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More than three-quarters of voters are already interested in the 2020 presidential election, including over half, 52 percent, who are “extremely” interested, according to the latest Fox News Poll. That matches interest levels typically seen only in the last weeks before Election Day.

The enthusiasm is on both sides. Fifty-seven percent of voters who supported Hillary Clinton in 2016 are “extremely” interested in the upcoming election, as are 57 percent of Donald Trump voters, and two-thirds of self-identified “very conservatives” (67 percent) and “very liberals” (65 percent).

Democratic primary voters are upbeat about many of their options. Nearly 8 in 10 would be satisfied with Joe Biden (78 percent) or Bernie Sanders (75 percent) winning the nomination, while 6 in 10 would be happy with Kamala Harris or Elizabeth Warren (each 61 percent).

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Compare that to 53 percent who would be satisfied if the nominee were Beto O’Rourke, 50 percent Cory Booker, 43 percent Pete Buttigieg, 38  percent Julian Castro or Kirsten Gillibrand, or 34 percent Amy Klobuchar. Still, there is room for opinions to change for these candidates, as at least 3 in 10 primary voters don’t know enough about each to have an opinion.

Two candidates, Harris and Buttigieg, perform notably better among “extremely” interested Democratic primary voters: satisfaction with Harris as the nominee goes from 61 to 70 percent, and satisfaction with Buttigieg increases from 43 to 50 percent.

Among Democratic primary voters, men, women, whites, and non-whites generally agree on the candidate ratings, but there is a significant difference in opinion among age groups.  Primary voters under age 45 are more likely than those 45 and over to say they would be satisfied if Sanders were the nominee (82 percent vs. 68 percent). Those ages 45+ (82 percent) are happier if Biden is the nominee than those under 45 (73 percent).

Eighty percent of those satisfied with Biden as the nominee would also be happy with Sanders, and 83 percent of those happy with Sanders would be fine if Biden wins.

There’s little fallout from the criticism that Biden’s “touchy” behavior has made some women uncomfortable. Most, 76 percent, are unconcerned about it.  That includes 82 percent of Democratic women, 82 percent of Democrats, 81 percent of women over age 45, 71 percent of women under 45, 68 percent of Republicans, and 67 percent of GOP women.

Almost all Republican primary voters, 88 percent, would be pleased with President Trump as the 2020 GOP nominee.  That includes 64 percent who would be “very” satisfied.

Former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld announced April 15 he is challenging Trump for the Republican nomination.  His first task is improving his name recognition, as 50 percent of primary voters have never heard of him.  Twelve percent would be satisfied if he wins.

The poll tested several policy proposals discussed on the campaign trail.  Majorities support establishing Congressional term limits (80 percent favor), pushing for renewable energy (70 percent), providing government-run health insurance for all (59 percent), providing free college tuition for all (57 percent), reducing government regulations (57 percent), and abolishing the Electoral College (52 percent).

There is less support for building a border wall (45 percent favor), increasing the number of Supreme Court justices (37 percent) and paying reparations for slavery (32 percent).

The top three policies favored by Democrats are Medicare for all (87 percent), renewable energy sources (86 percent), and free college tuition (81 percent). For Republicans, the largest numbers favor term limits (86 percent), a border wall (83 percent), and fewer regulations (74 percent).

“There’s appreciable support for free benefits from the federal government along with reining in that same government,” says Republican pollster Daron Shaw. “I’m not sure the public sees the irony.”  Shaw conducts the Fox News Poll with Democratic counterpart Chris Anderson.

Meanwhile, a majority, 53 percent, believes GOP policies benefit the rich and powerful rather than everyday Americans (32 percent), while voters are more likely to see the Democratic Party as being for everyday Americans (40 percent) than the rich (34 percent).

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When considering significant policy proposals that are now law, voters continue to view the 2010 Affordable Care Act more favorably than the 2017 tax reform law. Forty-seven percent have a positive opinion of ObamaCare compared to 36 percent for the GOP tax law.

Conducted April 14-16, 2019 under the joint direction of Beacon Research (D) and Shaw & Company (R), this Fox News Poll includes interviews with 1,005 randomly chosen registered voters nationwide who spoke with live interviewers on both landlines and cellphones. The poll has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points for all registered voters, and five points for both the Democratic (413) and Republican primary voter samples (374).

