clinton

With the entrance of former Vice President Joe Biden into the 2020 Democratic presidential contest on Thursday, the field is largely set, with all the big names included.

The sprawling Democratic field features candidates ranging from 37 to 77 years old; liberals and moderates; senators, governors and mayors; and an unprecedented number of women and minorities. Democrats view the upcoming election as a must-win, and they’re looking to nominate someone who is their best hope to beat President Donald Trump.

Here are the 20 candidates:

JOE BIDEN

Age: 76

Best known for: Being former President Barack Obama’s vice president from 2009 to 2017 and U.S. senator from Delaware from 1973 to 2009.

Biggest strength: He’s well-known nationally and popular in some places Democrats have lost recently, such as working-class swing states Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, his birthplace.

Biggest weakness: Biden would be the oldest person ever elected president, with a nearly five-decade record for opponents to comb through, at a time many in his party are clamoring for a new generation to take the reins. The notoriously chatty former senator also tends to commit verbal gaffes and faced recent accusations by some women of uninvited, though nonsexual, touching.

CORY BOOKER

Age: 49

Best known for: Serving as mayor of Newark and, currently, U.S. senator from New Jersey. He made headlines last year during his self-proclaimed “‘I am Spartacus’ moment” as he flouted Senate rules against disclosing confidential documents during Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation fight.

Biggest strength: His optimistic, unity-first attitude could resonate at a time of deep political divisions.

Biggest weakness: Trying to convince voters that he’s tough enough to take on Trump.

PETE BUTTIGIEG

Age: 37

Best known for: Serving as mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and being a former Naval intelligence officer.

Biggest strength: He’s won over voters and many skeptics with his intelligence and an articulate yet plain-spoken speaking style. He’s also shown an ability to inspire voters of different ages with a message of hope and “a new generation of leadership” and has been able to raise millions more than many of his Democratic rivals.

Biggest weakness: His youth and lack of political experience — his only public office has been leading the community of about 100,000 people — will give some voters pause. He also will need to ramp up his campaign operations and do more to appeal to minority voters in order to maintain his early momentum.

JULIAN CASTRO

Age: 44

Best Known for: Serving as Health and Human Services secretary during President Barack Obama’s second term and as the mayor of San Antonio, Texas, for five years.

Biggest strength: His youthfulness and status as the only Latino in the race could help him win the votes of Democrats looking for a new face of their party.

Biggest weakness: His fundraising lags well behind other contenders.

JOHN DELANEY

Age: 56

Best known for: Being a former congressman from Maryland.

Biggest strength: He has rolled out a rural-focus policy that includes proposals to strengthen family farmers and rural infrastructure, a plan that could play well in the battleground Rust Belt states won by Trump.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition.

TULSI GABBARD

Age: 38

Best known for: Serving as a U.S. representative for Hawaii; the first American Samoan and first Hindu to be elected to Congress.

Biggest strength: Her military service in Iraq and Kuwait with the Hawaii National Guard.

Biggest weakness: She has been criticized for traveling to Syria in 2017 to meet with Syrian President Bashar Assad, who has been accused of war crimes and even genocide. She was also forced to apologize for her past work advocating against gay rights.

KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND

Age: 52

Best known for: The senator from New York is one of her chamber’s most vocal members on issues of sexual harassment, military sexual assault, equal pay for women and family leave.

Biggest strength: Not being afraid to defy her own party in the #MeToo era, calling early for Democratic Sen. Al Franken’s resignation over sexual misconduct allegations and saying Bill Clinton should have voluntary left the presidency over an affair with intern Monica Lewinsky.

Biggest weakness: Sluggish campaign fundraising in the wake of some unpleasant #MeToo headlines of her own, with Gillibrand acknowledging there were “post-investigation human errors” made when her Senate office investigated allegations of sexual misconduct against various staffers.

KAMALA HARRIS

Age: 54

Best known for: The former California attorney general is now the junior U.S. senator from California, known for her rigorous questioning of Trump’s nominees.

Biggest strength: As the one black woman in the race, she’s able to tap into networks like historically black colleges and universities and her Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority that haven’t been fully realized before.

Biggest weakness: Her prosecutorial record has come under scrutiny amid a push for criminal justice reform.

JOHN HICKENLOOPER

Age: 67

Best known for: Being a quirky brewpub owner who became a politician late in life, rising to governor of Colorado.

Biggest strength: An unorthodox political persona and successful electoral track record in a swing state. He’s one of the few governors in a race heavy with senators and D.C. stalwarts.

