Each edition of the Axios-NewsWhip 2020 attention tracker.Updated Feb 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy
What we found from Romney/Clinton and Obama/Trump voters across America.Jan 28, 2020 - Politics & Policy
Read up on the field challenging Trump.Updated Jan 13, 2020 - Politics & Policy
Sen. Bernie Sanders wanted to keep his momentum after winning contests in New Hampshire and Nevada, while former Vice President Joe Biden hoped to keep his own campaign alive. The other five candidates were just trying to hang on.
What's happening: Seven contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination were in Charleston, South Carolina, for the tenth debate, just days before the South Carolina primary and a week before Super Tuesday. They spoke, sometimes over each other, about health care, Russian interference in the election, foreign policy the economy, gun control, marijuana, education, and race.
The 10th Democratic debate was billed as the most consequential of the primary thus far, but Tuesday night's high-stakes affair was at times awkward and unfocused as moderators struggled to rein in candidates desperate to make one last splash before Saturday's primary in South Carolina and Super Tuesday.
The big picture: After cementing himself as the Democratic favorite with a sweeping win in Nevada, Sen. Bernie Sanders came under fire as the front-runner for the first time on the debate stage. Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who will be on the ballot for the first time next Tuesday, was a progressive foil once again, but he appeared more prepared after taking a drubbing at the Nevada debate.
Sen. Bernie Sanders mocked President Trump's response to the novel coronavirus Tuesday at the Democratic debate.
What they're saying:
" In the White House today, we have a self-described great genius — self-described — and this great genius has told us that this coronavirus is going to end in two months. April is the magical date that this great scientist we have in the White House has determined — I wish I was kidding, that is what he said."— Sanders
Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg on the debate stage Tuesday denied telling a former employee to terminate her pregnancy.
Catch up quick: Per the Washington Post, a former saleswoman has alleged workplace discrimination against Bloomberg and his company and says Bloomberg told her to "kill it" when he learned she was pregnant. Bloomberg denied the allegation under oath and entered a confidential settlement with the woman.
Sen. Bernie Sanders sent a message to Russian President Vladimir Putin on the debate stage Tuesday, stating, "If I'm president of the United States, trust me, you're not going to interfere in any more American elections."
The big picture: It was unveiled last week that Russia has been interfering to boost Sanders' campaigns in an apparent attempt to strengthen President Trump's bid for reelection. Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said that "Vladimir Putin thinks that Donald Trump should be president of the United States, and that's why Russia is helping [Sanders] get elected.
Bernie Sanders is now the clear front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, and his opponents are ready to try to knock him down at tonight's debate in Charleston, South Carolina — especially Michael Bloomberg, who was the punching bag at the Las Vegas debate.
Why it matters: This is the last debate before Super Tuesday, when Sanders is expected to win California and Texas and could secure an insurmountable lead for the Democratic nomination. That's a direct threat to the entire field, but especially to Bloomberg, who skipped the early states to focus on the March 3 contests.
Two Florida Democrats filed a lawsuit Tuesday seeking to block Sen. Bernie Sanders — a self-declared independent — from appearing on the state's primary ballot next month on the grounds of Florida having a closed primary system, Politico reports.
The big picture: Florida's closed primary system does not allow individuals to cast votes across party lines or for independents or third-party voters to participate. Sanders is an independent who caucuses with Democrats in the Senate, but is currently the front-runner in the Democratic primary for president.
Diana Taylor, Mike Bloomberg's longtime partner, dismissed the concerns surrounding non-disclosure agreements used at his company, Bloomberg LP, telling CBS News that she would say to those bothered by the allegations, "It was 30 years ago, get over it."
Why it matters: Democratic candidates have used the NDAs as a talking point against Bloomberg, calling on him to allow women to speak about the reported sexual harassment and gender discrimination they faced while working for him.
Bernie Sanders is poised to become an economic scapegoat for both the White House and Corporate America, assuming that Sanders comes through Super Tuesday unscathed.
The big picture: If the U.S. economy remains strong, President Trump and CEOs will claim credit (as they've been doing for three years). If it turns sour, they'll blame Bernie (even though it's a largely baseless charge).
The gap between Democrats and Republicans in their trust of media and business as institutions remains wide ahead of the election, according to Edelman's latest Global Trust Barometer study.
The state of play: The gap is wide for media trust — as 66% of Democrats trust it, while only 33% of Republicans feel the same. Independents sit at 43%.