* “Democracy will win—if we fight for it.”–Former President Barack Obama.
* Populist Bidenomics pitch: Joe Biden underscored his reputation as an uber pro-labor president by making a Philadelphia union rally the first major political event of his re-election campaign. It enabled him to spotlight the climate, tax and health care package signed into law last year in the context of union endorsement in a key battleground state.
* Planned Parenthood, Emily’s List and NARAL-Pro Choice America have all extended early endorsements of President Biden and VP Kamala Harris. No surprise, but a pragmatic reminder that abortion—and last year’s blindsiding Dobbs v. Jackson ruling—should play a major partisan, base-energizing role in the 2024 election.
* Bollywood at the White House: Penn Masala was part of the WH welcoming ceremony for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Penn Masala is the premier South Asian a cappella group. But, no, it wasn’t quite Doo Wop.
* Secretary of State Antony Blinken notably met with Chinese officials—including President Xi Jinping—to lessen the possibility of a major conflict. Lots of nuanced phrasing. The next day President Biden referred to Xi as a “dictator.” Oops. So much for diplomatic etiquette.
* Given Gavin Newsom’s high national profile, the Dems’ thin bench and his well-chronicled, partisan rivalry with Ron DeSantis, it looks like the California governor is looking at a possible presidential run. He is term-limited after 2026.
Timing, we are again reminded, is everything. Just two years ago Newsom was facing recall. A few years before that, he was married to Kimberly Guilfoyle, former Fox News host and former campaign advisor to Trump who’s now engaged to Donald Trump Jr. Newsom and the rest of us will be hearing about that again.