Biggest weakness: He’s previously joked that he was too centrist to win the Democratic nomination. As governor he disappointed some environmentalists by not regulating the energy industry more. He’s another white male baby boomer in a party filled with younger and more diverse candidates that better reflect its base.

JAY INSLEE

Age: 68

Best known for: Being governor of Washington state and a former congressman.

Biggest strength: His campaign emphasis is on combating climate change, which he frames as an economic opportunity in addition to a moral imperative.

Biggest weakness: He risks being labeled a one-issue candidate.

AMY KLOBUCHAR

Age: 58

Best known for: The three-term Minnesota senator raised her national profile during a Senate committee hearing for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh when she asked him whether he had ever had so much to drink that he didn’t remember what happened. He replied, “Have you?”

Biggest strength: She’s known as a pragmatic lawmaker willing to work with Republicans to get things done, a quality that’s helped her win across Minnesota, including in rural areas that supported Trump in 2016. She says her Midwestern sensibilities would help Democrats reclaim critical battlegrounds like Wisconsin and Michigan.

Biggest weakness: Her pragmatism may work against her in a primary, as Democratic voters increasingly embrace more liberal policies and positions. There have also been news reports that she has mistreated staff.

WAYNE MESSAM

Age: 44

Best known for: Serving as the mayor of Miramar, Florida, and playing on the Florida State University Seminoles’ 1993 national championship football team.

Biggest strength: He touts his mayoral experience balancing government regulations needed to protect the environment while allowing room for companies to prosper.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition and funding.

SETH MOULTON

Age: 40

Best known for: The Massachusetts congressman and Iraq War veteran gained national attention for helping lead an effort within the party to reject Nancy Pelosi as House speaker after Democrats regained control of the chamber.

Biggest strength: Military and congressional experience.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition, late start on the fundraising necessary to qualify for the summer debate stage.

BETO O’ROURKE

Age: 46

Best known for: The former congressman narrowly lost the 2018 Senate race to Republican Ted Cruz in Texas, the country’s largest conservative state.

Biggest strength: A do-it-yourself campaign style that packs lots of travel and multiple events into long days and encourages off-the-cuff discussions with voters that still allow O’Rourke to talk up his days as a onetime punk rock guitarist and his love for his home on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Biggest weakness: He’s longer on enthusiasm and vague, bipartisan optimism than actual policy ideas, and the style-over-substance approach could see O’Rourke’s strong early fundraising slip once the curiosity begins to fade.

TIM RYAN

Age: 45

Best known for: The Ohio congressman made an unsuccessful bid to replace Nancy Pelosi as House Democratic leader in 2016.

Biggest strength: Ryan has touted himself as a candidate who can bridge Democrats’ progressive and working-class wings to win the White House.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition, late start on grassroots fundraising.

BERNIE SANDERS

Age: 77

Best known for: A 2016 presidential primary campaign against Hillary Clinton that laid the groundwork for the leftward lurch that has dominated Democratic politics in the Trump era.

Biggest strength: The Vermont senator, who identifies himself as a democratic socialist, generated progressive energy that fueled his insurgent 2016 campaign and the best fundraising numbers of any Democrat so far.

Biggest weakness: Expanding his appeal beyond his largely white base of supporters.

ERIC SWALWELL

Age: 38

Best known for: The California congressman is a frequent guest on cable news criticizing President Donald Trump.

Biggest strength: Media savvy and youthfulness could appeal to young voters.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition, late start on grassroots fundraising.

ELIZABETH WARREN

Age: 69

Best known for: The senator from Massachusetts and former Harvard University law professor whose calls for greater consumer protections led to the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under then-President Barack Obama.

Biggest strength: Warren has presented a plethora of progressive policy ideas, including eliminating existing student loan debt for millions of Americans, breaking up farming monopolies and mammoth technology firms, implementing a “wealth tax” on households with high net worth and providing universal child care.

Biggest weakness: She is viewed as one of the most liberal candidates in the Democratic field, which could hurt her chances among moderates. Her policy-heavy approach also risks alienating voters at a time when other candidates are appealing to hearts as much as to minds.

MARIANNE WILLIAMSON

Age: 66

Best known for: Best-selling author and spiritual leader.

Biggest strength: Outsider who could draw interest from voters who are fans of her books.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition, little political experience.

ANDREW YANG

Age: 44

Best known for: Entrepreneur who has generated buzz with his signature proposal for universal basic income to give every American $1,000 a month, no strings attached.

Biggest strength: Robust policy agenda, tech savvy.

Biggest weakness: Low name recognition, no political experience.

