Jan 11, 2019

Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is running for president

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Hawaii Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is running for president, she told CNN's Van Jones in an interview to air Saturday.

The big picture: Gabbard, one of the first female combat veterans in Congress, joins a crowded field of potential candidates. She plans to make a formal announcement "within the next week."

Catch up quick: Gabbard is a progressive Democrat who served as vice-chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, before resigning to support Sen. Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primaries.

  • Gabbard was first elected to the House in 2012, when she became the first American Samoan and Hindu lawmaker in Congress.
  • Steve Bannon, former chief strategist to President Donald Trump, was fond of Gabbard and set up a meeting between Trump and the Hawaii congresswoman during the 2016 transition. In a statement at the time, Gabbard said she would "never allow partisanship to undermine our national security when the lives of countless people lay in the balance.”
  • She called out now-President Trump after his statements over continuing support of Saudi Arabia in the wake of the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, tweeting that "being Saudi Arabia's b*tch is not 'America First.'"
  • Gabbard herself has come under fire for meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad in 2017. She has vehemently argued against U.S.-led regime change and "staked out anti-interventionist foreign policy positions in Congress," per CNN.

Republican National Committee Spokesman Michael Ahrens said in a statement: "Tulsi Gabbard has an even bigger problem than her lack of experience – it’s that she has no base of support. Liberals think she’s too conservative, conservatives think she’s too liberal, and just about everyone thinks her coziness with Bashar al-Assad is disturbing.”

Go deeper: Track the 2020 presidential election candidates

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 1,014,673 — Total deaths: 52,973 — Total recoveries: 210,335Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 244,678 — Total deaths: 5,911 — Total recoveries: 9,058Map.
  3. 2020 updates: The Democratic National Committee said its July convention will be postponed until August because of the coronavirus. A federal judge declined to delay Wisconsin's April 7 primary election.
  4. Jobs latest: Coronavirus unemployment numbers are like a natural disaster hitting every state.
  5. Public health latest: Anthony Fauci called for all states across the U.S. to issue stay-at-home orders. The FDA will allow blood donations from gay men after 3-month waiting period, citing "urgent need."
  6. Business latest: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said oil companies are eligible for aid from new lending programs the Federal Reserve is setting up, but not direct loans from his department.
  7. U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt: Navy removes captain of aircraft carrier who sounded alarm about coronavirus.
  8. 1 future thing: In developing countries, consequences of COVID-19 could be deeper and far more difficult to recover from.
  9. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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Mark Meadows considers new White House press secretary

Photos: Alyssa Farah, Defense Department; Stephanie Grisham, Alex Wong/Getty Images; Kayleigh McEnany, Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has privately discussed bringing on Pentagon spokesperson Alyssa Farah or Trump campaign spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany as a new White House press secretary, two sources familiar with the talks tell Axios.

Why it matters: Meadows' start on Tuesday as Trump's new chief presents a chance to overhaul a press shop that's kept a low profile since President Trump ended the tradition of daily press secretary briefings.

CNN: Fauci advises all states issue stay-at-home orders

Dr. Anthony Fauci listens to President Trump speak during a briefing on April 1. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci recommended on Thursday that all states across the U.S. implement stay-at-home orders, at a CNN town hall.

Why it matters: The recommendation stands in contrast to President Trump's calls for "flexibility." Nearly 4o states have issued stay-at-home orders to promote social distancing as a way to combat the novel coronavirus — but the orders vary in strictness and duration.

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