Source: Fox News Politics

Democratic presidential candidates directed their ire toward Attorney General Bill Barr on Thursday as they blasted the law enforcement chief’s handling of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia report, including the press conference Barr held moments before the report’s release.

Many of the 2020 White House hopefuls accused Barr of mounting a defense of the Republican president ahead of potentially damaging revelations in the Mueller report.

MUELLER REPORT REVEALS BEHIND THE SCENES WHITE HOUSE DRAMA OVER SPECIAL COUNSEL PROBE

One Democratic presidential candidate, Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, went a step further — calling on Barr to resign.

“The attorney general can represent the United States or he can be Donald Trump’s defense attorney. He can’t be both. And as we saw at this press conference today, the way that he mischaracterized the Mueller report, he is seeking to help Donald Trump. He should resign,” Swalwell told Fox News. “We need an attorney general who has credibility with the American people.”

Swalwell, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, argued that the report spotlights “glaring vulnerabilities in our democracy” due to “the fact that so many Russians were able to get so close to a campaign, a transition, and an administration.”

And Swalwell stressed that “it’s now Congress’s job to hold the president responsible and investigate this Mueller report and hear first from Mueller.”

Four of Swalwell’s higher-profile rivals for the Democratic nomination – Sens. Kamala Harris of California, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Cory Booker of New Jersey and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York – all quickly called for Mueller to testify in front of Congress.

“Barr is acting more like Trump’s defense attorney than the nation’s Attorney General. His press conference was a stunt, filled with political spin and propaganda,” Harris wrote on Twitter.

“Americans deserve the unvarnished truth. We need Special Counsel Mueller to testify publicly in Congress.”

Klobuchar said in a video that “we want to hear from Director Mueller himself. Director Mueller should come to testify before the Judiciary Committee that I sit on.”’

“He should be able to give us his own views of what happened here so we can answer questions. He’s the one that conducted this major investigation and he’s the one – not Attorney General Barr – that should answer the questions of America,” the senator added.

Booker echoed those calls, saying on Twitter that “Mueller must testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee as soon as possible. Congress & the American people need to hear directly from the person who authored the report.”

And Gillibrand, on Twitter, called for the release of the full, unredacted report.

“The Senate should hold public hearings on the investigation with major witnesses and Mueller should testify to his findings. And give Congress the full, unredacted report,” she urged.

Another Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, also took aim at Barr.

“It’s a disgrace to see an Attorney General acting as if he’s the personal attorney and publicist for the President of the United States,” she wrote on Twitter.

Source: Fox News Politics

Democrats have gone on the offensive following the release of the redacted report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on Russian interference in the 2016 election – requesting Mueller to testify before Congress, slamming Justice Department officials for discussing the report with the White House before its public release and even calling on Attorney General William Barr to resign.

The redacted version of the Mueller report, which was released Thursday morning, was met by President Trump and Republicans as a vindication of his claims that there was no collusion between his 2016 presidential campaign and the Russian government. But Democrats have slammed Barr’s handling of the report as a “staggering partisan effort” and highlighted Mueller’s reluctance to make a judgement on whether or not the president obstructed justice.

SPECIAL COUNSEL ROBERT MUELLER’S RUSSIA PROBE REPORT RELEASED BY JUSTICE DEPARTMENT

“AG Barr has confirmed the staggering partisan effort by the Trump Admin to spin public’s view of the #MuellerReport – complete with acknowledgment that the Trump team received a sneak preview,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., tweeted Thursday. “It’s more urgent than ever that Special Counsel Mueller testify before Congress.”

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-NY, and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., both on Thursday requested Mueller testify before their respective committees. Both Democratic lawmakers in the past have been some of the most vociferous critics of Trump – with Schiff previously claiming that he has evidence of collusion between the president and Russia and Nadler’s committee recently voting to subpoena the full, unredacted Mueller report.

“The House Intelligence Committee has formally invited Special Counsel Mueller to testify on the counterintelligence investigation,” Schiff tweeted. “After a two year investigation, the public deserves the facts, not Attorney General Barr’s political spin.”

