TIME elizabeth warren

Elizabeth Warren Wants You to Run For Office

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) attends the Planned Parenthood Generation Conference opening ceremony and welcome reception at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel on July 8, 2015 in Washington, DC.
Jennifer Graylock—Getty Images Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) attends the Planned Parenthood Generation Conference opening ceremony and welcome reception at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel on July 8, 2015 in Washington, DC.

If you're a progressive, that is

Sen. Elizabeth Warren urged down-ballot candidates and grassroots Democrats to run for office at a gathering of liberals in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, saying that local elections won in 2016 will help build a national progressive movement in future races.

The Massachusetts Democrat spoke at the kickoff of an intensive four-day conference designed to train a deep bench of progressive candidates to run for local office and build a movement of liberal candidates.

“This is about building a movement,” said Warren. “We build real change in this country by putting energy on our side by bringing ideas to the front, by showing people there are choices.”

Activists on the left have long lamented the lack of a strong grassroots movement to help reshape the Democratic Party equivalent to the Tea Party, which helped elect prominent Republicans such as Sens. Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, leading to a swell of GOP victories in 2010 and 2014.

The conference in Washington, organized by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, is intended to train state legislators, state senators and school board members, building up an infrastructure of candidates to eventually match conservatives’ ascent in Congress.

Warren, a standard-bearer for the progressive left who had never run for office before her 2012 Senate campaign, told attendees from states far-ranging as Rhode Island and Minnesota, that they are a central part of the Democratic movement.

“It is so important that we secure victories at the state and local level,” Warren said. “Washington is dysfunctional. We need you to be out there, town by town, county by county, state by state across this nation.”

Warren set out a progressives’ manifesto that received repeated standing ovations.

She called for raising the minimum wage, protecting workers’ bargaining rights, fighting for debt free college and combating racism. “We believe that no one should work full time and still live in poverty,” Warren said. “We believe that black lives matter.”

Warren is much beloved among liberals, who see her as one of the few prominent voices in Congress for the Democratic left. Progressive groups including Democracy for America and MoveOn.org spent months organizing a campaign to encourage Warren to run for president.

Though Warren has declined to run, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont has taken her place as the progressive candidate in the Democratic primary, attracting many of Warren’s grassroots supporters to work for his campaign.

Warren is seen as having a wide-ranging influence on the Democratic primary despite her refusal to run, challenging frontrunner Hillary Clinton to take positions on debt-free college and cabinet appointees.

Some in the audience were running for mayors of a small town, state legislature or considering running for city council. For many, the politics of left and right at the national level have few practical implications for effectively running a small town.

“At this point I’m not espousing far left, progresssive ideas. I just want to get stuff done,” Luke Feeney, who is running for mayor of Chillicothe, a town south of Cleveland, Ohio said before Warren spoke. “If the grass in the park isn’t cut, people won’t get behind the big platform.”

Still, Warren riled up her audience with a long view toward rallying a left movement.

“Victories in 2015 and 2016 are the victores of tomorrow,” she said.

TIME 2016 Election

Hillary Clinton Losing Strength in New National Polling

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Jim Cole—AP Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton listens to questions during a campaign stop on July 28, 2015, in Nashua, N.H.

She is strong against Democratic challengers, but weaker against Republicans

Six weeks after setting her candidacy into high gear, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers are continuing to fall, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday.

Across nearly every key metric, from trustworthiness to caring about voters to leadership, Clinton has seen an erosion in public approval, as likely Republican rivals have erased her leads in the poll. Clinton has a net -11 favorability rating in the poll, with 40% of the American public viewing her positively and 51% negatively, with more than 50% of independents on the negative side.

If the election were held today, Clinton would be tied with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in the poll—down from significant leads in a May 28 survey—but would top the current GOP frontrunner Donald Trump.

The poll, which was conducted amid new reporting on the existence of classified information on Clinton’s private email server, found further declines in Clinton’s perceived trustworthiness, with 57% of Americans now viewing her as neither honest nor trustworthy. And as Clinton has invested heavily in a campaign designed to appeal to Americans who feel left behind in the economic recovery, a majority of Americans now believe Clinton does not care about the needs or problems of people like them. But while the numbers have softened in recent months, Clinton is continued to be viewed as a strong leader by 58% of Americans.

Despite her struggles in general election match-ups, Clinton’s position as a front-runner for the Democratic nomination remains solid with 55 percent of Democrats supporting her—roughly unchanged from a year ago. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ gains, meanwhile, have slowed. The May poll found the avowed socialist’s support spiking from 8% to 15% from a month before; this month he has the backing of 17% of Democrats.

