July 09, 2019

CNN Nixes ‘Show of Hands’ Questions for Debate: Campaign Update
(Bloomberg) -- CNN has set ground rules for the second Democratic presidential primary debate later this month -- and there are some notable departures from how NBC handled the first event.One rule, which CNN said it laid down to representatives of more than 20 candidates in a phone call Tuesday: “There will be no show of hands or one-word, down-the-line questions.“Those questions were some of the most illuminating -- and to some candidates, frustrating -- of last month’s debate. They showed that the Democratic candidates uniformly support health insurance for undocumented immigrants -- a position President Donald Trump quickly seized on. “That’s the end of the race,” he tweeted.Another question highlighted that three candidates -- Senators Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio -- would eliminate private health insurance and replace it with Medicare for all.The candidates will learn July 17 whether their poll numbers and fundraising are enough to qualify them for the debate scheduled for July 30 and 31 in Detroit. The exact lineups for each night will be drawn at random.Biden Seeks a Lift With Foreign Policy Speech (6:36 p.m.)Joe Biden will deliver a speech on his foreign policy plans on Thursday, as the Democratic frontrunner looks to regroup after a shaky debate performance has led to an erosion in his poll numbers.The former vice president’s address, to be delivered in New York, “will lay out his foreign policy vision for America, which includes restoring dignified leadership at home and respected leadership on the world stage,” his campaign said in a statement.Biden has frequently promoted his vision of multilateralism during his time on the campaign trail, warning that a second term for President Donald Trump would lead to the disbanding of important alliances like the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.“Let me put it this way, if he wins re-election, I promise you there will be no NATO in four years or five years,” Biden said in a recent interview with CNN.That remark earned the ire of Trump, who said NATO “has taken total advantage” of Biden.“President Obama and Vice President Biden, they didn’t have a clue,” Trump told reporters at the White House on Friday. “They got taken advantage of by China, by NATO, by every country they did business with.”Biden has also cited his leadership of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee as he argues he’s prepared to take over as president. But some rival candidates -– including Iraq war veteran and Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard -- have criticized the former vice president’s 2002 vote to authorize the invasion of Iraq. -- Justin SinkBidens Earned $15 Million After Leaving White House (3:40 p.m.)Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden and his wife Jill earned more than $15 million during their first two years out of the White House, according to a financial disclosure filed Tuesday.The bulk of the Bidens’ income came from payments for the memoirs they’ve each written since the former vice president left office in January 2017. The couple’s total income in 2017 was $11 million and nearly $4.6 million in 2018.Joe Biden’s income in both years included about $400,000 from the University of Pennsylvania for his role as Benjamin Franklin Presidential Practice Professor. Jill Biden took in slightly more than $90,000 each year for her professorship at Northern Virginia Community College.Excluding retirement plans, the Bidens hold between $500,000 and $1.2 million in cash and have S-corpoprations with between $1 million and $5 million, and $500,000 and $1 million.Joe Biden’s financial disclosure lists 47 speaking appearances; 30 were for his 2017 book “Promise Me, Dad.“ -- Jennifer EpsteinWarren, Sanders Tell Billionaires to Stay Out (3:14 p.m.)Tom Steyer isn’t getting a particularly warm welcome to the presidential race from other Democratic candidates, who are knocking him for attempting to use his wealth to buy power.“The Democratic primary should not be decided by billionaires, whether they’re funding super-PACs or funding themselves,“ Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren said on Twitter without mentioning by name the billionaire investor who joined the presidential race Tuesday.Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders hit a similar note. “I like Tom personally,“ Sanders said, though he added that he isn’t happy to see the billionaire try to use his wealth to win office.“As somebody who in this campaign has received 2 million contributions, averaging $19 a person, I’m a bit tired of seeing billionaires trying to buy political power,” Sanders said.Warren’s campaign said Monday that she had raised $19.1 million in the second quarter, with an average contribution of $28. -- Jennifer EpsteinSanders Teams Up With Ocasio-Cortez -- Again (1:58 p.m.)Senator Bernie Sanders and his firebrand counterpart in the House, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, on Tuesday unveiled a resolution calling for “massive” federal action to reverse the effects of global warming.Sanders has frequently joined forces this spring and summer with Ocasio-Cortez, who could bestow one of the most coveted endorsements for 2020 Democratic candidates.The non-binding resolution declares that global warming is caused by humans and has resulted in “a climate emergency that severely and urgently impacts the economic and social well-being, health and safety, and national security of the United States.”With Republicans in control of the Senate and its agenda, the resolution won’t get very far. But it could help shore up Sanders’s progressive base as other candidates like Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Kamala Harris of California make gains in opinion polls.Like the vast majority of Democratic lawmakers, Ocasio-Cortez isn’t endorsing anyone yet in the crowded field of presidential hopefuls. But she volunteered for Sanders’s 2016 White House bid against eventual party nominee Hillary