While Biden is considered a tougher opponent, Trump mocked the vice president for his verbal slips and said he might have to be committed to elderly care. „Joe’s going to be in a home,” Trump said. „He’ll be watching television.”
Sanders “does have some enthusiasm, but much less than we have,” Trump said, but he added that “there’s not a lot of enthusiasm for Biden.”
After Trump spoke in Charlotte, Biden hosted a rally in Dallas to celebrate the endorsements of former opponents Amy Klobuchar, Pete Buttigieg and Beto O’Rourke.
„Our number one priority is to beat Donald Trump and bring unity back to our party,” Biden tweeted before his event. „Together we’re gonna make it happen.”
For his part, Sanders said he and his movement will be better able to defeat Trump. During a CNN town hall, Sanders also advised Trump to „stay out of the Democratic primary“ and asked: “Why don’t you do your job for a change as president?”
At his rally, Trump interspersed attacks on the Democrats with praise of his own economic and foreign policy record, including a new effort to fight the spread of the deadly virus.
Think you have coronavirus? Call first! Here’s what to expect at the doctor’s office
Trump pointed to a meeting he held earlier in the day with a group of pharmaceutical executives who pledged to work together to develop a vaccine „relatively soon.”
“We’re working hard on it and we’re going to come up with some really great solutions,” Trump said. „We’re going to safeguard our people.”
At the same time, Trump accused his Democratic opponents of trying to „politicize” the outbreak, thereby denigrating „the noble work of our public health professionals.”
While attacking Democrats like Buttigieg and Klobuchar for seeking jobs in exchange for their Biden endorsements, Trump also mocked the recent impeachment drive against him.
“They made a deal,” Trump said. „You know what? Quid pro quo, that’s what! Impeach them!. They should be impeached!”
Congressional Democrats accused Trump of seeking an improper quid pro quo in asking the president of Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son Hunter, who had business interests in that country.
The Republican-run Senate acquitted Trump on articles of impeachment accusing him of abuse of power and obstruction of the congressional impeachment investigation.
Trump also revived another issue: The stock market.
Having ignored the markets last week as they fell precipitously because of coronavirus fears, Trump brought up Monday’s record rise within minutes of taking the stage. “Today we just had the largest one day increase in the stock market in history” Trump said. „That was great.”
North Carolina was only the latest stop of Trump’s anti-Democratic tour. He hosted similar rallies on the eve of Democratic nominating contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina.
„We like to troll,” Trump said. „We do a little trolling.”
Charlotte is also the site of the Republican convention in August, and North Carolina is expected to be a highly competitive state in the fall.
Before leaving the White House, a reporter asked if it was safe to have a political rally in the midst of concern about the spread of coronavirus.
„Well, these were set up a long time ago,” Trump said. „And others are – I mean, you could ask that to the Democrats because they’re having a lot of rallies. They’re all having rallies … I think it’s very safe.”This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Donald Trump defends coronavirus plan, denigrates Democrats
Pence vows to follow ‘the experts and the science’ on coronavirus response
WASHINGTON — Even as some of President Trump’s allies have continued to describe the coronavirus as a mild threat that has been exaggerated by the president’s political enemies, officials leading the charge against the respiratory disease — which has so far killed six Americans — insisted that they would continue to be guided by science.
“We’re going to follow the facts and listen to the experts every step of the way,” Vice President Mike Pence, who is leading the White House coronavirus task force, said at a Monday press briefing. In language shorn of politics, he proceeded to describe a burgeoning “cluster” in Washington state and California, as well as efforts to keep the virus from spreading across the nation.
Standing next to him in the White House briefing room were some of the nation’s top public health officials, including Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health and Dr. Deborah Birx, a top AIDS expert who was recently appointed to the task force.
The president’s critics have long branded him as hostile to expertise of the very kind Birx and Fauci possess. Last year, the Union of Concerned Scientists, a progressive group, criticized him for “a pervasive pattern of sidelining science in critical decision making,” in particular when it came to the consensus about human activity causing climate change.
