Mar 12, 2018

News Shapers: Mike Pence & Amy Klobuchar

Axios' Mike Allen interviews Vice President Mike Pence. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios

Axios' Mike Allen hosted one-on-one conversations with Vice President Mike Pence and Senator Amy Klobuchar [D-MN] on Valentine's Day as part of our News Shapers series.

Why it mattered: They discussed the biggest news of the day, digging into immigration, the techlash, North Korea, Russian election interference and Rob Porter's resignation.

Mike Allen sets the stage with Axios' Alexi McCammond and Jonathan Swan.
Sen. Klobuchar's dream headline on the immigration debate: "The senate comes together; finally gets something done on immigration; 800,000 people are not deported."
Sen. Klobuchar on the Big Tech backlash: "These are amazing ways to directly communicate with people, but they have to see their responsibility that goes with that ... The only way you can do this is to have rules of the road for the major media companies."
Vice President Pence on North Korea: "[It is] the most tyrannical and oppressive regime on the planet," and that nothing changes in the U.S.' approach until they get rid of their nuclear weapons.
Vice President Pence tells Mike that U.S. intelligence communities concluded none of Russia's efforts "had any impact on the outcome of the 2016 election."

Why it matters: That isn't exactly true.

Vice President Pence on Rob Porter: "As I said, and as the White House has said, I think the White House could have handled this better. And I still feel that way." 
Thank you to the 220+ guests who joined us for this conversation at The W in D.C.

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Thank you Bank of America for sponsoring this event.

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Exclusive: Trump's "Deep State" hit list

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: WPA Pool/Getty Pool, Drew Angerer/Getty Staff

The Trump White House and its allies, over the past 18 months, assembled detailed lists of disloyal government officials to oust — and trusted pro-Trump people to replace them — according to more than a dozen sources familiar with the effort who spoke to Axios.

Driving the news: By the time President Trump instructed his 29-year-old former body man and new head of presidential personnel to rid his government of anti-Trump officials, he'd gathered reams of material to support his suspicions.

Exclusive: Anti-Sanders campaign targets black South Carolina voters

Courtesy of The Big Tent Project

The Big Tent Project, a Democratic political group focused on promoting moderate presidential candidates, has sent hundreds of thousands of mailers bashing Bernie Sanders to black voters in South Carolina who voted in the state's 2016 primary.

Why it matters: Sanders' rise to the top of the pack, as dueling moderate candidates split their side of the vote, is worrying many in the Democratic political establishment who fear a socialist can't beat President Trump.

Inside the fight over FBI surveillance powers

Carter Page. Photo: Artyom Korotayev\TASS via Getty Images

Over the past year, President Trump has told senior administration officials, including Attorney General Bill Barr, that he wants a major overhaul of national security surveillance powers and the secret court that approves them.

Behind the scenes: In one such discussion last year about the need to reauthorize government authorities to surveil U.S. citizens, Trump went so far as to say he'd rather get rid of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) altogether.