Clinton.Sanders has been promising his own detailed legislation on combating climate change and insisted Tuesday that it would be “the strongest plan” of all the Democratic White House contenders. However, he dodged a question on when he’d introduce it. -- Laura LitvanBillionaire Steyer Enters 2020 Democratic Race (11:24 a.m.)Tom Steyer, the billionaire hedge fund manager turned liberal activist, announced Tuesday he is entering the crowded race for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.Steyer, who has been focused on impeaching President Donald Trump, announced his candidacy in a video message. He said he was running because Americans “think the system has left them.”Steyer, 62, hinted at a run a 2020 run early this year, but showed up in Des Moines, Iowa, in January only to announce he had decided against it.The billionaire said Tuesday that corporations have bought the U.S.’s democracy and “politicians don’t care and don’t respect” citizens. The aim of his campaign would be “to make democracy work by pushing power down to the people.”Steyer poured $120 million into the 2018 midterms through two of his organizations, Need To Impeach and NextGen America, one aimed at turning out young voters and fighting climate change and the other pushing Trump’s impeachment. Both helped him raise a national profile.In his first day as a presidential candidate, Steyer already spent $1.05 million on TV ads placed in key states, like Nevada, South Carolina, and Iowa, as well as Boston.A voice-over to the announcement video says Steyer and his wife are “worth an estimated billion and a half dollars.” Bloomberg data show his net worth at $3.1 billion. His campaign debut video does not mention impeachment, but it does feature shots of Trump as well as his former campaign manager Paul Manafort in handcuffs.The country is working for “a few very very rich people, and everybody else living in misery,” Steyer says in the video. Several other Democratic presidential candidates, including Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg, have been running on similar messages.Steyer won’t be unfamiliar to Iowa caucus-goers. Need to Impeach PAC has spent more on television airtime there than every other Democratic candidate combined, and the commercials often feature Steyer himself directly arguing for Trump’s removal from office. -- Misyrlena EgkolfopoulouMcConnell Challenged by Fighter Pilot in 2020 (7:46 a.m.)Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell faces his highest-profile challenge yet, with former Marine fighter pilot Amy McGrath announcing she’ll seek to unseat the Kentucky Republican next year in what is sure to be an expensive campaign.McGrath, who raised millions in an unsuccessful effort to win a House seat last year, said McConnell “bit by bit, year by year, turned Washington into something we all despise.”“I’m running for Senate because it shouldn’t be like this,” she said in an announcement video.McGrath was the Democratic nominee against Republican Representative Andy Barr in 2018, losing 51% to 48% in a district President Donald Trump won 55% to 39% in 2016. McConnell was re-elected with 56% of votes in 2014 against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, who got 41%.Trump won the state by 30 points in 2016 and he remains popular there, but polls have shown McConnell to be much less popular. McGrath focused her fire in her three-minute announcement video on McConnell, not Trump. -- Steven T. DennisHow ‘Middle Class Joe’ Biden Made Millions (6 a.m.)Joe Biden has long told voters he was just a regular guy who shared their struggles. But the expected release of his most recent financial disclosures on Tuesday could paint a very different picture of “Middle Class Joe.”The filings will give some details of how much the former vice president has earned since leaving office after four decades of public service.The Bidens left the vice president’s residence in Washington with assets worth no more than $1.1 million, and perhaps as little as $303,028, according to the financial disclosure form he filed in January 2017. Officials and candidates disclose the value of their assets, their incomes and obligations in broad ranges.Life after government can be lucrative for former high-ranking officials, and Biden has been no exception. In April 2017, he signed an $8 million, three-book deal, including one co-written with his wife, Jill Biden, according to Publishers Weekly. He also gave dozens of paid speeches, with some of the fees amounting to $200,000 for a single appearance, according to the Washington Post.Biden’s campaign hasn’t disclosed who paid him to give speeches but said he’s delivered fewer than 50 since leaving office.But the engagements could become a campaign issue. Both Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and then-candidate Donald Trump assailed Hillary Clinton in the 2016 race for lucrative appearances at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. events, and speeches to other elite institutions.Filers don’t have to disclose the value of their residences, but do list residential loans. According to his last disclosure, the Bidens owed between $560,006 and $1.2 million, the bulk of which were a mortgage and home equity line of credit.Biden will file his financial disclosure form with the Federal Election Commission unless he requests a second 45-day extension. He was originally due to file the form on May 25.His campaign declined to comment. -- Bill Allison(An earlier version corrected misspelling of Paul Manafort’s surname and his former position, in 22nd paragraph.)\--With assistance from Bill Allison, Greg Giroux, Kasia Klimasinska, Steven T. Dennis, Gregory Korte, Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou, Laura Litvan, Jennifer Epstein and Justin Sink.To contact the reporter on this story: Gregory Korte in Washington at gkorte@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Joe Sobczyk at jsobczyk@bloomberg.net, Laurie AsséoFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



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