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Inside 2020

Inside 2020 (Nov 20th, 2019)

1. As Democrats take the stage for their fifth primary debate Wednesday night, viewers should expect to see other candidates attack new frontrunner Mayor Pete Buttigieg, according to Politico. Recent polling in Iowa showed Buttigieg surging into first place among 2020 hopefuls. The mayor's rise will pose a larger threat to former Vice President Joe Biden, some pundits have predicted, as the two share similarly more moderate views in contrast to progressive rivals Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders. The debate airs at 9 p.m. ET on MSNBC.-- MARKETWATCH

2. New citizens in battleground states could swing the electoral college in the Democrats' favor in 2020, a new study found. If the eventual nominee can mobilize newly naturalized citizens — who tend to vote Democratic — those voting groups could be the deciding factor in purple states like Georgia, Michigan, and Arizona, according to research from the progressive group New American Leaders. Trump won Michigan, for example, by about 10,000 votes — yet over the past three years, the state gained 64,000 new citizens who are eligible to vote. -- POLITICO

3. Former Vice President Joe Biden maintains a commanding lead nationally in a new Democratic primary poll. The new survey by Morning Consult found Biden leading his opponents with 32 percent of Democratic primary voters while Sen. Bernie Sanders comes in second at 20 percent and Sen. Elizabeth Warren rounds out the top three at 17 percent. Biden's enduring support from black voters — a key voting demographic in the party — has helped keep him ahead of the pack. -- THE HILL

4. Of all the Democratic contenders for president, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard remains a favorite among Russian propaganda outlets, a new study found. Forty-six percent of Gabbard's mentions on English-speaking outlets like Sputnik and Russia Today was favorable, according to research by the Foreign Policy Research Institute published on Tuesday. Former Vice President Joe Biden, on the other hand, garnered the least positive mentions by Russian propaganda outlets; just 3 percent of his coverage was framed in a favorable light. -- NBC NEWS

5. Battleground state economies may muddy President Trump's reelection message on jobs and unemployment. Trump will likely hammer home the economic gains made throughout the first term of his presidency — but those gains haven't been equally distributed across the country. Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Arizona, for instance, all have unemployment rates above the national average, and many swing states' economic outlooks are looking less rosy heading into 2020. -- CNBC

6. Mayor Pete Buttigieg earned the top spot in a new New Hampshire poll released on Tuesday. Buttigieg has 25 percent support in the survey by Saint Anselm, commanding a 10-point lead over both former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who came in second. Although the results suggest Buttigieg's recent rise is no fluke, some pollsters cautioned the poll's relatively small sample size could make it somewhat of an outlier. -- THE HILL

7. Leading up to tonight's Democratic debate on MSNBC, several candidates on Tuesday voiced their support for an independent investigation into alleged sexual misconduct at NBC News. Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, and Cory Booker have all signed a joint letter by advocacy group UltraViolet demanding answers regarding predatory behavior outlined in journalist Ronan Farrow’s book, “Catch and Kill.” MSNBC and NBC News are both owned by Comcast. -- VARIETY

8. A new poll of likely Iowa Democratic caucusgoers found a divided electorate on preferred approaches to health care. Thirty-six percent want Medicare for All, while 34 percent would favor a public option, according to the CNN/Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll. Another 20 percent want the full restoration of the Affordable Care Act before building on the existing law. The varied responses reflect one wedge issue among Democratic-leaning voters: the best way to get to universal health care. -- CNN 

9. The GOP group Black Voters for Trump slammed Mayor Pete Buttigieg's Douglass Plan for Black America as "incredibly misleading." After Buttigieg took heat for fumbling the rollout of his comprehensive new plan to curb systemic racial disparities, the conservative organization seized the opportunity to pan the rising presidential hopeful. In a statement provided to Newsweek on Tuesday, Black Voters for Trump noted Buttigieg's struggles to connect with black voters and touted the low unemployment rate for people of color in the Trump era. The president, however, lost black voters handily in 2016 and is failing to make significant inroads heading into 2020. -- NEWSWEEK

10. Several Democratic presidential hopefuls condemned the Trump administration's reversal on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The move, which shifts longstanding U.S. policy that deemed the settlements a violation of international law, will put a two-state solution further from reach, many candidates noted. Former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro called the decision a "grave error" that "undermines our moral leadership," while former Vice President Joe Biden predicted it will "further inflame tensions in the region." -- AXIOS

Robbie Couch is a writer and reporter whose work has been published on HuffPost, GOOD magazine, Upworthy, and more. In previous roles, Robbie has written about politics, pop culture news, and social issues.

Editor: Kim Lyons, Inside Managing Editor and Pittsburgh-based freelance journalist.

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