* No, there are no defensible upsides to what the U.S. has escalated by taking out Iranian Gen. Qassim Suleimani. But it’s likely that former Vice President Joe Biden benefits politically. He has first-hand foreign policy chops and no learning curve. He would be the polar opposite of an uninformed, impulsive narcissist trying to look like a tough guy when he’s not trying to look like a guy who hates stupid wars. However flawed and gaffe-prone, Biden’s been an international player and knows the game. Yes, there will be that congressional vote regarding Iraq, but the WMD lies had everything to do with it–as Hillary Clinton and most other non neo-con members of Congress can attest. When the foremost priority is removing an existential threat–before pivoting to domestic priorities–Biden benefits.
* Julian Castro is officially out as a Democratic presidential candidate and has officially endorsed Elizabeth Warren. But his proposal for a “Marshal Plan” for Central America should still be very much in play. Moreover, he’s still in the mix for a place on the ticket–just as he was in 2016 when Hillary Clinton was the nominee.
* “The answer is, I would, but I can’t think of one right now.”–Joe Biden, in answer to a stump question asking if he would consider choosing a Republican as a running mate.
* “We cannot afford the degree of recklessness and political immaturity among some who conclude that unless my candidate wins, I’m taking my ball and going home. That is what delivered Donald Trump the first time.”–Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., a member of the House Democratic leadership.
* “Yang Gang.” What Andrew Yang’s online following is known as. BTW, Yang, nationally unknown barely a year ago, raised more than $16 million last quarter, more than Biden had raised in the previous (third) quarter. Never know anymore with debate optics, a protean electorate and nanosecond news cycles. But at least they’re not known as the Yang Bangers.