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Inside Politics: Billionaire Bloomberg considering 2020 run?

Reading the 2020 tea leaves, Mike Pence's trip to Latin America, Trump's court push, and a controversial FBI agent heads to the Hill—it's all on Inside Politics.

Posted: Jun 25, 2018 10:09 AM
Updated: Jun 25, 2018 10:11 AM

Here are the stories our D.C. insiders are talking about in this week's "Inside Politics" forecast, where you get a glimpse of tomorrow's headlines today.

1. Bloomberg 2020?

Michael Bloomberg is a Republican-turned-independent who now wants to be the Democrats' 2018 midterm savior. His big splash: a new pledge to spend perhaps $80 million to help Democrats win back the House.

"Democrats are ecstatic at this gift, but is the Democratic House Bloomberg's only goal here?" asks CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.

"He's long wanted to be president, and some very smart people in contact with Bloomberg's inner circle say Team Bloomberg sees this 2018 effort as a way to make new friends and test a possible Bloomberg 2020 campaign."

Bloomberg isn't a Democrat. And he's 76 years old. But Sen. Bernie Sanders is also not a Democrat and is also 76 years old, and he's mulling another run too. And Donald Trump is a Democrat-turned-independent-turned Republican president.

"Yes, Bloomberg 2020 seems more than a stretch," King said. "But so did Trump in 2016."

King said a veteran political operative who's talked about this with top Bloomberg advisers put it this way: "He wants to run against Trump. The Bloomberg guys think Democrats will owe him a shot. We will see."

2. Dem hopefuls eye Maryland gubernatorial primary

Some of the most prominent Democrats with an eye on 2020 are focused this week on Maryland, where Democratic voters will pick a gubernatorial nominee to run against incumbent Republican Larry Hogan, one of the most popular governors in the country.

Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Bernie Sanders have all been there to campaign for former NAACP chief Ben Jealous. His main competition is a centrist local leader from Prince George's County.

"Ben Jealous is kind of the progressive candidate running against Rushern Baker, who is more the establishment-type candidate," New York Times reporter Jonathan Martin said. "It does have some echoes of Sanders versus Clinton from two years ago."

Martin said Sen. Sanders in particular has a lot riding on the race. "Sanders has not had a great record in a lot of these primaries so far, and could use a "W" from his wing of the party."

3. Pence heads to South America

Vice President Mike Pence travels to Central and South America this week -- including a stop in Guatemala, where he'll no doubt face questions about the administration's border policy.

"Immigration and the way President Trump has treated the immigration issue, the implications of the family separations, particularly for a place like Guatemala, are front and center on many peoples' minds," Bloomberg's Margaret Talev said. "It will be very interesting to see how the vice president tries to do clean-up on what President Trump's separation policy has done."

4. Trump hopes courts will help his agenda

The Republican legislative agenda may be stuck in Congress, but the administration is hoping the courts can help with some of President Trump's biggest priorities.

"In the courts he actually can make quite a bit of progress, and the administration in recent weeks has been trying to do that not just on immigration, but also on the Affordable Care Act," said Julie Hirschfeld Davis of the New York Times. On the ACA, the administration's recent decision not to defend its constitutionality "could have big implications for health care law, even if Congress doesn't do what President Trump has repeatedly asked them to do."

One factor weighing in the administration's favor: the record number of Trump-picked judges who have been confirmed to the judiciary. "This has been a big talking point for President Trump on the campaign trail, that he's really remade the judiciary," Davis said. "And now we're beginning to see the ways in which he is trying to take advantage of those changes."

5. Controversial FBI agent heads to the Hill

Trump allies in Congress who have been trying to undercut the Mueller investigation have a big week ahead: FBI agent Peter Strzok is scheduled to testify before a House panel investigating the FBI's probe into Hillary Clinton's emails.

Strzok is one of the FBI agents whose anti-Trump text messages have raised questions about bias at the bureau. He volunteered to testify, but that didn't stop House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte from subpoenaing him anyway.

