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Biden gains widest lead in 2020 race in months amid Trump's smears – live – The Guardian, Theguardian.com

Biden gains widest lead in 2020 race in months amid Trump's smears – live – The Guardian, Theguardian.com


A group of HouseRepublicanslaunched another publicity stunt asLaura Cooper, the top Pentagon official on Ukraine, testified in the impeachment inquiry againstTrump.

More than two dozen HouseRepublicans, led by representativeMatt Gaetz, tried to force their way into Cooper’s deposition, even though they are not members of the three committees leading the inquiry.

Ben Siegel(@ benyc)

.@ RepLeeZeldinand dozens of House Republicans have set up a press conference outside the hearing room, criticizing Democrats for holding closed-door depositions.pic.twitter.com/Zaz7CbNpDR

October 23, 2019

Erik Wasson(@ elwasson)

Republicans not on committee were able to force their way the impeachment inquiry room but@ RepAdamSchiffhalted proceedings when they did. (Republicans on the committees are allowed to be in room)

October 23, 2019

It’s worth noting that the dozens of Republican lawmakers who do sit on the three investigating panels have been able to watch the interviews so far.

What Gaetz and his allies are demanding is that lawmakers who are not members of those committees be allowed to participate, which the House parliamentarian has already ruled is not in line with congressional procedure.

Zuckerberg arrives for hearing

Facebook CEOMark Zuckerberghas arrived to testify before the House financial services committee about his company’s embattled cryptocurrency.

CeciliaKang(@ ceciliakang)

Let’s go. Zuckerberg before House Financial Services Committee to defend Libra and a whole lots of issues facing Facebookpic.twitter.com/1Hgsouyv5r

October 23, 2019

My west coast colleague, Kari Paul, is running a separate live blog to provide the latest updates and analysis of Zuckerberg’s comments, so follow alonghere.

Biden to deliver economic address in Scranton

Joe Bidenis about to deliver a speech on “rebuilding the middle class,” per his campaign, in his birthplace of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Biden released a statement before the speech slammingTrump‘s privileged background. The former vice president said: “Donald Trump has had everything given to him and spent his entire life and presidency enriching himself. …

“Donald Trump doesn’t know what it means to be a part of the middle class. I do. ”

The speech will also give Biden a chance to redirect attention toward policy discussions and away from Trump’s false corruption claims against him and his son,Hunter Biden.

A Bloomberg News reporter noted that the newest Democratic primary poll foundJoe Bidenhas a 43 – point advantage on foreign policy, despiteTrump‘s repeated false corruption claims against the former vice president.

Sahil Kapur(@ sahilkapur)

This is after vs. before the Ukraine news broke. If the president’s goal was to create an aura of scandal around Biden and damage him in the Dem primary, poll suggests it’s failing.

Of note: Biden’s edge on foreign policy is 43 over his nearest D rival.https: //t.co/ya8PjEUGPG

(October) , 2019

Trump to deliver statement this morning on Syria

Trumpannounced in a tweet that he would deliver a statement from the White House at 11 am E.T. on the situation in Syria.

Donald J. Trump(@ realDonaldTrump)

Big success on the Turkey / Syria Border. Safe Zone created! Ceasefire has held and combat missions have ended. Kurds are safe and have worked very nicely with us. Captured ISIS prisoners secured. I will be making a statement at 11: 00 AM from the White House. Thank you!

(October) , 2019

The statement will come one day after Turkey and Russia announced they had reached an agreement to jointly control formerly Kurdish territory in Syria, givingVladimir Putina key foothold in the Middle East.

The Guardian’s Bethan McKernan and Julian Borgerreportedyesterday on the deal:

Tuesday’s developments more concretely define the size and scope of the area that Turkish soldiers will occupy, adding to pockets of northern Syria that Turkey seized from Islamic State and Kurdish fighters in operations in 2016 and 2018.

