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Former President Barack Obama. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Former President Barack Obama warned 2020 Democrats to avoid moving too far to the left and tearing down the system at a meeting for the Democracy Alliance on Friday, the Washington Post reports.

“This is still a country that is less revolutionary than it is interested in improvement. They like seeing things improved. But the average American doesn’t think that we have to completely tear down the system and remake it. And I think it’s important for us not to lose sight of that.”

Why it matters: Obama said he will remain neutral throughout the primaries. However, some of the big ideas about sweeping change that the former president mentioned seemed to align with "staunch liberal" candidates, Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the Post notes.

What he's saying:

  • “My point is that even as we push the envelope and we are bold in our vision, we also have to be rooted in reality and the fact that voters, including Democratic voters and certainly persuadable independents or even moderate Republicans, are not driven by the same views that are reflected on certain, you know, left-leaning Twitter feeds or the activist wing of our party,” Obama said, per the Post.
  • Obama urged 2020 contenders to push past campaigning on his administration's accomplishments, and bring new ideas to the table.
  • The 44th president harkened back to his own primary to provide encouragement for the current campaigners, saying: “For those who get stressed about robust primaries, I just have to remind you that I had a very robust primary ... whoever emerges from the primary process, I will work my tail off to make sure they are the next president.”

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Biden confronts mounting humanitarian crisis at the border

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Pool/Getty Images     

Just over a month into his presidency, President Biden is staring down a mounting crisis at the border that could be just as bad as the ones faced by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, if not worse.

Why it matters: Immigration is an issue that can consume a presidency. It's intensely and poisonously partisan. It's complicated. And the lives and welfare of vulnerable children hang in the balance.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The rise of vaccine passports

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Vaccine passports were touted early in the pandemic as an important piece of the plan to get people back to normal life. Now they’re becoming a reality.

Driving the news: CLEAR, the secure digital identity app that you see in airports around the world, and CommonPass, a health app that lets users securely access vaccination records and COVID test results, have joined forces.

"Vaccine tourism" stretches states' supplies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans who are highly motivated to get vaccinated are traveling across state lines after hearing about larger vaccine supplies or loopholes in sign-up systems.

Why it matters: "Vaccine tourism" raises ethical and legal questions, and could worsen the racial socioeconomic and racial inequalities of the pandemic.