Articles on this Page
- 11/13/15--17:23: _Parisians use #Port...
- 11/14/15--04:40: _Everything we know ...
- 11/14/15--07:17: _Beneath pall of Par...
- 11/14/15--10:24: _Hollande: Terror at...
- 11/14/15--10:36: _Paris attacks give ...
- 11/14/15--11:38: _‘Je suis Paris': In...
- 11/14/15--13:44: _American college st...
- 11/14/15--14:52: _Sanders faces major...
- 11/14/15--15:03: _How the Paris attac...
- 11/14/15--15:12: _Increased vigilance...
- 11/14/15--15:31: _What to watch for i...
- 11/14/15--16:36: _Paris attacks may p...
- 11/14/15--17:03: _French capital ‘tra...
- 11/14/15--17:26: _At G-20 meeting, an...
- 11/14/15--17:59: _LIVE BLOG: Presiden...
- 11/14/15--19:26: _Following Paris att...
- 11/15/15--08:33: _Fact checking the s...
- 11/15/15--09:53: _Clinton criticized ...
- 11/15/15--10:40: _In wake of Paris at...
- 11/15/15--12:00: _Candles lit across ...
- 11/14/15--04:40: Everything we know about the multiple attacks in Paris
- 11/14/15--07:17: Beneath pall of Paris attacks, Syria talks get underway in Vienna
- 11/14/15--10:36: Paris attacks give G-20 summit new urgency
- 11/14/15--13:44: American college student among victims killed in Paris attacks
- 11/14/15--14:52: Sanders faces major test in second Democratic primary debate
- 11/14/15--15:03: How the Paris attacks may affect the U.S.-led war on ISIS
- 11/14/15--15:12: Increased vigilance across the globe following Paris attacks
- 11/14/15--15:31: What to watch for in the second Democratic primary debate
- 11/14/15--16:36: Paris attacks may prompt White House to escalate fight against ISIS
- 11/14/15--17:03: French capital ‘traumatized’ on day after terror assault
- 11/14/15--19:26: Following Paris attacks, Clinton and Sanders spar on foreign policy
- 11/15/15--08:33: Fact checking the second Democratic debate
- 11/15/15--09:53: Clinton criticized after invoking 9/11 to defend campaign donations
- 11/15/15--12:00: Candles lit across France on second day of national mourning
After a series of attacks in central Paris left more than 100 people dead on Friday, Parisian residents used social media to offer each help, and verify their safety for family and friends elswewhere.
On Twitter, residents used #PorteOuverte, which translates to “open door,” to ask for shelter and offer their homes to one another.
#PorteOuverte If you need a place to stay tonight in the 18th we can host a few people, clean bedding, tea, and internet if you need it!
— Gaybby (@gabshnks) November 13, 2015
— Dawid Auguscik (@DawidAuguscik) November 13, 2015
#PorteOuverte I live by Gate du Nord in the 10eme on rue de Dunkerque. Please call if you need shelter or wine: +33781784949
— Lloyd (@lloyd_ay) November 13, 2015
#porteouverte send me a message for a safe place in canal Saint Martin. Please be safe
— Florian Duretz (@duretzflo) November 13, 2015
Facebook implemented a “Safety Check” page — a tool that the social network created in the event of disaster and tragedy — for people in the area to check in and let friends know that they were safe.
Many offered only their general neighborhood as Twitter users warned each other not to tweet specific addresses.
Meanwhile, taxis in Paris reportedly turned off their meters to offer free rides home to anyone.
D'après amie dans taxi : les taxis éteignent les compteurs à Paris et ramènent les gens chez eux
— Sébastien Bossi (@bonakor) November 13, 2015
French president Francois Hollande has called the attacks the deadliest in France since World War II.
The post Parisians use #PorteOuverte to offer each other shelter after attacks appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
As night fell in Paris on Saturday, authorities in Belgium arrested several people suspected of being linked to the deadly terrorist attacks that shook the City of Light on Friday.
Coordinated attacks in the heart of the city — at restaurants, near the soccer stadium and a concert hall — left at least 129 people dead. A rental car with Belgian plates was seen near the Bataclan music venue, where more than 80 people were killed, Belgian officials said.
Eight attackers are reportedly dead; seven killed themselves with explosive vests and one was shot by police.
While the attackers have not been publicly identified, French police said that one carried a Syrian passport. According to Greek officials, the name on that passport matches the name of a Syrian migrant who arrived on the Greek island of Leros six weeks ago.
President Francois Hollande called the attacks an “act of war” in a televised address on Friday and blamed the Islamic State militant group for the massacre.
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attacks on Saturday morning, though its statement could not be immediately authenticated.
Hollande declared a nationwide state of emergency, reinstituted border checks and imposed a curfew to restrict foot and vehicular traffic. He deployed about 1,500 military personnel across the city.
The shooting rampages and suicide attacks began Friday night at a level of violence not seen in Paris since World War II.
In the 1,500-seat Bataclan concert venue, gunmen opened fire on the crowd watching the California band Eagles of Death Metal, methodically killing at least 80 people.
After police stormed the building, four attackers were dead: three had blown themselves up and the police shot one, the BBC reported.
“They are cutting down everyone. One by one,” said a concert-goer who managed to escape.
Gunmen with Kalashnikovs also fired through windows at the Petit Cambodge Restaurant on Rue Alibert, and several other cafes in the city, killing at least 37 people. Panicked patrons dropped to the floor and people on the streets fled.
At the Stade de France, Hollande and about 80,000 others were watching an exhibition soccer match between France and Germany. Three suicide bombs exploded around the stadium, the Associated Press reported. Hollande was whisked to safety. Some spectators thought the explosions were fireworks, and in the confusion, the game continued.
In all, at least six locations were hit in and around the capital.
People around the world took to Twitter to express support, including the hashtag #PorteOuverte offering victims a places to stay, #PrayforParis and #JeSuisParis.
The French capital was already in a state of alert after gunmen killed 18 people in early January in attacks at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, at a Jewish supermarket, and on a policewoman on patrol.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Twitter, “I am shocked by events in Paris tonight. Our thoughts and prayers are with the French people. We will do whatever we can to help.”
Other world leaders expressed their condolences.
In Washington, President Barack Obama called it “an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”
Watch his comments below:
U.S. authorities said they were monitoring the situation and that there appeared to be no credible threat against the United States.
Lorenzo Vidino, director of the Program on Extremism at George Washington University, said on Friday’s PBS NewsHour that France has a large number of individuals inspired by al-Qaida and the Islamic State group’s ideology. And the country’s aggressive foreign policy in North Africa and increased presence near Syria and Iraq against Islamic State forces make it a target.
Reuters reporter Mathais Blamont was in the neighborhood as the attack unfolded and described the aftermath at about 8:30 p.m. EST Friday.
And after the latest campaign news, NewsHour political analysts Mark Shields and Michael Gerson weighed in about the vulnerability felt after such attacks.
The post Everything we know about the multiple attacks in Paris appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
VIENNA — Syria as a breeding ground for terrorism moved Saturday to the foreground of a meeting of foreign ministers on the war in that country, with participants linking the shooting and bombing attacks in Paris to Mideast turmoil and the opportunities it gives for terror.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov both condemned the attacks as they began meetings with senior representatives from Iran, Saudi Arabia and other countries with strongly conflicting views on how to end the more than four-year war. Key differences include what, if any role Syrian President Bashar Assad should play in any transition government and which groups fighting him should be grouped as terrorists.
Those differences appeared to be put aside at least temporarily as the meeting started.