The deal was widely perceived as good news for Ankara and a poor result for the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), building as it does on the US ‘agreement last week that Turkey has a right to a buffer zone on its border at their expense. Most of all, it cements Moscow’s new role as prime powerbroker in the Middle East as US influence in the region wanes.

Pentagon official arrives for impeachment testimony

Laura Cooper– the deputy assistant secretary of defense for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia – has arrived to testify in HouseDemocrats‘impeachment inquiry.

Cooper may be able to shed more light on the delaying of military aid to Ukraine, but her appearance feels a bit anticlimactic afterBill Taylortestified yesterday that he was toldTrumpspecifically wanted a public announcement of investigations intoJoe Bidenand the 2016 election before releasing the aid.

Mayor of Philadelphia, home of Biden’s campaign, backs Warren

Despite thenew pollout this morning showing thatJoe Bidenhas retaken a commanding lead in the Democratic presidential primary,Elizabeth Warrenhas picked up a helpful endorsement .

Jim Kenney– the mayor of Philadelphia , where Biden’s campaign is headquartered – announced he was throwing his support behind Warren’s bid.

Jim Kenney(@ JimFKenney)

I am endorsing Elizabeth Warren for President because she is a tough and determined leader. She has what it takes to defeat Donald Trump and lead us in the post-Trump era. She will unite us and put power in the hands of working families – & get our nation back on the right track.pic.twitter.com/8dLMOwLwor

(October) , 2019

The endorsement will almost certainly be very welcome news to Warren, who has struggled to pick up endorsements outside of her home state of Massachusetts.

The New York Timesreportedlast week:

Ms. ****** Warren is now a clear front-runner in the race for her party’s nomination, yet just under four months before the leadoff Iowa caucuses she lacks the support of a single governor, big-city mayor or fellow senator outside Massachusetts.

She does have the backing of the Working Families Party, an influential liberal group, and yet she also has fewer totalendorsements from state legislators in Iowa and New Hampshire thanSenator Cory Booker,who registers in the lower single-digits of surveys and last month had to beseech donors to give him enough money to sustain his stagnant campaign.

Warren has obviously now attracted the support of at least one “big-city mayor,” which could encourage others to follow suit.

Biden takes widest polling lead in months amid Trump’s smears

Good morning, live blog readers!

Washington is still reeling from yesterday’s news of the acting US ambassador to Ukraine,Bill Taylor,testifyingin HouseDemocrats‘impeachment inquiry. The longtime diplomat said under oath that he was toldDonald Trumpwanted Ukrainian officials to publicly announce investigations intoJoe Bidenand the 2016 election before releasing military aid.

However, Trump’s false corruption claims against Biden have not slowed down his momentum in the Democratic presidential primary. According to a CNN / SSRS poll released this morning, the former vice-president has gained his widest lead in the race since April.

The pollfoundthat Biden is attracting the support of 34% of Democratic voters, compared toElizabeth Warren‘s 19% andBernie Sanders‘16%. No other candidate attracts more than 6% of the vote, althoughAmy KlobucharandBeto O’Rourkeeach picked up another qualifying poll for next month’s debate .

Those findings come after weeks of headlines that Biden waslosinghisedgein the race, especially in theearly voting states. It’s possible that Biden’s prolonged media attention, thanks to Trump, may actually be helping his bid. But, then again, it’s just one poll, and we’re still more than three months away from the Iowa caucus. Time will tell.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg pauses while testifying before Congress.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg pauses while testifying before Congress. Photograph: Andrew Harnik / AP

Here’s what else the blog is keeping its eye on:

  • Trumpwill speak at a shale gas conference in Pittsburgh this afternoon.
  • (Facebook CEO) *************** (Mark Zuckerberg) is testifying on Capitol Hill this morning, and the Guardian will soon have a live blog up to follow the latest updates from the hearing.

  • James Jeffrey, the state department’s special representative on Syria, will testify before the House foreign affairs committee on the US troop withdrawal from northern Syria.

That’s all still coming up, so stay tuned.

Updated

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