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2020 Daily Trail Markers: DNC announces first primary debate participants

DNC releases list for first debates

The DNC confirmed 20 candidates have been invited to participate in the first Democratic presidential primary debate, based on the qualifications announced in February, notes CBS NEWS Political Unit AP Sarah Ewall-Wice. Here's the full group:

  1. Michael Bennet
  2. Joe Biden
  3. Cory Booker
  4. Pete Buttigieg
  5. Julian Castro
  6. Bill de Blasio
  7. Rep. John Delaney
  8. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
  9. Kirsten Gillibrand
  10. Kamala Harris
  11. John Hickenlooper
  12. Jay Inslee
  13. Amy Klobuchar
  14. Beto O'Rourke
  15. Rep. Tim Ryan
  16. Bernie Sanders
  17. Eric Swalwell
  18. Elizabeth Warren
  19. Marianne Williamson
  20. Andrew Yang

The first debates will take place over two nights, on June 26 and 27, 2019, in Miami, Florida.


MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG: Mayor Pete Buttigieg met Wednesday with the Raben Group, a public affairs and communications firm founded by former Assistant Attorney General Robert Raben during former President Bill Clinton's administration, says CBS News campaign reporter Jack Turman. According to a source familiar with the meeting, it was not a fundraising event and 10 people were in the room for the meeting. The meeting included "professional people of color" and the meeting focused on policy, campaigns and staffing.

JOE BIDEN: Anita Hill, the law professor who accused Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment during his 1991 confirmation hearing, said the fact that then-Sen. Biden led that hearing does not "disqualify" him for the presidency. And, asked if she would consider voting for him, Hill replied during a Thursday interview with NBC News, "Of course I could."

JOHN HICKENLOOPER:  Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper laid into Sen. Bernie Sanders, a rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, while speaking at a National Press Club event in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, reports CBS News campaign reporter Stephanie Ramirez

Hickenlooper's criticism of Sanders comes a day after the Vermont senator gave a speech at George Washington University defending what he calls "democratic socialism." Hickenlooper has been a vocal critic of socialism on the trail, an approach that has irked some left-leaning audiences. 

"I have great respect for Sen. Sanders. He's provided clarity and urgency around the major issues for working families in America," said Hickenlooper on Thursday. "But I fundamentally disagree that we should do away with the democratic, regulated capitalism that has guided this country for over 200 years."

Read more here.

GOV. JAY INSLEE: During an impromptu interview at a D.C. fast-casual restaurant, Inslee told CBS News Political Unit's Ellee Watson, Bo Erickson, and Jack Turman today that his push for a climate change debate is not slowing down despite Chairman Tom Perez's insistence it will not happen. Inslee said nine state Democratic chairs and at least 50 members of the Democratic National Committee will present a resolution to the executive leaders at the Democratic National Committee on June 28, in Pittsburgh. Regarding the first debate at the end of the month, the governor said his debate prep is "going well" but admitted it's "challenging" condensing his more than 200-page book into a 60-second pitch.

At the same time, Inslee is now inclined toward impeaching President Trump, he said today during an interview with CNN, notes CBS News campaign reporter Tim Perry. "I don't see any other choice. I know the leaders will make a timing decision, but I think he's making it inevitable by his actions," Inslee said.  Inslee previously said Democrats shouldn't take it off the table nor was he of the opinion that impeachment "inevitable."

BETO O'ROURKE: The former Texas congressman took some swipes at former Joe Biden, says CBS News campaign reporter Tim Perry.  During an interview with MSNBC's Morning Joe, O'Rourke agreed that Biden is a "return to the past," and attacked his record by asking viewers and voters, "Did he support the war in Iraq that forever destabilized the Middle East? Does he really believe that women of lower income should be able to make their own decisions about their own body, be able to afford healthcare in order to do that," O'Rourke wondered aloud. "[Biden] supported the Hyde Amendment. he now opposes it. On China he says China is no threat to worry about and now seems to be changing his message on that."

REP ERIC SWALWELL: The majority of the Democrats running for president and on the House Judiciary Committee want to move forward on impeachment of President Trump. Rep. Eric Swalwell today also called for an impeachment inquiry into Mr. Trump, making him the 13th member of both groups to make the call says CBS News campaign reporter Zak Hudak. The California congressman and former prosecutor had come just short of calling for impeachment up to this point, saying only that the country was on that "road." Swalwell cited the president's admission Wednesday that he might not alert the FBI if a foreign government offered him dirt on one of his opponents as his breaking point on the issue. "His relentless attacks on our rule of law and numerous efforts to obstruct justice and Congress have reached such a point to require extraordinary action," he said in a release. 


UP NORTH: CBS News confirms Gov. Jay Inslee has made his first hire in the Granite State – Patrick Drupp. The former South Carolina state operative will serve as the New Hampshire deputy state director, based in Manchester, says CBS News campaign reporter Nicole Sganga.

New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu dropped by the White House today "for a discussion on workforce freedom and mobility." The New Hampshire executive came under fire Wednesday, for his recent veto of a paid family and medical leave bill. "When politicians feel the heat, then they see the light," Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced at a "Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy" roundtable in Concord, NH. "Here's a message to Governor Sununu. If you want to grow your economy, look West," Inslee added. Washington offers paid family leave up to 12 weeks.


IN THE POLLS: There's mixed news for Sen. Kamala Harris out of today's poll of likely California primary voters from UC Berkeley and the Los Angeles Times, says CBS News campaign reporter Alex Tin. Though tied at the top with Elizabeth Warren on net favorability, the California Democrat trails Warren, Joe Biden, and Bernie Sanders as voters' first choice. We also now have more evidence of Sanders' enthusiastic support among Golden State Latinos: among them, he is the clear frontrunner at 32% (Biden follows, with 25%). Recall that in 2016, Sanders was losing the Hispanic vote to Clinton (42% to 54%), in polls ahead of California's June primary then.

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