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, meanwhile, has struggled for recognition, with 76% of Americans and 78% of Democrats saying they don’t know enough about him to form an opinion of him. Despite intense campaigning and jabs at Clinton and Sanders, O’Malley only garners the support of 1% of Democrats, unchanged from two months ago.

The poll of 1,644 registered voters has a margin of error of ± 2.4 percentage points and was conducted from July 23-28. The smaller sample of 681 Democrats has a margin of error of ±3.8 percentage points.

TIME Hillary Clinton

The Legal Question Over Hillary Clinton’s Secret Emails

Secretary Hillary Clinton speaks to voters at a town hall meeting in Nashua, New Hampshire, on Tuesday, July 28, 2015.
The Washington Post—The Washington Post/Getty Images Secretary Hillary Clinton speaks to voters at a town hall meeting in Nashua, New Hampshire, on Tuesday, July 28, 2015.

Two key questions: Did she know material was classified and did she act negligently handling it?

Is Hillary Clinton in trouble for having government secrets on her private email server?

Last week, the inspector general for the U.S. intelligence community concluded that some of the emails Clinton and others exchanged on her private server while she was Secretary of State contained classified information.

But the consequences of that revelation were muddied early on by erroneous reports of a request for a criminal inquiry from the Justice Department and by official disagreement over when and whether the information in the emails was actually classified.

Legally, the question is pretty clear-cut. If Clinton knowingly used her private server to handle classified information she could have a problem. But if she didn’t know the material was classified when she sent or received it she’s safe.

There are several laws that make it a criminal offense knowingly to reveal or mishandle classified information. The main one, 18 USC 1924 reads:

Whoever being an officer, employee, contractor, or consultant of the United States, and, by virtue of his office, employment, position, or contract, becomes possessed of documents or materials containing classified information of the United States, knowingly removes such documents or materials without authority and with the intent to retain such documents or materials at an unauthorized location shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

Clinton has explicitly and repeatedly said she didn’t knowingly send or receive any classified information. “The facts are pretty clear,” she said last weekend in Iowa, “I did not send nor receive anything that was classified at the time.” Intelligence Community Inspector General I. Charles McCullough III, disagrees, saying some of the material was in fact classified at the time it was sent. But in his letter last week to Congressional intelligence committee leaders, McCullough reported that, “None of the emails we reviewed had classification or dissemination markings.” And there has been no indication Clinton knew she was sending and receiving anything classified.

The public doesn’t yet know the content of the classified emails, and the State Department and the inspectors general have tens of thousands still to review. If evidence emerges that Clinton knew she was handling secrets on her private server, “She could have a problem,” says William Jeffress, a leading criminal trial lawyer at Baker Botts who has represented government officials in secrecy cases. Barring that, says Jeffress, “there’s no way in the world [prosecutors] could ever make a case” against her.

Clinton also has to worry about government rules for handling secrets. In December 2009, President Obama signed Executive Order 13526, which renewed the long-running rules for classifying information and the penalties for revealing it.

Under that order, agency heads like Clinton are responsible for keeping secrets safe throughout their departments. And all officers of the government can be suspended, fired or have their security clearance revoked if they “knowingly, willfully, or negligently” disclosed secrets or broke the rules in any other way.

Was Clinton negligent in setting up her private email server and communicating with State Department staff exclusively on it? Says Steven Aftergood, a secrecy expert at the Federation of American Scientists, “The material in question was not marked as classified, making it very hard or impossible to show negligence.”

With 16 months until the 2016 presidential election, Clinton’s opponents will certainly try. And with tens of thousands of emails still to be reviewed, they’ll have plenty of material to work with.

TIME Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders Hosts Biggest Organizing Event of 2016 So Far

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks to guests at the Louisiana Rally with Bernie Sanders at Ponchartain Center on July 26, 2015 in Kenner, Louisiana.
Josh Brasted—Getty Images Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks to guests at the Louisiana Rally with Bernie Sanders at Ponchartain Center on July 26, 2015 in Kenner, Louisiana.

Bernie Sanders hosted a massive grassroots organizing event on Wednesday evening that featured simultaneous parties in all 50 states, as the upstart Democratic candidate seeks to mobilize the progressive base of the party.

Sanders appeared at a house party in Southwest Washington, D.C., and made remarks broadcast simultaneously to all the meeting locations in the country, from Alaska to Florida.

“Tonight is a historical night and all of us are making history,” Sanders said at the event, reading his notes from a music stand. “Why are we seeing spontaneous uprisings if you like and meetings in cities and town all over this country? My answer is the American people are saying loudly and clearly, enough is enough.”

During an abbreviated version of his standard stump speech in which the Democratic presidential hopeful pointed to wealth inequality and racial injustice, Sanders also pointed to the massive size of the event he was hosting.

