It turned out to be a real “super,” Super Tuesday for former VP Joe Biden, who roared back to winning at least nine of the 14 contests up for grabs. Biden’s huge comeback comes after a rough several months of seemingly to struggle in the first three Democratic nominating contests.
However, Sen. Bernie Sanders, claimed gold, as most expected he would, with a sizable win in delegate-rich California – divvying up the map on the biggest primary day of the season and indicating a tight battle between the two that is likely to drag on for weeks or more.
It emerged after midnight Wednesday that Biden had narrowly defeated Sanders in Texas, the second-biggest prize of the day. With 90 percent of precincts reporting, Biden was ahead of Sanders 33.3 percent to 29.3 percent. It looks as though the candidates will receive a similar share of the state’s 228 pledged delegates.
The former vice president’s comeback was remarkable given his poor performances in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada earlier this year, which left many pundits declaring his campaign dead in the water. Biden won the most contests Tuesday and certainly outperformed expectations from just a week ago – though who came out ahead in the delegate race remains unclear.
“I’m here to report, we are very much alive! And make no mistake about it, this campaign will send Donald Trump packing,” the 77-year-old Biden told fired-up supporters in Los Angeles Tuesday night.
Biden’s weekend win in South Carolina and the decision by 2020 rivals to bow out and endorse him were undeniable factors – especially in Minnesota, which he won after backing from Klobuchar, the home-state senator.
Next week’s Mar. 10 primary in Michigan will be Biden’s next big test as he seeks to demonstrate that he can reliably overcome Sanders’ appeal in the Midwest and the so-called “rust belt.”
Biden so far is projected to win Texas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Virginia, Tennessee, Alabama, North Carolina, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. Sanders handily won his home state of Vermont and later racked up wins in Colorado and Utah, in addition to California.
Who comes out ahead in the delegate race is still being assessed, because they are allocated proportionally and not all votes have been counted. Approximate total delegate counts through Super Tuesday are 660 for Biden, 586 for Sanders, 110 for Bloomberg, and 101 for Warren.
For their part, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Bloomberg have openly suggested they could stay in the running until the Democratic National Convention. It’s unclear whether their poor showing on Super Tuesday will lead them to reconsider.
Conservative talk show host, and recent Medal of Freedom winner, Rush Limbaugh says he knows the truth about what is behind the coronavirus outbreak.
On a recent broadcast, Rush said that the coronavirus is nothing more than a “common cold” blown out of proportion by the media to take down President Donald Trump.
“It looks like the coronavirus is being weaponized as yet another element to bring down Donald Trump,” Rush said. “I want to tell you the truth about the coronavirus…. the coronavirus is the common cold, folks,” he added.
Rush then went on to say, “The drive-by media hype of this thing as a pandemic, as the Andromeda strain, as, ‘Oh, my God. If you get it, you’re dead…’ I think the survival rate is 98%,” he said. “Ninety-eight percent of people who get the coronavirus survive. It’s a respiratory system virus.”
Continuing, he added, “It probably is a ChiCom laboratory experiment that is in the process of being weaponized.”
Limbaugh then went on to claim that “all superpower nations weaponize bioweapons,” and the Russians “have weaponized fentanyl,” which is “also not what it is represented to be.”
“I’m not trying to get you to let your guard down. Nobody wants to get any of this stuff. I mean, you never… I hate getting the common cold. You don’t want to get the flu. It’s miserable,” Limbaugh declared. “But we’re not talking about something here that’s gonna wipe out your town or your city if it finds its way there.”
He concluded his diatribe about the virus with a deliberate jab at democratic-socialist Bernie Sanders.
“It came from a country that Bernie Sanders wants to turn the United States into a mirror image of: Communist China. That’s where it came from. It didn’t come from an American lab. It didn’t escape from an American research lab. It hasn’t been spread by Americans,” Limbaugh concluded. “It starts out in a communist country. Its tentacles spread all across the world in numbers that are not big and not huge, but they’re being reported as just the opposite. Just trying to keep it all in perspective.”
