The Latest: Yang says his caucus success will be a ‘shock’

Politics
Elizabeth Warren

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., speaks at a campaign stop at Peace Tree Brewing Co., Friday, Jan. 31, 2020, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Latest on the 2020 presidential campaign (all times local):

9:45 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang says he will “shock” the nation with his performance in Monday night’s caucuses. He says one reason will be his support from Republicans, who he claims back him because he’s focused on the same issues as President Donald Trump.

Speaking at a rally at a downtown Des Moines hotel Saturday night, Yang told a packed ballroom that he’s laser-focused on solving the same problems that Trump pointed out — but has actual solutions that people will see and feel.

Yang also referenced his signature campaign proposal, the universal basic income, which would give all American adults $1,000 each month, as a contrast with the president. The businessman says that while Trump says he wants to drain the swamp, he wants to distribute the swamp.

Yang drew one more comparison to Trump: He turned out a raucous crowd of 1,200, dozens of whom spilled out into the hallway. The businessman jokingly gave a Trump-like estimate that the room held 12,000, before admitting is held about 800.

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8:40 p.m.

Sometimes a simple question on the stump gets a startlingly personal answer.

Amid a Q-and-A session at an evening rally in Davenport, an audience member asked Sen. Elizabeth Warren to name the hardest decision she’d ever made.

The candidate, known for her physicality and high-energy on stage, suddenly stopped moving and looked down as she thought. When she looked up, she answered so softly it was difficult to hear.

She said, “To admit that my marriage had failed and I had failed.”

The audience went as quiet as Warren, who then quickly lightened the moment with a joke. Addressing her current husband as he sat by the stage, she said, “Not you, sweetie.”

Warren went on to explain that she tried to fix her first marriage to Jim Warren, whom she married at age 19 and divorced 10 years later.

She said: “Finally, one day, I realized I’m never going to fix this. … I asked him if he wanted a divorce and he said, yes, on the spot.”

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8:30 p.m.

The Des Moines Register, CNN and its polling partner have decided not release the final installment of its presidential preference poll, fearing its results may have been compromised.

The executive editor of the Iowa newspaper, Carol Hunter, posted the announcement Saturday night at the same time the results of highly anticipated survey were supposed to be released.

She said that one of the poll respondents reported earlier in the day that a candidate’s name was omitted. While that is believed to be an isolated incident, the poll administrators could not be sure.

Hunter says, “Therefore, the partners made the difficult decision to not to move forward with releasing the Iowa Poll.”

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7:36 p.m.

Joe Biden again is going after after presidential rival Bernie Sanders’ policy checklist without naming him. Biden said at an appearance in Waterloo: “Talk is cheap.” He said that in politics, sometimes that talk is costly when you don’t tell people how you pay for what you say you’re going to do. Biden said: “Be straight. Tell the people what it’s going to cost.”

Biden referenced some estimates that put Sanders’ big-ticket proposals on single-payer health care, college debt forgiveness and tuition-free college tuition at more than $60 trillion over 10 years. He said he wondered “why they don’t know how much it’s gonna cost.” He was alluding to Sanders recently telling CBS News that he doesn’t know exactly what his Medicare for All plan would cost the federal government.

4:36 p.m.

Joe Biden has built his 2020 presidential bid as a case against President Donald Trump, but he got especially exasperated Saturday about the state of Trump’s America as he made his final weekend swing ahead of Monday’s Iowa caucuses.

Biden added off-the-cuff frustrations to his usual Trump criticisms, delighting about 500 people packed in a Cedar Rapids high school gymnasium.

“Ladies and gentlemen, it’s almost hard to believe?” he said, his voice rising. “His ridiculous tweets!” At another point, he said: “This is bizarre.”

“Crazy!” one supporter interjected. Biden replied: “It’s more than that. It’s dangerous!”

At one point, he even apologized for his intensity, and he returned to his usual argument that Democrats’ nominating fight center around choosing the best nominee to topple Trump.

““Folks, this is bigger than the Democratic Party,” he said. “This nation has to come together.”

3:30 p.m.

John Kerry is reliving a bit of his 2004 presidential campaign as he campaigns for his old Senate colleague Joe Biden in the closing day’s before Monday’s Iowa caucuses launch the 2020 nominating process.

Kerry basked in the applause of a packed high school gymnasium in Cedar Rapids as he recalled winning the 2004 caucuses “that sent me on to the nomination,” and he lamented his general election loss to then-President George W. Bush. “I’m sorry to this day that we fell short in one state, by half the people in a football stadium,” he said, a nod to his narrow loss in Ohio. “It was the difference in a lot of history as a result.”