The president has attempted to project confidence in his administration’s public health efforts, but he has sometimes undermined that attempt by talking about the coronavirus in political terms, or seemingly dismissing the severity of the threat.
Rush Limbaugh, the pro-Trump radio host with a legacy of offensive remarks, said he had spoken to Trump on Monday morning. Suffering from advanced cancer, Limbaugh was recently awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
“He starts talking about this hoax,” Limbaugh said of his conversation with Trump. “He starts talking about this versus the flu and the number of cases and the mortality rate. He’s on top of this. He knows exactly, folks, what they are trying and what they’re doing. He was insistent to me that they are not going to join the panic on the task force — or himself personally — in reporting this.”
Pence has tried to project a measure of reassurance in his remarks to the press in the last several days. That has included praising scientific accomplishment and consensus instead of maligning it.
“We’ll follow the facts, the experts and the science,” Pence said at a later time in Monday’s briefing, speaking specifically about restrictions on Americans traveling to countries with high rates of infection, including Italy and South Korea.
Asked by a reporter during Monday’s briefing about how quickly he expected the virus to spread, Pence deviated from Trump’s brand of sunny assurance.“Let me refer that to the experts,” Pence said somberly before ceding the podium. (Those experts expressed confidence in the nation’s public health system while also making clear that more cases are to be expected in the days and weeks to come.)In his own remarks, Fauci said that Trump and Pence would be visiting the National Institutes of Health, in the Washington suburbs, on Wednesday. A few minutes later, Dr. Robert Redfield, who heads the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said the president and vice president would come to the CDC’s headquarters in Atlanta on Friday.Pence also announced that the task force would be holding daily press briefings. “Get used to seeing us,” the vice president said. “We’re going to bring the experts in.”
“The market by and large had been telling us this situation was going to deteriorate, [and] equities only caught on to that last week,” he said, adding that “any near-term bounce is unlikely to hold.”Fears for the global economy are on the rise, as the coronavirus only just begins to surface in economic data — particularly in China, an epicenter of the coronavirus. The country’s Caixin/Markit Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) registered at 40.3 for February, representing the lowest reading in the 16-year history of the survey. Prints below 50 indicate contraction in a sector.Also on Monday, the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development lowered its 2020 global economic growth forecast to 2.4% from 2.9% amid the outbreak. That would mark the weakest pace of growth since 2009.In the U.S., Wall Street is now banking on the Federal Reserve to come to the rescue with a series of rate cuts — a theme that will likely be reinforced amid a week chock-full of market-moving economic data, some of which may begin to hint at the havoc the COVID-19 virus is wreaking on the global economy.“Under other conditions, the economic data in the week ahead would set the tone, but in the current environment, they play second fiddle to market positioning and anxiety around the Covid-19,” Marc Chandler, managing director at Bannockburn Global Forex, said Sunday.“Investors may be particularly sensitive to downward revisions as it may reflect the deterioration of conditions as new data was reported,” he added.-4:00 p.m. Dow jumps more than 1,200 points or 5% in rebound Here were the main moves in markets, as of 4:00 p.m. ET:
- S&P 500 (^GSPC): +4.61% or +136.30 points to 3,090.52
- Dow (^DJI): +5.10% or +1,296.81 points to 26,706.17
- Nasdaq (^IXIC): +4.49% or +384.80 points to 8,952.17
- Crude oil (CL=F): +5.56% or +2.49 to 47.25 a barrel
- Gold (GC=F): +1.29% or +20.20 to 1,586.90 per ounce
- 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -3.46% or -0.0390 to 1.0880Indexes are in the green as markets look to rebound after their worst week since the financial crisis in 2008
- S&P 500 (^GSPC): +2.41% or +71.23 points to 3,025.45
- Dow (^DJI): +2.96% or +766.49 points to 26,175.85
- Nasdaq (^IXIC): +2.41% or +208.74 points to 8,775.58
- Crude oil (CL=F): +4.87% or +$2.18 to $46.94 a barrel
- Gold (GC=F): +1.82% or +$28.50 to $1,595.20 per ounce
- 10-year Treasury (^TNX): yielding 1.082%, down 4.4 basis points
ProShares Head of Investment Strategy Simeon Hyman joins On The Move to discuss how policy can support the markets during times of crisis and how investors should be thinking about governmental change during volatile times.—1:57 p.m. ET: Apple shares rise more than 6%Apple shares rose more than 6% Monday, outperforming against the S&P 500 and Dow during the intraday session.The company’s shares gained following an Oppenheimer analyst’s note saying that Apple is better positioned than competitors to deal with the coronavirus, Reuters reports.
