The Note: Ascendant left drives outcomes -- and backlash

Now Democrats are pondering where they will be taken next.

The TAKE with Rick Klein

The young and ascendant left announced its arrival in a few splashy ways this week. Now Democrats are pondering where they will be taken next.

In forcing the about-face, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez helped beat out the rivalry-turned-partnership of two Democratic titans from their shared home state: Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The "Green New Deal" that she and other progressives introduced has become an early marking point for 2020 conversations and a point of mockery from Republicans. It is due for a vote in the Senate, though as a wedge Republicans hope to use against Democrats, not the other way around.

The new Economist cover highlights "The Rise of Millennial Socialism," in both America and Europe, using a label that not all who are leading the movement would quickly reject.

Someone else who might welcome such branding? Trump.

The RUNDOWN with MaryAlice Parks

Washington might have finished the paperwork to avoid another partial government shutdown, but Trump on Thursday made sure that the debate about a border wall was far from over.

By vowing to use executive action, including the possibility of declaring a national emergency, Trump guaranteed the conversations around security, immigration and law enforcement will rage on well into this year and likely into 2020. Worth noting, as Democrats vow to look into the legality around some of his proposed moves, the president did not guarantee more structures necessarily will be built.

With this move, Trump is looking to test the limits of executive power and challenge the fact that the founding fathers explicitly gave Congress, not the president, the power of the purse.

Previous presidents, including President Barack Obama, have pushed boundaries before, of course. Just ask some of the many Republicans still in office about how much they disapproved then.

The TIP with Adam Kelsey

The Democratic National Committee announced Thursday its polling and fundraising thresholds for its first two presidential debates, capping the field at 20 participants who earn at least 1 percent in three polls or receive donations from at least 65,000 unique donors across 20 states.

The latter criteria would seem to vindicate some of the race's first entrants, including below-the-radar candidates like former Maryland Rep. John Delaney and entrepreneur Andrew Yang, who have each been in the race since 2017 and received some mockery for their early bids.

While the polling threshold requires the 1 percent be acquired in surveys taken in 2019, the start date on attracting donors is simply the launch of one's campaign or exploratory committee, giving Delaney and Yang a year-plus headstart on making the debate stage.

But on the flipside, the requirement may now force the hands of potential candidates who have thus far avoided the early rush. For someone like Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, who reportedly wants to wait for the end of the state's legislative session in May to get in the race, it would take a fast and furious effort to corral donors with just a month to spare.


The judge who earlier this week ruled that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was in breach of his plea agreement is no stranger to special counsel cases -- she has presided over matters related to six of them. Get to know Judge Amy Berman Jackson.


ABC News' "Start Here" Podcast. Friday morning’s episode features ABC News Senior National Correspondent Terry Moran and ABC News Senior Congressional Correspondent Mary Bruce as they analyze Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency in order to obtain border wall funding. Then, ABC News Senior Washington reporter Devin Dwyer explains why some Americans are seeing less money in their tax refunds this year.

FiveThirtyEight’s "Politics Podcast." ABC News’ partner FiveThirtyEight reacts to the news that Trump plans to sign a bipartisan budget deal and declare a national emergency to build a wall at the southern border. Vox Senior Correspondent Dara Lind also joins the podcast to discuss the contours of the border security deal Trump plans to sign.


  • President Donald Trump delivers remarks on the national security and humanitarian crisis on our southern border at 10 a.m. and later heads to Mar-a-Lago for the weekend.
  • Texas Rep. Will Hurd will appear on ABC’s "The View" at 11 a.m.
  • New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand heads to New Hampshire this weekend, the first-in-the-nation primary state, to meet with voters across the state. The Democratic candidate will also participate in an event with LGBTQ individuals at New Hampshire’s "Rainbow City" in Somersworth before headlining a town hall at Dartmouth College.
  • New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana, will also be in New Hampshire on Saturday, and both are expected to crisscross the state. Booker also holds a "Sunday Funday" with the New Hampshire Democrats on Sunday evening.
  • California Sen. Kamala Harris is set to hold town hall meetings this weekend during a campaign swing through South Carolina, with stops in Charleston and Columbia.
  • Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren continues her campaign swing through several early voting states, traveling to South Carolina and Georgia on Saturday and Nevada on Sunday. After announcing her official candidacy last weekend, Warren holds several events as part of her seven-state organizing tour.
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden delivers remarks at the 2019 Munich Security Conference in Germany on Saturday. He will travel along with members of the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement to outline his view of the United States’ role on the world stage. Vice President Mike Pence is also expected to address the conference during his trip to Europe.
  • Potential 2020 candidate and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke travels to Wisconsin for a discussion and Q&A with students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
  • Former Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams participates in a discussion on race and political power in the U.S. at the Brookings Institution in Washington on Friday, and later delivers a speech at the Democratic National Committee’s Winter Meeting.
  • Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld joins "Politics & Eggs" at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics Friday.
  • Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, California Rep. Eric Swalwell and former Maryland Rep. John Delaney attend the Monroe County spaghetti dinner in Iowa on Sunday. This will be Klobuchar’s first appearance in Iowa since announcing her presidential campaign last weekend.
  • Sunday on "This Week": The Powerhouse Roundtable debates the week in politics, with ABC News Political Analyst Matthew Dowd, TIME National Political Correspondent Molly Ball, Washington Examiner Chief Congressional Correspondent Susan Ferrechio, and Vice News Washington Bureau Chief Shawna Thomas.
  • The Note is a daily ABC News feature that highlights the key political moments of the day ahead. Please check back Monday for the latest.