“These kinds of attacks are the most vile, horrendous, outrageous, unacceptable acts on the planet,” said Kerry, after speaking with Lavrov and shortly before the main meeting convened at a luxurious Vienna hotel. “And the one thing we could say to those people is that what they do in this is stiffen our resolve, all of us, to fight back, to hold people accountable, and to stand up for rule of law, which is exactly what we are here to do.
“And if they’ve done anything, they’ve encouraged us today to do even harder work to make progress and to help resolve the crises that we face,” Kerry said.
Lavrov, standing next to Kerry, said there was “no justification for terrorist acts, and no justification for us not doing much more to defeat ISIS and al Nusra and the like,” adding: “I hope that this meeting as well would allow us to move forward.”
Ahead of the meeting, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said the attacks in Paris made it all the more necessary for the international community to find a common approach in Syria and terrorism, sentiments echoed by the foreign ministers of Germany, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told Iranian state TV Saturday that the attacks in Paris show the urgency of fighting terrorism and extremism on a global level. He joined the talks later in the day.
Jordan’s foreign minister, Nasser Judeh, said the Paris attack “reaffirms our collective commitment” to fight terror and extremism wherever it may occur, while EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said no one could turn away from the common threat.
“We are together in this: Europeans, Arabs, East and West, all the international community,” she declared. “The best response to this is actually coming together, overcoming our differences, and trying together to lead the way towards peace in Syria.”
More than 250,000 people have been killed in the Syrian war. Eleven million have been uprooted from their homes. The conflict has allowed Islamic State militants to carve out significant parts of Syria and Iraq for their would-be caliphate. Europe and Syria’s neighbors, meanwhile, are struggling to cope with the worst migrant crisis since World War II.
The post Beneath pall of Paris attacks, Syria talks get underway in Vienna appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
French President François Hollande said Saturday the wave of simultaneous attacks that hit Paris on Friday — killing at least 129 people in the worst act of terror Europe has seen since the 2004 Madrid bombings — was orchestrated by the Islamic State militant group and constituted an “act of war.”
Speaking in a televised address from the Elysée presidential palace, Hollande said the jihadist group’s actions were an attack on France’s core democratic values, against “a free country that means something to the whole planet.”
“Faced with war, the country must take appropriate action,” he said. “France will be merciless toward these barbarians.”
The death toll was expected to rise following a night of terror in the French capital, during which militants targeted six locations, including a rock concert at the Bataclan music hall in the city’s 11th Arrondissement, where most of the victims were killed.
French officials said more than 350 people were wounded and at least 99 of them remain hospitalized in serious or critical condition.
Paris prosecutor François Molins, speaking at a press conference Saturday, said three groups of radicals likely carried out the attack.
“We can say at this stage of the investigation there were probably three coordinated teams of terrorists behind this barbaric act,” he said.
In an online statement distributed Saturday, the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, claimed responsibility for the assault on Paris.
“Eight of the brothers, wrapped in explosive belts and carrying rifles targeted specially selected locations in the heart of the French capital,” the statement said. “This attack is only the beginning and a warning for those who can learn.”
While the claim could not immediately be authenticated, it resembled previous statements made by the group, the Associated Press reported.
The Belgian justice minister said Saturday that several people had been arrested in Brussels in connection to the attack.
This story will be updated as new information becomes available.
The post Hollande: Terror attacks in Paris were ‘act of war’ by ISIS militants appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
WASHINGTON — The global anxiety sparked by a series of deadly attacks in Paris by the Islamic State group has given new urgency to President Barack Obama’s upcoming talks with world leaders.
The crisis in Syria, where the Islamic State group has taken root, was already high on the agenda at the meeting of 20 leading industrialized and emerging-market nations. But the violence in Paris that killed at least 127 people will dramatically change the dynamic of the talks in Antalya, Turkey, a seaside resort city just a few hundred miles from the Syrian border.
In remarks from the White House shortly after the attacks Obama said, “We’re going to do whatever it takes to work with the French people and with nations around the world to bring these terrorists to justice, and to go after any terrorist networks that go after our people.”
French President Francois Hollande said Islamic State militants were behind the attacks and the extremist group claimed responsibility Saturday. The U.S. has not yet said whether it believes the group is responsible for the carnage.
Obama was due to depart Washington Saturday afternoon for a trip that also includes stops in the Philippines and Malaysia. He’s also supposed to travel to Paris in two weeks for a high-stakes climate conference, though there’s now some doubt whether that meeting can take place in the French capital, given that securing the leaders could come at the expense of other pressing security matters.
Security is expected be extremely tight in Turkey as leaders gather for two days of talks in Antalya, where several suspected Islamic State militants were recently detained.
Ahead of Obama’s talks in Turkey, Secretary of State John Kerry was meeting in Vienna with his counterparts from Russia, Turkey and other nations with a stake in Syria. The discussions suggest a new seriousness in efforts to end the 4 ½- year civil war, though how or when that might happen still remains deeply uncertain.
U.S. officials have played down prospects for an imminent breakthrough to quell Syria’s civil war and defeat the militants that have taken advantage of the chaos. Obama’s National Security Adviser Susan Rice said the goal was simply to make “incremental progress.”
More 250,000 people have been killed in the clashes between rebels and forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad. Eleven million people have been uprooted from their homes, sparking a massive migration crisis in Europe that is also expected to be on the agenda at the G-20 meeting.
The president’s first meeting in Turkey is with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish leader whose ties with the White House have become increasingly strained. Their meeting wasn’t announced until shortly before Obama’s departure, a underscoring the “very tense nature” of the U.S.-Turkey relationship, according to Heather Conley, a Europe expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank.
While Erdogan shares Obama’s desire to get Assad out of power in Syria, the two leaders have disagreed over tactics.
“The U.S. and Turkey do not align on the dimension of the Syrian campaign,” Conley said.
Erdogan has been frustrated by Obama’s willingness to use military force against the Islamic State, but not against Assad. The U.S., meanwhile, was irked by Erdogan’s reluctance to join the campaign against IS, though Turkey eventually decided to start bombing the militants this summer and also allowed the U.S. to launch its own airstrikes from key bases in the county.
Obama’s dealings with Russian President Vladimir Putin over Syria have been even more complicated. As Assad’s biggest benefactor, Russia has essentially propped up the Syrian leader throughout the crisis. Until Putin is willing to abandon Assad and accept new leadership in Syria, it’s unlikely a political solution can be reached.
Despite Obama’s vow to isolate Putin in retaliation for Russian aggression in Ukraine, the president agreed to meet with his longtime foe in New York earlier this year to discuss Syria. The slight optimism U. S. officials expressed after the meeting was quickly dashed when Russia began launching its own airstrikes in Syria, raising the prospect of a proxy war with the U.S.
While Putin says his country’s forces are targeting the Islamic State, U.S. officials have accused Russia of instead going after forces fighting Assad in a bid to protect the Syrian leader.
Obama and Putin won’t hold another formal meeting in Turkey, but White House officials said the leaders would have plenty of time to talk on the sidelines of the G-20.
Following several coordinated terror attacks in Paris Friday night, which left at least 129 people dead and more than 350 injured, signs of solidarity emerged from around the world.
In Shanghai, the Oriental Pearl TV Tower shone Le Tricolor blue, white and red.
People lit candles and lay flowers at the sites of the attacks — and at French embassies from Toulouse to Tehran — as security was stepped up globally.
The post ‘Je suis Paris': In solidarity with France, tributes spring up across the globe appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
A 23-year-old student at California State University, Long Beach, was among the victims killed in Friday night’s assault on Paris, the university said Saturday.
Nohemi Gonzalez, a third-year undergraduate from El Monte, California, had been studying abroad at the Strate College of Design in the Paris suburb of Sèvres, according to a Cal State press release.
“I’m deeply saddened by the news of the passing of Long Beach State University student Nohemi Gonzalez. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends during this sad time,” university President Jane Close Conoley said in the statement.
