Power of 1 highlights challenges for Biden: The Note

Dems are realizing the power of any one of them as a potential deciding vote.

The TAKE with Rick Klein

President Joe Biden surveyed the broad landscape of challenges facing the nation and summed up his strategy rather simply at Thursday's news conference: "One at a time."

The ability to order his priorities was recently disrupted in dramatic fashion. A second mass shooting in a week, provocations from North Korea, a humanitarian crisis at the border and familiar yet newly relevant partisan battles on Capitol Hill are all threatening to impose new realities for Biden and his party.

One is the critical number, though not in the way the president wants it to be. Democrats across the ideological spectrum are realizing the power of any one of them as a potential deciding vote, forcing awkward compromises and backtracks from the White House.

Inside the GOP, the pull of partisanship remains that much more salient so long as Democrats fail to agree with themselves. And there's a singular former president with an outsized role in ideology -- one big endorsement and one big voice still.

"They have to posture for a while," the president said of Republicans on Thursday.

He said the onus will still be on them to come to the table for negotiations on a range of issues. But there isn't one -- at least not yet -- who appears willing to meet him on those terms.

The RUNDOWN with Averi Harper

During his first formal press conference since taking office Thursday, Biden condemned Republican efforts to make it more difficult to vote in states across the country, calling them "un-American," "sick" and compared them to Jim Crow.

"It's sick. Deciding in some states that you cannot bring water to people standing in line waiting to vote? Deciding that you're going to end voting at 5, when working people are just getting off work? Deciding that there will be no absentee ballots under the most rigid circumstances?" said Biden referring, in part, to provisions included in a bill passed Thursday afternoon in Georgia’s legislature and later signed by the governor. "It's all designed."

He reiterated his support for sweeping voting reforms laid out in the "For the People Act" and also agreed that the filibuster is a relic of Jim Crow, but stopped short of saying it should be scrapped.

Biden has repeatedly pledged that his administration would root out institutional racism. If he believes that the filibuster is a relic of the same discriminatory system that he decries, he will have to come up with a better answer as to why he refuses to call for its elimination as the parliamentary procedure in its current form stands to block much of the legislation he's promised to address systemic racism.

The TIP with Alisa Wiersema

November 2024 is still more than three years away, but one early primary state is already beginning to see some high-profile political foot traffic. Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is set to attend two Iowa events on Friday and Florida Sen. Rick Scott is slated to visit next week.

Pompeo's itinerary includes a breakfast with the Westside Conservative Club in Urbandale, followed by a lunch event in Des Moines with the Iowa Bull Moose Club, a Republican group whose members are under 40 years old. The appearances come on the heels of his trip to the emerging battleground of Texas for a conversation with the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank. There, he discussed politically salient topics including U.S.-China relations, as well as the migrant situation at the southern border.

Despite frequently signaling his interest in the 2024 campaign by tweeting a countdown to the November election date, Pompeo still faces the unknown Trump candidacy factor. So far, his former boss has not publicly named the former top diplomat as one of the Republicans whom he considers to be the future of the party.

Meanwhile, the significance of Iowa and New Hampshire -- where Pompeo virtually appears Monday -- in presidential politics is another potential hurdle given calls from across the aisle to elevate the more diverse electorates of Nevada and South Carolina to lead the primary cycle. Although the ongoing debate could create a meta-battle for the top primary spot, current hopefuls are forging ahead with the status quo in mind.


ABC News' "Start Here" podcast. Friday morning's episode features ABC News Chief White House correspondent Cecilia Vega, who tells us about her interaction with President Joe Biden on immigration during his first formal news conference Thursday. ABC News' Ashley Riegle brings us up to speed on a record-breaking sexual assault settlement in the USC gynecologist case. And ABC News Chief Legal Analyst Dan Abrams tells us why one university's plan to require vaccinations for in-person learning could become the standard for other industries. http://apple.co/2HPocUL

FiveThirtyEight's Politics Podcast. On Thursday, we launched our updated pollster ratings here at FiveThirtyEight. While they showed that polls have not become markedly less accurate in recent years, they did have a pretty bad 2020. Our analysis also found that a longtime truism in polling -- that surveys using live callers are more accurate -- is no longer true. Comparing live-caller polls with online surveys, text messaging, automated calls and mixed methods, the former is not systematically likelier to reflect the final result of an election. In this installment of the FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast, editor in chief Nate Silver talks to Galen Druke about why the gold standard of polling has changed and what this means going forward. With the benefit of hindsight, and updated pollster ratings, they also assess how polls performed in 2019 and 2020 in general. https://53eig.ht/3ro2mJy


  • Education Secretary Miguel Cardona appears on ABC's "The View."
  • Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Iowa for a breakfast meeting with the Westside Conservative Club in Urbandale at 7:15 a.m. CT and a lunch at noon CT hosted by the Bull Moose Club of Des Moines, a group of conservatives under 40.
  • Vice President Kamala Harris ceremonially swears in Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra at 9:30 a.m. and then Shalanda Young as the deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget at 9:55 a.m. She travels to Connecticut to hold a listening session at 2:35 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven with Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, Sen. Chris Murphy, and Connecticut leaders on how the American Rescue Plan addresses the issue of child poverty and education. Harris visits the West Haven Child Development Center and delivers remarks at 4:35 p.m. Cardona and Rep. Rosa DeLauro also speak.
  • President Joe Biden and the vice president receive the president's daily brief at 10:20 a.m. The president receives a weekly economic briefing at 2:10 p.m. and participates in a virtual fundraiser for Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms at 3 p.m.
  • The White House COVID-19 Response Team and public health officials hold a briefing at 10:15 a.m.
  • White House press secretary Jen Psaki holds a briefing at 12:30 p.m.
  • Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, leads a congressional delegation to the Carrizo Springs Office of Refugee Resettlement facility for unaccompanied children at the border on Friday and holds a press conference at noon.
  • Republican Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn lead a Senate delegation in a tour of the Texas-Mexico border on Friday.
  • Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-Texas, hosts a delegation of eight members of Congress at the El Paso, Texas, sector of the southern border on Saturday. The delegation meets with non-governmental organization representatives and immigration advocates and visits the El Paso Border Patrol Central Processing Center, an HHS/ORR facility for unaccompanied minors, a migrant shelter and the Paso del Norte Port of Entry. Following the visits, the delegation will brief reporters.
  • The Democratic Party of New Mexico will host a forum for declared candidates to be the Democratic nominee to fill the vacancy in New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District on Sunday at 3 p.m. MT.
  • Sunday on ABC's "This Week": ABC News Chief Washington Correspondent and "This Week" co-anchor Jonathan Karl goes one-on-one exclusively with Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska. Plus, the Powerhouse Roundtable discusses all the week's politics with former Chicago Mayor and ABC News Contributor Rahm Emanuel, Harry Truman Professor of History at Brandeis University and ABC News Contributor Leah Wright Rigueur, host of PBS' Firing Line and CNN Contributor Margaret Hoover and National Review Senior Editor, American Enterprise Institute Fellow and Bloomberg Opinion Columnist Ramesh Ponnuru.
  • 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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