The widely anticipated first appearance of Michael Bloomberg in a democratic debate was far from the bombastic performance the former New York Mayor needed. Instead, he stumbled through most of the debate, which didn’t get lost on one person in the audience who was probably most keyed in to Bloomberg’s performance – Donald Trump.
The president, in an early morning tweet after the former mayor’s dismal performance, mocked Bloomberg, calling the former New York City mayor “grossly incompetent.”
“Mini Mike Bloomberg’s debate performance tonight was perhaps the worst in the history of debates, and there have been some really bad ones,” Trump tweeted.
“He was stumbling, bumbling and grossly incompetent. If this doesn’t knock him out of the race, nothing will. Not so easy to do what I did!” he added
“Worst debate performance in history!” he added in a subsequent tweet.
Trump’s remarks about “Mini-Mike,” were nothing new. At a rally in Phoenix Wednesday night, while the debate was taking place, the president had this to say, “Now they have a new member of the crew, mini Mike,” Trump told the crowd of supporters. “We call him ‘no boxes.’ I hear he’s getting pounded tonight,” Trump went on. “I hear they’re pounding him.”
But, the president was not alone in his assessment of Bloomberg’s poor showing. Pundits on the right and left feel that he struggled to find his footing during his debut at the Democratic primary debate in Las Vegas. It was the ninth primary debate so far, and his fellow candidates’ experience on the stage shone through.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) wasted no time going after Bloomberg after the debate began.
“Democrats are not going to win if we have a nominee who has a history of hiding his tax returns, of harassing women and of supporting racist policies like redlining and stop and frisk,” Warren said. “Democrats take a huge risk if we just substitute one arrogant billionaire for another.”
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) added later, “I don’t think you look at Donald Trump and say we need someone richer than Donald Trump in the White House.”
For the most part, Republicans and Democrats alike cheered as Harrison Ford’s President James Marshall kicked terrorists “the hell off of my plane,” in the classic action-adventure movie, Air Force One.
However, in the real world, Ford’s politics are decidedly a little more Hollywood one-sided. Ford seems to be dipping his toe into political waters, noting in a recent interview that talking about politics has become unavoidable.
Days after the 77-year-old actor appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live and called President Donald Trump a “son of a b—-,” he was asked about his recent forays into talking politics in an interview with CBS News. The star responded by noting that politics has become too divisive and called for a return to “the middle ground.”
“I think it’s come to the point where we gotta start talking politics,” Ford said. “But we gotta talk about it in a positive way. We gotta regain the middle ground. We’re in these ideological enclaves. But the truth is in the middle. Progress is made in the middle.”
When asked if he thought it was possible to get back to the middle ground, the iconic actor’s response was blunt. “We damn well better,” he shot back.
Ford was on hand to promote his new film, “The Call of the Wild,” which he says spoke to his personal beliefs about climate change and human beings’ impact on the natural world.
“We’re in danger of losing the support of nature for our lives, for our economies, for our societies,” Ford added in the interview. “Because nature doesn’t need people, [but] people need nature.”
The actor has previously been critical of the United States’ decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Accord. In the CBS interview, he noted that he believes young people will help usher in an era of actually making progress on climate change.
“I’m now seeing that I think we’re coming close to being able to really commit the resources and energy to confronting the issue because it’s taken up on the highest level of politics,” he explained. “It’s taken up on the streets by young people.”
Ford’s comments come after an appearance in Mexico City earlier this month where he bashed America’s current leadership while praising young climate activist Greta Thunberg.
“Science is being ridiculed by people in ideological campgrounds. They are refusing the wisdom, the discipline of science in favor of a political point of view,” Ford continued. “And that has to stop. And I believe young people throughout the world have known it has to stop and are capable and willing to make the sacrifices to make that happen.”
Billionaire Democratic candidate for president, Michael Bloomberg will appear on the debate stage for the first time against fellow candidates in Nevada.
