2020 presidential election: Joe Biden advisers smell a conspiracy

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Joe Biden advisers believe coverage of allegations of inappropriate behavior is being stoked by rival Democrats — a dynamic that could actually fire up the vice president at a time when others see success as increasingly improbable.

Why it matters: Several around Biden think advisers to Bernie Sanders are at least partly behind the anti-Biden campaign. One prominent backer thinks Biden will run, and "is ready to kill Bernie."

I got this text last night from a source close to Biden:

  • "VP directed staff this evening to reach out to supporters and donors with a simple message — full steam ahead."

Why you'll hear about this again: A second woman went on the record Monday to say that a past display of affection by Biden had made her feel uncomfortable.

  • Amy Lappos of Connecticut told the Hartford Courant that Biden rubbed noses during a 2009 political fundraiser in Greenwich when he was vice president: "It wasn't sexual, but he did grab me by the head."
  • Biden spokesman Bill Russo blasted "right wing trolls" from "the dark recesses of the internet" for circulating misleading photos of Biden embraces.

Go deeper: 2020 Democrats, establishment figures split over defense of Joe Biden

Additional Stories

Sanders to propose bill wiping student debt of 45M Americans

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders. Photo: Logan Cyrus/AFP/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is set to unveil Monday legislation to eliminate all $1.6 trillion of student debt held in the U.S. and pay for it by raising taxes on Wall Street, the Washington Post first reported.

"This is truly a revolutionary proposal: all Americans will get the college education or job training they need, while having all student debt forgiven. We bailed out Wall Street in 2008. It’s time to tax Wall Street’s greed to help the American people."
— Sanders statement on Twitter

Exclusive: Leaked Trump vetting docs

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Nearly 100 internal Trump transition vetting documents leaked to "Axios on HBO" identify a host of "red flags" about officials who went on to get some of the most powerful jobs in the U.S. government. 

Why it matters: The massive trove, and the story behind it, sheds light on the slap-dash way President Trump filled his cabinet and administration, and foreshadowed future scandals that beset his government.

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