The Note: Early veepstakes buzz gets ahead of Biden campaign

There has been open lobbying for and against potential running mates.

The TAKE with Rick Klein

This is the week that Joe Biden will name his vice-presidential selection committee.

Unofficial chatter, though, is well ahead of any official launch. Veepstakes buzz has become unusually public, with open lobbying for and against potential running mates -- and the chatty candidate himself contributing to the name game in ways that might be hard to rein in later.

The women on Biden’s short list are being featured on his new podcast and in campaign events, including with a COVID-19 town hall Monday, featuring Sen. Kamala Harris and Rep. Marcia Fudge.

Stacey Abrams is giving a wide range of interviews where she is touting her own qualifications. Perhaps just as consequentially, she is speaking about how important it is to have a woman of color on the ticket -- even as prominent black male leaders are making individual preferences known.

There’s a push to make sure Latinas make the short list. Then there’s the left, with progressives wanting one of their own running with Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren among those saying flatly that she’d accept the position and discussion of Harris drawing particular scrutiny.

Biden has been able to unify his party with unusual speed owing in part to accidents of timing. He happened to wrap up the nomination at the same time a national emergency set in -- ceding the spotlight to a uniquely polarizing president.

Now, the Biden camp hopes to reset around perhaps the most consequential decision that faces any general-election candidate. The candidate will be sending signals and ultimately making a choice that will be bound to disappoint some inside the Democratic Party.

The RUNDOWN with MaryAlice Parks

On ABC’s “This Week” Sunday, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer reminded Americans of one simple fact: whether he likes it or not, whether he believes he is being serious or sarcastic when the president talks people listen.

“I want to say, unequivocally, no one should be using disinfectants digested to fight COVID-19. Please don't do it. Just don't do it,” Whitmer said responding to the president’s comments earlier in the week hypothesizing about potential wacky treatments without cause or consideration of facts.

President Donald Trump responded to backlash over the remarks on Friday saying that he was being sarcastic.

Both governors -- Whitmer, a Democrat, and Larry Hogan, Republican of Maryland, said Sunday their state health services had seen an uptick in inquiries on whether ingesting disinfectant materials could treat coronavirus. An absolutely terrifying reality that related to the president's comments.

“We had hundreds of calls come in to our emergency hotline at our health department asking if it was -- if it was right to ingest Clorox or, you know, alcohol cleaning products, whether that was going to help them fight the virus. So, we had to put out that warning to make sure that people were not doing something like that which would kill people,” said Hogan.

Since the beginning of the outbreak the relationship between states and the federal government has been marred and unstable, in no small part because of a larger issue exemplified here: that it is hard to know what information from the president and his White House can be trusted and when.

The TIP with Adam Kelsey and Kendall Karson

When Bernie Sanders announced the suspension of his presidential campaign earlier this month, he raised some eyebrows by asserting he'd remain on forthcoming primary ballots and continue to amass delegates -- what some viewed as a play for platform or committee sway at this summer's Democratic National Convention.

But as Sanders’ supporters seek to maintain his influence, New York state elections officials are expected to take up a vote Monday on whether to remove the senator’s name from the ballot from its June primary ballot. Only two votes from the two Democrats on the New York State Board of Elections are needed to give Sanders the boot, a move that would virtually cancel the contest, deny him any portion of the state's 274 delegates, and continue to rile up his already frustrated liberal base.

What's left of the official Sanders campaign apparatus has been silent on the issue, a frustration for some progressive activists eager to keep up the (symbolic) fight who have spoken to ABC News, but reflective of the senator's balancing act in which he must appease the party in order to maintain an ability to attempt to reform it.

That leaves outside forces to take the lead. Most notably, Our Revolution, the nonprofit spun-off from Sanders' 2016 campaign, which already circulated a petition and began working Sunday with volunteers to phonebank and text New York state officials to lobby for the senator's name to remain.


ABC News' "Start Here" Podcast. Monday morning’s episode features ABC News Chief National correspondent Matt Gutman, who tells us about tensions between local and state governments over how to reopen their economies. Then, ABC News’ Liz Alesse previews the new phase of Paycheck Protection Program lending, which reopens for small businesses Monday. And, ABC News Senior Editorial producer John Santucci examines President Donald Trump’s approach to daily press briefings in the wake of his comments about cleaning products.


  • Former Vice President Joe Biden will hold a virtual town hall with Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., at 3:30 p.m. He then participates in a virtual Biden for President finance event at TBD.
  • President Donald Trump participates in a Governors’ video teleconference on COVID-19 response and economic revival at 2 p.m. He then meets with industry executives on COVID-19 response at 4 p.m.
  • Members of the Coronavirus Task Force hold a press briefing at the White House at 5 p.m.
  • Download the ABC News app and select "The Note" as an item of interest to receive the day's sharpest political analysis.

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