Wednesday, November 20

ByKevin Sheekey

2020 Watch.

How Mike Bloomberg’s Record Could Play Well In Democratic Primary (City & State)

As Mayor, he created groundbreaking health and climate initiatives, revived the city’s economy and budget, beefed up education and more.

After the Great Recession of 2007-2009, the city’s economy quickly rebounded. Private-sector jobs increased by nearly 10% in Bloomberg’s last four years in office, well above the nationwide average.

Tourism increased under Bloomberg, with an average of 50 million tourists making their way to the city annually by the end of his third term, up from the 32-million national average when he took office.

Well before Bloomberg pledged to invest $500 million of his own money for the Beyond Carbon effort to combat climate change, he was creating forward-looking city climate policies in New York.

Under Bloomberg, student test scores improved and graduation rates rose, many new schools were opened and school choice dramatically expanded.

He improved the health of the city: In 2002, Bloomberg signed a law that banned smoking in all bars and restaurants – a move that resonated globally.

He was also a trailblazer in banning artificial trans fats in 2005, when he forced restaurants and food vendors to phase them out due to their artery-clogging attributes.

As a result, life expectancy for New Yorkers increased while he was Mayor: From 2001 to 2013, life expectancy increased 3.2 years from 77.9 to 81.1 years, 2.3 years longer than the 2013 national average.

Democrats Debate Tonight in Atlanta – What To Expect (Vox)

The fifth Democratic debate airs from 9 to 11PM ET tonight on MSNBC. The debate is being co-hosted by the Washington Post and will include an all-female panel of moderators, something that’s only happened twice before in presidential primary debates.

Protecting the Right to Vote: Red-State Stop for Democrats Showcases Bitter Voter-Rights Feuds (Bloomberg)

Stacey Abrams’ voter rights effort is being copied in dozens of states across the country after Democrats and civil rights groups filed five federal lawsuits over Georgia’s election practices a year before the 2020 election.


Impeachment Today.

Bombshell:  Star Witness Testifies ‘Quid Pro Quo’ Involving Ukraine Ordered by Trump (Bloomberg)

U.S. envoy Gordon Sondland says that “everyone was in the loop” on the demand for investigations by the Ukraine in exchange for a White House call and a meeting for Ukraine’s president. “It was no secret,” Sondland said in testimony today. He also said Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were aware of the effort.


Hong Kong Update.

Next Flashpoint: Sunday’s District Council Elections are First Vote Since Unrest Began (Bloomberg)

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s government has threatened to postpone the historically low key local elections on Sunday if there is a renewed spurt of violence.


Climate News.


Music News.

Lizzo Rocks: New Acts Rule Grammys as Lizzo, Lil Nas, Eilish Lead Nominations (Associated Press)

The Grammys are screaming “Cuz I Love You” to Lizzo: The breakthrough singer-rapper scored a whopping eight nominations, including bids for the top four awards, making her the show’s top-nominated act.


Best of late night.

“I saw that organization expert Marie Kondo launched an online store today where you can buy candles, books and kitchen products. Here’s how it works: first you buy the items from Marie, and then six months later she shows up at your house and makes you throw them out.”
— Jimmy Fallon

“Scientists have developed a new shark proof wet suit material that they say will reduce blood loss from shark bites, though it’s still not as effective as my favorite method, land.”
— Seth Meyers

“A bagel store manager in New York is receiving praise online after he drove seven hours to Pennsylvania to return a set of keys a customer left behind. Said the customer — “Oh, I hate to tell you this, but these aren’t mine.””
— Seth Meyers