1:35 p.m. ET: Amy Klobuchar to drop out of U.S. presidential race, AP reports
Amy Klobuchar is ending her bid to become the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, the Associated Press reported Monday.
According to the report, the Minnesota senator is set to fly to Dallas to join Democratic candidate Joe Biden at his rally Monday night. Klobuchar will reportedly endorse Biden for the nomination.
12:18 p.m. ET: Dow jumps 600+ points, or more than 2%, as rebound rally accelerates
The S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq each surged more than 2% after last week’s sell-off. At the highs of the session so far, the Dow was up as many as 795.7 points.
Haven assets still continued to climb, with U.S. Treasuries and gold prices both rising Monday afternoon.
Here were the main moves in markets, as of 12:18 p.m. ET:
- S&P 500 (^GSPC): +2.36% or +69.82 points to 3,024.04
- Dow (^DJI): +2.53% or +643 points to 26,053.22
- Nasdaq (^IXIC): +2.3% or +193.48 points to 8,760.53
- Crude oil (CL=F): +4.94% or +$2.21 to $46.97 a barrel
- Gold (GC=F): +2.02% or +$31.60 to $1,598.30 per ounce
- 10-year Treasury (^TNX): yielding 1.083%, down 4.3 basis points
Beware of investors selling into the gains as markets rally: Strategist
Markets rallied after last week’s ‘ferocious’ slide but investors need to keep an eye on sellers unloading stocks as markets gain steam. Quincy Krosby – Prudential Financial Chief market strategist outlines what’s at stake.
11:09 a.m. ET: Global manufacturing sector contracts by the most in a decade amid coronavirus
The global manufacturing sector contracted by the most since 2009 amid supply chain, trade and demand disruptions due to the coronavirus, according to a joint report from IHS Markit and J.P.Morgan Monday.
The weighted average global purchasing managers’ index (PMI) registered at 47.2 for February, comprising a survey-record contraction in China and stagnant growth, on average, for the rest of the world. Readings below 50 indicate contraction.
In addition to China, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Taiwan, South Korea and Australia registered contracting output in their manufacturing sectors. Meanwhile, the U.S., UK, Canada, Mexico, India and Brazil were some major countries to show output growth.Here’s what Olya Borichevska from Global Economic Research at J.P.Morgan, said about the results of the report:
Here were the main moves in markets, as of 10:52 a.m. ET:
- S&P 500 (^GSPC): +1.14% or +33.62 points to 2,995.10
- Dow (^DJI): +1.67% or +423 points to 25,832.46
- Nasdaq (^IXIC): +1.26% or +108.66 points to 8,676.03
- Crude oil (CL=F): +2.73% or +$1.22 to $45.98 a barrel
- Gold (GC=F): +1.74% or +$27.20 to $1,593.90 per ounce
- 10-year Treasury (^TNX): yielding 1.083%, down 4.3 basis points
—10:26 a.m. ET: Trump slams Federal Reserve for being ‘slow to act’ on ratesEconomists say cuts may come before Fed’s next meeting Over the weekend Goldman Sachs said that they expect the Fed to cut rates by 50 basis-points at the March 18th meeting. Yahoo Finance’s Brian Cheung joins the On the Move panel to discuss.President Donald Trump renewed his attack on Federal Reserve and Fed Chair Jerome Powell in a Twitter post Monday morning, calling the central bank “slow to act” in their decisions to cut rates.
Clusters of disease grew in South Korea, Italy and Iran, and the virus has turned up for the first time in New York, Moscow and Berlin, as well as Latvia, Indonesia, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal, Jordan and Portugal. The worldwide death toll topped 3,000, and the number of cases tops 89,000 in about 70 countries.
