Nov 18, 2018

Democrats' battle for speaker becomes a national campaign

Nancy Pelosi heads into a Democratic caucus meeting in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center this week. Photo: Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

The battle over whether Rep. Nancy Pelosi, who already became the first woman to serve as speaker of the House in 2007, will retake the gavel for Democrats now that they're in the majority has "exploded into a national political campaign," reports the Washington Post.

Why it matters: The speaker of the House will not only be responsible for advancing the Democrats' legislative agenda, but will also "emerge as the country’s most high-profile counterpoint to President Trump — who will set the strategy for investigating him, who will lead the opposition to his agenda, and who will be the face of the Democratic Party ahead of the 2020 campaign," per the Post. Riding a wave of at least 40 flipped House seats, new Democratic members have an expectation for change, one that could come via a speaker challenge from African-American lawmaker Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D-Ohio).

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Pelosi warns U.S. allies against working with China's Huawei

Nancy Pelosi on Feb. 16. Photo: Sven Hoppe/picture alliance via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday cautioned U.S. allies against allowing Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei to develop their 5G networks, arguing at the Munich Security Conference that doing so is akin to “choosing autocracy over democracy," CNBC reports.

Why it matters: Pelosi's hawkish stance marks a rare area of agreement with the Trump administration, which believes Huawei is a national security threat because the Chinese government may be capable of accessing its equipment for espionage.

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Judge sets "scheduling" conference call ahead of Roger Stone sentencing

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U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson has requested a Feb. 18 "scheduling" conference call in the Roger Stone case, two days before the former Trump associate is set to be sentenced.

Why it matters: Stone's defense team on Friday filed a sealed motion for a new trial — the second time they've done so — amid allegations of juror bias and a growing controversy over Attorney General Bill Barr's intervention in the case.

Biden says Bloomberg's money can't "erase" his record

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images.

Former Vice President Joe Biden said on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday that Michael Bloomberg's vast fortune cannot "erase" his record, and that scrutiny of Bloomberg's positions on things like race and policing will ramp up now that he's in the national spotlight.

Why it matters: Biden's polling free fall in the wake of poor performances in Iowa and New Hampshire has coincided with a surge for Bloomberg, who appeals to a similar moderate bloc of the Democratic Party. The billionaire's limitless spending capacity poses an especially stark threat to Biden, who has struggled with fundraising.