“Our university stands with our nearly eighty foreign exchange students from France as they struggle with this tragedy. We will extend all support necessary to comfort them. We will also extend support to all students, faculty and staff who are in need.”
Gonzalez’s boyfriend, Tim Mraz, posted a photo on Instagram of the two embracing, and said he had lost the most important person in his life.
“She was my best friend and she will always be my angel forever,” he wrote. “I am lost for words. My prayers are with her family. Such a bright soul and the sweetest girl with a smile on her face.”
Cal State Long Beach’s Department of Design chairman, Martin Herman, told the LA Times that Gonzalez tutored students in design and was a friendly, helpful person.
“We relied on her,” Herman said. “She had an indescribably sweet spirit and imagination. It’s unbelievable that this could have happened.”
Details of the specific circumstances of Gonzalez’s death were not immediately available.
The post American college student among victims killed in Paris attacks appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
WASHINGTON — Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders faces the biggest test yet of his insurgent presidential campaign on Saturday night, when he faces off with Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton in the party’s second primary debate.
His goal is clear: Reset a contest that increasingly looks like little more than a march to the nomination for Clinton.
That effort will be complicated by fresh terrorist strikes that have captured the world’s attention. Despite Sanders’ focus on domestic issues, national security and foreign policy will play prominent roles in the debate, with the string of deadly attacks in Paris that killed more than 120 people front and center.
All the candidates quickly denounced the attacks in statements on Friday night. Party officials said the forum will continue as planned.
Foreign relations is an area where Clinton, a former secretary of state, is in the strongest position to talk about the attacks and the U.S. effort to dismantle the Islamic State group. But her tenure is tied to that of Obama, who’s struggled to contain the threat from Islamic militants in Syria and associated terror attacks across the globe.
Clinton’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, accompanied her to Des Moines on Saturday but will not be in the hall for the debate, spokesman Angel Urena said.
A spate of good news for Clinton since the party’s first debate a month ago has helped her rebuild a lead in the early voting states, an uptick that comes amid other signs the party is coalescing behind her.
An Associated Press survey of superdelegates published Friday found that half of the Democratic insiders are publicly backing Clinton.
Sanders may have inadvertently facilitated some of her progress in the first debate, when he seemed to dismiss the controversy over her use of a private email account and server by saying Americans are tired of hearing about her “damn emails.”
Since then, he’s given her no more passes.
Though careful never to mention Clinton by name, Sanders has drawn a series of contrasts with the former secretary of state on issues that include her backing of the war in Iraq, trade and the minimum wage.
Sanders’ advisers say he plans to discuss the email issue only if the moderators of the debate in Des Moines, Iowa, bring it up. That could be a signal to organizers that he’s is open to the topic.
“He’s definitely going to cut a harder contrast on core issues,” said Larry Cohen, a senior adviser to Sanders. “But it’s not going to be over personal style.”
The problem for Sanders is that Clinton agrees with him on some of the core domestic issues of his campaign, having shifted to the left in recent weeks to oppose construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal.
“It’s really tough for him,” said Gina Glantz, manager of Bill Bradley’s 2000 presidential campaign, which posed a primary challenge to then-Vice President Al Gore. “He’s in a difficult position where his current arguments aren’t enough to get beyond his core voter.”
While Sanders aides bragged about their candidate’s lax preparation for the last debate, they shuttled him to his campaign headquarters in Burlington, Vermont, for mock sessions before this match-up. Clinton, too, has kept her schedule relatively clear over the last several days, leaving plenty of time for rehearsals.
“They are absolutely prepared for the fact that Bernie’s going to come out swinging,” said Maria Cardona, a Democratic strategist who worked for Clinton’s failed 2008 White House campaign. “The question is how it’s going to happen.”
Clinton supporters say their candidate will remain focused on laying out her vision for the future rather than striking back at Sanders. Her campaign has about $15.2 million in television advertising planned through mid-February, compared with a $3.2 million Sanders ad buy that ends next week, according to Kantar Media’s CMAG advertising tracker.
The Service Employees International Union, an influential force in Democratic politics, is expected to issue their endorsement on Tuesday, according to people knowledgeable about the union’s process. Clinton has been backed by more than 72 percent of members in all their internal polling, including the most recent survey conducted a few weeks ago.
Her team is hoping to notch another win after a series of strong moments since the first debate. Clinton has benefited from Vice President Joe Biden’s decision to forgo a run and well-received testimony before a Republican-led congressional panel investigating the deadly 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya.
They’re also trying not to alienate the Sanders backers whose support they’ll need should Clinton win the nomination.
“As a front-runner your job is to do no harm,” said Cardona. “She’s going to want to be a comfortable home for the Bernie supporters toward the end of this process.”
Sanders, too, may face tougher attacks. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who’s struggled to break 5 percent in national preference polls, has questioned Sanders’ commitment to the Democratic Party and President Barack Obama, still a popular figure among Democrats.
A more aggressive tone would mark a shift for a race that has so far been notable for its civility. Democrats have spent months boasting about the substantive tone of their contest, attempting to set-up a favorable early contrast with the often carnival-like insults of the crowded Republican primary.
Their bragging may come to an end after Saturday night.
The post Sanders faces major test in second Democratic primary debate appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
The post How the Paris attacks may affect the U.S.-led war on ISIS appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
As French President François Hollande tightened security across France, promising “merciless” retribution for the series of coordinated terror attacks in Paris Friday night, world leaders reacted with expressions of solidarity as well as increased vigilance in their own countries.
In response to the attacks, which the president called an “act of war” by Islamic State militants, Hollande announced three national days of mourning and bolstered security across the country, including a nationwide state of emergency — France’s first since World War II — and temporary border controls.
Hollande also deployed roughly 1,500 soldiers to sites around Paris.
Many Parisian businesses were closed Saturday, and the city government announced that its facilities, including schools, museums, libraries and food markets would be closed for the weekend.
The company that operates the Eiffel Tower announced Saturday that the iconic tourist attraction will remain closed indefinitely, Agence France-Presse reported.
Charles de Gaulle Airport remained open, though officials warned travelers to expect significant delays as the result of heightened security measures.“This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”
Speaking from the White House Friday night, President Barack Obama expressed solidarity with the French people and described the acts of terror as an assault on humanity.
“This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share,” he said.
The president also pledged support for the French government and emphasized the bonds of common history that the United States shares with France.
“We stand prepared and ready to provide whatever assistance that the government and the people of France need to respond,” he said. “France is our oldest ally. The French people have stood shoulder to shoulder with the United States time and again. And we want to be very clear that we stand together with them in the fight against terrorism and extremism.”
American authorities have said that there is no known domestic threat related to the Paris attacks, but officials across the country are taking precautionary measures.
In a conversation with reporters on Friday night, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that he had been briefed on the attacks and that, while there were no specific threats against the city, the New York Police Department would bolster security.
“NYPD is of course ready, has already deployed resources to protect the French Mission to the U.N. here in New York City, and the French Consulate, and will be focusing on other sites related to France to make sure they are safe. We have our Critical Response Vehicles on high alert right now to be able to move wherever we need them,” he said.
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said Friday evening that he had ordered extra patrols to city transportation centers and other potential targets, and that officials would upgrade security at Sunday’s football game between the Philadelphia Eagles the Miami Dolphins football game, USA Today reported.
“Obviously, one of the targets in Paris was a sports stadium,” Ramsey said, referring to a series of explosions outside a sold-out exhibition soccer match. “We’re not taking any chances.”
Several major American sports organizations, including the National Hockey League and NASCAR, announced similar plans to enhance security at upcoming sporting events.
France’s European neighbors, including Italy, the Netherlands and the U.K., also boosted security at the borders and other critical locations.