A new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll published Tuesday shows Bloomberg with 19% support nationally in the Democratic nominating contest. Under recently changed rules, he only needed one more poll above 10% to qualify for Nevada.
The former New York City mayor, who launched his presidential campaign in November, will appear in Wednesday’s debate in Las Vegas alongside former Vice President Joe Biden, Sens. Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Fellow billionaire and philanthropist Tom Steyer is still hoping to qualify.
Bloomberg’s campaign said that it was seeing “a groundswell of support across the country” and that qualifying for Wednesday’s debate “is the latest sign that Mike’s plan and ability to defeat Donald Trump is resonating with more Americans.”
“Mike is looking forward to joining the other Democratic candidates on stage and making the case for why he’s the best candidate to defeat Donald Trump and unite the country,” Bloomberg campaign manager Kevin Sheekey said in a statement.
Even though he will participate in the debate on Wednesday, Bloomberg will not be on the ballot in Nevada. The former NYC mayor is skipping the first four primary states — Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina — to focus on saturating Super Tuesday states with ads and to campaign in the 14 states that will vote on that day while other candidates are grinding it out in the early states. This strategy has allowed him to pass other candidates in national polls despite their strong showings in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Bloomberg has not appeared in earlier debates, because his campaign is self-funded.
Until a recent change, one of the criteria for candidates to get on the debate stage was their number of donors, but the DNC changed those rules for the Nevada debate in late January, opening the door for Bloomberg to make the stage. That decision drew criticism from his Democratic competitors, who have previously characterized Bloomberg as trying to “buy” the presidency.
“The DNC didn’t change the rules to ensure good, diverse candidates could remain on the debate stage. They shouldn’t change the rules to let a billionaire on. Billionaires shouldn’t be allowed to play by different rules—on the debate stage, in our democracy, or in our government,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts tweeted at the time.
The fact that Bloomberg didn’t appear at the most recent debates, of course, drew ridicule from President Trump.
“Mini Mike Bloomberg doesn’t get on the Democrat Debate Stage because he doesn’t want to – he is a terrible debater and speaker. If he did, he would go down in the polls even more (if that is possible!),” Trump tweeted last month.
The other candidates who have qualified for Wednesday’s debate are former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Biden, Sanders, Warren, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.
With everyone up in arms about the alleged influence President Trump has over AG Barr’s justice department, a new book has revealed some shocking new details of how former President Clinton “shook down, ” Obama’s Attorney General Loretta Lynch, during their infamous “tarmac meeting,” in 2016.
“We knew something had occurred that was a bit unusual. It was a planned meeting. It was not a coincidence,” journalist Christopher Sign, and author of the book, “Secret on the Tarmac,” told “Fox & Friends” about the explosive meeting, which cast a negative light over the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of state.
At the time, then-candidate Donald Trump criticized Bill Clinton via Twitter for potentially trying to interfere with the investigation, twitting, “Does anybody really believe that Bill Clinton and the U.S.A.G. talked only about ‘grandkids’ and golf for 37 minutes in plane on tarmac?”
Trump had publicly questioned the meeting at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor Airport, after which Clinton and Lynch claimed the conversation centered around their grandchildren. The meeting occurred just days before the FBI decided it would not recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.
Of his new book, Sign says, “[Secret on the Tarmac] details everything that they don’t want you to know and everything they think you forgot, but Bill Clinton was on that plane for 20 minutes and it wasn’t just about golf, grandkids, and Brexit. There’s so much that doesn’t add up.”
He said that his source who was there outlined that when Clinton arrived at the airport, he was waiting for Lynch.
“He then sat and waited in his car with the motorcade, her airstairs come down, most of her staff gets off, he then gets on as the Secret Service and FBI are figuring out ‘How in the world are we supposed to handle this? What are we supposed to do?’” Sign said.