Source: NewsMax Politics

America has to fix the attack by Russia on the 2016 election, but it is a “false choice” to conclude impeachment is the only solution, according to Hillary Clinton.

In a commentary posted by The Washington Post, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee said “this is bigger than politics.”

“A crime was committed against all Americans, and all Americans should demand action and accountability,” she wrote.

“Our founders envisioned the danger we face today and designed a system to meet it. Now it’s up to us to prove the wisdom of our Constitution, the resilience of our democracy and the strength of our nation.”

According to Clinton, Congress has to “get it right.”

Mueller’s report “is a road map,” she wrote, but asserted the debate about how to respond and “how to hold President [Donald] Trump accountable for obstructing the investigation and possibly breaking the law . . . has been reduced to a false choice: immediate impeachment or nothing.”

“What our country needs now is clear-eyed patriotism, not reflexive partisanship,” she wrote.

“It’s up to members of both parties to see where that road map leads — to the eventual filing of articles of impeachment, or not,” she wrote. “Either way, the nation’s interests will be best served by putting party and political considerations aside and being deliberate, fair, and fearless.”

Secondly, she said Congress has to hold “substantive hearings that build on the Mueller report and fill in its gaps” before heading right for impeachment — and asserted “Watergate offers a better precedent” with its televised hearings.

“Similar hearings with Mueller, former White House counsel Donald McGahn and other key witnesses could do the same today.”

Also, she said, the nation needs a commission like the one formed after 9/11 to be established by Congress “to recommend steps that would help guard against future attacks.”

Clinton also warned Democrats they will have to “stay focused on the sensible agenda that voters demanded in the midterms, from protecting healthcare to investing in infrastructure.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

America has to fix the attack by Russia on the 2016 election, but it’s a “false choice” to conclude impeachment is the only solution, according to Hillary Clinton.

In a commentary posted by The Washington Post, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee said “this is bigger than politics.”

“A crime was committed against all Americans, and all Americans should demand action and accountability,” she wrote.

“Our founders envisioned the danger we face today and designed a system to meet it. Now it’s up to us to prove the wisdom of our Constitution, the resilience of our democracy and the strength of our nation.”

According to Clinton, Congress has to “get it right.”

Mueller’s report “is a road map,” she wrote, but asserted the debate about how to respond and “how to hold President [Donald] Trump accountable for obstructing the investigation and possibly breaking the law …has been reduced to a false choice: immediate impeachment or nothing.”

“What our country needs now is clear-eyed patriotism, not reflexive partisanship,” she wrote.

“It’s up to members of both parties to see where that road map leads — to the eventual filing of articles of impeachment, or not,” she wrote. “Either way, the nation’s interests will be best served by putting party and political considerations aside and being deliberate, fair and fearless.”

Secondly, she said Congress has to hold “substantive hearings that build on the Mueller report and fill in its gaps” before heading right for impeachment — and asserted “Watergate offers a better precedent” with its televised hearings.

“Similar hearings with Mueller, former White House counsel Donald McGahn and other key witnesses could do the same today.”

Also, she said, the nation needs a commission like the one formed after 9/11 to be established by Congress “to recommend steps that would help guard against future attacks.”

Clinton also warned Democrats that they will have to “stay focused on the sensible agenda that voters demanded in the midterms, from protecting health care to investing in infrastructure.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

It will “cost” Democrats to keep pushing for information about President Donald Trump because he’s already been thoroughly investigated by special counsel Robert Mueller’s team, presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway said Wednesday.

“He gave an interview to The Washington Post, where he made very clear that there is really no reason to comply with all these requests when we have the Mueller investigation,” Conway told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.” “We have already spent $30 million plus of taxpayer dollars and subpoenas, million pieces of documentation to get to the bottom of it…I also believe that people are right in this country to look at the Mueller investigation as the definitive, conclusive, nonpartisan, taxpayer-funded investigation.”

The report makes it clear that the executive branch and Trump himself “never intervened, impeded, or obstructed that investigation,” she added. “In fact, he made available all these people from the White House and his campaign, all the documentation.”

Trump is “possibly” willing to use executive privilege, said Conway, so Democrats need to decide if they’re going to talk about “Trump, Trump, Trump” at all times, or if they will work on infrastructure, drug pricing, or healthcare.

“They have to be honest with the people of this country who they represent as to whether they’re serious about having bipartisan action to try to solve the problems of this nation,” said Conway.

She also dismissed comments from Hillary Clinton, who claimed Tuesday anyone else would have faced charges following Mueller’s investigation.”