Global health officials sought to reassure the public that the virus remains a manageable threat.
“Containment is feasible and must remain the top priority for all countries,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.
Around the world, the crisis reshaped the daily routines of millions of people.
School children in Japan stayed home with schools closed until April. Israelis in quarantine used special booths to vote in national elections. Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel was rebuffed by her interior minister when she extended her hand to greet him. And the United Nations postponed a major conference on women that had been expected to bring up to 12,000 people from its 193 member countries to New York next week.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned that the world economy could contract this quarter for the first time since the international financial crisis more than a decade ago. “Global economic prospects remain subdued and very uncertain,” it said.
Nevertheless, the Dow Jones Industrial Average soared nearly 1,300 points, or 5%, as stocks roared back from a seven-day rout on hopes that central banks will take action to shield the global economy from the effects of the outbreak. Finance ministers and bank leaders from the Group of Seven major industrial countries said they will confer by phone Tuesday to discuss an economic response.
Health officials in Washington state, where a particularly troubling cluster of cases surfaced at a nursing home outside Seattle, said four more people had died from the coronavirus, bringing the number of deaths in the U.S. to six, all in Washington. New cases were also reported in New Hampshire and New York.
In Seattle, King County Executive Dow Constantine declared an emergency and said the county is buying a hotel to be used as a hospital for patients who need to be isolated.
“We have moved to a new stage in the fight,” he said.
Over 100 cases have been confirmed in the U.S. More are likely with thousands of test kits going to state and local labs and new guidelines to expand screening.
“In this situation, the facts defeat fear. Because the reality is reassuring. It is deep-breath time,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.
The message was echoed by global health officials, who said they were encouraged that even in some countries that had taken far less aggressive measures than China’s to contain the spread, the virus remains largely in check.
Because the virus is not transmitted as easily as the flu, “it offers us a glimmer … that this virus can be suppressed and contained,” said Dr. Mike Ryan, the WHO’s emergencies chief.
China in January imposed a virtual lockdown around Hubei’s capital, Wuhan, where the illness was first detected in December and which has been the epicenter of the outbreak. Many countries have canceled or curbed public events and discouraged travel to virus hotspots, but quarantines and similar restrictions have been on smaller scales, focused on those directly exposed.
The worst-hit places outside China were South Korea, Iran and Italy. South Korea on Tuesday reported 477 new cases, bringing its totals to 4,812 with 28 deaths. Most are in the southeastern city of Daegu and neighboring towns.
In Iran, a confidant of Iran’s supreme leader died from the virus. The Islamic Republic confirmed 1,501 cases and 66 deaths, but many believe the true number is larger. Its reported caseload surged more than 250% in just 24 hours.
Italy’s caseload rose to 2,036, including 52 deaths. Officials said it could take up to two weeks before they know whether measures including quarantining 11 towns in northern Italy are slowing the spread of the virus.
Contributing to this report were Josh Funk in Omaha, Nebraska; Chris Grygiel in Seattle, Carley Petesch in Dakar, Senegal; Edith M. Lederer at the United Nations; Matt Sedensky in Bangkok, Dake Kang in Beijing; Aniruddha Ghosal in New Delhi; Kim Tong-Hyung in Seoul, South Korea; Nasser Karimi in Tehran, Iran; Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Thomas Adamson and Lori Hinnant in Paris; Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo; Nicole Winfield and Frances D’Emilio in Rome; Colleen Barry in Milan; and Aron Heller in Jerusalem.
This story has been revised to correct that Indonesia reported its first case Monday, not Malaysia.
The shambolic Democratic primary race has been a blessing for President Trump, who has lampooned the bickersome debates and castigated frontrunner Bernie Sanders as a crazy socialist.
But Trump should be getting nervous. Several things are beginning to work against his reelection odds. Here are three:
Joe Biden’s resurgence. Biden’s convincing win in the South Carolina primary on Feb. 29 didn’t put him in the lead, and he will probably end the primaries with fewer delegates than Sanders. But Biden has shown enough life to remain competitive to the end. This means the moderate Biden could have a strong case for the Democratic nomination if nobody wins a majority of delegates and party insiders determine the nominee at the Democratic convention in July.