Nadler, who plans to hold a press conference in Manhattan on Thursday afternoon, said it is “clear that the American people must hear from Special Counsel Robert Mueller in person to better understand his findings.”

Arguably the strongest reaction from a Democrat has come from Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, who called for Barr’s immediate resignation “given his misconduct regarding the full report.”

WATCH: AG BARR SPARS WITH A REPORTER DURING NEWS CONFERENCE AHEAD OF MUELLER REPORT RELEASE

“The attorney general can represent the United States, or he can be Donald Trump’s defense attorney. He can’t be both,” Swalwell told Fox News. “He is seeking to help Donald Trump. He should resign. We need an attorney general who has credibility with the American people.”

A number of Trump’s Democratic challengers in the 2020 presidential race have also weighed in on the redacted report.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., lambasted Barr in a series of tweets – accusing the attorney general of only looking out for Trump’s interest and “acting as if he’s the personal attorney and publicist for the President of the United States.”

“The AG is supposed to serve as the country’s top law enforcement officer – someone who stands up for the rule of law & defends the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign or domestic,” Warren tweeted. “William Barr is standing up for only one person: the President of the United States.”

Another 2020 Democratic candidate, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., also went after Barr, while urging Mueller to appear before Congress to testify on his report.

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“Attorney General Barr has made it clear he is not impartial when it comes to this investigation,” Klobuchar tweeted. “Now that we have the report we should hear from Robert Mueller himself in public hearings. Our democracy demands it.”

And then there is Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., whose main gripe so far was that the version of the Mueller report on the Justice Department website was unsearchable.

“The Trump administration posted an unsearchable pdf of the Mueller report so it would be harder for you to read,” Booker tweeted, before linking to a searchable version that his staff put together.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume said Wednesday that given “obvious” facts at the southern border, Democratic politicians could no longer deny that the U.S. was dealing with a crisis.

“It’s pretty simple,” Hume told “The Daily Briefing” host Dana Perino. “The facts have become so clear and so obvious that there’s really no way to deny that there’s a crisis down there.”

Perino showed a clip from 2020 candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., who admonished people not to deny a crisis existed at the border. “Nations should have borders. Borders should be respected,” he asserted during a campaign event in Iowa.

Hume’s comments came as both an influx of migrants and a complicated legal situation put the administration in a tough spot as it worked to determine what to do with detained migrants after the law required their release from custody.

CHER’S RIGHT, ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION’S A ‘DEVASTATING PROBLEM,’ KATIE PAVLICH SAYS

In what Hume described as a “nice piece of politics,” President Trump proposed transferring detained migrants to sanctuary cities. “I don’t think he ever seriously intended to do that,” Hume said.

“It doesn’t really make any law enforcement sense to do that,” he added, “because if they go to sanctuary cities, they can leave and go elsewhere.” Hume indicated that Trump’s proposal showed the left’s hypocrisy on sanctuary cities, which Democrats have touted as a welcome environment for illlegal immigrants.

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Congressional Democrats blasted the proposal as “a bizarre and unlawful attempt to score political points.” Trump has long warned he would shut down border crossings and reportedly told Kevin McAleenan, Homeland Security’s new acting director, to do just that with the alleged promise of a future pardon if he faced prosecution.

The reported deal, not confirmed by Fox News, created an uproar in Congress, where House Judiciary Democrats demanded McAleenan provide more information on the exchange. Both Trump and DHS have denied any inappropriate conversations between the president and McAleenan.

Source: Fox News Politics

Kamala Harris and Cory Booker have each missed more than one-fifth of the Senate’s votes so far this year as they campaign for president, according to an Associated Press analysis of congressional data.

With 16 missed votes of the 77 that the Republican-controlled Senate has held in 2019, Harris and Booker far outpace the number missed by their fellow senators also vying for the Democratic presidential nomination. Sen. Bernie Sanders has missed seven votes so far this year, while Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Amy Klobuchar have each missed three and Sen. Elizabeth Warren has missed one vote, AP found.

Seeking the presidency as a sitting member of Congress requires a logistical juggling act that often results in candidates taking hits for missed votes as the pace of campaign season picks up to a whirlwind. Perhaps the most notable recent example is Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who took hits for his missed votes from his rivals — including future President Donald Trump — during the 2016 GOP presidential primary.