British Prime Minister David Cameron called what happened in Paris “a horrifying and sickening attack” and cautioned the British people against an attack at home.
“Today the British and French people stand together, as we have so often before in our history when confronted by evil, shocked but resolute, in sorrow, but unbowed,” Cameron said in an address. “The threat level is already at severe, which means an attack is highly likely, and will remain so, and we must recognize that however strong we are, however much we prepare, we in the U.K. face the same threat.”
In addition to official statements of sympathy and condolence from governments around the world, iconic monuments in many countries were lit up with the French Tricolour flag in a display of unity with the French people, including Australia’s Sydney Opera House, the Brandenburg gate in Berlin, Germany, and the statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The post Increased vigilance across the globe following Paris attacks appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
DES MOINES, Iowa — Hillary Rodham Clinton has been on a hot streak since the first Democratic presidential debate last month. The main question heading into Saturday’s second encounter: Can her two challengers slow down her Big Mo’?
National security will play a prominent role in the debate in the aftermath of deadly terror attacks in Paris that killed more than 125 people and left about 350 injured. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attacks, a development that will bring terror and the U.S. response to the jihadist group to the forefront.
Heading into the debate, Clinton expects to face a more direct challenge from Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley in their first debate since the Democratic field has winnowed down to three candidates.
Both Sanders and O’Malley have taken steps to point out their differences and the underdog ex-governor is also trying to undercut Sanders as Clinton’s main alternative. But the debate could take a more somber tone following the Paris attacks.
Some things to look for in the two-hour debate:
PARIS: The string of deadly attacks in Paris will be front-and-center in the debate. As a former secretary of state, Clinton enters the debate in a stronger position to talk about the attacks and the U.S. effort to dismantle IS. Sanders and O’Malley have a more limited experience in foreign policy. CBS News, which is moderating the debate, said questions about national security and foreign policy related to the Paris attacks will play a more central role in the debate. CBS News Vice President and Washington Bureau Chief Christopher Isham told reporters “it caused us to refocus some of the questions on what happened in Paris and the threat from terrorism and how the candidates would respond to the threat if they were president.” But he said other topics will be included. Clinton said at a New Hampshire town hall last week that she did not currently support seeking a declaration of war against the Islamic State, citing the diffuse nature of the threat. But she has called for a no-fly zone over northern Syria. The three candidates have opposed the U.S. entering a larger ground war in the Middle East to combat the rise of Islamic militants.
CAN ANYONE TRIP UP CLINTON?: Clinton’s strong performance in the first debate kicked off a winning streak: Vice President Joe Biden decided not to run for president, she emerged unscathed during an 11-hour visit to the congressional panel on Benghazi and saw her poll numbers rise in the aftermath. Even a San Antonio rally alongside Housing Secretary Julian Castro, viewed as a potential vice presidential pick, created buzz about a future Democratic ticket. In short, she has a good problem to deal with: How to manage soaring expectations. “She wants to make sure people know where she stands on the issues,” Clinton spokeswoman Karen Finney said in Denver. “I’ve seen some of the coverage of what the other candidates’ strategy is going to be but our strategy remains the same.” The Paris attacks are likely to garner attention at the start of the debate and allow Clinton to talk about her experience as secretary of state.
DIVIDED OR UNITED?
The former secretary of state has little incentive to toss verbal bombs. When asked to describe the differences in the race, she typically says there’s little that separates Democrats on policy compared to a jumbled Republican race. Clinton doesn’t want to alienate the loyal following Sanders has built among young voters. But Sanders and O’Malley appear more inclined to highlight their differences with Clinton, including the Keystone XL pipeline (they opposed it, she avoided the issue and then opposed), the Trans-Pacific Partnership (they oppose it, she eventually got there) and the federal minimum wage (they want $15 an hour, she’s for $12 an hour). Look for Clinton’s recent comments in New Hampshire about “illegal immigrants” and her past support for a border fence to play a factor in the discussion.
DAMN EMAILS REDUX?
In the first debate, Sanders famously said Americans don’t care about Clinton’s “damn emails,” suggesting the inquiry into her use of a private email system should be off-limits. He has since taken a different tactic, reiterating that the investigation should play its course. As Clinton has consolidated support, Sanders has pointed out their differences on the environment, trade, the federal minimum wage and gay marriage. So any strong suggestions from Sanders that Clinton’s email practices should be relevant in the primaries would be noteworthy. Sanders’ advisers say the senator will highlight the differences in the race but won’t let it get personal. “It’s not like there’s a wild imperative to go after someone in the debate. This campaign is doing phenomenally well,” said Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver.
NOTHING TO LOSE
Mired in single-digits, O’Malley is running out of time, low on cash and ready to challenge both Clinton and Sanders. But can he shake up the race? His appearance at a South Carolina forum sponsored by MSNBC may have been his best of the campaign and included several barbs, including criticism of Sanders for suggesting in 2012 that Obama might need a primary challenge. Nearly six months into his campaign, O’Malley is still searching for a high-profile, breakout moment that will make more Democrats give him a second look. But he’s still relatively unknown, so slash-and-burn tactics carry some risk.
Much of Sanders’ appeal has been derived from his unconventional persona and his long commitment to the plight of distressed workers. The 74-year-old “democratic socialist” is an atypical presidential candidate but he could tarnish his brand if he goes negative on Clinton. Clinton could see a preview of things to come if any Democrat portrays her as a poll-driven, political chameleon more motivated by winning than standing up for principles. Republicans hope to make that case in the fall and would welcome any help now.
Sanders is building a strong organization in Iowa, especially on college campuses, and has shown strength in New Hampshire, which has a history of rewarding candidates from New England. But by mid-February, Democrats will need to appeal to a more diverse electorate in South Carolina, Nevada and a litany of “Super Tuesday” states in the South. Sanders won the endorsement of a top black Democrat in Ohio, former state senator Nina Turner, and will hold a rally in her hometown of Cleveland on Monday. His team hopes it signals a breakthrough in connecting with a bigger swath of the Democratic base.
The post What to watch for in the second Democratic primary debate appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
WASHINGTON — The Paris terrorist attacks seem likely to compel President Barack Obama to consider military escalation against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. But that probably will not mean dramatic moves like launching a U.S. or international ground offensive or accelerating aerial bombing in hopes of eliminating the global threat of violent extremism.
“You aren’t going to bomb ISIS back to the Stone Age,” Anthony Cordesman, a longtime Middle East analyst, said Saturday.
Cordesman and other American defense analysts said Obama may deepen U.S. involvement incrementally by, for example, embedding U.S. military advisers closer to the front lines of battle with Iraqi forces and with anti-IS fighters in Syria. But that and similar moves to intensify U.S. support for local forces is unlikely to produce quick results.
As Cordesman sees it, years of tragic terrorist attacks like Paris are almost inevitable, and there are no near-term solutions.
Stephen Biddle, a George Washington University professor of international affairs, said the Paris attack may create a political imperative to do more militarily against IS, but he thinks it would be a mistake to launch a U.S. ground war.
“To defeat ISIL decisively would require hundreds of thousands of Western ground troops, but nobody thinks the ISIL threat warrants that scale of commitment, and in fact it doesn’t,” Biddle said.
At the core of the U.S. strategy in Iraq is a belief that unless local forces are empowered to retake and secure their own territory, any military gains the U.S. could make by leading the charge would be short-lived. In Syria, Obama had been unwilling to get more involved in a civil war, although he recently agreed to send a few dozen special operations forces.
One new wrinkle since Friday’s attacks in Paris is the prospect of France asking its NATO allies to come to its aid, invoking the 28 members’ treaty obligation to consider an armed attack on one member as an attack against them all. That has happened only once in NATO’s 66-year history: in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks against the U.S.
