Catch up on everything you may have missed on the 2020 front with our weekly rundown below:
Fmr. Vice President Joe Biden
Biden chose not to attend the California Democratic Party’s convention in San Francisco over the weekend, a decision that some fellow contenders took issue with from the podium. Instead, he addressed the Human Rights Campaign’s gala in Columbus, Ohio, where he declared that he believes it’s time for full equal rights for LGBTQ individuals at the federal and state levels. You can watch the speech here.
Meanwhile, Biden’s campaign released his schedule for the month of June, and it’s notably light. Given his frontrunner status, that’s no great surprise. But it’s causing some Democrats to question whether Biden’s heart is truly in this fight and if he has it in him to keep up a rigorous campaign schedule for over a year.
VICE News reported Monday that Biden is expected to roll out a “progressive” trade policy designed to combat the recent tariffs imposed by President Trump on countries like China and Mexico.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
Sanders didn’t hold back his attacks on Biden in San Francisco this weekend. In two separate attacks, Sanders criticized Biden for not attending the California Democrats’ convention and for supporting policies that Sanders believes would “go back to the old ways.”
Sanders also penned an op-ed in the New York Times Monday, titled, “I Know Where I Came From. Does President Trump?” In the piece, Sanders criticizes Trump for being out of touch with the struggles of millions of Americans. Sanders also attacks what he calls “unfettered capitalism” and “the greed of corporate America.”
Sanders also hosted his first “grassroots fundraiser” in San Francisco this weekend. He charged attendees $27, famously his average donation size in 2016, and 1,000 tickets were sold, according to his campaign.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Warren’s polling has steadily, though just slightly, increased over the course of the past few months. Most polls consistently show her in third place behind Biden and Sanders, though she still hovers in the high single digits to the low double digits. Still, at least one labor union strategist in Iowa said, “a lot of Bernie’s support seems to be drifting to Warren.”
That tracks with a recent Politico story that indicated Warren is playing in Iowa for keeps. She already employs 50 staffers in the Hawkeye State and is expected to add at least 10 additional staffers by mid-June. She’s hosted 34 separate events in Iowa, more than any other state, and her campaign believes a strong showing in Iowa could “catapult her to front-runner status for the nomination.”
Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Despite what some political pundits expected at the start of the campaign, Harris does not have the Democratic nomination locked up in her home state of California. That point has been reiterated by a few polls conducted in the Golden State in recent months and then again brought to light by this weekend’s “cattle call” in San Francisco.
“But in the room, her reception was not as rapturous as the one that Elizabeth Warren got for a tighter speech with a hard-to-miss attack on centrists. … Harris made no mistakes, and told receptive audiences about protecting abortion rights and eliminating the pay gap. But none of her strongest rivals would be spooked out of competing for California.”
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Buttigieg unveiled a new plan to overhaul the U.S. Supreme Court. Following President Trump’s appointment of two justices to the high court and numerous lower court appointments, Democrats have increasingly discussed “packing” the Supreme Court with liberal justices. No law states that the Supreme Court must only have nine justices, and Buttigieg’s plan advocates for 15: five Democrats, five Republicans, and five “apolitical justices chosen by the first 10.”
Fmr. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX)
O’Rourke reportedly reached out to and spoke with former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton recently. His campaign has been caught in a bit of a spiral since his announcement, but the Daily Beast’s Michael Tomasky wrote that people shouldn’t count out O’Rourke just yet. There’s been plenty of fodder for naysayers to work with, including a sloppy roll out, bad jokes and gaffes. Tomasky’s theory is that if O’Rourke performs well in the early debates, “O’Rourke is primed to get a second look.”
Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” and defended his gun control policy from Biden, who critiqued the plan last week.
After inappropriately bringing up the late John McCain and amid backlash from the family, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) issued a statement saying she has “deep respect” for him and his family.
During a CNN town hall, Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) said he believes President Trump wants Democrats to attempt to impeach him.
Fox News hosted a town hall for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) in which she took on moderator Chris Wallace over gender equality.
Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA) is scheduled to make a campaign stop in Detroit on Tuesday to talk about his No. 1 issue: climate change.
Former Gov. John Hickenlooper (D-CO) drew headlines this weekend when he told a liberal audience in San Francisco that “socialism is not the answer” to defeating Trump. The crowd energetically booed him.
While Gov. Steve Bullock (D-MT) claims he has no interest in running for Senate, one GOP super PAC isn’t convinced. Senate Leadership Fund recently launched a TV ad against the governor in Montana.
Los Angeles Magazine reported that some of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s (D-HI) supporters, who believe the “Las Vegas mass shooting was a set-up, that Bill Cosby was “framed,” and that “Pizzagate” was a thing,” are becoming a problem for her campaign.
Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA) took a pass when asked whether he believes Biden’s vote in favor of the Iraq war was good or not. CNN’s Jake Tapper called the answer a “cop out.”
Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) joined the chorus of other 2020 Democrats calling for the House to begin impeachment proceedings against President Trump during a CNN town hall.
Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) posted a rather strange fundraising plea on Twitter in which he’s changing a baby’s diaper. “Will you donate $1 now to get me to the debate stage? I’m ready to clean s#*% up!” the tweet read.
Critics blasted NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NY) for skipping a 9/11 memorial event. “Blasio chose to go to the gym and eat a croissant at his favorite patisserie in Park Slope rather than attend a ceremony at Ground Zero,” according to CBS New York.
Former HUD Secretary Julian Castro (D-TX) released a police reform plan on Monday. Read it here.