WHO’S RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT IN 2020? GROWING FIELD OF CANDIDATES JOIN RACE FOR DEMOCRATIC NOD

“When you’re a governor or businessman, you can run for president and still do your day job. But when you’re a senator or congressman and run for president, you’re not voting, which is the single most important part of your job,” said Alex Conant, a veteran Republican strategist and Rubio’s communications director in 2016. “So I think there’s an inherent conflict that people (who) aren’t in that position are going to try to exploit.”

That doesn’t mean, however, that jabbing at presidential candidates for missed votes is effective. While Rubio’s absenteeism drew criticism from Trump and the Democrat seeking to take his Senate seat in 2016, he still easily won re-election to the Senate.

And Rubio had missed considerably more votes at a similar point in 2015 than Harris and Booker have during 2019′s Senate session so far: The Republican was absent from 25 of the first 77 votes of that year, according to AP’s tally. That is 56% more votes than Harris and Booker missed.

KAMALA HARRIS, WHO DEFENDED DEATH PENALTY AS CALIFORNIA AG, CHEERS DECISION TO END IT

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz also took heat for missed votes from his opponent last year, former congressman turned Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke, and still came out ahead.

Democratic strategist Jesse Lehrich, a former aide to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign who’s not currently affiliated with any presidential candidate, predicted his party’s presidential candidates would avoid making missed votes an issue in a primary that’s stayed largely free of infighting thus far.

“Given the positive tenor on the Democratic side of the campaign thus far, I just can’t imagine any candidate trying to disingenuously weaponize it in this primary,” Lehrich said. “If someone did, I think it would backfire.”

Harris and Booker tallied the bulk of their missed votes this month, including the confirmation of Trump’s nominee to lead the Interior Department , David Bernhardt — when the Democratic duo had separately scheduled campaign travel to Iowa. Harris entered a statement in the Congressional Record making clear that she would have voted no on advancing Bernhardt to a final vote.

But none of the Democratic senators running in 2020 have missed votes where their presence would have affected the outcome, as Lehrich noted.

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“I’d be shocked if any 2020 Democratic candidate missed a key vote where the outcome was actually up in the air,” he said.

On that point, Conant offered some bipartisan consensus: “I never ran into a voter in Iowa or New Hampshire who was concerned that Rubio was missing votes,” recalled the Republican, now a partner at the firm Firehouse Strategies. “Voters understand that when you’re running for president, missing votes comes with the job. The one exception, I think, is if you miss a vote of national significance where your vote could be decisive.”

Source: Fox News Politics

On the day that Americans faced the annual deadline to file their tax returns, presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker unveiled a plan that he said would cut taxes for some 150 million people.

The New Jersey Democrat on Monday proposed what he’s called the Rise Credit, which would nearly double the number of people eligible to receive the benefits of the existing Earned Income Tax Credit.

“Creating a fairer, more just tax code begins with putting money in the pockets of Americans who are struggling to get ahead,” the senator emphasized in a statement.

CORY BOOKER’S NOT SURGING AND THAT’S JUST FINE WITH HIS CAMPAIGN

Booker’s plan would raise the cap for eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit from a maximum of $54,000 to $90,000 for married couples, which his campaign said would allow more working and middle-class families to enjoy the benefit.

The campaign added that qualifying workers without children at home would receive the maximum individual credit of $4,000, nearly eight times what they currently receive from the tax credit.

The campaign – touting his plan as “the most dramatic expansion of the tax credit – spotlighted that the non-partisan Tax Policy Center estimated the broadening of the tax credit benefit would affect 154 million people and touted that Booker’s plan would lift some 15 million people out of poverty.

BOOKER VOWS TO ‘BRING A FIGHT TO THE NRA’

Booker said funds to cover the expanded tax credit would come from taxing capital gains income at the same rates as other income.

“Cory would help fund the Rise Credit by ending the preferential tax treatment of capital gains investment income that overwhelmingly favors the wealthiest Americans, because income from selling stocks and other investments should be taxed the same as income from work,” his campaign said.

Booker lamented that “families’ earnings are not keeping up with the cost of living, and many people are living paycheck to paycheck with little to nothing left over to save.”