“There was enormous pressure on the Mueller investigation and investigators to do what she failed to do, deny Donald Trump the presidency,” said Conway. “This woman has always blamed everybody but the poor campaign she ran.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

Americans are punishing President Donald Trump at the polls, and his best hope might come if Democrats try to impeach him, MSNBC “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough said Tuesday.

“Donald Trump’s best hope for higher poll numbers, and for re-election, is for the Democrats to try to remove him from office through impeachment,” Scarborough said on his program while discussing the results of a Morning Consult/Politico poll released Monday.

According to the poll, Trump’s job approval rating has dropped to 39%, tying the low numbers he posted after his reaction to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017. The poll also showed that 57% disapprove of Trump himself.

“The reason why is because he’s now gathered Attorney General [WIlliam Barr], who is doing an inside job for him, who is gaming the system, who Americans know aren’t playing straightforward,” Scarborough said. “Donald Trump, the outsider, has become Donald Trump the government insider who has rigged the system for himself. Americans see it. They know it’s a scam. They hear him lying about it. And they are punishing him at the polls.”

Meanwhile, impeachment gave President Bill Clinton a “very nice departing gift,” Scarborough said.

“I’m talking as far as politics go and being part of a house of representatives back in the 1990s who impeached Bill Clinton when he couldn’t get prosecuted in the Senate, and it ended up we gave him a very nice departing gift and that is a 60% approval rating,” he added.

“Americans are reflexively against impeachment . . . whether that’s right, whether that’s wrong, if your ultimate goal is removing Donald Trump from office, then impeachment politically is the worst way to go,” Scarborough said.

Source: NewsMax America

President Donald Trump was unable to attend the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday morning. But his record in office on “red meat issues” for Roman Catholics was praised and wildly cheered by the sellout crowd of more than 800 at Marriott Marquis Washington D.C.

Among the issues for which President Trump was hailed by speakers at the annual event were his efforts to stop federal funding of abortions, his executive orders permitting political action by churches, and – drawing the loudest applause of all – his appointments to the Supreme Court and the federal bench.

If the breakfast was any barometer of where the president stands among practicing Catholics in the U.S., then he is very likely in stronger shape than in 2016. That was the year Trump – a Presbyterian and occasional churchgoer – drew more than 70 percent of the votes of Roman Catholic voters who practice their faith (attendance at weekly Mass and on Holy Days of obligation) over Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Representing the president – and given a hero’s welcome at the breakfast – was Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney. Mulvaney, himself a Roman Catholic, revealed Trump personally added to his 2019 State of the Union Address the criticism of Virginia’s Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam for his controversial statements about aborting a live baby.

Recalling the president’s successful efforts to release Christian Pastor Andrew Brunson from a Turkish prison, Mulvaney also revealed something “from behind closed doors at the White House.” Mulvaney regaled his audience how he had sat with Trump and watched the president tell fellow world leaders “You’re not doing enough to help Christians [who are being persecuted] in your country.”

I am sure, the president’s top aide added, “that this has not been done in the Oval Office in a long time.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

Source: NewsMax Politics

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi knows the ramification of impeaching President Donald Trump, as she knows that attempt will be seen by half of Americans as a “limp attempt at a soft coup,” talk show host Joe Concha said Tuesday.

“It’ll all be for show anyway,” Concha, a media reporter for The Hill, commented on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends.” “People want lawmakers, Democrats who took the house in November, to solve problems, not go down this road. There’s no appetite for it.”

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, by making a quick call for Trump’s impeachment, is throwing a “Hail Mary,” even though it’s early in the primary game,” Concha added.

“If you look at the polling, it’s a rudderless campaign,” said Concha. “She doesn’t seem to get any traction.”

Meanwhile, Pelosi was in Washington during the impeachment proceedings for then-President Bill Clinton, at a time when Republican cited obstruction of justice as one reason they wanted him removed from office.

“Everybody knew it was all for show because there was no way at that time lawmakers were able to get two-thirds of the Senate to remove that president,” said Concha.

The day after Clinton was impeached, his Gallup approval rating was at 73 percent, and when he left office, it was at 65%, because he was seen as a sympathetic figure, he added.

“It led to the launching of another political career in Hillary Clinton because she was seen as a sympathetic figure,” said Concha. “Nancy Pelosi has seen this.”

Source: NewsMax Politics

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump attends the 2019 White House Easter Egg Roll in Washington
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump attends the 2019 White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, U.S., April 22, 2019. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

April 23, 2019

By Tim Reid

(Reuters) – A group of Democratic presidential candidates were divided on Monday over whether Republican President Donald Trump should be impeached, reflecting a broader split in the Democratic Party over how to react to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian election meddling.

