- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 17, 2018

At any given moment, the news media is bandying about 15 to 20 potential Democratic presidential hopefuls who will duke it out for the nomination in 2020.

They include predictable names like Sens. Bernard Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and media mogul Oprah Winfrey often get a mention, as do New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz — among many others.

Fox News suggests that Hillary Clinton’s recent public “actions” indicate she’s got an eye on 2020. The New York Times is adamant that Ms. Warren and Ms. Harris, plus former Vice President Joseph R. Biden and Mr. Booker, are already “prepping” for 2020.

“As a group, they are a strikingly heterogeneous array of rivals for Mr. Trump, embodying the Democratic Party’s options for defining itself: They are distinguished by gender and race, span three decades in age and traverse the ideological and tonal spectrum between combative Democratic socialism and consensus-minded incrementalism,” The Times noted Monday.

Yes, well. The real advantage could go to hopefuls who are, uh, new.

“Clinton, Sanders and Biden are among those touted as serious Democratic presidential contenders, but three-out-of-four Democrats think their party needs to turn to someone new,” says a new Rasmussen Reports poll, which found that 73 percent of likely Democratic voters say their party should seek a new, “fresh face” to run for president in 2020.

Just 16 percent disagree, while 11 percent are undecided. The poll also found that 65 percent of all likely U.S. voters say the Democrats should find someone new for the presidential ballot.

Mrs. Clinton was the clear favorite in 2016. But alas. Time marches on. The new poll also revealed that 58 percent of all voters now believe the former hopeful has been “bad for the Democratic Party,” only 22 percent think she’s been a positive factor, while 12 percent say she’s had “no impact” on the party. The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted July 11-14.

WHAT DIDN’T GET REPORTED

It was an eloquent little missive, written in the middle of the media firestorm which followed President Trump’s appearance with Russia President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki.

“I would rather take a political risk in pursuit of peace, than to risk peace in pursuit of politics,” Mr. Trump tweeted, at approximately 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.

TRUMP ALOFT

President Trump is a man who knows aircraft, having flown aboard his personal Boeing 757 almost nonstop throughout his 2016 campaign. The exterior has a patriotic flair, the interior is done up in tasteful ecru, ivory white and natural woods. Among other things, there are two bedrooms with luxury linens, a master bath with shower and a 57-inch TV with instant access to 1,000 movies. Custom pillows with the Trump family crest complete cabin decor; seat belt buckles and bath faucets are 24-karat gold-plated. The aircraft was named one of the nation’s “mighty planes” by the Smithsonian Channel.

“It’s like living in a beautiful home,” Mr. Trump once told The Wall Street Journal.

Air Force One may get the Trump touch as well. The president has proclaimed that the next official White House aircraft will not be sedate, 1960s-era pale blue and white.

“Red, white and blue. Air Force One is going to be incredible, it’s going to be the top of the line, the top in the world,” Mr. Trump told CBS News, revealing that he himself helped finesse a money-saving deal with Boeing.

“Trump Force One,” noted a Men’s Journal review of the new plan.

“Air Force One’s baby blue color scheme is so last election. Instead, picture a star-spangled Boeing jet transporting the commander in chief through the sky for years to come,” noted Air Force Times.

IN PRAISE OF GRASSROOTS DONORS

Donald J. Trump for President Inc. reveals it has raised $17.7 million in the second quarter of the year for Mr. Trump’s 2020 campaign, continuing what the organization deems a “record fundraising streak.” The campaign now has $33 million, cash on hand — and 98.5 percent of that total came from “small donor” amounts under $200.

“The American people clearly see how hard President Trump is working to reclaim their jobs lost to bad trade deals, increase their take home pay through historic tax cuts, and make their communities safer through his immigration enforcement and initial work to build the wall,” says Lara Trump, senior adviser to the campaign.

FOXIFIED

Fox News Channel dominated all coverage of President Trump’s Supreme Court Justice nomination last week, drawing 6.6 million viewers according to Nielsen Media Research; the closest competitor was ABC, with 5 million viewers.

Fox also dominated cable rivals on Monday during the high-stakes meeting between Mr. Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Fox drew 3.3 million prime time viewers, compared to 2.9 million for MSNBC and 1.7 million for CNN. Additionally, Chris Wallace’s exclusive interview with Mr. Putin following the summit had an audience of 3.2 million, while Sean Hannity’s interview with Mr. Trump drew 4 million.

In the digital realm, Fox News is enjoying many clicks. With 1.4 billion page views in June, FoxNews.com has seen a 19 percent increase in visitors since last year. The network’s site also has bested NewYorkTimes.com for the sixth consecutive month and TheWashingtonPost.com for the 10th consecutive month in total page views.

Fox Business Network, meanwhile, topped CNBC for the 22nd consecutive week. Additionally, the network broadcast the top seven business programs in television last week.

POLL DU JOUR

• 83 percent of Americans say the choice of the next Supreme Court justice is important to them; 87 percent of Republicans and 82 percent of Democrats agree.

• 61 percent of Americans overall want the Supreme Court to address issues like abortion; 51 percent of Republicans and 70 percent of Democrats agree.

• 41 percent overall say Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh should be confirmed as Supreme Court justice; 73 percent of Republicans and 16 percent of Democrats agree.

• 39 percent overall would expect Judge Kavanaugh to overturn Roe v. Wade; 27 percent of Republicans and 55 percent of Democrats agree.

• 31 percent overall would expect Judge Kavanaugh to make the Supreme Court “too conservative”; 12 percent of Republicans and 53 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Pew Research Center poll of 1,007 U.S. adults conducted July 11-15.

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