James Stavridis, the retired Navy admiral who served as NATO’s top commander in Europe from 2009 to 2013, said NATO should play a military role now.
“NATO’s actions need to be deliberate, meaningful and at a significant scale,” Stavridis said by email, adding that consultations among the allies should begin shortly.
Stavridis, who is dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, said NATO special forces could be called on in Iraq and Syria as aircraft spotters and as trainers of anti-IS fighters. They also could gather intelligence and conduct raids, he said. The alliance should welcome nonmember participants, including Russia, he said.
“Soft power and playing the long game matter in the Middle East, but there is a time for the ruthless application of hard power,” Stavridis said. “This is that time, and NATO should respond militarily against the Islamic State with vigor.
Obama began U.S. bombing in Iraq and Syria, along with the deployment of military advisers to Iraq, more than a year ago. And although thousands of IS fighters have been killed, the U.S.-led coalition campaign has had only limited successes.
Overall the extremists remain in control of about a third of Iraq and Syria. IS continues to impose its unforgiving brand of radical Islam and carrying out atrocities against minority groups, including sexual enslavement of women.
Richard Fontaine, president of the Center for a New American Security, a Washington think tank, said the Obama administration almost certainly will consider new ways to accelerate its military campaign.
Fontaine, a former foreign policy adviser to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said Obama might opt for at least two changes in Iraq that he has resisted thus far: embedding U.S. military advisers in Iraqi army units closer to the front lines, and deploying forward air controllers on the battlefield to improve the effectiveness of U.S. airstrikes.
He saw little chance, however, of the U.S. undertaking a ground invasion of Syria.
“I wouldn’t put that in the realistic category,” he said.
Biddle, the George Washington University professor, said he expects a limited escalation from the U.S. and its allies, but he sees no options that would make a decisive military difference.
“Elected officials feel obligated to do something when bad news emerges from ISIL,” he said. “So they escalate a bit. Because the escalation falls far short of what’s needed to defeat ISIL, the escalation doesn’t solve the problem, and so there’s more bad news of some kind a few months later and the cycle repeats. This could go on a long time. My guess is that the Paris attacks will also follow this pattern.”
The post Paris attacks may prompt White House to escalate fight against ISIS appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
HARI SREENIVASAN, PBS NEWSHOUR WEEKEND ANCHOR: NewsHour special correspondent Malcolm Brabant is in Paris and has been speaking to people there all day.
Malcolm, give us a sense of what the mood’s like on the street?
MALCOLM BRABANT, NEWSHOUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: It’s no exaggeration to say that this is a city that has been completely traumatized by the events of last night.
Driving into Paris today, you get the sense it was completely eerie. People were cleared off the streets. They were clearly taking the advice of the police to stay home and that’s because of just the complete uncertainty that there may still be some terrorists out there.
That has certainly been ramped up during the course of the day because there have been ISIS people who issued threats urging Muslims to come out and attack targets here, clearly trying to capitalize on the fear that there is in the city.
Behind me, you can see the people are lighting candles close to the concert hall where nearly 90 people were slaughtered. And people are completely stunned by what has happened. They thought that “Charlie Hebdo” was absolutely terrible, but this is many times worse.
SREENIVASAN: Have — I see traffic and I see people on the streets, but have the shopkeepers decided to stay closed or is it slower than a usual weekend right now? Do you see more police presence?
BRABANT: This is normally a bustling city and as I said, coming into the city was a complete shock to see just how many stores were closed down. It was almost like a Sunday with nobody on the streets at all, just convenience stores, and things like that.
The places where there have been queues have been blood donation centers where Parisians have been coming out to show solidarity with those 90 people who are critically injured, and they have been turning out in such large numbers, that the blood centers have had to turn them away and send them to other places.
There have also been people at the hospitals coming trying to find lost ones, trying to identify people who are, you know, missing. It’s– there’s still– I mean, gradually I think Paris is coming to terms with what has happened but there is still a huge sense of shock here.
SREENIVASAN: We’ve heard that there were military forces deployed on the streets to protect certain areas. Are you seeing increased police presence in most of the neighborhoods that you’re traveling through?
BRABANT: Well, I have to say that I’m quite surprised that I haven’t actually seen this many policemen as I have expected to, although there have been about 1,500 soldiers who have been deployed to Paris.
But what is quite significant is that area where you’d expect people to come together have been closed down monuments such as the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, all of these places have been closed down.
The police have been urging people not to gather in groups because of the potential for causing a target for other potential terrorists who might be here.
But people are defying that order in various places, such as the Place de la Republique, which is a place which is symbolic of France, and they’ve been gathering around the monument there.
Also, lighting candles and talking in terms of what needs to happen to France and basically people on the streets are saying they need to be unified. They can’t start to hate because that’s what the terrorists are trying to create with the actions that they carried out yesterday.
SREENIVASAN: Malcolm, you mentioned they are still recovering in some ways from the “Charlie Hebdo” attack. What is it that they think needs to be done to try to keep themselves secure?
BRABANT: I think that people are completely confused about that question. I don’t think people know how you do generate security.
I was talking to one man at the Place de la Republique. He said that basically what you have to do is you have to love people.
But the problem is that people here think that this, perhaps, is the start of some kind of horrendous war that is not one that is defined by sorts of international wars that we’ve had before, but ones that is going to be carried out in terms of terror attacks in places all across Europe.
Perhaps — there is a sense that perhaps this is the start of something else, that the Islamic State is trying to, will hit other places in the future, not just Paris.
But they do seem to say in their messages that they put out today claiming responsibility for this, that they have a particular gripe against France, and they say they will continue to hit France. And so, people here aren’t necessarily feeling secure.
SREENIVASAN: NewsHour special correspondent Malcolm Brabant joining us from the streets of Paris tonight — thanks so much.
The post French capital ‘traumatized’ on day after terror assault appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
HARI SREENIVASAN, PBS NEWSHOUR WEEKEND ANCHOR: Leaders from the U.S., Russia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey are meeting in Vienna, Austria, this weekend to discuss ways to end the war in syria and a post-war transitional government.
Though no delegation from Syria is at the negotiating table, Secretary of State John Kerry said today there could be new elections in Syria within 18 months. He referred to the terrorist group “ISIS” by its Arabic name, “Dash.”
JOHN KERRY SOT: The impacts of this war bleed into all of our nations from the flood of desperate migrants seeking refuge within the region or in Europe or beyond to the foreign terrorist fighters who make their way into Syria to join the ranks of groups like Daesh, to self-radicalized fighters living among us.
SREENIVASAN: New York Times reporter Julie Hirschfeld Davis is covering the Syria peace talks and joins me by phone from Vienna.
How significantly has last night’s attacks played into the conversation today?
JULIE DAVIS, THE NEW YORK TIMES (via telephone): Well, I think it really stiffens everyone’s resolve, as John Kerry said, to really come out with something concrete from these meetings. Everyone, you know, took a moment of silence in the beginning of their ministerial.
Everyone was very somber and, you know, very determined to make some headway here in light of — you know, the attacks that really underscored the challenge they’re facing, trying to confront the Islamic State and, you know, its effects on the region, but also, obviously, well beyond the region.
So, it did lend a sense of urgency, and they made some headway. But I would say they were looking for a lot more momentum than they maybe were able to get because there are still some pretty significant remaining issues that divide the key players.
SREENIVASAN: All right. So, let’s talk a little bit about. What are they hoping to accomplish and what’s standing in between today and that point?
DAVIS: Well, they did come up with a timetable for action on a political transition in Syria, which is important. It’s a pretty optimistic timetable.
