Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* Ahead of a possible 2020 campaign, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) met yesterday with a group of women who worked on his 2016 team and who’ve alleged sexual misconduct as part of the senator’s operation. One person who was in attendance told Politico, “It went as well as it could have.”
* A new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll shows Donald Trump with a 39% approval rating, but just as important is the president slipping with his base. The survey results showed his support slipping among self-identified Republican voters and white men without a college degree, generally seen as a key constituency in Trump’s base.
* Adding to Rep. Steve King’s (R-Iowa) troubles, the editorial board of The Messenger in Fort Dodge, Iowa, published a piece today expressing regret for having endorsed his re-election bid. “It is now clear that the endorsement we made was a mistake,” the editorial read, while calling for the far-right Republican to resign.
* Rep. Ed Case (D-Hawaii) spoke earlier this week at a reception intended to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander members of the 116th Congress. As part of his remarks, the Democratic lawmaker told attendees he’s “an Asian trapped in a white body.” Case yesterday tried to walk that back, saying, “I regret if my specific remarks to the national API community on my full absorption of their concerns caused any offense.”
* As former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) launches his road trip, Politico reports, “Becky Bond, a senior adviser to Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign and an adviser to O’Rourke’s 2018 Senate run, has been talking with operatives in recent days about potential jobs on a 2020 campaign.”
* Democratic leaders believe appointed Sen. Martha McSally (R), who has to run again next year, is vulnerable, and they already have a candidate in mind for the race. Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) met yesterday with Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Catherine Cortez Masto (Nev.), and said after the meeting, “It went great. I’m strongly considering it.”
* And in North Carolina, the News & Observer in Raleigh reported that Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), who hasn’t cast a vote in Congress since September due to an undisclosed illness, suffered a broken hip this week and underwent successful surgery at a local hospital. Jones, who’ll retire at the end of this Congress, ran for re-election unopposed.