More than 100,000 people had RSVPed to participate in some 3,500 parties in houses, living rooms and coffee shops, Sanders’ campaign said on Wednesday night, making it the biggest online organizing event of the 2016 campaign. The large turnout Wednesday is an important part of Sanders’ plan to build enthusiasm among the Democratic party’s base.

“Bernie Sanders alone as president of these United States is not going to solve all these problems,” Sanders said. “The only way we take on the Koch brothers and take on the billionaire class, and people who have unbelievable money and power, the only we can do that is when we put together a strong grassroots movement of millions and millions of people.”

“And that is what I mean by political revolution, and that is what you are involved in today,” he added, looking into the camera.

The vast number of parties made for an eclectic mix. One screening party held in Asheville, North Carolina, featured three punk rock bands that helped fundraise for Sanders afterward. Another in Texas was called “Brisket and biscuits for Bernie,” in honor of the food that was served. One event was hosted in a town in the Alaskan wilderness of about 1,000 residents. At another party, a guest brought four live chickens.

The tactical purpose of all parties was to create a larger network of grassroots volunteers, who then can reach a greater network of supporters. The Sanders campaign has relied heavily on volunteers due to its thin staff of approximately 50, a little more than one-tenth the size of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. The viewers at the various house parties were asked to volunteer and join a chain of text messages.

“We need you to bring this movement to your community to do unglamorous but essential work,” said Claire Sandberg, a digital organizer for the campaign who addressed the camera after Sanders. “Like knocking on doors, calling voters, voter registration.”

Sanders arrived about 15 minutes before he was due to go live at the part in the Washington apartment, and in the middle of the crowded foyer spent several minutes working through his handwritten speech notes on a clipboard. (His campaign notes that Sanders writes all his own speeches.)

He joked with his introducer when he accidentally mixed up their papers. “Somebody has the brains here, and it’s not me,” Sanders said. He laughed when one partygoer wearing a beard and a colorful shirt shouted to Sanders, “Can I get you a tie-dye?”

Many of the attendees were Sanders volunteers enthusiastic about the candidate’s message. “You hear the word and you’re like, ‘I’m in,'” said Jon Culver, a 29-year-old who works at a tech startup in Seattle. “The crazy distribution of wealth, income inequality, those are big ones for me. He’s very progressive he’s all for women’s rights and good family values. He’s solid.”

The day of Hillary Clinton’s kickoff rally in early June, the campaign held an online organizing event that included around 650 parties across the country, about one-fifth of the number of events Sanders’ campaign has organized.

The Sanders event’s sheer size is a mark of the grassroots progressive enthusiasm for the liberal Vermont senator, who has repeatedly turned out crowds upwards of 10,000 people, larger than any other campaign.

Sanders has repeatedly emphasized building a large movement in favor of a slew of progressive ideas over his winning the Democratic nomination. He is trailing far behind Hillary Clinton in national polls, with 22% favorability among voters compared with 57% for Clinton.

At the end of the event, the party’s host, Manisha Sharma, a financial services regulatory attorney, gave Sanders a blown-up photo of Mahatma Gandhi with a cleverly selected quote.

Sanders read it: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, and then you win,'” he read. “Maybe that is what this campaign is about.”

TIME Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton to Call for Lifting Cuba Embargo

Hillary Clinton Brings Her Presidential Campaign Back To Iowa
Scott Olson—Getty Images Democratic presidential hopeful and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks to guests gathered for a house party on July 26, 2015 in Carroll, Iowa.

Hillary Clinton will declare her support on Friday for lifting the U.S. embargo on Cuba, her campaign said, allying herself with President Obama’s open stance toward the long-isolated island nation.

Speaking at Florida International University Friday morning, Clinton will also criticize Republicans’ opposition to normalizing relations with the country, saying that the right’s arguments against increased engagement are part of a legacy of failed strategies for addressing Cuban relations.

“She will highlight that Republican arguments against increased engagement are part of failed policies of the past and contend that we must look to the future in order to advance a core set of values and interests to engage with Cubans and address human rights abuses,” the Clinton campaign said in a statement.

Clinton will hold her speech in the state that Republican presidential candidates Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio call home. Bush, the former governor, has called Obama’s opening relations with Cuba a “policy misstep” and a “dramatic overreach of his executive authority.” Rubio, who is the son of Cuban immigrants, has also strongly criticized Obama, calling the decision “a terrible one, but not surprising unfortunately.”

The United States has maintained various embargoes on Cuba since 1960, and continues to block trade with the country despite having opened up diplomatic relations with the island nation. Republican Rep. Tom Emmer filed a bill on Tuesday to remove the restrictions on American businesses from trading with Cuba.