The split between Sanders on the left and several more moderate candidates has fragmented the vote so severely that data site fivethirtyeight estimates there’s a 65% chance no candidate wins the majority of delegates needed to clinch the nomination outright. The withdrawal of Pete Buttigieg, Tom Steyer and Amy Klobuchar could marginally help Biden, but he’s probably too far behind Sanders already to reach a majority. The Super Tuesday contests on March 3, when about one-third of all delegates are up for grabs, could clarify the picture. But forecasters expect a split verdict—with Biden and Sanders each winning some states—that will leave the race a muddle.
Trump would obviously prefer to run against Sanders rather than Biden. Mainstream Democrats know this, and think Sanders would lose badly and also possibly give Republicans full control of Congress. The gaffe-prone Biden isn’t a shoo-in to beat Trump, but he has broad appeal and could win over Independents and moderate Republicans who would never vote for Sanders. There’s good reason Trump sought an edge over Biden last year by urging a bogus investigation of him in Ukraine, which ultimately led to Trump’s impeachment. Biden could take him down.
A coronavirus recession. The U.S. economy isn’t contracting yet, and it could well survive the coronavirus epidemic that has caused an abrupt correction in global stock markets. But this also seems to be the most serious economic danger of the Trump presidency, with businesses canceling events everywhere and consumer confidence beginning to drop. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says the global economy “faces its biggest danger since the  financial crisis.” Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, told Yahoo Finance he sees “even odds” of a U.S. recession. “It’s not Trump-friendly,” he said.
Trump is urging the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates, to stimulate the economy. But Zandi and others point out that with rates already historically low, there may not be a lot the Fed can do. “Further monetary stimulus by itself may not be enough to generate a sustained recovery in risky assets,” Capital Economics wrote to clients on March 2.
One problem for Trump is that U.S. economic growth was only around 2% before the onset of the coronavirus. His tariffs and protectionist trade policy have cut into growth and created new vulnerabilities. Trump is historically unpopular, and a solid economy is the only reason some voters support him. If he loses that, his favorability will almost surely drop from the 40s into the 30s and maybe even into the 20s, dooming his reelection odds.
The ACA lawsuit. The Supreme Court said on March 2 it will hear a case about the future of the Obama-era Affordable Care Act, which will determine if the law lives or dies. The Trump administration has sided with a group of Republican-led states arguing that the whole law should be invalidated, because Congress in 2017 repealed the penalty for violating the individual mandate requiring all Americans to have insurance. The legal argument is convoluted, but the bottom line is Trump is on record asking the courts to kill the entire ACA.
That means he would repeal the prohibition on the once-hated practice of insurance companies denying coverage or charging more for preexisting conditions. The ACA forbids that, something most Americans support. Trump is going to have some explaining to do this fall as the Democratic nominee, whoever it is, blasts Trump for threatening the health coverage of 80 million Americans with preexisting conditions.
Trump claims to be “the person who saved Pre-Existing Conditions in your healthcare.” This is an outright lie. Republicans have said they’d pass a new law to restore this provision if the ACA is repealed, but those proposals have loopholes the ACA doesn’t have. Killing the ACA would also eliminate health care coverage for around 20 million Americans who get insurance through one of the ACA’s mechanisms. This is not a winning political stance for Trump.
If there’s good news for Trump, it’s that the Supreme Court won’t hear this case till next fall, meaning there won’t be a decision until 2021. So Trump won’t have to answer for the actual death of the ACA before the November elections. But Democrats will hammer this theme all the same, especially since health care is a top voter concern. Trump has given his opponent a gift, perhaps expecting his Democratic foe to bungle it. In this instance, Trump may be the bungler.
Rick Newman is the author of four books, including “Rebounders: How Winners Pivot from Setback to Success.” Follow him on Twitter: @rickjnewman. Confidential tip line: firstname.lastname@example.org. Encrypted communication available. Click here to get Rick’s stories by email.