January 13, 2020

Elizabeth Warren Woos Women to Turn Around Her Campaign
(Bloomberg) -- Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, who has seen her national lead dwindle on the eve of the Iowa caucuses, is turning back to a bloc of voters she once appeared to have locked up: Women.She’s putting high-profile women surrogates and activists on the front lines of her campaign in Iowa, giving interviews to fashion magazines and trying to broaden her coalition beyond the white, educated progressives who form the backbone of her support.The moves show an attempt to restore the bridge-building formulation that put her neck-and-neck with front-runner Joe Biden just three months ago. Since then, she’s lost her advantage among women, traded older voters for less reliable younger ones and failed to make inroads among minority voters.Warren still leads among Democrats who call themselves “very liberal,” even surpassing the self-avowed socialist Bernie Sanders by 9 percentage points in one recent Quinnipiac Poll. She has less support across the political spectrum, trailing Biden by 29 points among moderates.Warren launched her campaign last year in Lawrence, Massachusetts, home of a women-led 1912 textile strike that formed the emotional backbone of her announcement speech. “These workers  —  led by women – didn’t have much. Not even a common language,” she said. “Nevertheless… they persisted!”At the height of her campaign, Warren had the support of one-third of women -- a 9 percentage point gender gap over her male support. That advantage has all but disappeared.Warren’s campaign declined to comment for this story.Women make up 58% of Democratic primary voters, but only three of the remaining 13 candidates. Warren, Amy Klobuchar and Tulsi Gabbard are now collectively polling at less than 20%, according to the RealClearPolitics average.Warren’s frequent policy roll-outs have often made implicit appeals to women. She has detailed platforms on abortion rights, maternal mortality, pay equity, part-time workers, family leave and universal child care.Now, that appeal to women is becoming explicit. Warren appeared in three different women’s fashion magazines in the last week, outlining her vision for the presidency but also offering up more personal, relatable details about what’s she’s like off the campaign trail.In Cosmopolitan, she described her daily skincare routine. In Vogue, she revealed that she shops at Target and H&M for her trademark cardigans. And in Elle, she gave dating advice under the headline “Elizabeth Warren Wants You To Ditch That Guy, Get A Dog, And Vote To Tax The Wealthy.”In Iowa this weekend, the Warren campaign held a series of organizing events with a new group called Black Womxn For, which endorsed the candidate in November. And Warren also brought in one of her former Harvard law students — Representative Katie Porter, an Iowa native who was elected to Congress from California in 2018 as part of a wave of Democratic women.Susan Burton, 51, an insurance company manager in Clear Lake, Iowa, said Warren’s electability was a factor.“She’s more progressive than a lot of the other candidates. I want someone more progressive but I don’t know that the entire country wants someone more progressive. I obviously want someone that will win, so it makes me worry in that regard.”Warren’s also trying to broaden her appeal beyond white voters.She sent former Housing Secretary Julian Castro to Nevada to campaign for her at a Hispanic supermarket in Las Vegas. Castro, who was the only Latino candidate in the race before dropping out this month, is highlighting Warren’s efforts to appeal to a broader coalition.“Elizabeth Warren is the candidate who can unite the entire Democratic Party,” Castro said as he introduced her at a New York rally last week. “She can bring people together. She can appeal to all sides.”Warren is not the only Democratic candidate struggling to unite the party’s various factions and constituency groups. Biden and Sanders have big generational divides to overcome, and Pete Buttigieg is lagging with African-American voters.None has been able to reassemble the Obama coalition — union workers and progressives boosted by an influx of young and minority voters — still considered the winning formula for Democrats.But can they? “The short answer is the Obama coalition was specific to Obama,” said Lyn Ragsdale, a Rice University professor and expert on voting behavior. “The Democratic candidates for 2020 are going to create their own coalitions.”It is too early to say “who is best positioned to capture both young people and blacks,” Ragsdale said. “I don’t see Warren being that person at the moment but no one else jumps to mind either.”But no candidate gets the coalition question as consistently as Warren. In one recent Iowa event, a voter asked her how she’d bridge the divisiveness in the U.S. At another, someone asked her how she would unite voters across party lines if elected president.Warren’s answer is often the same: She blamed Trump for turning people against one another and described her family’s political diversity. Of her three older brothers, she says, only one is a Democrat.“There aren’t just Republicans and Democrats, it’s that all of us understand that we’re getting cheated by the guys at the top.”Warren argues that moderate proposals will fail to excite the coalition necessary to defeat Trump, implying that candidates like Biden and Buttigieg can’t win a general election. “If they think that nibbling around the edges of really big problems is somehow a safe strategy, they are wrong,” Warren said Saturday. “If the best we can promise is business as usual after Donald Trump, the Democrats will lose.”Warren’s allies acknowledge that coalition-building is a long game.“It’s less important to look at any one snapshot and more important to look at the trajectory of how a candidate is doing with certain Democrats,” said Adam Green, chairman of the pro-Warren Progressive Change Campaign Committee.“There may be certain candidates who started with certain advantages, and the question is, where are they trending?” he said.Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke and Castro, candidates thought to have appeal to African-American and Hispanic voters, have dropped out of the race. Cory Booker failed to catch fire with voters and dropped out of the race Monday. Sanders, who kept his supporters from his 2016 campaign against Hillary Clinton, has struggled to break 20% in national polls since Biden got into the race in April.And Biden, the national front-runner, has shown weakness in Iowa and New Hampshire but overwhelming support in South Carolina, where the majority of Democratic primary voters are black.Warren, by contrast, seemed to get a polling boost from Biden’s entry in the race, and pulled even with him briefly in October at 27% before falling back to 14% more recently.Warren seems to be aware that she needs to broaden her base beyond traditional Democratic supporters to win the White House. She defines her coalition in terms designed to appeal to both the Democrats’ left wing and disaffected Trump supporters.“We’ve got to be willing to embrace each other’s fights,” Warren said in Manchester, Iowa, this month. “We’ve got to be willing to say your fight is my fight and build that coalition together. It’s a big part of why I decided to run a grassroots movement rather than spend my time with rich people.”(Adds Booker dropping out in 29th paragraph.)To contact the reporters on this story: Gregory Korte in Washington at gkorte@bloomberg.net;Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou in Marshalltown, Iowa at megkolfopoul@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Wendy Benjaminson at wbenjaminson@bloomberg.net, Max BerleyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
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Star Wars Director Says It's About Time A Woman Makes A Star Wars Movie
Jan 02, 2024
Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Sharmeed Obaid-Chinoy is directing an upcoming Star Wars movie that brings back Daisy Ridley in the role of Rey. Obaid-Chinoy will become the first woman to direct a Star Wars film, dating back to the franchise's origins in the 1970s. Speaking about this, Obaid-Chinoy told CNN that she is "very thrilled" to make the movie and create something that is "very special.""We're in 2024 now, and I think it's about time we had a woman come forward to shape the story in a galaxy far, far away," she said.Obaid-Chinoy won Best Documentary, Short Subjects Academy Awards for Saving Face (2012) and A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (2015).In 2020, Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy told the BBC that a woman would eventually direct a Star Wars movie, saying that would "absolutely" happen, "without question." Victoria Mahoney was a second unit director on The Rise of Skywalker, but a woman has never claimed a top directing credit on a Star Wars movie.On the TV side of things, The Mandalorian has featured a number of female directors, including Deborah Chow and Bryce Dallas Howard. Chow went on to direct the Obi-Wan TV series, too.Another high-profile franchise that has never had a female director is James Bond. Producer Barbara Broccoli and Skyfall director Sam Mendes have both said they want to see a woman direct a future 007 film.As for Obaid-Chinoy's Star Wars movie, little is known about it apart from the fact that Ridley will come back to play Rey. It is expected that this film will be the first of the three new Star Wars films to come to theaters, possibly releasing in December 2025.According to a report, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight is writing the Rey movie, taking over for Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt-Gibson.
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NBA Names Clare Akamanzi CEO Of NBA Africa
Jan 02, 2024 15:29
The NBA named Clare Akamanzi – an accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer – as CEO of NBA Africa. Akamanzi will start her position on Jan. 23, 2024, and report to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum. In this role, Akamanzi will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa and will be responsible for continuing to grow the popularity of basketball, the NBA and the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent, including through grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives that improve the livelihoods of African youth and families. For the last six and a half years, Akamanzi was CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), where she spearheaded Rwanda’s economic development by enabling private sector growth. Under Akamanzi’s leadership, RDB implemented several business policy reforms and initiatives that led to significant investment and development for the country, including through partnerships with the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich and TIME Magazine, among others. “Clare’s business acumen, international experience and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa,” says Tatum. “NBA Africa and the Basketball Africa League are well-positioned for continued growth, and under Clare’s leadership we believe these initiatives will transform economies, communities and lives across the continent.” “I’ve seen firsthand how sports can positively impact businesses, families and communities in Africa, and the NBA and the BAL are a perfect example of that,” says Akamanzi. “The NBA has done an incredible job growing basketball and the economy around it across the continent, and I’m excited about the enormous opportunities ahead to build on that momentum.” Previously, Akamanzi was Chief Operating Officer of RDB and Head of Strategy and Policy Unit, Office of the President of the Republic of Rwanda. She has extensive international trade, business and diplomatic experience, having previously worked for the Rwandan Government at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland and at the Rwandan Embassy in London, England. Akamanzi has worked or studied in seven different countries and holds an honorary LLD from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, in recognition of her work in Rwanda. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she was the recipient of three prestigious awards for academic excellence and distinguished contribution to the community: the Lucius N. Littauer Fellows Award, the Raymond & Josephine Vernon Award and the Robert Kennedy Public Service Award. In addition, Akamanzi holds a Master of Laws degree in international trade and investments from the University of Pretoria in South Africa, and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Akamanzi has served on several company boards, including the World Health Organization (WHO) Foundation, ECOBANK and Aviation, Travel and Logistics (ATL) company. She was recognized by Forbes as one of Africa’s Top 50 Powerful Women in 2020.
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