He went on to say that when Lynch testified before the House Oversight Committee in December 2018, that “She mentioned that Bill Clinton flattered her, talked about Eric Holder, talked about how things were going at Justice, talked about her job performance, not this ‘golf-grandkids, Brexit.’”
According to Fox, Sign said that his family has received death threats for telling the story.
“This story isn’t about right or left, Republican or Democrat, it’s about right and wrong and journalism.”
In response, Bill Clinton said he was “offended” over the allegations of misconduct regarding the tarmac meeting.
“I thought, you know, I don’t know whether I’m more offended that they think I’m crooked or that they think I’m stupid,” Clinton told investigators, according to a 2018 report released by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz.
The Department of Justice recently announced charges against several Chinese nationals in connection with the massive Equifax data breach.
In a news conference earlier this week, U.S. Attorney General William Barr said four members of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army were behind the hack that affected 150 million Americans.
The 2017 breach resulted in the theft of names, social security numbers and personal information of American citizens, as well as the theft of trade secrets from Equifax. The hack has been described as one of the largest in history.
“This kind of attack on American industry is of a piece with other Chinese illegal acquisitions of sensitive personal data,” stated Attorney General Barr. “For years, we have witnessed China’s voracious appetite for the personal data of Americans.”
The indictment charges the alleged hackers with computer fraud, conspiracy to commit economic espionage, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
This shocking news comes as the Trump administration continues to warn of the “growing political and economic influence” of China.
Just this past weekend, Sectary of State, Mike Pompeo warned state Governors at their national conference that “We can’t ignore China’s actions and strategic intentions,” he said while addressing the National Governors Association winter meeting. “The Chinese government has been methodical in the way it’s analyzed our system… it’s assessed our vulnerabilities and it’s decided to exploit our freedoms, to gain an advantage over us at the federal level, the state level and the local level.”
In the wake of his acquittal, which resulted in the firings of the likes of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and Ambassador Sondland – the gutting of the supposedly “deep state” staff at the National Security Council (NSC) will continue – so says an well-known NSC expert.
Dr. John Gans said recently in The New York Times, that the removal of Vindman is only the latest step of a much larger and ongoing effort by the Trump administration to tear down the council and reduce it to something that is weaker, less effective, and more beholden to the personal whims of the president.
“The dismissal is just one part of a campaign by the national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, to ‘trumpify’ one of the most powerful and important institutions in government,” wrote Gans. “Over the last six months, while impeachment dominated the news, Mr. O’Brien undertook the first restructuring of the council in a generation. He cut 60 to 70 positions, about a third of the staff, many of them career professionals. He also directed that the National Security Council focus less on transnational issues like global economics and nonproliferation, and more on bilateral and geographic priorities. In all, Mr. O’Brien’s ‘trumpification’ of the staff will hamper the United States’ ability to meet the world’s challenges, and hamstring the next president.”
So expect Trump’s purge of his enemies in the NSC to continue. CNN says that some people with “knowledge of the impending change” previously said once President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial had concluded, O’Brien was expected to oust about a dozen or so officials as part of an effort to streamline the NSC, which O’Brien alleges has become too large.
“So it’s bloated. We’re going to bring it back to a size that’s manageable and efficient. And look, the folks who are there, they really need to want to serve the President,” O’Brien told Fox News’ Laura Ingraham earlier this week.
“What I said when I came to the NSC is that I would drastically downsize it,” he added.
O’Brien said the council had “ballooned up” to 236 policy professionals in the Obama administration from about 100 during the Bush administration.
“Another week or two, I think we’ll have met our goal,” he said.
The NSC coordinates policy options on national security, foreign policy and military issues for the White House.
Soon after O’Brien was named to the top position, he told the White House in October he wanted to slash the NSC staff by about half by early 2020.
With a horrendous showing in both Iowa and New Hampshire, is it all but over for former VP Joe Biden?
He was once the presumptive Democratic nominee, but on Tuesday, Joe Biden fled New Hampshire with his tail between his legs — and headed to South Carolina, where he watched his dismal results come in.