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“But instead of helping hard-working Americans who are struggling to get by, our tax code concentrates benefits to those at the very top. It’s unconscionable that hedge fund managers can pay a lower percentage of their income in taxes than their secretaries. That’s wrong and must change,” he stressed.

Booker was scheduled to highlight his Rise Credit plan at a campaign event later Monday in Sioux City, Iowa, as well as at events in Des Moines, Iowa, and Carroll, Nevada, on Tuesday.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Donald Trump enjoys a humongous financial head start over his Democratic challengers as the 2020 election cycle heats up, after hauling in more than $30 million in fundraising in the first three months of this year.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont – one of the co-front runners in the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination polls – holds a large lead over his rivals when it comes to the cash his campaign has on hand. Presidential candidates must report to the Federal Election Commission by the end of Monday how much money they raised and spent in the first quarter of 2019.

TRUMP HAULS IN $30 MILLION IN FIRST THREE MONTHS OF 2019

Trump’s re-election campaign brought in $30.3 million in the January-March first quarter of fundraising, and reports having $40.8 million cash on hand. The Republican National Committee, which will be backing the president’s re-election, raised an additional $45.8 million in the first three months of the year, a record for the party in a non-election year. Combined, the party and Trump’s two re-election committees can boast having $82 million in the bank, a massive war chest so early in a presidential election cycle.

“The President is in a vastly stronger position at this point than any previous incumbent president running for re-election, and only continues to build momentum,” said Trump re-election campaign manager Brad Parscale.

Breaking with generations of precedent, the president filed his campaign paperwork to run for re-election on the day he took over in the White House, and has raised more than $127 million during his first two years in the Oval Office.

It’s a dramatic change from his 2016 campaign, a low budget affair compared to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Trump ended up self-financing much of his campaign, putting $66 million of his own money into his White House bid.

TRUMP BLASTS PELOSI OVER OMAR 9/11 COMMENTS

And Trump’s setting up his re-election bid immediately after assuming the presidency stands in stark contrast to his two immediate two-term successors.

President Barack Obama didn’t declare his candidacy for re-election until April of 2011, and had only $2 million cash on hand at that time. And President George W. Bush raised less than $270,000 during his first two years in office, ahead of his 2004 re-election.

The Trump campaign touted its small-dollar grassroots appeal, announcing that 98.79 percent of first-quarter contributions were $200 or less, and that the average donation to the campaign was $34.26.

WATCH THE BERNIE SANDERS TOWN HALL ON FOX NEWS CHANNEL ON MONDAY AT 6:30 PM ET. 

Among the Democrats, Sanders is on top when it comes to the amount of cash raised and the amount of money in the bank. The Independent from Vermont, who’s making his second straight bid for the Democratic presidential nomination, reported raising $18.2 million, with $28 million cash on hand, having transferred money left over from his 2018 Senate re-election bid.

Sen. Kamala Harris of California reported raising $12 million. So did former Rep. John Delaney of Maryland, who’s considered a long-shot for the nomination. But $11.7 million of that haul was an infusion of cash from the candidate, who’s a self-made multi-millionaire.

Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke of Texas raised an eye-popping $9.4 million during the first 18 days of his campaign, with $6.1 million of the haul coming in the first 24 hours after declaring his candidacy.

When Pete Buttigieg announced earlier this month that he had brought in nearly $7.1 million during the first quarter, it was another sign that 37-year old South Bend, Indiana mayor had moved from a long-shot status to one of the leading contenders for the Democratic nomination. In Monday’s filing with the FEC, his campaign revealed that it had $6.4 million cash on-hand as of April 1, indicating he’s been frugal with his resources.

But his burn rate may increase going forward, as Buttigieg, over the past two weeks, has doubled his campaign staff from 20 to 40, moved into a larger headquarters, and now is in the process of staffing up in the early voting primary and caucus states.

Buttigieg’s campaign also touted that it raised $1 million in just a few hours on Sunday after the candidate formally declared he was running for president.

