Happy Wednesday! Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,174 words ... < 5 minutes.
Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders looked like Democrats' de facto leaders and policymakers last night, in the opening half of the party's back-to-back Debate 2, which continues tonight on CNN at 8 ET with 10 more candidates.
Warren and Sanders spoke to Democrats who are tired of small ball, Axios managing editor David Nather points out.
Why it matters ... Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who warned the party this week about moving too far left, told me after the debate:
Axios' Alexi McCammond reports from the debate site in Detroit that CNN's debate structure — with candidates pressed into abbreviated answers, often in response to a rival — frustrated the more centrist campaigns:
Buttigieg, 37, drew applause when asked if voters should take age into consideration when picking a president:
I don't care how old you are. I care about your vision. ... Because the only reason we got this president is that normal didn't work. ...
[I]f you are watching this at home and you are a Republican member of Congress, consider the fact that, when the sun sets on your career and they are writing your story — of all the good and bad things you did in your life — the thing you will be remembered for is whether, in this moment, with this president, you found the courage to stand up to him, or you continued to put party over country.
Nather's other takeaways: Tough night for the moderates ... Beto O'Rourke vanished ... No one mentioned Joe Biden by name.
A quick-turn solicitation from Bernie Sanders' campaign arrived at 10:05 p.m. ET — 38 minutes before the debate ended:
The campaign was capitalizing on this instant-classic moment:
📺 Behind the scenes ... What to watch tonight, when Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are center stage (sorry, I botched the lineup yesterday):
What we talked about ...
... and who we were curious about:
The pro-Trump super PAC America First Action and its affiliated 501(c)(4) nonprofit, America First Policies, jointly raised $17.83 million in the first half of 2019, and will report $21 million in cash on hand to the FEC, Axios' Ursula Perano and Jonathan Swan report.
Where it stands: The conservative organization, which Trump has blessed and which is led by former Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, has jointly brought in 16,649 total donations from 11,655 different contributors.
Between the lines: Trump will have a weapon he didn't have in 2016 — serious TV advertising to assault his Democratic opponent.
"Need Extra Time on Tests? It Helps to Have Cash ... Demand for disability accommodations for schoolwork and testing has swelled. But access to them is unequal and the process is vulnerable to abuse," the N.Y. Times' Dana Goldstein and Jugal K. Patel report:
"To Cheat and Lie in L.A.: How the College-Admissions Scandal Ensnared the Richest Families in Southern California" ... Vanity Fair's Evgenia Peretz tells the story of five families drawn into what would become known as Operation Varsity Blues:
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
State attorneys general have become some of the most powerful forces fighting the Trump White House — pushing back against its agenda on hot topics like immigration, energy, health care and more, write Axios' Stef Kight and Sara Fischer.
Migrant children sleep this month on a mattress on the floor of the AMAR migrant shelter in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. Photo: Marco Ugarte/AP
911 children, including babies and toddlers, were separated from their parents at the border from June 2018 to June 2019, per ACLU figures reported by AP.
Duhigg tells me the show "represents something new: the introduction of genuinely investigative service journalism in podcasting. We’ll release a new episode, with a new problem and solution, every week."
Apple CEO Tim Cook said yesterday on an earnings call that the Apple Card will launch next month, CNBC's Tod Haselton reports:
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