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2020 Daily Trail Markers: John Kasich plans a visit to New Hampshire in September

GOP rivals weigh potential bids against Trump

Former Ohio Governor John Kasich plans to visit New Hampshire next month to see what the mood is in the state, CBS News campaign reporter Nicole Sganga confirms, according to a source familiar with the governor's thinking. The source said that Kasich wants to be a part of the conversation, although another presidential bid isn't likely. The trip will be aimed at making the case for the need for greater civility in our political process.

Former Arizona Senator and CBS News contributor Jeff Flake says he's closed the door to a potential 2020 primary bid. "I said six months ago that I was not going to run and I have not changed my mind," Flake told CBS. The senator said he's seen an increase in phone calls from donors over the past week.

"Some donors and others have never stopped calling," said Flake. "They continue to call. But there's been an uptick lately because, I believe, the possibility of recession coming up. And people believe if the economy isn't strong, then there isn't much to recommend the president or Republicans."

Still weighing his options is former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford who visited the Granite State last month. The longtime Republican lawmaker called the visit another "green light" in his 2020 primary deliberations. "If you look at a state like New Hampshire, there certainly is historic precedent for somebody getting in during this window of time."

The Trump campaign declined to comment.

FROM THE CANDIDATES                                                                                          

MICHAEL BENNET

Colorado Senator Michael Bennet unveiled his plan today aimed at helping the middle class, specifically the 70% of Americans who don't have a four-year college degree. CBS News campaign reporter Adam Brewster says Bennet's proposal includes making a $500 billion investment over 10 years to help Americans without a four-year college degree, including high quality job training and apprenticeships. 

Bennet says this would be coordinated at the regional and local levels to help meet demands of local economies. The plan also calls for expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit to $3,000 per worker without children and expanding the Child Tax Credit to up to $300 per month. Bennet's plan does not call for a universal $15 minimum wage, but would set it there for high-cost cities and providing exemptions in "rural and lower-cost communities." 

He did not say how the wage would be set or where the line would be drawn for exempt communities, but said places like his wife's hometown of Marion, Arkansas could be hurt by a $15 minimum wage. "I don't think it's going to be tons of places in America, but I do think we need to have some flexibility to recognize, acknowledge that local conditions may not support a $15 minimum wage," Bennet told reporters on a press conference call. 

Bennet's plan calls for supporting unions by strengthening the ability of workers to organize and collectively bargain and pushing back on Right to Work laws. Finally, Bennet's proposal calls for quicker, automatic responses to potential recessions. That includes automatic direct payments to individuals when the unemployment rate rises (compared to low points of the previous year), expanding safety net programs like SNAP during recessions and reforming unemployment insurance.

CORY BOOKER

After remarks at the Iowa Federation of Labor State Convention, CBS News campaign reporter Jack Turman says New Jersey Senator Cory Booker commented in a press gaggle that the Democratic Party needs to nominate a candidate who is "not the safe bet." 

Asked to comment on the argument that Democratic voters should vote for a candidate who they are most confident can beat President Donald Trump in an election, even if other candidates excite them more, Booker said, "We need a candidate that can energize and ignite the whole Democratic Party, but even more than that, because I think this is not a partisan moment in America. This is a moral moment in America."

PETE BUTTIGIEG

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg released two radio ads in Iowa on Wednesday that will run statewide. In one ad titled "Fabric", Buttigieg takes aim at the Trump administration's trade war and how it is affecting rural communities, according to Turman. "This reckless trade war is tearing apart the very fabric of rural America," Buttigieg says in the ad. 

Buttigieg was in Iowa today, where he held a town hall with the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) and spoke at the Iowa Federation of Labor State Convention. 

In a press gaggle after his remarks at the labor convention, Buttigieg emphasized his call for generational change, saying the "idea of electability is an illusion and a dangerous one." "I think the biggest risk we could take is to try to play it safe," Buttigieg said. 

"Remember, a guy like the current president, in my view, should never have gotten close. But because Democrats looked like we were promising more of the same, back to normal, keep the system, we were rejected, including in the industrial Midwest where I live."

KAMALA HARRIS

The Harris campaign is touting two tribal endorsements on Wednesday says CBS News campaign reporter Stephanie Ramirez. "On the heels of her participation in Frank LaMere's Native American Presidential Forum and a career-long track record of partnership with Native communities, Senator Kamala Harris earned the endorsements of Chairman Mark Macarro of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians and Chairman Kenneth Kahn of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians," the Harris campaign wrote in a press release. Both groups are based in California.

JAY INSLEE

Washington Governor Jay Inslee unveiled his "Growing Rural Prosperity" Agriculture Plan, the sixth and last major part of his Climate Mission Agenda. CBS News campaign reporter Tim Perry says the plan outlines measures aimed at supporting rural and agriculture communities by "rewarding farmers for their environmental stewardship an healthy soils."  Highlights of the plan include investing in agriculture innovations with $3 billion in annual funding for the Conservative Stewardship Program, increasing USDA outreach and financing programs for farmers of color and expanding rural broadband connectivity.

MONEY MATTERS

ON THE $$$

The Democratic National Committee this summer is in danger of doling out more money than it takes in. CBS News Political Unit associate producer Sarah Ewall-Wice says according to the latest monthly filing with the Federal Election Commission, the DNC receipts totaled just over $7.6 million in July, but the committee distributed $7.9 million over the course of the month. 

While that was not the case in June, there was also more money going out than coming in for May. The DNC still also has more than $5.6 million in debt, though that number has been gradually shrinking in recent months. The DNC finished July with $9 million cash on hand. 

Meanwhile, the Republican National Committee is sitting on a pile of cash. According to the latest monthly FEC filing, the RNC has more than $46 million cash on hand at the end of July. Over the course of the month, receipts totaled more than $20.8 million, while it distributed $17.7 million in funds. While the DNC has been lagging behind the RNC in fundraising in 2019, some Democrats like to point out congressional committees as a source of hope. In July, the DSCC and DCCC outraised the NRSC and NRCC after some mixed fundraising numbers in June.

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