May 21, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Clinton nets a record $2 million for Biden at virtual fundraiser

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. Photo: Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has raised $2 million for 2020 candidate Joe Biden's joint fundraising committee with the Democratic National Committee at a virtual event, Politico reported Wednesday night.

Why it matters: Per Politico, it's a record haul for a Biden surrogate at a single event with the former vice president not in attendance. President Trump's campaign has raised much more than Biden's. But the Democrat has made significant fundraising gains in the past two months, and the new DNC pact is another boost.

  • The partnership with the DNC announced last month allows individual donors to contribute up to $360,600 — a huge jump from the $5,600 maximum that an individual can donate to his campaign.

By the numbers: Federal Election Commission fundraising data for April released Monday shows Trump's re-election campaign raised with the Republican National Committee $61.7 million.

  • Biden's campaign and the DNC raised $60.5 million for the same period. Biden's campaign alone raised $43.7 million of that amount — slightly less than his best monthly total of $46.7 million in March.
  • Politico notes that the "Trump operation said it had over $255 million in cash on hand at the end of last month," whereas Biden and the DNC have "$97.5 million in the bank." The fundraising total of the Democrats' joint committee has yet to be disclosed.

The bottom line: The Democrats will have to raise much more to catch the Republicans.

What to watch: Democrats expect former President Obama to draw during summer campaigning significantly more than Clinton's fundraising total from Tuesday's Zoom event.

  • "Obama is the kind of person who can make any Democrat give twice," a Democratic official told Politico.

Go deeper: GOP's small-dollar fundraising platform raises $60M in April

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Mark Zuckerberg: Social networks should not be "the arbiter of truth"

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg argued on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Thursday that social media platforms should not police political speech, and that "people should be able to see what politicians say.”

Why it matters: Zuckerberg was responding to Twitter's decision this week to fact-check a pair of President Trump's tweets that claimed that mail-in ballots are "substantially fraudulent." Twitter's label, which directs users to "get the facts" about mail-in voting, does not censor Trump's tweets.

House Democrats pull FISA reauthorization bill

Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

House Democrats pulled legislation Thursday that would have renewed expired domestic surveillance laws and strengthened transparency and privacy protections amid broad opposition from President Trump, House GOP leadership and progressive Democrats.

Why it matters: The failure to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) comes as Trump continues to attack the intelligence community, which he claims abused the law to surveil his 2016 campaign and Trump administration officials.

U.S. GDP drop revised lower to 5% in the first quarter

Data: Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy shrunk by an annualized 5% in the first quarter — worse than the initially estimated 4.8% contraction — according to revised figures released by the government on Thursday.

Why it matters: It's the worst quarterly decline since 2008 and shows a huge hit as the economy was just beginning to shut down because of the coronavirus. Economists are bracing for the second quarter's figures to be the worst ever — with some projecting an annualized decline of around 40%.

2 hours ago - Economy & Business