2020 Daily Trail Markers: Bloomberg throws $10 million at House Dems
Despite raising his hand at a debate indicating he would provide healthcare to undocumented immigrants earlier this year, Joe Biden’s immigration plan released on Wednesday did not address the issue, report CBS News political unit associate producer Eleanor Watson and CBS News campaign reporter Bo Erickson.
The campaign released its immigration plan and a plan for Central America. Like Julian Castro, Biden promises an economic plan to address factors driving migrants from Central America to the United States. Biden’s plan promises $4 billion over four years paid for by reorienting the budget of the Department of Homeland Security. His immigration plan promises to undo many of the Trump administration’s policies like the National Emergency Declaration allowing funds to build the wall, the cap on the number of refugees, and the Migrant Protection Protocol instructing certain migrants to wait in Mexico.
Senior advisers to Biden defended the record number of deportations under the Obama administration on Wednesday, with one saying, “There is no comparison between what Donald Trump is doing right now to immigrants and to the Latino community to what happened under the Obama-Biden administration.”
Biden unveiled his plan ahead of touring the Culinary Union’s health center in Las Vegas. While in Nevada, Biden was asked about a recent Politico report that he may pledge to serve only one term if elected.
“No. I never have. I don’t have plans on one term. I’m not even there yet,” Biden said.
FROM THE CANDIDATES
Former New York City Mayor and billionaire Mike Bloomberg will donate $10 million dollars to House Democrats being targeted by Republican opponents over the impeachment inquiry. The Washington Post was first to report the story.
According to CBS News campaign reporter Tim Perry, Bloomberg said, “Sadly Republicans are more interested in protecting the President than the Constitution. Fortunately House Democrats are holding the President accountable.” Bloomberg added, “I was proud to help Democrats win back the House in last year’s midterms, and I’m proud to support them again now.”
During the 2018 midterm elections, Bloomberg spent $110 million of his own money to support House Democrats facing difficult races. Decisions made about targeting and messaging for Bloomberg’s latest financial donation to House Democrats will be handled by the House Majority PAC, the House Democrats’ main outside group.
Robby Mook, President of the House Majority PAC and a CBS News Political Contributor, said, “With this extraordinary commitment from Mayor Bloomberg, we’ll be able to ensure voters understand how their Democratic House majority is working on the issues that matter, like protecting access to affordable health care and reducing the cost of prescription drugs.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was also grateful for the donation, saying, “We welcome and thank Mayor Bloomberg for his support.”
South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg released a list of his clients from his time working at the consulting firm McKinsey & Company. The release comes after the mayor faced mounting pressure to be more transparent about his work at the firm, where he worked from 2007 to 2010. Buttigieg’s clients included Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, environmental groups and U.S. government agencies.
While serving Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, the campaign said his work included assignments concerning “overhead expenditures” and did not involve policies, premiums or benefits.
“For a brief time, Pete Buttigieg was part of a larger McKinsey team we engaged back in 2007 to consult with our company during a corporate-wide reorganization,” said Helen Stojic, a spokesperson for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “He was not involved as a leader on that team, but rather as part of the larger consultant group.”
The campaign also described Buttigieg’s work in promoting entrepreneurship in Iraq and Afghanistan while working with the Department of Defense. His last study at the firm was for the U.S. Postal Service in 2010. The campaign told CBS News campaign reporter Jack Turman that the millennial mayor was tasked with investigating ways to generate revenue while with the Postal Service.
Separately, Buttigieg was endorsed Wednesday by Iowa State Senator Bill Dotzler, who represents parts of Waterloo and Black Hawk County, and is serving his fifth term in the state senate.
“I’m endorsing Pete Buttigieg for President because he offers a new kind of leadership,” Dotzler said in a statement released by the campaign. “As a veteran, as a mayor, a person of faith, and as a fellow midwesterner –– Pete has a unique set of experiences that can unite the country and defeat Donald Trump. He is focused on healing the divisions in our country, uniting the people, creating high quality jobs for working class Americans, and improving the lives of everyday Americans.”
CBS News campaign reporters Musadiq Bidar and Adam Brewster say Dotzler is the first current Iowa state legislator to endorse Buttigieg this cycle.
In a conversation with the Council on Foreign Relations in D.C. on Wednesday, Senator Amy Klobuchar said she hasn’t taken a firm stance on the USMCA trade agreement yet. “I have voted for some trade agreements and against others, I look at them individually. As I look at USMCA, I’m going to look at what some of the changes are there on labor standards, environmental standards, a pharmaceutical agreement, and seeing if those are strong enough to garner my support,” she said. “And then, also as president, what we could to take some of those negotiated changes if they are strong enough, into looking at TPP again.”
CBS News political unit broadcast associate Aaron Navarro reports Klobuchar also laid out her “5 R’s” approach to foreign policy: Restoring American leadership, Repairing alliances, Rejoining agreements, Responding appropriately to threats and Reasserting American values. Klobuchar also talked about rebuilding the State Department and expanding the budget for foreign assistance. She also floated the idea of making it possible for career diplomats that were forced out under the Trump administration to come back.
In addition, she criticized Mr. Trump for leaving the recent NATO conference early, saying that he has “walked out on the world.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren won the endorsement from Iowa’s Storm Lake Times in a column published by Pulitzer Prize-winning editor Art Cullen. Many candidates have made trips to Storm Lake hoping to earn Cullen’s support. But while Cullen praised several other candidates, including Biden, Buttigieg, Klobuchar and Bernie Sanders, Cullen said “Warren is campaigning to give us a fighting chance.”
Bidar and Brewster say the column focused extensively on Warren’s plans for rural America and fighting climate change. “Warren shows a real feeling for places left behind because she comes from there,” Cullen wrote. “Elizabeth Warren is fighting on principle like nobody else to give us a chance. It’s why she is our first choice among a marvelous field approaching the Iowa Caucuses on Feb. 3.”
With a mere 66 days until early voting begins in Nevada, a handful of campaigns are continuing to ramp up their staff in the state. The Sanders campaign says they will have hired their 100th staffer in the state as of this weekend. CBS News campaign reporter Alex Tin says Cory Booker’s team has brought on new organizers over the past week, bringing their staff total here to “around 20.” And Tom Steyer has named Ben Wheeler their new caucus director for the contest, nabbing yet another former state party staffer.
ON THE DOWNLOAD
On this week’s episode of the “Where Did You Get This Number?” podcast, host Anthony Salvanto and CBS News 2020 campaign reporter Bo Erickson discuss Biden’s presidential campaign strategy in Iowa, specifically concerning undecided voters and Republicans dissatisfied with President Trump. Erickson was with the Biden campaign’s bus tour when this episode was taped.
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