Tom Steyer and Michael Bloomberg. Photos: Mark Makela/Getty Images and Ron Adar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

2020 Democratic candidate and billionaire Tom Steyer challenged incoming contender Michael Bloomberg on Friday to support a wealth tax or leave the 2020 race.

The big picture: Bloomberg told Axios he will "spend whatever it takes to defeat Donald Trump." Steyer, also a billionaire, has spent more than any other Democratic candidate to self-fund his campaign — allowing him to meet the increasingly strict qualifications for presidential debates.

What he's saying: “People like Michael Bloomberg and I, who have done well under the current economic system, have a direct responsibility to address wealth inequality and bring forth progressive plans to support working families."

  • Steyer said the Democratic nominee must support a wealth tax if they also support progressive policies like the Green New Deal and universal health care.

Between the lines: A Steyer campaign aide would not explicitly say if Steyer and Bloomberg have a responsibility to increase taxes on the wealthy because they are billionaires.

  • "I think what Tom is talking about specifically is a wealth tax, and obviously that does impact those people at the very top. And when you think about who those people at the very top are in this race, there are only two of them," the aide told Axios.

Go deeper: 2020 candidates' Q3 fundraising hauls

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Deadly Hurricane Zeta churns inland after lashing Louisiana

A satellite image of Hurricane Zeta. Photo: National Hurricane Center/NOAA

Hurricane Zeta has killed at least one person after a downed power line electrocuted a 55-year-old in Louisiana as the storm moved into Alabama overnight.

What's happening: After "battering southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi," it began lashing Alabama late Wednesday, per the National Hurricane Center.

47 mins ago - World

Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases

Catholics go through containment protocols including body-temperature measurement and hands-sanitisation before entering the Saint Christopher Parish Church, Taipei City, Taiwan, in July. Photo: Ceng Shou Yi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Taiwan on Thursday marked no locally transmitted coronavirus cases for 200 days, as the island of 23 million people's total number of infections reported stands at 550 and the COVID-19 death toll at seven.

Why it matters: Nowhere else in the world has reached such a milestone. While COVID-19 cases surge across the U.S. and Europe, Taiwan's last locally transmitted case was on April 12. Experts credit tightly regulated travel, early border closure, "rigorous contact tracing, technology-enforced quarantine and universal mask wearing," along with the island state's previous experience with the SARS virus, per Bloomberg.

Go deeper: As Taiwan's profile rises, so does risk of conflict with China

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Biden ahead in Wisconsin, Michigan as cases surge in the Midwest.
  2. Health: Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022 — Trump's testing czar: Surge "is real" and not just caused by more tests Some coronavirus survivors have "autoantibodies."
  3. Business: Consumer confidence sinking Testing is a windfall.
  4. World: Europe faces "stronger and deadlier" wave France imposes lockdown Germany to close bars and restaurants for a month.
  5. Sports: Boston Marathon delayed MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.