Answering audience questions at a televised CNN event in the early voting state of New Hampshire, three Democratic 2020 candidates shied away from calling for Trump’s impeachment.

Another, California U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, said Congress should “take the steps towards impeachment” but believed such an effort would likely fail.

Only one candidate at the event, Massachusetts U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, issued a full-throated call for Congress to try and remove Trump from office.

“If any other human being in this country had done what’s documented in the Mueller report, they would be arrested and put in jail,” Warren said. Julian Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio and another 2020 hopeful – who was not at the CNN event – has also called for Trump’s impeachment.

In the report released on Thursday, Mueller portrayed a president bent on stopping the probe into Russian meddling. But Mueller stopped short of concluding that a crime was committed, leaving it to Congress to make its own determination as to whether Trump obstructed justice.

Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker of the House, and some other Democratic Party leaders have been wary of impeaching Trump before the November 2020 presidential election.

They believe there are not enough votes in the Republican-controlled Senate to remove Trump from office, and that such a move could play into his hands. They also remember Republican efforts to impeach former Democratic President Bill Clinton in the 1990s, which backfired politically.

But prominent liberals have demanded the start of proceedings to remove Trump from office since the release of a redacted version of Mueller’s report last week.

In a letter to fellow Democratic lawmakers on Monday, Pelosi did not rule out impeaching Trump, but said it is “important to know that the facts regarding holding the president accountable can be gained outside of impeachment hearings.” She added that Trump engaged in highly unethical and unscrupulous behavior “whether currently indictable or not”.

Reflecting the divide in the party over how to proceed over Mueller’s findings, the five 2020 candidates, who appeared at back-to-back events before an audience of young voters, were also split.

Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders said: “If for the next year and a half all the Congress is talking about is ‘Trump, Trump, Trump,’ and ‘Mueller, Mueller, Mueller’ and we’re not talking about the issues that concern ordinary Americans, I worry that works to Trump’s advantage.”

Minnesota U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar said she did not want to “predispose things” over the question of whether to impeach Trump and left that question up to the U.S. House of Representatives, where impeachment proceedings are initiated.

South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg said Trump “deserves” to be impeached, but he would leave it to the House and Senate. He said politicians have to stop talking about Trump so much, and the best thing for Democrats would be to deliver “an absolute thumping” to Trump at the ballot box next November.

(Reporting by Tim Reid; Editing by Michael Perry)

Source: OANN

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., leads President Donald Trump in hypothetical matchups in three states that proved critical for Trump’s 2016 victory, NBC News reported.

The internal polling conducted by the Sanders team showed 52% of likely voters in Michigan inclined to back Sanders in the 2020 general election, compared with 41% for Trump, the news outlet reported.

In Wisconsin, 52% of voters said they would back Sanders, while 42% said they would vote for Trump. In Pennsylvania, 51% of likely voters said they would support Sanders, while 43% would vote for Trump.

All three swing states solidified Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.

“I don’t think it’s any generic Democrat fits the mold here,” Sanders pollster Ben Tulchin told NBC News. “Trump is vulnerable here, but it has to be for the right kind of Democrat who has real strengths and can win these three states.”

“I don’t think any other candidate is as well positioned as Bernie is in these three states,” Tulchin said.

The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.

Source: NewsMax Politics

House Democratic leaders are urging their colleagues to tone down the impeachment rhetoric as it relates to President Donald Trump.

During a Monday evening conference call, high-ranking party leaders tried to squash talk of pursuing impeachment at this time.

According to The Hill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and others expressed their concern over jumping on the impeachment bandwagon without concrete evidence Trump might have committed an impeachable offense.

“We need to hear from [Attorney General William] Barr and [special counsel Robert] Mueller – and we need to see the unredacted report and the documents [that] go with it,” House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said. “We cannot allow this president to continue going down this course.”

Other lawmakers said it is time to pursue impeachment.

“I think we have great evidence that the president has blatantly violated so many laws. It’s just ridiculous,” Rep. Val Demings, D-Fla., said, The Hill reported. “I think we have enough” to start the impeachment process.

According to CNN’s Manu Raju, Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., said she is still in favor of impeaching Trump but she is not actively trying to recruit other members to join her effort.

Mueller recently completed his investigation into Russia interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. He did not find evidence Trump conspired with the Russians to defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton, but he was unable to determine whether Trump obstructed justice.

Since a redacted version of the report was released last week, Democrats are pointing to evidence that shows Trump may have tried to interfere with Mueller’s probe.

Source: NewsMax Politics


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