"Goodlatte wanted to issue that subpoena to really send a message to Strzok and to send a message that they want to go after this issue relatively hard," said CNN's Manu Raju.

Republicans also are discussing holding top Justice Department officials in contempt of Congress for not turning over documents they've requested about the Clinton investigation.

"The threat of contempt or impeachment of Rod Rosenstein still looms large," Raju said.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1524527

Reported Deaths: 20751
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion2077652558
Lake1010411517
Allen946081024
Hamilton73638551
St. Joseph65362761
Elkhart50026632
Vanderburgh48959530
Tippecanoe44411338
Johnson38772527
Hendricks36850462
Porter34709476
Madison29301547
Clark26328328
Vigo25941346
LaPorte23600313
Monroe23478249
Howard22382381
Delaware21877370
Hancock18857220
Bartholomew18433216
Kosciusko18124203
Warrick17207215
Wayne16474303
Floyd16129257
Grant15566299
Morgan14615232
Boone13622138
Noble11983142
Shelby11877152
Dearborn11825113
Henry11771201
Marshall11444171
Dubois11418152
Jackson10772104
Cass10380143
Lawrence10308221
DeKalb10292132
Huntington10277140
Gibson9749126
Montgomery9377144
Knox9162125
Harrison9157117
Whitley886771
Steuben8739105
Jasper8325116
Putnam8306100
Clinton827596
Miami8249135
Jefferson8030127
Wabash7914139
Ripley7278116
Adams6713103
Daviess6661130
Scott663586
White624484
Greene6159112
Clay615275
Decatur6062120
Wells6001120
Jennings600081
Fayette5886122
Posey561648
LaGrange535797
Randolph5171129
Washington511470
Owen5068100
Fountain482580
Spencer457456
Sullivan449866
Starke443986
Fulton440393
Orange435083
Jay419964
Rush418839
Perry397555
Carroll384549
Franklin382850
Vermillion363562
Pike327845
Parke327338
Tipton320675
Blackford275955
Pulaski275375
Newton235461
Brown233556
Benton221521
Crawford220132
Switzerland201414
Martin191822
Warren179522
Union172619
Ohio125216
Unassigned0759

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2496243

Reported Deaths: 31987
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin2696772100
Cuyahoga2600613087
Hamilton1742641756
Montgomery1162791651
Summit1084961418
Lucas929121193
Butler82981963
Stark766321431
Lorain63976809
Warren52895489
Mahoning50955930
Lake47462611
Clermont46371452
Delaware40674220
Trumbull39527790
Licking38492416
Medina38487427
Fairfield35469349
Greene33906435
Portage32283366
Clark31960453
Richland29400444
Wood29143301
Allen25702403
Miami23931408
Muskingum23316255
Columbiana22903409
Wayne21965365
Tuscarawas19512428
Erie18531224
Ashtabula18489362
Marion18456235
Scioto17888214
Ross17287260
Pickaway16251181
Hancock16004232
Geauga15456229
Lawrence14746186
Belmont14033248
Union1403384
Huron13838184
Jefferson13519261
Sandusky13180200
Athens12624107
Knox12037201
Seneca11934204
Darke11316202
Ashland11157184
Washington11009172
Auglaize10785147
Crawford10333178
Shelby10308160
Brown9972145
Fulton9661154
Highland9632151
Guernsey9612122
Defiance9486137
Logan9403147
Clinton9299132
Mercer9015112
Madison8971111
Preble8428170
Williams8263138
Putnam8024136
Champaign7974113
Ottawa7909123
Jackson7763121
Perry7415102
Coshocton7345136
Morrow723984
Fayette703292
Pike658489
Hardin6532133
Gallia634391
Adams6159127
Van Wert6025121
Henry598196
Hocking5835105
Wyandot498894
Carroll4961101
Holmes4857167
Paulding421665
Meigs397774
Monroe313868
Harrison296362
Noble295652
Morgan289448
Vinton254646
Unassigned08
Fort Wayne
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Angola
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Huntington
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Decatur
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Van Wert
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