Apr 17, 2019

DNC pumps brakes on Jay Inslee's proposal for climate change debate

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, who is running a climate-focused (and longshot) 2020 campaign, last night asked the Democratic National Committee to set up a debate focused solely on climate change.

What he's saying: "This can’t be a one-off question where candidates get to give a soundbite and move on," Inslee, who launched a petition, said in a statement. "Climate change is at the heart of every issue that matters to voters, and voters deserve to hear what 2020 presidential candidates plan to do about it."

But, but, but: The DNC offered an extremely noncommittal statement last night, even as the party emphasized the topic's importance and said Republicans "refuse to even acknowledge that climate change is real."

What they're saying: Communications director Xochitl Hinojosa said the DNC's goal is to provide candidates a platform for "vigorous discussion" on topics including the economy, climate and health care. She added:

  • "Democrats are eager to put forward their solutions to combat climate change, and we will absolutely have these discussions during the 2020 primary process."
  • "The DNC is currently ironing out the details for all 12 debates and will work with the networks to ensure that Democrats have a platform to discuss these issues directly with the American people."

Go deeper: Inside the climate election of 2020

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Scoop: Inside the Trump campaign's big hedge on Facebook

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The Trump campaign has invested most of its advertising budget to date on Facebook, testing thousands of versions of ads per day to maximize its spending.

But behind the scenes, a source familiar with the campaign tells Axios, the thinking has shifted: "As everyone can see, we still have strong spending on Facebook, but the percentage of our total media budget [on Facebook] is shrinking."

Trump's revenge tour has the House in its sights

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Saul Loeb/Getty Contributor

In the lead-up to the 2018 midterm elections — buoyed by Republican control of both chambers — President Trump viewed campaigning for the House as a lower-tier priority and instead poured his energy into rallying for the Senate.

But after the GOP reckoning in 2018, and experiencing firsthand how damaging a Democratic-led House has been to him, Trump is now personally invested in helping Republicans regain the majority in November, several people familiar with his thinking tell Axios.

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

Nancy Pelosi, 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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