The Campaign Report – 11/18/2019

A new University of Northern Florida poll in South Carolina finds Joe Biden leading the Democratic field with 36%, followed by Bernie Sanders at 10%, Elizabeth Warren at 10%, Tom Steyer at 8%, Kamala Harris at 4%, Pete Buttigieg at 3% and Cory Booker at 2%.

Another South Carolina poll, this one by Quinnipiac, finds the same thing, a wide Biden lead with 33%, followed by Elizabeth Warren at 13%, Bernie Sanders at 11%, Pete Buttigieg at 6%, Tom Steyer at 5%, Andrew Yang at 4%, Kamala Harris at 3% and Cory Booker at 2%. No other candidate tops 1%, and 18% of likely voters are undecided.

Meanwhile, in Iowa… A new CBS News/YouGov poll in Iowa finds Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden leading the Democratic field with 22% each, followed by Pete Buttigieg at 21% and Elizabeth Warren at 18%.

A new CBS News/YouGov poll in New Hampshire finds Elizabeth Warren leading the Democratic field with 31%, followed by Joe Biden at 22%, Bernie Sanders at 20% and Pete Buttigieg at 16%.

An overwhelming 70% of Americans think President Trump’s request to a foreign leader to investigate his political rival, which sits at the heart of the House of Representatives’ impeachment inquiry, was wrong, a new ABC News/Ipsos poll finds.

A slim majority of Americans, 51%, believe Trump’s actions were both wrong and he should be impeached and removed from office. But only 21% of Americans say they are following the hearings very closely.

A new Harvard Institute of Politics poll finds 52% of young Americans and 58% of likely general election voters under 30 want President Trump impeached and removed from office.

Only 28% of likely voters feel differently. 

“Elizabeth Warren prohibits special access for big donors — but her campaign treasurer and another close ally are organizing wealthy supporters for Warren behind the scenes while she rips on the rich,” Politico reports.

“The pair, Boston businessman Paul Egerman and activist Shanti Fry, have maintained campaign titles as Warren’s finance co-chairs, even as her campaign sheared other links to the Democratic donor class earlier this year by forswearing closed-door, in-person fundraising events of the sort Warren did for years in the Senate.”

“In the history of American politics, one fact distills the nation’s enduring suspicion of cities: Voters have never elected a sitting mayor to the presidency,” the New York Times reports.

“Americans have seldom embraced anyone who’s even touched the job. Calvin Coolidge was the last president, one of just three in 230 years, to have been a mayor at any point. He led Northampton, Mass. — a modest town, really — for two years.”

“But as the Democratic Party becomes ever more aligned with urban areas, its presidential field is now studded with politicians whose boasts include running a city.”

Jonathan Bernstein on whether Trump rallies are hurting Republicans: “Democratic operatives in Louisiana seem to think so. And Trump’s overall lack of popularity certainly hurts Republican candidates everywhere, even in places where he remains popular. But it’s also possible that this is a typical case of political winners looking savvy after the fact and losers looking guilty of poor electioneering choices. It’s more likely that the rallies had little or no direct effects.”

“What matters to Trump’s reputation, however, is what Republican party actors believe. It’s possible they’ll believe his outlandish and evidence-free boasts about these elections — that, for example, he single-handedly rescued Kentucky’s Republican governor from a huge polling deficit and managed to help him to a narrower-than-expected loss. More likely, however, they’ll be more skeptical about his reputation for electoral clout.”

Reuters/Ipsos poll shows 4% support for Michael Bloomberg in the Democratic presidential race.

“Without Bloomberg in the race, 30% of Democrats said that they would vote for Biden. With Bloomberg added to the list of contenders, 26% of Democrats say that they plan to vote for Biden. In other words, the minimal support that Bloomberg does have appears to come at Biden’s expense.”

“Former New York mayor Mike Bloomberg, who has moved toward joining the Democratic presidential race, apologized Sunday for his handling of stop-and-frisk, a controversial policing tactic that has been criticized as a kind of racial profiling and that Bloomberg defended as recently as early this year,” the Washington Post reports.

“Bloomberg expressed regrets at a predominantly black megachurch he has visited many times, telling congregants that he didn’t understand the full effects on African American and Latino communities quickly enough and should have curtailed the program sooner.”

“The speech served as one of the clearest indicators yet that the billionaire businessman might soon join the crowded Democratic primary.”

A.B. Stoddard: “Alarm bells are ringing in the deep-red South where Republicans have lost gubernatorial races this month in Kentucky and Louisiana — despite rallies President Trump held to boost their prospects — largely on the issue of Medicaid expansion. Republicans in Washington better hear them.”

