Biden shifts from neutral
Vice President Joe Biden thought about running for president himself. After he bowed out, he had nice things to say about Bernie Sanders for bringing big ideas to the campaign.
But Biden now expects Hillary Clinton to be the Democrats’ nominee, and though he didn’t actually make an endorsement, the tenor of his remarks suggested he’s fine with that outcome, or at least accepting of it.
“I feel confident that Hillary will be the nominee and I feel confident that she’ll be the next president,” Biden said in an interview for ABC’s “Good Morning America.” (Video clip here.)
The comment was the clearest signal yet from within the White House that the Vermont senator — even with a few more primary wins — is not going to overtake the former secretary of state.
President Barack Obama said last month that “everybody knows what that math is,” but it was important to “let the process play itself out.”
Sanders takes West Virginia
Sanders, as expected, won Tuesday’s Democratic primary in West Virginia, where Clinton’s ill-framed remarks about putting the coal industry “out of business” caused widespread anger.
Trump, who no longer has an active Republican opponent, won primaries in West Virginia and Nebraska.
A Sanders fundraising email declared: “We just got word that we won our 19th state, taking the majority of the delegates.” A Sanders statement noted that in poll matchups, he continues to do better than Clinton against Trump.
Preliminary exit polling in West Virginia showed one-third of Democratic voters favoring Trump over Clinton in November. But three in 10 would go for Trump over Sanders.
Clinton on Tuesday won 59 percent in Nebraska. But the victory was symbolic, because delegate allotment there is based on the caucuses that Sanders won in March. (For some reason the state nonetheless requires presidential names appear on its primary-day ballots).
Find the latest vote totals results from Tuesday’s West Virginia and Nebraska primaries here.
Convention math, as it still plays out, is posted on Newsday's delegate tracker here.
Trump ‘error’ on white nationalist
The Trump campaign blamed a “database error” for the inclusion of William Daniel Johnson, leader of the American Freedom Party, as a delegate from California on Trump’s slate in next month’s primary.
Johnson’s inclusion among the 169 names was first reported by Mother Jones magazine. The group’s website says it “exists to represent the political interests of White Americans.”
The campaign says Johnson was “rejected and removed” from its delegate list in February, and was also deleted from the final list submitted to California’s secretary of state after the error was discovered.
The take-away: Etch A Sketch
Trump’s pivots in his positions are not unique among presidential candidates shifting from primary to general-election campaigns, writes Newsday’s Dan Janison, and Clinton has shown some flexibility, too.
Cruz back in?
Ted Cruz told radio host and supporter Glenn Beck that he won’t categorically rule out restarting his presidential campaign if “there’s a path to victory,” but he added: “I’m not holding my breath.”
As for supporting Trump, Cruz said picking a presidential candidate “is not a choice that we as voters have to make today.”
Trump’s veep list
Trump told The Associated Press he’s narrowed his list of potential running mates to “five or six people,” all with lengthy political resumes.
He wants a vice president who can help him “with legislation, getting things through” Washington if he wins the White House. “We don’t need another business person,” Trump said.
The throw-away: Most LI affidavit ballots out
Nine of ten affidavit ballots filed on Long Island in the New York presidential primaries were tossed out. Newsday's Robert Brodsky reports on the hows and whats.
The ex-presidents’ club
Once upon a time, when a Republican nominee was attacked as an extremist, a former president came to his aid — even though the candidate had said mean things about him.
What else is happening:
- Trump told The Washington Post he might not have talked so graphically about his sex life on Howard Stern’s radio show had he known he would later run for president ...
- Clinton considers a proposal to let people as young as 50 buy into Medicare.
- More Senate Republicans said they would support Trump, but the enthusiasm of some was restrained ...
- Trump returns to Nassau Wednesday for a Republican county committee fundraiser, as Newsday's Ellen Yan describes...
- A Quinnipiac poll finds Clinton barely ahead of Trump in the swing states of Florida and Pennsylvania, and trailing slightly in Ohio. Past surveys from other pollsters have shown Clinton with significant leads in those states ...
- Swing voters don't buy Democratic arguments that Trump would let the rich pay less in taxes, according to Greg Sargent.
- A Trump video on Instagram goes after Clinton on Benghazi ...
- UFO believers like Clinton’s promise to open up government files on the subject, The New York Times reported ...
- London’s new mayor, Sadiq Khan, denounced Trump’s “ignorant” view of Islam, along with his suggestion that Khan could be an exception to a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. ...
- Paul Ryan downplayed his summit Thursday with Trump, but it's still unclear just how this conflicted moment with the House Speaker will be staged.
- Some claim a parallel between Trump and new Phillipines President Rodrigo Duterte. Others don't find the comparison all that valid.
- Trump keeps repeating the talismanic utterance that he's a winner -- no matter what the context, as a Times story reflects.