They want to get opposition groups together by January 1, and get them talking with the government of Syria and the representatives of the president, Bashar al-Assad, in the next six months after that, to try to come up with a unity government and constitution and then hold elections in 18 months.
So, that’s a pretty ambitious timetable, and Secretary Kerry acknowledged that, and everyone at the table I think acknowledged that it’s a long shot but that’s a concrete timetable and that represents some real progress here.
And they also, you know, agreed that they would, in parallel, seek a cease-fire. But again, for that to happen they’re going to have to figure out what the fate of President Assad is going to be, what role he’s going to play.
And they have to identify who they’re going to treat as a terrorist group and who they’re going to treat as a legitimate opposition group that gets to have a seat at the table in those transition talks. And those are very big tasks that they accept for themselves in the next six months.
SREENIVASAN: And there isn’t anybody from Assad’s government at this table in these conversations. Is Russia supposed to be the proxy that takes the message back?
DAVIS: Well, that’s right, they’re not at the table and they haven’t been at the table. The group is going to meet again next month, and it’s not clear whether they’ll be at the table at that point.
They are — the U.N. envoy, special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, was here, and he is going to be spearheading the process of trying to get the opposition groups and Assad to the table, to try to start talking. But until they’re in a position to do that, they’re not going to be a part of these talks and that’s a big impediment.
Now, Secretary Kerry talks about how we’re not trying to impose a solution on anyone, but as long as they’re not at the table and we have interests in Syria that we’re trying to execute on – mainly that Assad must go — and the Russians have interests that they’re trying to execute on and they say that Assad is not the main problem here and he can be part of a solution, it’s hard to see them making a much more significant headway.
SREENIVASAN: Is there any part of this conversation that includes perhaps increased coordination of military activities between the Russian airstrikes happening and the U.S. airstrikes that are happening in Syria?
DAVIS: They did talk about that. It came up, and basically they have been involved, as you know in these talks to deconflict, so that they’re basically not bombing at each other or flying at each other. But there still is a level of coordination I think that Russia is seeking that they’re not getting for the United States.
And, you know, I think that’s also a key sticking point here, and a reason that they’re not making as much progress as they want to on the other piece, on the diplomatic piece because there is a feeling there could be more coordination and Russia and Sergey Lavrov, the foreign minister, said here at the end of the talks that that would be in everyone’s interest, if there was more coordination between them and the United States and the rest of the coalition.
SREENIVASAN: So, besides the military posture of all the countries involved, what about the humanitarian aid, and perhaps any agreement on what these countries are going to do to try to help the people of Syria that are still there?
DAVIS: Well, that’s an element they talked a lot about, and a piece of really trying to figure out a way towards this political process. I think they acknowledge in order to get the opposition groups to the table and in order to have a legitimate process that everyone feels is in the interest of the Syrian people, they’re going to have to do more of that.
And they did actually agree in terms of the political process that the Diaspora, those who have left Syria, should be part of the ultimate elections that take place, which is — which is a major element here, and I think it speaks to their desire to have this not look like it’s an outside solution being imposed from above, from outside of Syria.
SREENIVASAN: All right. New York Times reporter Julie Davis, joining us on the phone from Vienna today — thanks so much.
DAVIS: Thank you.
The post At G-20 meeting, an ambitious timeline for political transition in Syria appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
The Democratic presidential candidates are debating for the second time in the 2016 nomination contest, this time in Des Moines.
The latest developments (all times local):
The second debate of the Democratic campaign for president is underway, and it’s starting with a moment of silence for the victims of the attacks in Paris.
A coordinated gun-and-suicide bombing attack tore across Paris on Friday, leaving at least 129 people dead and 352 injured. It marked the deadliest violence on French soil since World War II.
French President Francois Hollande has vowed that his country will wage “merciless” war on the Islamic State group, which claimed responsibility for the carnage.
The candidates will each make an opening statement before the debate’s first section focuses on the attacks and foreign policy.
The Democratic candidates for president are gathering for the party’s second debate of the 2016 campaign, a meeting that will take place in the shadow of the attacks in Paris.
The campaigns have tangled with debate host CBS over the format of the debate in the hours before the debate.
When CBS said on a conference call with the campaigns that it wanted to focus the opening statement and the first section of the debate on the Paris attacks, the campaign of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders vigorously disagreed.
That’s according to a participant on the call, who spoke on condition of anonymity and was not authorized to speak publicly.
Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver says the key issue is a proposal to shorten the opening statements from 90 seconds to 30 seconds in order to move quickly to questions in a debate unfolding a day after the Paris attacks.
The Vermont senator’s campaign says it successfully argued on behalf of the longer opening statements, which all three candidates will deliver.
The debate will begin with a moment of silence in memory of the victims of the attacks.
The post LIVE BLOG: Presidential candidates face off in second Democratic debate appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
WASHINGTON — A day after deadly terrorist attacks in Paris, Hillary Rodham Clinton cast herself as the strongest U.S. commander in chief in an uncertain world, even as she found herself forced to defend the Obama administration’s response to the rise of the Islamic State militants.
“This election is not only about electing a president, it’s also about choosing our next commander in chief,” said Clinton in the Democrats’ second debate of the presidential campaign. “All of the other issues we want to deal with depend upon us being secure and strong.”
But she nearly immediately faced criticism of her own record, when Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders traced the current instability in the Middle East to the Senate vote — including Clinton’s — to authorize military action in Iraq in 2002. He said that U.S. invasion “unraveled the region.”
Clinton fought back, saying terrorism has been erupting for decades, specifically mentioning the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. She said the recent unrest in Libya and other parts of the Middle East was symptomatic of an “arc of instability from North Africa to Afghanistan.”
She rejected the idea that she and the rest of the administration underestimated the growing threat of the Islamic State.
Clinton and Sanders were joined by former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley for the debate, which also featured lively discussion of domestic issues including the economy, “Obamacare” and immigration reform. O’Malley got cheers from the Democrats’ audience when he spoke out against Republican front-runner Donald Trump, whom he called an “immigrant-bashing carnival barker.”
On international terrorism, much in the world’s mind after the Paris attacks, the early back-and-forth revealed a foreign policy split within the Democratic Party, with Sanders playing to the anti-war activists who boosted then-Illinois Sen. Barack Obama to victory in 2008.
Sanders argued for a far more hands-off approach, advocating for Muslim countries to lead the fight and arguing that the war against Islamic State militants is about the “soul of Islam.”
Clinton has a history of advocating for more robust involvement across the globe — both as a presidential candidate eight years ago and as Barack Obama’s secretary of state. In recent weeks, she has advocated for a more aggressive U.S. role in the Syrian conflict, calling for a no-fly zone over the area, a move the Obama administration opposes. But she stood by her opposition to seeking a formal declaration of war against the Islamic State.
Foreign relations is an area where Clinton, as a former secretary of state, is in the strongest position to talk about the attacks and the U.S. effort to dismantle the Islamic State group. But she is vulnerable, too, her tenure tied to that of Obama, who’s struggled to contain the threat from Islamic militants in Syria and associated terror attacks across the globe.
The candidates were meeting in the shadow of the Paris attacks that killed at least 129 and wounded at least 352 people. The debate began with a solemn tone, with a moment of silence followed by previously unplanned foreign policy questions.
All the candidates denounced the attacks, the first time the Democratic field spoke about the incidents.
They gave some fodder to their Republican critics, who coupled condemnation of the Paris attacks earlier in the day with sharp criticism for Obama and his former secretary of state, Clinton.
“We are at war with violent extremism, we are at war with people who use their religion for purposes of power and oppression,” said Clinton, arguing the U.S. is not at war with Islam or all Muslims. “I don’t want us to be painting with too broad a brush.”
