slaves on ships.

Hillary Clinton won Colorado in 2016. Gardner is considered one of the GOP's most vulnerable senators, and Democrats are hoping Hickenlooper will flip the seat. Catherine Garcia

February 17, 2020

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has faith in all of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, telling CNN that any one of them "would be a better president" than President Trump.

There are now eight candidates in the running for the Democratic nomination, and Pelosi said she is "grateful" to all of them for "putting themselves on the line, putting forth their ideas." She's certain of one thing: Democrats "have a better vision for America, and we must defeat Donald Trump, who does not share a vision that is about unity and unifying the country."

Pelosi said she "can't even envision a situation" where Trump would be re-elected, but Democrats still "must be unified in making sure that he does not have a second term." Catherine Garcia

January 16, 2020

Pete Buttigieg's interview with The New York Times got a little bumpy.

The former South Bend, Indiana, mayor sat down with the Times as part of the outlet's series on Democratic presidential candidates. Buttigieg's interview largely went as one would expect — he defended his choice to work at McKinsey, argued he could rally support from black voters, and outlined his stance on issues ranging from climate change to abortion.

But things got a little tense when one Times editorial board member asserted Buttigieg had "been on the front lines of corporate price fixing" by way of his consulting for Loblaws grocery stores while at McKinsey. Loblaws later admitted it had been fixing prices on bread for years.

"Whoa, whoa whoa, that's, that's, I'm sorry, that's —" said Buttigieg in response to the claim. "The proposition that I've been on front lines of corporate price fixing is bullshit. Just to get that out of the way."

"You worked for a company that was fixing bread prices," said the Times board member, Binyamin Appelbaum. "No, I worked for a consulting company that had a client that may have been involved in fixing or was apparently in a scandal. I was not aware of the Canadian bread pricing scandal until last night," he responded.

The conversation hit another snag when a Times writer said Buttigieg used to support abolishing the Electoral College, but hasn't talked about it in a while.

"So, that's false, and I reject any reporting, some of which I've seen, I believe some of it coming from this building, that suggests that I backed away from it," said the former mayor. "I talk about it in virtually every stump speech that I give."

For his final curveball question, Buttigieg was asked what he's "most likely to fail at" as president. His answer? He "might get canceled" by haters on Twitter. Read the full interview at The New York Times. Summer Meza

November 7, 2019

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is reportedly planning to file paperwork to enter the Democratic presidential primary in Alabama by Friday.

The billionaire has been weighing a bid for weeks, a Bloomberg adviser told The New York Times on Thursday, and he has not yet made a final decision on whether to launch a full-fledged campaign. Alabama has an early filing deadline to enter the race. The adviser said Bloomberg feels "the current field of candidates is not well positioned to" defeat Trump.

Bloomberg is a moderate Democrat who ran for mayor as a Republican and later became an independent. Experts say he would be capable of raising money quickly and could be a threat to former Vice President Joe Biden's candidacy. Summer Meza

February 15, 2017

Democrats counting the days until the 2020 election might want to curb their enthusiasm, a new Politico/Morning Consult poll has found. In a hypothetical election, President Trump would win his re-election if he ran against Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) by a margin of 42 percent to 36 percent. That margin is "fairly impressive … for a less-than-popular president against the prominent senator," Politico notes.

Politico/Morning Consult has shown Trump with higher favorability than other polls for a number of reasons, with 49 percent of voters approving of his presidency, while 45 percent disapprove in the most recent survey. But "it looks like Trump's [honeymoon period] is ending," said Morning Consult co-founder and chief research officer Kyle Dropp. "The slate of bad news for the administration is catching up to him, although its important to note that his approval rating remains sky-high among people who voted for him in November."

That won't necessarily be enough. Even with Trump beating Warren in a hypothetical election, 43 percent of voters say they would vote for a "nameless" Democrat in 2020. Just a third say they'll definitely vote for Trump. Approximately a quarter of voters think Trump is the worst president of the last 100 years.

The poll was conducted on Feb. 9 and 10, after Warren was silenced by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and reached 1,791 registered voters. The margin of error is plus or minus 2 points. Read the full results here. Jeva Lange

January 5, 2017

Mark Zuckerberg 2020? It might not be so far-fetched. The Facebook founder has made quite a few moves in the past six months that look like someone preparing a political campaign, Wired points out.

In addition to Zuckerberg's New Year's resolution to "get out and talk to more people about how they're living, working, and thinking about the future," the billionaire and former atheist has also come out as believing religion is "very important." "Given that it's accepted wisdom in American politics that someone who is not religious can never be elected president of the United States, could this be #positioning?" Wired wonders.

Then there is this bit:

In June during Facebook's annual meeting, company shareholders voted to approve a restructuring of Facebook stock that would ensure Zuckerberg keeps his majority ownership even if the company issues more shares … But buried in the public filing is one big exception, one that Zuckerberg reportedly fought hard for: he can take a leave of absence from Facebook and still retain voting control of the company if he goes to work for the government. More specifically, as long as Zuckerberg owns enough of Facebook — 30 percent or more of shares he owned at the time of signing the stock restructuring agreement — he can serve in government. And if he owns less than 30 percent, he just needs board approval. If he doesn't get that, he can still serve in public office if the government position has a two-year term limit. (A Facebook representative confirmed this is how the agreement works.) [Wired]

Of course, Zuckerberg could be joining a crowded field: Cory Booker might also toss in his hat — and there is always Kanye West. Jeva Lange

January 4, 2017

Rapper Kanye West claimed he will run for president in 2020. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced plans to travel to all 50 states in 2017 and "get out and talk to more people about how they're living, working, and thinking about the future." And here's a new name for 2020 gossips to add to their lists: New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker (D).

Of course, the New Hampshire interview might have just been out of Booker's interest in, um, local TV stations:

Booker might be advised to make a stop in Nevada, too. You know, because it's nice this time of year. Jeva Lange

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