“Andy Beshear upset incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin in Kentucky, campaigning against the work requirements Bevin put on Medicaid in a state that had seen the uninsured rate for adults too young for Medicare drop from 21% to 7%. Democratic Gov. Jon Bel Edwards fended off a GOP challenge Saturday from a candidate pledging to block new enrollment in Medicaid and conduct stricter oversight of how recipients qualify for benefits.”

“Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly (D) won her race in 2018 after running on the same issue in a state Trump won by 20 percentage points.”

Greg Sargent: “John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, won reelection as governor of deep-red Louisiana on Saturday by a comfortable 40,000 votes — after President Trump had repeatedly campaigned for his Republican opponent. Worse for Trump, this came after he positively begged voters to support the Republican, casting it as a referendum on himself by saying: ‘You got to give me a big win, please.’”

“Yet Edwards won, in large part, by also stressing his implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion in the state during his first term. Indeed, Edwards’s lead pollster, Zac McCrary, told me during an interview that no single issue was more important in driving the governor’s victory.”

“All of which underscores an important truism about the Trump era, one often neglected by pundits: A key reason Democrats have been racking up wins in Trump country may be the president’s embrace of conventional GOP plutocratic economics.”

“Two days before Senator Elizabeth Warren rolled out a fundamental reimagining of America’s health care and tax system — a $20.5 trillion package that would dwarf all her previous plans combined — she was working the phones to personally preview her proposal and sell it to a select group of political influencers,” the New York Times reports.

“One was Paul Krugman, the Nobel Prize-winning economist and New York Times columnist, who had written skeptically days earlier that her plan to pay for ‘Medicare for all’ was a ‘make-or-break moment’ for her, if not the whole 2020 race. Another call was to Representative Pramila Jayapal, the lead sponsor of Medicare for all legislation in the House and a leading liberal as the co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.”

“Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s two-part plan to pass a public option as a transition into Medicare for All — and then full-blown Medicare for All a few years later — has revealed the difficulty of appealing to both the pragmatic and progressive wings of the party,” Axios reports.

“With a rapidly growing campaign staff and a big investment in infrastructure, Bernie Sanders is going all in on the California ground game,” the San Jose Mercury News reports.

“The Vermont senator’s campaign has opened five offices in California — far more than top rivals Sens. Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren, who have two each, and former Vice President Joe Biden, who hasn’t opened one. Sanders’ staff says they plan to set up at least 10 more offices by the end of the year and already have hired 40 full-time paid staffers in the state.”

“Joe Biden doubled down on his reserved stance over legalizing marijuana and said his questions over its status as a gateway drug hold him back from supporting legalization,” Business Insider reports.

Said Biden: “The truth of the matter is, there’s not nearly been enough evidence that has been acquired as to whether or not it is a gateway drug. It’s a debate, and I want a lot more before I legalize it nationally. I want to make sure we know a lot more about the science behind it.”

Washington Post: “Everything seemed ready to go: President Trump’s ban on most flavored e-cigarettes had been cleared by federal regulators. Officials were poised to announce they would order candy, fruit and mint flavors off the market within 30 days — a step the president had promised almost two months earlier to quell a youth vaping epidemic that had ensnared 5 million teenagers.”

“One last thing was needed: Trump’s sign-off. But on Nov. 4, the night before a planned morning news conference, the president balked.”

New York Times: “After spending months in anxious passivity, staking their hopes on Joseph Biden and little else, moderate Democrats appear suddenly determined to fight for control of their party in the 2020 elections.”

“The shift in attitude has come in fits and starts over the last few weeks, seemingly more as an organic turn in the political season than as a product of coordinated action by party leaders. But each assertive act has seemed to build on the one before, starting with a debate-stage clash last month over ‘Medicare for all’ and culminating in recent days with the entry of two new moderate candidates into the primary, Michael R. Bloomberg and Deval Patrick, and a gentle warning from former President Barack Obama that Democrats should not overestimate voters’ appetite for drastic change.”

Echelon Insights looked at U.S. registered voter support in a hypothetical multi-party democracy. Here’s what it might look like:

  • 28% Labor (working class center-left)
  • 21% Conservative (traditional-right, pre-Trump)
  • 19% Nationalist (basically Trump)
  • 12% “Acela Party” (socially liberal, globalist, fiscally centrist)
  • 10% Green (basically AOC)

There is 10% missing, so I suppose that number is divided among the theocrats (to the extent they are not included with the Trump nationalists), actual socialists and communists, and libertarians (to the extent they are not included in the conservative camp).

A progressive nonprofit funded mainly by Democratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer is investing $45 million as part of a youth voter turnout campaign ahead of the 2020 election, The Hill reports. Good. This is where progressive or moderate billionaires like Steyer and Bloomberg should be spending their billions. Not on vanity campaigns but on campaign turnout and on down ballot candidates and infrastructure.

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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