Among those celebrities who contributed to Buttigieg during the first quarter – actors Jayne Lynch, Mandy Moore, Ryan Reynolds and entertainer Chelsea Handler.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren raised $6 million in the first quarter. The Massachusetts Democrat, who’s stressing fighting corruption and big money in politics, announced in late February that she was forgoing “fancy receptions or big money fundraisers only with people who can write big checks,” as well as phone calls with wealthy donors. The senator had $11.2 million in the bank, thanks to a large transfer of funds from her 2018 re-election campaign.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota raised $5.2 million from her campaign launching during a snowstorm in February until the end of the first quarter. She had $7 million cash on hand as of April 1, thanks to a transfer of cash from her 2018 re-election campaign.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York only raised $3 million in the first quarter, but thanks to a transfer of funds from her 2018 re-election bid, she had $10.2 million in the bank for her presidential campaign. And Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey brought in $5 million in his first two months as a presidential candidate, and as of April 1 had $6.1 million cash on hand.

Fundraising is considered an important barometer of a candidate’s popularity and a campaign’s strength. The cash can be used by a candidate to build an organization and hire staff and consultants, increase voter outreach efforts, travel and fund ads.

Democratic strategist Jesse Ferguson, a presidential campaign veteran, highlighted that the numbers are an important “data point to show us how campaigns are doing.”

“The numbers will surely be over-interpreted, but they will tell us who is building the base of support needed in order to stay in for the long haul,” explained Ferguson, who served as a senior spokesman on the 2016 Clinton presidential campaign.

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Democratic presidential contender Cory Booker promised on Saturday to “bring a fight” to the National Rifle Association (NRA), calling for a range of gun control reforms as part of a hometown launch for a national campaign tour.

“We won’t wait for more thoughts and prayers for communities that have been shattered by gun violence from Pittsburgh to Parkland to Charleston,” he told the crowd in Newark, where he served as mayor for seven years before becoming a senator. “We will pass universal background checks, we will ban assault weapons and close loopholes that allow people who never should have a gun to get one.”

CORY BOOKER’S NOT SURGING IN THE 2020 RACE — AND HIS CAMPAIGN SAYS THAT’S JUST FINE

“And folks, we will bring a fight to the NRA like they have never, ever seen before — and we will win,” he said.

Booker’s remarks mark the start of a two-week tour across America for the 2020 hopeful, who has at times struggled to distinguish himself from the large pack of Democrats seeking the party’s nod and has languished in single digits in polls.

On Saturday, Booker led the rallying cry “We can’t wait” as he listed his policy goals, including fighting climate change, enacting comprehensive immigration reform ending “mass incarcerations” and facilitating federal legalization of marijuana.

He also made a call for national unity and for Democrats to fight “from higher ground” in an increasingly partisan and frequently toxic political environment.

“Critics will tell us that a campaign powered by grace and love and a deep faith in each other” cannot prevail, Booker said. “But I say it’s the only way we win. The president wants a race to the gutter and to fight us in the gutter. To win, we have to fight from higher ground in order to bring this country to higher ground.”

BOOKER RAISES $5 MILLION, LAGGING BEHIND MULTIPLE DEMOCRATS RUNNING FOR WHITE HOUSE

At the rally, he pushed his own bipartisan credentials — namely the criminal justice reform bill he worked on, which was signed into law by President Trump last year. He is likely to continue to promote that work when he travels to states such as Iowa, Georgia  and Nevada as part of his tour.

While Booker has thus far failed to generate the kind of buzz that has followed candidates such as Beto O’Rouke and Pete Buttigieg, his aides say that the campaign’s philosophy offers some home. That philosophy? “You’ve got to organize and get hot at the end.”

“We’re not building this campaign to win a poll in April of 2019. We’re trying to win the election in February of 2020, in March of 2020, in April of 2020. This is a long race where there’s going to be a lot of ups and downs,” Booker campaign manager Addisu Demissie told Fox News this week.

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The campaign is directing most of its firepower to Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina, the four states will kick off the presidential primary and caucus calendar in February and can provide crucial momentum for the primaries to follow.

“We’ve built our operation with the intention of having the strongest operation in the states on the front end of the primary calendar,” he said.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Cory Booker’s not soaring the in polls, and he doesn’t appear to have the buzz that Beto O’Rourke and Pete Buttigieg have enjoyed the past six weeks.

But that’s just fine with the Democratic senator’s presidential campaign, aides say.