The former secretary of state also threw in a bit of humor as he vouched for Biden. The 76-year-old Kerry said he goes “way back with Joe” to when “Donald Trump had just two bankruptcies” and “when we didn’t know Rudy Giuliani was nuts.”

3 p.m.

Top advisers to Pete Buttigieg are escalating the campaign’s implicit criticism of Joe Biden, characterizing the former vice president and U.S. senator as a throwback from Washington’s past who would be ill-suited to defeat President Donald Trump.

A senior adviser to Buttigieg, Lis Smith, didn’t mention Biden by name when she referred to taking on Trump with what she called “the old playbook,” but Smith’s example was someone who claims to understand the ways of Washington and “hung out” with a late longtime South Carolina senator, Strom Thurmond.

In a similar vein, Buttigieg campaign manager Mike Schmuhl noted that vice presidents have a dismal track record of winning the presidency.

Buttigieg is competing fiercely with Biden and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar for support from moderate voters ahead of Monday’s Iowa caucuses. The comments from his top advisers were made during a Saturday breakfast with reporters.

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2:20 p.m.

Bernie Sanders says he’ll support the Democratic nominee for president no matter who emerges from the field of contenders. The Vermont senator is trying to preach unity at a time when some of his supporters feel the political establishment is out to get them.

Sanders tells a crowd in Indianola, Iowa, that if he isn’t the nominee, “we will support the winner and I know that every other candidate will do the same.”

Sanders says the Democratic primary field is, in his words, “united in our understanding that we must defeat Donald Trump.”

His comments come a day after one of his highest profile supporters, Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, led a crowd at a concert for Sanders in booing Hillary Clinton. That followed Clinton’s suggestion that Sanders didn’t do enough in 2016 to help her, as the Democrats’ presidential nominee, beat Donald Trump.

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1:25 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren is skipping her signature “selfie” line so she can pack in more events into the final weekend before the Iowa caucuses on Monday.

Her campaign announced at a rally in Cedar Rapids that the Massachusetts senator had to dash to Iowa City and couldn’t stay for pictures. For months, she has stayed after events to pose for selfies with all who wanted one. Sometimes that’s lasted for hours.

Warren has taken 100,000-plus selfies during more than a year of campaigning. The snippets of conversation she has with those who pose alongside her are a centerpiece of her campaign.

Staying behind for pictures in Cedar Rapids was Bailey, Warren’s golden retriever. Bailey has campaigned across Iowa while Warren was in Washington for President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate.

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12:45 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s high-profile endorsers are emphasizing his perceived general election strength against President Donald Trump and his “coattails” for other Democrats as they make late appeals before Monday’s Iowa caucuses.

One of those Biden supporters is John Kerry, the 2004 presidential nominee and former secretary of state and senator. Kerry is making an appeal for moderation, telling would-be caucusgoers in North Liberty that 2020 isn’t just about the presidency but about down-ballot races.

Kerry says the 2020 election is “about restoring to another branch of government a sense of duty.”

With the Republican-controlled Senate nearing the expected acquittal of President Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, Kerry says the November vote is also about “holding accountable those senators who put party, president and personal power over the Constitution and our country.”

Kerry calls former Vice President Biden “a candidate with coattails.”

And there’s support also from Harold Schaitberger, the president of the International Associated of Firefighters. He says Biden has a unique appeal among Democrats from working-class, union households.

An Iowa congresswoman, Abby Finkenauer, notes that Biden had helped her flip a Republican-held congressional district in 2018. Finkenauer is one of dozens of first-term members of the House for whom Biden campaigned or endorsed in 2018.

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12:20 p.m.

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg wants Iowa voters to “do something different” when they hold their leadoff presidential caucuses on Monday.

The former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, says recent criticism by 2016 nominee Hillary Clinton of her Democratic rival in that race, Bernie Sanders, is a reminder of tensions that remain in the party.

Buttigieg says he “didn’t much enjoy as a Democrat living through the experience of 2016.” He says he wants to make sure that “2020 resembles 2016 as little as possible.”

Buttigieg is headlining seven campaign events on the closing weekend before the first contest of the 2020 race.

He said during a stop in Waterloo that questions about lingering ill will between Clinton and Sanders supporters point out the need to rally behind a candidate who can unite the party.,

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