2020 rankings: It’s now or never for Democrats who want to be president

(CNN)Since Monday, four candidates have made their final go/no-go decisions about the 2020 Democratic presidential race. THE POINT — NOW ON YOUTUBE! In each episode of his weekly YouTube show, Chris Cillizza will delve a little deeper into the surreal world of politics. Click to subscribe! The rapid-fire decisions made by that quartet of candidates speaks to how quickly the 2020 race has gone from a standstill to a dead sprint. The battle for key early-state operatives is on. The fight for online dollars is joined. And any candidate not in the race by now runs the risk of getting lapped. 2. Joe Biden: No one confounds us more than the former vice president. Biden continues to lead national polling …

Brexit meaningful vote will go ahead, Theresa May says

Confirmation comes as Irish foreign minister suggests May will hold more talks with EU officials on Monday evening Theresa May has said the meaningful vote on her Brexit deal will go ahead on Tuesday, as MPs warned she would lose the confidence of parliament if it was pulled. The Irish foreign minister, Simon Coveney, said he understood May would travel to Strasbourg on Monday evening but Downing Street sources declined to confirm that, saying May had no confirmed travel plans yet and suggesting the Irish government was getting ahead of events. Coveney said negotiations were ongoing and said he had hoped there would be clarity at this stage, particularly in advance of the vote on Tuesday. The British prime minister …

‘House of fools’: what the papers said about May’s Brexit defeat

The word humiliation features strongly on todays front pages as PMs woes show no signs of easing Theresa May looks downcast on the front pages of most of the papers today, which all focus on the The Guardian (@guardian) The Guardian front page, Wednesday 13 March 2019: Another huge defeat for May. And just 16 days until Brexit March 12, 2019 The Daily Mirror focuses on the uncertainty ahead for the country, which it says has been plunged into: Brexit delay mayhem. May surrenders after another massive defeat leaving nation facing months of chaos, the paper reports. #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/qcjZYOigx6 #bbcpapers @AllieHBNews) March 12, 2019 The Daily Mail knows exactly who it blames for the situation, calling parliament: The house of …

Trump admin seeks to zero out Syria stabilization fund

Washington (CNN)With the Syrian Civil War entering its ninth year this month, the Trump administration is proposing to zero out all new US funding for stabilization efforts in the country. Boyle points out the plan, which is contained in the administration’s State Department budget proposal, would hurt efforts to secure the release of American citizens being detained in Syria. As of last summer, the US had spent a total of $90 million in northeast Syria on counter-ISIS stabilization efforts, according to the former anti-ISIS envoy, Brett McGurk. That money had been spent on projects including efforts to get clean water running, supporting schools so that students can return, clearing extensive rubble and demining areas so they are livable for returning …

McConnell tells GOP senators he has the votes for ‘nuclear option’ to speed nominations process

(CNN)Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told the Senate Republican Conference on Tuesday that he now has the votes to invoke the so-called nuclear option to significantly cut back the debate time on nominations, according to a person with direct knowledge of the remarks. The rule change would lower the debate time allowed once a filibuster has been defeated from 30 hours to two hours. The change would apply to almost all judicial and executive branch nominees but not those for high-level positions such as Cabinet officials, federal appellate court judges and the members of the Supreme Court. Democrats employed similar debate limits when they were last in the majority, ending in 2015, as they pushed through Obama administration nominations. But that …

Hillary Clinton rules out 2020 run, but says ‘I’m not going anywhere’

Washington (CNN)Hillary Clinton said Monday that she is not running for president in 2020 but will continue to speak out about politics, saying, “I’m not going anywhere.” Three people told CNN in January that Clinton was telling people she had not closed the door to the idea of another presidential run. This was in the wake of the announcements of indictments by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election and whether the Trump campaign was involved. At the time, a close Clinton friend said it would still be a big surprise to them if she launched a 2020 bid. Clinton’s former campaign chairman John Podesta told CNN in January that he took her at …

ERG warns May not to ‘bounce’ parliament over new Brexit deal

Tory Eurosceptic group says at least two days will be needed to scrutinise new compromise on Irish backstop Tory Brexiters are to demand at least two days to scrutinise any new offer from Brussels on the Irish backstop mechanism, warning the prime minister not to bounce the group into an early vote on her Brexit deal. May has pledged that a vote will take place on her proposal, including any changes agreed in Brussels, by 12 March, though it is possible that Downing Street will seek to put the vote to MPs as early as next week if changes can be secured. The EU has suggested that progress has been minimal and a No 10 source said there was little …

Energetic Democrats see a common purpose — if not yet a champion — in 2020 race

(CNN)The fire marshal in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, ordered the campaign to close the doors. Sen. Kamala Harris’ town hall at a historic church was at capacity — from basement to sanctuary to balconies. Harris made her way outside to the crowd that refused to leave the church steps, even as heavy snow blanketed them. “We’re going to have many opportunities for us to spend time together,” she said to cheers. “There is something different in the energy this time around,” said Meghann Foster, of Coralville, Iowa. “I think we have such an exciting field. 2018 was just the warm-up for the main event.” Foster, 43, could be the Democratic Party’s poster child for that warm-up act of the midterms. After …

Fact Check: Did Ivanka Trump create ‘millions of jobs’?