5 THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT SEN. CORY BOOKER

“We’re not building this campaign to win a poll in April of 2019. We’re trying to win the election in February of 2020, in March of 2020, in April of 2020. This is a long race where there’s going to be a lot of ups and downs,” Booker campaign manager Addisu Demissie told Fox News.

Demissie explained that the campaign’s philosophy is “you’ve got to organize and get hot at the end.”

He highlighted that the New Jersey senator and his team are “laser-focused on building strong teams in the states that are going the set the narrative around the primary starting in February of next year.”

Booker’s campaign manager detailed his strategy with political reporters on Thursday, ahead of Saturday’s ‘hometown kickoff’ by Booker in Newark. Booker served as mayor of New Jersey’s largest city for seven years before winning election to the Senate in 2013.

WATCH THE BERNIE SANDERS TOWN HALL ON FOX NEWS CHANNEL ON MONDAY AT 6:30 PM ET. 

The campaign’s putting most of its firepower in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina, the four states that next February will kick off the presidential primary and caucus calendar.

“We’ve built our operation with the intention of having the strongest operation in the states on the front end of the primary calendar,” he said.

Demissie touted that the strategy’s paying off, noting that “we’ve earned the first legislative endorsements in Iowa and South Carolina and the first state senator to endorse in New Hampshire.”

And he spotlighted that “no campaign, I think, can boast the level of staff infrastructure and local support that we have.”

But that staffing up is expensive. And presidential campaign history is littered with candidates who grew their infrastructures too fast and spent too much, only to drop out — in some cases — even before the voting began.

Booker declared his candidacy at the beginning of February and quickly spent much of his time stumping in the first four states to vote on the road to the White House.

Demissie noted that Booker held 60 events and stops in the early voting states to show “the voters of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina that we were going to campaign in the best traditions of those states and planting that flag on the ground early and often.”

The concentration on visiting and staffing up in the early voting states may be one reason why Booker’s fundraising figures – $5 million in the first quarter of this year – were respectable but far behind the campaign cash leaders – Sens. Bernie Sanders ($18 million) and Kamala Harris ($12 million).

And while candidates like O’Rourke and Buttigieg are grabbing media attention, Demissie said he wasn’t concerned his candidate’s yet to have a breakout moment.

“We want to win an election, not a news cycle,” he emphasized.

Source: Fox News Politics

Sen. Cory Booker on Monday introduced a bill that would study the possibility of reparations for descendants of slaves, embracing a push that recently has caught the interest of fellow 2020 Democratic presidential candidates.

The senator from New Jersey said Monday that “this bill is a way of addressing head-on the persistence of racism, white supremacy, and implicit racial bias in our country. It will bring together the best minds to study the issue and propose solutions that will finally begin to right the economic scales of past harms and make sure we are a country where all dignity and humanity is affirmed.”

2020 DEMOCRATS PLEDGE REPARATIONS SUPPORT AT SHARPTON CONFERENCE

The measure is a Senate companion to a bill introduced in the House of Representatives in January by Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, which if passed into law would set up a commission to study the impact of slavery and continued discrimination against black Americans and make recommendations on reparation proposals for the descendants of slaves. The legislation was first introduced 30 years ago by then-Rep. John Conyers of Michigan.

“Since slavery in this country, we have had overt policies fueled by white supremacy and racism that have oppressed African-Americans economically for generations,” Booker added. “Many of our bedrock domestic policies that have ushered millions of Americans into the middle class have systematically excluded blacks through practices like GI Bill discrimination and redlining.”

Besides Booker, the idea of slavery reparations for black Americans is at least partially backed by at least eight other Democratic presidential contenders. They are Sen. Kamala Harris of California; Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts; Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont; former San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, who served as housing secretary under President Barack Obama; South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg; former Rep. Beto O’Rourke of Texas; Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii; and businessman and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.

Several of them were asked specifically about Jackson Lee’s reparations bill during a conference last week of Al Sharpton’s National Action Network.

OCASIO-CORTEZ CALLS FOR ‘AGENDA OF REPARATIONS’

The push by the Democratic White House hopefuls points to the further importance of race and identity issues within the party. Yet while supporters say reparations are needed to address slavery and racist aspects of American history, critics claim such a move could cost several trillion dollars without solving the issue of racism.

Source: Fox News Politics


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