The Note: Trump tempts Democrats to meet outrage with action

PHOTO: President Donald Trump tours his Made In America product showcase at the White House July 15, 2019 in Washington.PlayChip Somodevilla/Getty Images
WATCH Democrats defend 4 congresswomen after Trump's tweets

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"Many people agree with me."

With those words, uttered in response to a question about whether it bothered him that white nationalists celebrated his tweet suggesting certain members of Congress "go back" to their native countries, President Donald Trump solidified yet another moment of outrage around his presidency.

PHOTO: President Donald Trump tours his Made In America product showcase at the White House July 15, 2019 in Washington. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
President Donald Trump tours his 'Made In America' product showcase at the White House July 15, 2019 in Washington.

The familiar pattern: a jaw-dropping Trump tweet, Democratic denunciations and then stern, if belated, statements from a smattering of Republicans, led by those up for reelection soonest.

Elements of the president's political base rejoiced, many shrugged and the president dug in.

It poses a familiar question for Democrats: What should or could be done about it?

Democrats will have opportunities to act -- or choose not to -- in the days to come. One House Democrat is vowing to force his colleagues to vote on impeachment this month, with Tom Steyer's entry into the presidential field putting that conversation squarely onto the campaign trail.

Meanwhile, Trump's words and what they represent don't stand for themselves. Horrid conditions at migrant detention centers, ICE raids and tighter asylum rules are just the latest Trump administration policies that deserve scrutiny.

One of the members of Congress targeted by the president this week urged a response shaped around policy.

"Do not take the bait," said Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., at a news conference Monday.

Just moments later, another one of those House members, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., suggested a slightly different definition of bait: "It's time for us to impeach this president."

The RUNDOWN with MaryAlice Parks

Campaigns this week are bracing for the final list from the Democratic National Committee of the candidates who have qualified for the second round of debates later this month. The announcement is expected Wednesday.

In order to qualify for the debates at the end of July, candidates must have earned at least 1% support in three separate national or early-state polls conducted from Jan. 1 to two weeks before the given debate, or received donations from at least 65,000 people across 20 different states, with a minimum of 200 unique donors per state. The last day to qualify is Tuesday.

PHOTO: 2020 democratic presidential candidates participate in the second night of the first 2020 democratic presidential debate at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami, June 27, 2019. Mike Segar/Reuters, FILE
2020 democratic presidential candidates participate in the second night of the first 2020 democratic presidential debate at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami, June 27, 2019.

The number of debate participants has been capped at 20 by the DNC, meaning the committee will use a formula combining both polling and donations to determine the top 20 candidates in the race, should more than 20 qualify.

Based on an analysis by ABC News, 14 of the 25 candidates have met both the polling and grassroots fundraising thresholds. Of the remaining 11, six have qualified based on polling only, including: Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan.

Candidates have been told that participating in debates that are not sanctioned by the party will disqualify them from joining in future debates, but the party continues to face pressure from some stakeholders to broaden its approach and perhaps green-light, or at least not penalize for, a debate just on climate change down the road.

The TIP with Soo Rin Kim

As top-tier candidates set a high bar on fundraising with some large hauls, some toward the bottom of the table are struggling to make ends meet, raising the question of how much longer their long shot campaigns can last.

Several candidates, including former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and author Marianne Williamson reported spending more than they raised in the second quarter of this year, according the latest campaign filings, while former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro spent 84% of what he raised. Williamson, in particular, only had $549,000 of cash on hand by the end of June and owed $302,000 to various vendors.

With more than six months to go until anyone even votes, now is the time to be stocking up the war chest -- not blazing through it.

Some candidates are managing to keep their wallets full in their own ways. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., too, spent nearly double the $2.3 million she raised this quarter, but still has more than $8 million in her pocket with help from a big transfer from her Senate campaign fund from last quarter.

Former Rep. John Delaney, D-Md., had the worst burn rate this cycle, spending more than $2 million despite raising just over $284,000. The onetime congressman secured more than $7.4 million in his fund by the end of this quarter thanks to the $7 million loan from himself dropped just two days before close of books.

THE PLAYLIST

ABC News' "Start Here" podcast. Tuesday morning's episode features ABC News senior White House correspondent Cecilia Vega, who is tracking the response to Trump's tweets attacking Democratic congresswomen of color. "They don't want to touch this with a 10-foot pole," Vega says of lawmakers in Trump's own party.http://apple.co/2HPocUL

ABC News' "The Investigation" podcast. In this episode of The Investigation, presidential candidate and U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., talks about why he's ratcheting up calls for Trump's impeachment, even though it continues to be a contentious topic with colleagues in the House and fellow 2020 contenders. Later the ABC News team forecasts what to expect from Mueller's testimony and analyzes the political roadblocks facing congressional democrats who want to launch impeachment proceedings against Trump. https://bit.ly/2FMgHe3

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TODAY

  • President Donald Trump will begin his Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. with a Cabinet meeting. At 12:45 p.m., he'll have lunch with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
  • It's the last day to qualify for the second round of Democratic primary debates, taking place July 30-31.
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., participates in a Networking Breakfast and Washington Post live one-on-one interview series at the Washington Post Live Center in Washington.
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden will have a community event in Manning, Iowa, a rural health care event in Le Mar, Iowa, and another community event in Sioux City, Iowa.
  • Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., is set to deliver a speech on priorities on her first 100 days as President at the National Press Club in Washington.
  • Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper visits Dartmouth College and then hosts a Meet and Greet in Laconia, N.H.
  • Sen. Michael Bennet, D -Colo., participates in a Roundtable & Healthcare Conversation with Local Labor Leaders in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and then attends a Climate Conversation in Hiawatha, Iowa.
  • Former U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro holds a "Fight for $15 Rally" in Davenport, Iowa. He then takes part in the AARP and The Des Moines Register Forum at the Quad-Cities Waterfront Convention Center in Bettendorf, Iowa at 3 p.m. CDT and lastly, participates in a Meet and Greet in Davenport, Iowa.
  • Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., participates in a Women of Color roundtable in Davenport, Iowa. She then takes part in the AARP and The Des Moines Register Forum at the Quad-Cities Waterfront Convention Center in Bettendorf, Iowa, at 3:30 p.m. CDT.
  • Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., Participates in AARP and The Des Moines Register Presidential Primary Candidate Forum Event in Bettendorf, Iowa. The event will be live streamed by The Des Moines Register.
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