Sanders and O’Malley agreed with her sentiments, saying the term “radical Islam” used by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and other Republican presidential candidates, is unnecessarily offensive to American Muslims.
Republicans immediately seized on the remarks. “Yes, we are at war with radical Islamic terrorism,” tweeted former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
The conversation later pivoted to economic issues, with the candidates tangling over how to pay for their plans to expand college affordability, family leave and prescription drug coverage. All three agreed that wealthy citizens and corporations should pay more in taxes to benefit the middle class.
“I’m not that much of a socialist compared to Eisenhower,” joked Sanders, saying the former president backed a 90 percent marginal tax rate.
Since the party’s first debate a month ago, Clinton has helped build a lead in the early voting states, an uptick that has come amid other signs the party is coalescing behind her. An Associated Press survey of superdelegates published Friday found that half of the Democratic insiders are publicly backing Clinton.
The post Following Paris attacks, Clinton and Sanders spar on foreign policy appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
WASHINGTON — Bernie Sanders persisted in using shopworn stats on income inequality and Hillary Rodham Clinton glossed over the well-heeled donors to her campaign in the latest Democratic presidential debate.
Some of the claims in the debate Saturday night and how they compare with the facts:
CLINTON: “Since we last debated in Las Vegas, nearly 3,000 people have been killed by guns. Two hundred children have been killed. This is an emergency.” She said that in the same period there have been 21 mass shootings, “including one last weekend in Des Moines where three were murdered.”
THE FACTS: The claim appears to be unsupported on all counts.
The Gun Violence Archive has recorded 11,485 gun deaths in the U.S. so far this year, an average of just under 1,000 per month, making Clinton’s figure appear to be highly exaggerated. The archive had more detailed data for children and teenagers, showing 70 from those age groups killed by firearms since the Democratic candidates debated Oct. 13 – not 200 as she claimed.
Asked to explain the discrepancy, Clinton’s campaign pointed to 2013 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and 2010 figures from the Children’s Defense Fund. But that’s not the time period she said she was talking about.
The only mass shooting recently in Des Moines was Nov. 8, when four people were shot at a night club. One was killed, not three.
SANDERS: “People are working longer hours for lower wages, and almost all of the new income and wealth goes to the top 1 percent.”
THE FACTS: As he did in the last debate, Sanders leaned on outdated data.
In the first five years of the economic recovery, 2009-2014, the richest 1 percent captured 58 percent of income growth. That’s according to Emmanuel Saez, a University of California economist whose research Sanders uses. That’s a hefty share, but far short of “almost all.”
In the first three years of the recovery, 2009-2012, the richest 1 percent did capture 91 percent of the growth in income. But part of that gain was an accounting maneuver as the wealthiest pulled income forward to 2012 in advance of tax increases that took effect in 2013 on the biggest earners.
Many companies paid out greater bonuses to their highest-paid employees in 2012 before the higher tax rates took effect. Those bonuses then fell back in 2013. And in 2014, the bottom 99 percent finally saw their incomes rise 3.3 percent, the biggest gain in 15 years.
SANDERS: “I am running a campaign differently than any other candidate. We are relying on small campaign donors, 750,000 of them, 30 bucks a piece. That’s who I’m indebted to.”
CLINTON: “I have hundreds of thousands of donors, most of them small.”
THE FACTS: It’s hardly unusual for most of a candidate’s donors to be people who send small amounts. What’s more telling about the nature of a candidate’s appeal is how much of the campaign’s money comes from small and big givers.
On that score, Clinton is taking the big money while Sanders is the one drawing from the grassroots.
Over the course of her presidential campaign, through the end of September, 17 percent of her total fundraising haul has come from donors giving $200 or less. For Sanders? Nearly 74 percent.
Moreover, Sanders has not blessed any super PACs to spend money on his behalf.
By contrast some of Clinton’s top former aides are entrenched at a super PAC that is expecting to raise more than $100 million to help her throughout the course of the presidential race. That group has already netted at least seven separate $1 million checks from some of the wealthiest Democratic donors in the country.
MARTIN O’MALLEY: “Under Ronald Reagan’s first term, the highest marginal rate was 70 percent.”
THE FACTS: O’Malley’s comment suggests that the economic recovery of 1983-84 occurred with a 70 percent tax rate on the richest Americans. Actually, one of President Ronald Reagan’s first tax-cut bills, enacted into law in 1981, lowered the top tax rate from 70 percent to 50 percent. And in 1986, Reagan worked with Congress on a bipartisan bill to further lower the top rate to 28 percent.
CLINTON on the health care law: “The Republicans have voted to repeal it nearly 60 times.”
THE FACTS: As much as Republicans wish to dismantle President Barack Obama’s health care law, they haven’t beaten their heads against the wall quite that often.
Many of the votes she is counting were to change or repeal specific parts of the sprawling law, a fine-tuning that Obama acquiesced to at times and some Democrats voted for. In June, the House voted to abolish one part of the law, a tax on medical device makers, with the support of 46 Democrats.
SANDERS: Break-up the big banks “and re-establish Glass-Steagall.”
O’MALLEY: “We should have reinstated a modern version of Glass-Steagall.”
CLINTON: “I just don’t think it will get the job done” of preventing future financial crises.
THE FACTS: Economists tend to side with Clinton on this one.
The Glass-Steagall legislation was passed in the midst of the Great Depression and separated commercial from investment banking, among other things. The idea was to keep risky Wall Street business apart from retail banking, particularly since retail deposits are guaranteed by the federal government.
President Bill Clinton signed a law repealing Glass-Steagall in 1999, and many commentators argue that his move was an early example of a trend toward financial deregulation that made the 2008 financial crisis worse.
Yet many economists note that nearly all the large financial institutions that failed in the crisis, including Lehman Brothers, AIG, and Bear Stearns, were investment banks or insurance companies, and their failure wouldn’t have been prevented if Glass-Steagall had still been in effect.
SANDERS: Speaking of calls to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour: “You’re seeing cities like Seattle. You’re seeing cities like San Francisco, cities like Los Angeles doing it, and they are doing it well and workers are able to have more disposable income.”
THE FACTS: The jury is still out on whether a $15 minimum wage will cause job losses in those big cities. Even some economists who argue that modest increases in the minimum don’t cost jobs point out there is little research on the impact of such a large increase, which is more than double the current $7.25.
Outside high-cost urban areas, a $15 minimum would be a heavier lift for many businesses. The median hourly wage in eight states is below $15. (The median is the midpoint between the highest and lowest pay levels.)
Still, there is no consensus. The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business asked more than 40 economists if raising the minimum to $15 an hour by 2020 would “substantially” eliminate jobs for low-wage workers. About 40 percent said they were uncertain, while the rest were split between yes and no.
CLINTON: Sanders’ health care plan would “eliminate” Medicare.
THE FACTS: Sanders’ plan would incorporate Medicare into a broader system intended to cover all Americans. But that does not mean the government would stop paying for seniors’ health care. Indeed, Sanders says Medicare is the model for his idea, which he calls “Medicare for all.”
Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program would be also be absorbed by the new “single-payer” system envisioned by Sanders, which would be run by the states under federal rules.
Private insurance companies would be sidelined to selling supplemental coverage.
His plan specifies that Medicare beneficiaries would be covered during the transition.
Associated Press writers Alicia A. Caldwell, Julie Bykowicz and Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar contributed to this report.
DES MOINES, Iowa — Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign on Sunday defended her donations from Wall Street by saying she worked to help the financial sector rebuild after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and sought to address the abuses that led to an economic crisis.
During the second Democratic debate on Saturday, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders put Clinton on the defensive when he said Wall Street had been the major contributor to her campaigns. “Now maybe they’re dumb and they don’t know what they’re going to get, but I don’t think so,” he said.