Sensing a humiliating defeat in the Granite State, Biden’s team announced the former vice president was throwing in the towel before the polls had even closed, spending Tuesday evening at a campaign launch party in Columbia, SC, about 1,000 miles away.
It seems the former veep was right to get outta Dodge. Biden ended up placing fifth in New Hampshire, capturing less than 9 percent of the vote and none of the state’s pledged delegates. Despite the disastrous showing, Biden rallied with supporters in South Carolina, insisting the first two states in the primary season are not bellwethers.
“Tonight, though, we just heard from the first two of 50 states. Just two,” Biden said. “It ain’t over, man. We’re just getting started.”
Political experts, however, saw a campaign with little to offer new voters.
“It’s never a good sign when you leave a primary before the results are in,” said University of Southern California political scientist Robert Shrum, who managed Democrats Al Gore’s and John Kerry’s White House campaigns.
Shrum continued, “It’s probably not a good message to people who might be inclined to vote for him, but on the other hand, [Biden’s team is] anticipating a mediocre result.”
For his part, Biden remains confident in his ability to bounce back. He stressed in a tweet and an accompanying video on Wednesday that “nobody told me the road would be easy, but together we can and will win.”
But, with the best of intentions, with his campaign in a nose-dive, Biden is trying to do what’s never been done in modern history.
“In the last 40 years, just one person has gone on to win the presidency after losing both Iowa and New Hampshire — Bill Clinton. And in his case, he came in second place in New Hampshire in 1992,” said veteran New Hampshire-based political scientist Wayne Lesperance, the vice president of academic affairs at New England College.
Biden’s campaign has long pointed to Nevada and South Carolina, with their diverse electorates, as much friendlier ground than the overwhelmingly white states of Iowa and New Hampshire.
Minimizing the results in the first two states — and spotlighting Biden’s strong support with African American and Latino voters — senior campaign adviser Symone Sanders stressed that “it would be a mistake for anyone to write Biden and our campaign off before people of color have had their say in this election. You know people of color — black folks, Latino voters — are the base of this party.”
However taking off those aviator shades his is fond of wearing, and looking at the reality of the situation, for Biden, who’s long struggled with fundraising, the poor results in Iowa and especially New Hampshire make hauling in campaign cash now, all the more difficult.
And his inability to come even close to winning in the first two contests in the nominating calendar puts a big dent in Biden’s argument that he’s the most electable candidate to take on President Trump in November.
Donald Trump’s controversial personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani has said that former NSA, John Bolton, is either a “liar” or a “backstabber.”
Of course, the former NYC mayor was referring to the leaks from the manuscript of Bolton’s soon to be published book which indicate that the president tied aid to Ukraine to his request that the country announce investigations of the Bidens.
In an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Giuliani – who Bolton claims was in the room when Trump made those very requests – said “He went around my back to the secretary of state and complained. I don’t know what John’s up to. He’s either a liar or a backstabber.”
The claim in Bolton’s upcoming book, which was first reported by the New York Times, led to renewed calls during Trump’s impeachment trial that Bolton – along with acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and other high ranking administration officials – should be called as witnesses. The Republican-controlled Senate eventually voted against calling any witnesses in Trump’s trial and ultimately acquitted the president on the two articles brought against him.
Giuliani said he felt betrayed by Bolton for his comments and said he considered him a “friend.”
“I’m very angry at John because John says I was a hand grenade,” Giuliani said. “At no time, during the entire period this was going on did John Bolton, who I’ve known for ten years and consider a friend, did he come up to me and say Rudy I’m concerned about what you’re doing, I’m worried about what you’re doing. Never.”
Following Trump’s acquittal, Democrats said they are mulling over whether to subpoena Bolton to testify about his time in Trump’s White House.
In early January, Bolton said in a statement he would be willing to testify before the Senate trial if subpoenaed to meet his “obligations both as a citizen and as former National Security Advisor.”