Washington (CNN)During an address to US governors Monday morning, President Donald Trump discussed the need for training programs and claimed that his daughter Ivanka had “created millions of jobs.” He followed up by discussing the Pledge to America’s Workers, an effort Ivanka has been involved in since its inception last year. Two hundred companies have agreed to the pledge, with each providing different numbers of training opportunities. This brings the total number of opportunities pledged to just over 6.5 million. (See the full list.) The facts CNN’s Senior Economics Writer Lydia DePillis checked out a similar claim made by Ivanka herself last year as she discussed the pledge. “We’re up to 6.3 million new jobs,” Ivanka said last October. That …

Schiff: Dems willing to have Mueller testify, subpoena report if it’s not made public

(CNN)House Intelligence Committee Democrats are willing to compel Special Counsel Robert Mueller to testify before their panel and sue the administration if that’s what it takes to make public Mueller’s report on his investigation into possible Russian involvement in the 2016 election. “We are going to get to the bottom of this, we are going to share this information with the public, and if the President is serious about all of his claims of exoneration, then he should welcome the publication of this report,” he added. The precise timing of when Mueller will present his report has been a moving target. A Justice Department official briefed on the plans told CNN Friday that Mueller’s report is not expected this coming …

How Bernie Sanders used the ‘Netflix’ model of political donations to raise millions

(CNN)Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders raised an eye-popping $6 million during the first 24 hours of his presidential campaign, far surpassing the totals announced by his rivals for the Democratic nomination About 20% of the money that flowed to Democratic candidates and organizations through ActBlue in the 2018 cycle came from recurring contributions, Caleb Cade, an ActBlue spokesman, told CNN. ActBlue does not disclose the fundraising details of the individual candidates who use its online platform. But New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who entered Congress last month with the highest proportion of small donors of any House member, is one of the most prominent examples of a politician using recurring donations to fuel her campaign. In all, about 62% of …

Negotiators move VAWA debate out of spending bill despite Friday expiration

Washington (CNN)The latest funding bill passed by Congress on Thursday night does not include an extension to reauthorize the decades-old Violence Against Women Act, despite its expiration on Friday, as Democrats plan to push for an overhaul of the legislation in near future. On Wednesday, Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy voiced the GOP’s desire to extend the legislation, saying at a news conference: “We do not want to have VAWA … expire. We want to extend it out, that will become a question down, hopefully Speaker Pelosi would not want to have VAWA expire, which would be on Friday. That’s why we would like to add that and make sure it’s in.” But Democrats ultimately got their wish — and now …

Trump declares border national emergency to bipartisan skepticism

Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency to unlock billions of dollars in federal funds to build a wall on the southern border, bypassing Congress after lawmakers refused to meet his multi-billion dollar request for border wall funds. Fact Check: Trump’s El Paso border wall claims Trump repeated claims about “tremendous amounts of drugs” crossing into the US from the southern border — even though the majority of those drugs come through ports of entry — and addressed the issue of human trafficking. He once again reiterated his claim that El Paso, Texas, is safer because of border fencing built there in 2008, despite statistics showing the city had already become safer a decade prior and violent …

Rep. Tim Ryan ‘seriously considering’ running for president

(CNN)Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan is “seriously considering” a run for president and doesn’t have a timeline for making his decision, he told CNN’s Erin Burnett Wednesday night. If Ryan enters the race he will join an ever expanding slate of Democratic candidates looking to thwart President Donald Trump’s re-election bid. Included on that list is a current House colleague of Ryan’s — Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard — and a former one as well in John Delaney. This is not the first time Ryan has suggested he is interested in a presidential run. Last week an adviser to the congressman told CNN that Ryan is planning visits to Iowa and New Hampshire in the coming months as he considers his bid. …

What needs to happen now to avert a government shutdown

Washington (CNN)A tentative border security deal has been agreed to on Capitol Hill, but there is still more work to be done in Washington before a partial government shutdown can be averted — and there are plenty of opportunities along the way for a deal to be derailed. Here’s what needs to happen now: 1. House expected to vote after bill text released Top-line details from the tentative agreement emerged on Monday night, including that the deal is slated to provide $1.375 billion for barrier funding that will cover roughly 55 miles of new barrier. But the full legislative text has not yet been released and that will need to happen ahead of any votes in the House. Typically, the …

Political world mourns the loss of John Dingell

Washington (CNN)The news of former Michigan Democratic Rep. John Dingell’s death shook the political world Thursday night as memorials poured in from political leaders spanning his decades as the House’s longest-serving member. Former President Barack Obama mourned Dingell, calling him proof that change “does not always come with a flash, but instead with steady, determined effort.” “John sat beside me when I signed the Affordable Care Act — a law that nearly cut in half the uninsured rate in America. He had a long tradition of introducing legislation on the first day of each new Congress to guarantee health care for every single American,” Obama said in a statement. “Because of him, we’ve come closer to that vision than ever …