The Latest: Warren says she’s best positioned to beat Trump

Political
Tom Perez

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez, addresses member of the audience on stage Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, before the start of a Democratic presidential primary debate hosted by ABC News, Apple News, and WMUR-TV at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, N.H. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — The Latest on the 2020 Democratic presidential race and Tuesday’s primary in New Hampshire (all times local):

6:45 p.m.

Elizabeth Warren is tweaking her standard campaign speech, saying that she’s in the best position to win what some see as an “unwinnable” election for any Democrat against President Donald Trump.

Warren finished third in last week’s Iowa caucus, which was too close to call between Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana. She has also refused to say that New Hampshire’s primary on Tuesday is a must win, even though she’s a senator from neighboring Massachusetts.

Still, at a rally at a high school in Lebanon, New Hampshire, on Sunday night, Warren referenced her then-upset win in 2012 over Republican incumbent Sen. Scott Brown. Warren noted that polls in that race once showed her down by 19 points but she ultimately won comfortably.

She said such contests are “only unwinnable if you don’t get in the fight” adding, “2020, we’re in this fight and we’re going to win it.”

6:30 p.m.

Democratic presidential hopeful Tom Steyer says he would call for a $22 hourly minimum wage if elected president.

The billionaire climate activist made that call during a campaign block party on Sunday afternoon in Winnsboro, South Carolina. Others in the field have called for an increase to $17 an hour.

The town of about 23,000 off Interstate 77 has endured a series of economic struggles in recent years, and its unemployment is typically among the highest in the state.

Steyer is making a play for South Carolina, where former Vice President Joe Biden has traditionally led polling.

But Steyer has been spending millions on television advertising and is campaigning here this week as the rest of the field stumps in New Hampshire. Steyer says he sees success in the diverse states of Nevada and South Carolina as critical to primary success.

3:20 p.m.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren has largely avoided attacks from her key presidential rivals lately — but doesn’t see an advantage for anyone in them.

Speaking to reporters after a rally in Concord, New Hampshire, on Sunday, Warren said, “Look, we’re going to have to bring our party together in order to beat Donald Trump.”

She added: “And the way we do this is not by launching a bunch of attacks on each other and trying to tear each other down.”

The Massachusetts senator spent months criticizing Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, over holding fundraisers with wealthy donors that were for months closed to the press.

But lately Warren has tried to stress party unity. She said Sunday that Democratic candidates should “talk about the things we can run on together.”

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3 p.m.

New Hampshire is practically Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s backyard. So much so that she mistakenly thought she was home while campaigning there.

During a rally at a high school in the New Hampshire state capital of Concord on Sunday, Warren declared, “It’s up to you, Massachusetts.”

The crowd immediately reacted with chuckles and yelling out corrections. Warren corrected herself with a laugh, saying, “And to the people of New Hampshire. Thank you.”

Warren has refused to call New Hampshire a must-win during Tuesday’s primary, despite it bordering Massachusetts. She told reporters after the event, “There are 55 more states or territories after this. It looks like it’s going to be a long battle to the nomination.”

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2:40 p.m.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar says she’s plans to keep defying expectations heading into Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary.

Though she’s spent the last year behind the front-runners, Klobuchar has enjoyed a burst of momentum in the last few days thanks to a strong debate performance and infusion of cash. At a rally at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester on Sunday, her campaign initially set up about 250 chairs, then removed them to make room for a room-capacity crowd of more than 700.

Klobuchar said she’s had an “incredible journey” in the last few days, and expects to do well in New Hampshire because it is “grassroots” territory where voters really listen.

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2:25 p.m.

The head of the Democratic National Committee says that after the 2020 election is over, the national party will review whether state parties should be running elections.

That word from DNC Chairman Tom Perez follows the vote count problems in the Iowa caucuses from last Monday.

Perez tells ABC’s “This Week” that Iowa might have avoided problems if it had held a primary run by state elections officials, rather than a caucus run by volunteers and the party.

He says he’s looking forward “to the conversation” about state parties getting “out of the business of running elections.”

Iowa’s leadoff caucuses ended in disarray after a technical problem and then a telephone logjam prevented the Iowa Democratic Party from compiling results soon after the caucuses ended.

It took until Thursday for the state party to issue what it said are complete results. The Associated Press says it’s unable to declare a winner based on the available information. The AP believes the results as reported by the Iowa Democratic Party may not be fully accurate

Perez says the Democratic Party also will review whether Iowa should keep its status as being the first in the nation to cast votes.

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1:30 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders insists he doesn’t want to “denigrate” rival Pete Buttigieg, but Sanders is pointing out to supporters in New Hampshire why he thinks Buttigieg shouldn’t be the party’s nominee.

During an appearance in Plymouth, Sanders began by calling Buttigieg “my friend.” That draw a loud laugh from a Sanders supporters.

Then Sanders said: “We’re not here to denigrate Pete, he’s running a good campaign, but our views are different.”

Sanders said a candidate like Buttigieg who takes campaign contributions from drug company executives or “Wall Street tycoons” won’t stand up to “the corporate elite.”

Sanders has made similar criticisms in the past about how his rivals raise money. But his pointed remarks toward Buttigieg comes as Sanders fights to win the New Hampshire primary in two days.

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12:45 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is playing down the notion that his lagging finish in the Iowa caucuses will hurt his electability.

The former vice president tells New Hampshire voters that rivals Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders were “better organized than we were in Iowa.”

Biden is stressing that voters should treat the first four early voting states “as one.” New Hampshire, which holds its primary, is the second early voting state, followed by Nevada and South Carolina.

The New Hampshire contests includes two candidates whom Biden describes to voters as coming “from the two states next door to you.” It’s a reference to Sanders, who’s a Vermont senator, and Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts senator.

Biden is returning to the town hall format New Hampshire voters tend to pride themselves on. Before Sunday, Biden had skipped taking questions from the crowds at his New Hampshire events in January and February. Biden instead focused on greeting supporters on the rope line at these events.

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Catch up on the 2020 election campaign with AP experts on our weekly politics podcast, “Ground Game.”

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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