Clinton accused Sanders of trying to “impugn my integrity” and said that as a New York senator, she helped New York City’s financial hub rebuild. “That was good for New York and it was good for the economy and it was a way to rebuke the terrorists who had attacked our country,” she said, her voice rising.
On Sunday, Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon elaborated, saying in a statement that her work to help the financial industry rebuild after 9/11 “did not mean she ever hesitated to call out and seek to reform the abuses and excesses that led to the economic crisis. She did so early and often.”
Her debate response drew an incredulous reaction on social media sites like Twitter, and the debate’s moderators asked Clinton to respond to one Twitter user, who took issue with her mention of 9/11 to justify the contributions.
“Well, I’m sorry that whoever tweeted that had that impression because I worked closely with New Yorkers after 9/11 for my entire first term to rebuild,” Clinton said. “I had a lot of folks give me donations from all kinds of backgrounds say, ‘I don’t agree with you on everything. But I like what you do. I like how you stand up. I’m going to support you.’ And I think that is absolutely appropriate.”
The exchange highlighted one of Sanders’ main critiques of Clinton: That she has maintained close ties to Wall Street executives during her political career and would be less forceful in policing the risky behavior of financial firms that Sanders says led to the economic downturn in 2008 and 2009.
Both Sanders and ex-Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley support reinstating the Glass-Steagall law which once separated commercial and investment banking but was repealed in 1999 under her husband, President Bill Clinton. The former secretary of state says repealing Glass-Steagall wouldn’t go far enough to curb risks pushed by a shadow banking system.
When Clinton raised Wall Street donations along with 9/11, her Democratic rivals quickly pounced. In the post-debate “spin room,” former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley told reporters, “I’ll let her answer that gaffe. I think it was one of the biggest ones of the night.”
Mark Longabaugh, a top Sanders’ adviser, said, “Do I think it’s a legitimate defense? No. I don’t see how you can make those two pieces go together.” He called the exchanges over Wall Street the “pivotal moments of the debate.”
Republicans said Clinton had hidden shamefully behind the 9/11 attacks to deflect attention from her ties to her wealthiest donors. And they signaled that the response would likely find its way into advertising if Clinton becomes the Democratic nominee.
“It’s an intersection between stupid and offensive, and I think that’s going to be a big problem as the campaign heads into the general election,” said Sean Spicer, the Republican National Committee’s chief strategist.
Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta told reporters that Clinton’s “integrity was impugned and what she was saying was that she was proud to represent the state of New York, to help rebuild lower Manhattan.”
“When people attack her and call her quote-unquote the ‘senator from Wall Street,’ they ought to remember that she was instrumental in trying to rebuild an important part of the New York economy,” he said.
The post Clinton criticized after invoking 9/11 to defend campaign donations appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
ANTALYA, Turkey — Jolted to attention by a horrifying terror spree in Paris, world leaders pledged a renewed fight Sunday against the Islamic State group, but offered little in the way of a revamped counter-terrorism strategy. Instead, President Barack Obama sought to encourage his allies in the fight to intensify the types of efforts that have thus far proven unsuccessful in routing the extremist threat.
Huddling in Turkey, a front-line state in the war against IS, leaders from the Group of 20 summit denounced the attacks with towering rhetoric that reflected growing concern that the extremist group is now set on inflicting violence far beyond Iraq and Syria. Obama said that “the skies have been darkened” by the attack that killed at least 129 in Paris, while Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan deemed it a strike “against the whole of humanity.”
“The killing of innocent people, based on a twisted ideology, is an attack not just on France, not just on Turkey, but it’s an attack on the civilized world,” Obama said after meeting with Erdogan as he opened two days of talks in this seaside city just a few hundred miles from the Syrian border.
In addition to the Paris attacks, the Islamic State group is blamed for two deadly bombings in Turkey this year and one in Lebanon. The group has also claimed responsibility for the downing of a Russian airliner this month over Egypt. The White House said it believed IS has set its sights on Libya and hinted at more U.S. airstrikes like the one that targeted a top IS leader in Libya on Friday – coincidentally, just as the Paris attacks were underway.
The global war against IS overtook all other planned topics for the G-20 economic summit, which brings together leading rich and developing nations to discuss heady topics like global economic growth. Instead, leaders vacillated between discussions of how best to defeat IS and how to deal with the migrant crisis stemming from Syria’s civil war.
Absent from the talks was French President Francois Hollande. He canceled his trip after the elaborately coordinated assault on a stadium, a concert hall and cafes in the French capital.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, called on nations to pool their efforts to combat terrorism, adding that the fight must respect international law, the U.N. Charter and each nation’s sovereign rights and interests.
“We understand very well that it’s only possible to deal with the terror threat and help millions of people who lost their homes by combining efforts of the entire global community,” Putin said.
On the sidelines of the summit, Obama and Putin held a rare but informal sit-down spanning more than half an hour. The White House said they discussed a new proposal to end Syria’s civil war and Obama’s hope that Russia’s airstrikes in Syria will focus on IS, not opposition groups fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad.
On video provided by host country Turkey, the two leaders could be spotted leaning in close to one another and chatting in casual fashion. Broaching another tense topic, Obama renewed his call for Russia to withdraw forces, weapons and support for pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine, the White House said.
In addition to the terror threat, this year’s G-20 agenda also included efforts to hasten global economic growth, with a particular focus on addressing the effects of China’s economic slowdown. In a draft of the final G-20 communique obtained by The Associated Press, leaders renewed their goal to grow their collective GDP by another 2 percent by 2018.
Opening the G-20 meeting, Erdogan said incidents like the Paris massacre have “shown that the relationship between the economy and security cannot be ignored,” and he cited Syria as the clearest example. Likewise, European Union leader Donald Tusk called for a show of “full determination” against terrorism and urged cooperation to prevent terror financing – a step that nations have already been pursuing for more than a year.
In a fresh reminder of the Islamic State’s expanding capacity to wreak havoc, five Turkish police officers were injured Sunday when a suicide bomber blew himself up during a police raid on a suspected IS hideout near the Syrian border. Turkish security forces also rounded up 20 suspected IS militants in and around Antalya in the run-up to the G-20.
Yet beyond sweeping condemnations of IS, leaders have yet to float new, specific proposals for intensifying the fight following the Paris attacks. The U.S. and coalition partners have been bombing IS in Iraq and Syria for more than a year with limited success, and Obama has been reluctant to get pulled deeper into the conflict.
Asked whether he would consider additional action against IS, Obama wouldn’t tip his hand. But his deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, said Obama was looking to France and others in the U.S.-led coalition to “intensify their efforts.” He said the U.S. considered the Paris attack an “act of war,” but said it was up to France whether to invoke the NATO clause that would require other NATO allies to rush to its defense.
“You’ll see more resources dedicated to strikes, leadership targeting, support for opposition forces,” Rhodes said. He said the U.S. would increase its effort to arm Syrian opposition groups, but ruled out large-scale deployment of U.S. troops to Syria beyond the 50 or so special forces Obama has authorized.
Associated Press writers Vladimir Isachenkov and Matthew Lee in Antalya and Suzan Fraser in Ankara contributed to this report.
The post In wake of Paris attacks, world leaders pledge renewed fight against ISIS appeared first on PBS NewsHour.
People lit candles, posted placards and paid tribute across France on Sunday in remembrance of the victims killed in the terror attacks that hit Paris on Friday night.
Paris officials reported the death toll at 129, with more than 350 injured.
At the famed Notre Dame Cathedral in the city’s fourth Arrondissement, thousands of mourners paid tribute to the victims as the church held a special service.
Museums and other major attractions across the capital city remained closed for a second day.
The post Candles lit across France on second day of national mourning appeared first on PBS NewsHour.