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–> A midday take on what’s happening in politics and how to have a sense of humor about it.*
*Ha. Haha. Hahah. Sniff. Haha. Sniff. Ha–breaks down crying hysterically.
The Hill’s 12:30 Report: Dem anxiety grows ahead of Super Tuesday | Centrist Dems worry after Bloomberg’s debate performance | Rivals fear Sanders building ‘insurmountable’ lead | Nevada caucus this Saturday | Trump holding Las Vegas rally today | Progressives see energized unions as key to 2020 win | Trump dismisses reports of Russian 2020 meddling | US, Taliban agreement could be signed this month | National Margarita Day deals | Burger King unveils french-fry burger
TALK OF THE MORNING
Chaos! Chaos, I tell you!:
Via The Hill’s Niall Stanage, “The Democratic presidential race is in fresh turmoil after former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg turned in a conspicuously poor performance in his first debate Wednesday evening.” http://bit.ly/2HKLusk
Why this is important: The moderate vote is splintered between several candidates while the progressive wing of the party has rallied around Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)
Why centrists are nervous about Sanders taking the nomination: “The centrists contend Sanders is too risky a candidate to run against President Trump in November — an assertion that is, of course, vigorously disputed by his supporters.”
WHY SOME DEMOCRATS ARE HAVING SECOND THOUGHTS ABOUT BLOOMBERG:
INTERESTING READ ON BLOOMBERG’S SUPPORT:
Via The Washington Post’s Philip Rucker, “‘It’s going to take a rich guy to beat Trump’: Why some Democrats back Bloomberg.” https://wapo.st/2uitrqe
Tidbit — how one Democrat feels: “I don’t care that he’s a billionaire trying to buy the election,” said Lynn Silva , a 66-year-old lifelong Democrat. “If that’s what it takes to beat Trump, that’s fine. I loved [Sen. Kamala D. Harris], but look at her: Out. I loved [Sen.] Cory Booker, but look at him: Out. No money.”
Happy Friday! I’m Cate Martel with a quick recap of the morning and what’s coming up. Send comments, story ideas and events for our radar to [email protected] — and follow along on Twitter @CateMartel and Facebook.
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What the candidates have in common in Nevada:
Via The Hill’s Jonathan Easley in Las Vegas, “Nevada, which will hold the first-in-the-west caucuses on Saturday, is a template for how progressives would like to see the Democratic White House contenders engage with the unions from now through the general election.” http://bit.ly/37IwEgl
For example — on Wednesday…: “That dynamic was on full display in Las Vegas on Wednesday, as the Democratic candidates joined hundreds of Culinary Workers Union members to march outside the Palms Casino Resort to demand that management meet with workers who are attempting to unionize there.”
IN THE WHITE HOUSE
Hoaxes are getting numbered now:
This morning, President Trump accused Democrats of being behind reports that intelligence officials told Congress about Russian efforts to interfere in the 2020 presidential election. http://bit.ly/2Th1jfR
Trump tweeted: “Another misinformation campaign is being launched by Democrats in Congress saying that Russia prefers me to any of the Do Nothing Democrat candidates who still have been unable to, after two weeks, count their votes in Iowa. Hoax number 7!” http://bit.ly/2V6YdgV
A U.S.-Taliban agreement on Leap Year Day:
Via The Hill’s Morgan Chalfant, “Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday said that the United States has reached an ‘understanding’ with the Taliban on a reduction of violence across Afghanistan, paving the way for a peace agreement between both sides to be signed on February 29.” http://bit.ly/38NAXZ3
And after that — from Mike Pompeo: “Intra-Afghan negotiations will start soon thereafter, and will build on this fundamental step to deliver a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire and the future political roadmap for Afghanistan … The only way to achieve a sustainable peace in Afghanistan is for Afghans to come together and agree on the way forward.”
Next up as the Director of National Intelligence:
President Trump says he is considering four people to serve as the next Director of National Intelligence (DNI). http://bit.ly/2Vanerq
Who: Trump didn’t name names.
What he did tweet: “Four great candidates are under consideration at DNI. Decision within next few weeks!” http://bit.ly/2wBwJWt
SUPER TUESDAY PREVIEW
Bernie is winning the numbers game:
Via The Hill’s Jonathan Easley and Julia Manchester, “Sen. Bernie Sanders’s (I-Vt.) rivals are sounding the alarm over his growing strength and warning that he could effectively secure the presidential nomination on Super Tuesday if Democrats don’t quickly align behind an alternative.” http://bit.ly/38NAx4V
Where the race stands now: “While Sanders and former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg have effectively split the delegate hauls from Iowa and New Hampshire, Sanders is the favorite to win the Nevada caucuses on Saturday. Sanders has been keeping a light schedule in Nevada, instead making the strategic decision to beat his rivals to the Super Tuesday states, where he’s begun to campaign vigorously.”
How many days until Super Tuesday: 11 days. Super Tuesday is on March 3
How many states vote on Super Tuesday: 14 states
What to expect on Super Tuesday: http://bit.ly/38NAx4V
Lol, I love when tweets are ironically placed together:
Twitter can be fun sometimes . pic.twitter.com/ElfiY9xF0L
— Dan Berman (@DHBerman) February 20, 2020
The House and Senate are out. President Trump and Vice President Pence are in Las Vegas.
8 p.m. EST: Vice President Pence gets back to Washington, D.C.
9:10 p.m. EST: President Trump gets back to Washington, D.C.
WHAT TO WATCH
3 p.m. EST: President Trump holds a campaign rally in Las Vegas. Vice President Pence also speaks. Livestream: https://cs.pn/32gvszZ
NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF…
Today is National Sticky Bun Day. And for planning purposes, tomorrow is National Margarita Day!
Margs! Margs! Margs!:
Via USA Today, here’s a list of margarita specials to celebrate National Margarita Day tomorrow: http://bit.ly/2wz58oJ
Carbs stuffed with more carbs — I mean, I’d try it…:
Burger King is selling a burger that is only filled with French fries. Photos: https://yhoo.it/37Kf7nZ
And to get your weekend off on the right foot, here’s a video of Donald Duck workin’ it: http://bit.ly/2HIGswj