Clinton has long supported normalizing relations with Cuba, and as secretary of state pushed Obama to normalize relations with the Communist nation. A February Gallup poll showed that 59% of Americans support reestablishing diplomatic relations with Cuba.

TIME Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton Calls Planned Parenthood Video ‘Disturbing’

Secretary Hillary Clinton speaks to journalists after a town hall meeting in Nashua, New Hampshire, on July 28, 2015.
Melina Mara—The Washington Post/Getty Images Secretary Hillary Clinton speaks to journalists after a town hall meeting in Nashua, New Hampshire, on July 28, 2015.

Hillary Clinton on Tuesday called the undercover videos of a Planned Parenthood official discussing aborted fetal tissue “disturbing,” though she defended the women’s health organization in an interview with the New Hampshire Union Leader.

“I have seen pictures from them and obviously find them disturbing,” the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination said in an interview with the newspaper.

“Planned Parenthood is answering questions and will continue to answer questions. I think there are two points to make,” Clinton said. “One, Planned Parenthood for more than a century has done a lot of really good work for women: cancer screenings, family planning, all kinds of health services. And this raises not questions about Planned Parenthood so much as it raises questions about the whole process, that is, not just involving Planned Parenthood, but many institutions in our country.”

The Center for Medical Progress released videos this month showing a Planned Parenthood official discussing fetal tissue extraction and reimbursements for clinic costs. Republicans have alleged Planned Parenthood is illegally selling fetal parts and have called for a public defunding of the health service. Planned Parenthood says it received reimbursement legally and only to cover minor expenses.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is among the Republican presidential candidates seeking to make this a 2016 issue as well. “I call upon mainstream reporters to ask Hillary Clinton if she supports Planned Parenthood’s sale of body parts in direct violation of federal criminal law,” he said, according to Politico.

[Union Leader]

TIME Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton Threads the Needle on Keystone Pipeline

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Jim Cole—AP Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton listens to questions during a campaign stop on July 28, 2015, in Nashua, N.H.

She's avoided taking a stance on a hugely symbolic issue, but many environmentalists aren't upset

When an assertive New Hampshire voter asked about the Keystone Pipeline, he gave Hillary Clinton exactly two options.

“As president, would you sign a bill—yes or no, please—in favor of allowing the Keystone XL pipeline,” said the man in the audience at a town hall in Nashua on Tuesday.

Clinton declined to choose either. “This is President Obama’s decision,” she said, citing the White House’s ongoing review of the most controversial oil pipeline in recent years. “If it’s undecided when I become president, I will answer your question.”

Clinton has repeatedly refused this week to take a stand on the controversial Keystone pipeline, saying that she will not comment on a decision the White House still must make. It’s a notable elision because many environmentalists have spent the last few years calling opposition to the pipeline a litmus test for seriousness about fighting climate change.

But despite her hedging, Clinton has won initial approval for her climate change plans from key figures in the environmental movement, including billionaire climate activist Tom Steyer, the Sierra Club and a variety of activists and politicians in the early primary states. Many activists expect President Obama to decide the issue in the coming months, which would make it a moot point in the 2016 race.

Clinton has seized on an ambivalence on the left over Keystone XL’s importance in the 2016 presidential race.

“From our perspective, it’s not problematic,” Michael Brune, executive director the Sierra Club said in an interview of Clinton’s refusal to take a position. “The decision on Keystone will be made long before the election. For the 2016 presidential candidates, their stance on Keystone is only symbolic.”

Among environmental groups, stopping the Keystone pipeline has been a major symbol of the fight to slow fossil fuel extraction. But the pipeline’s importance has faded recently as the Obama administration has set strict regulations on coal-fired power plants and increased fuel standards on cars and trucks. While they still hope to stop Keystone, climate activists now are more likely to talk about the need for the next president to rapidly expand renewable energy, put a moratorium on oil drilling in the Arctic and cut back on fracking.

Keystone, some say, is not a make-or-break climate issue.

“Basically, we’d trade Keystone for a price on carbon or other important policies,” said Robert Cowin, director of government affairs at the Union of Concerned Scientists, a non-profit science advocacy group, speaking figuratively about the broader importance of other legislative approaches to combatting climate change.

Clinton’s position on climate change seems to have hit a delicate balance between satisfying environmental activists and avoiding the anger of moderates and businesses interests who support Keystone. One way she’s done that is by changing the subject from Keystone to other climate change flashpoints.

“To signal that there is only one overriding threat really doesn’t take into account the seriousness of a whole range of issues,” Clinton said Tuesday. “That’s why I’m coming out with a comprehensive clean energy plan.”

“China is building coal-fired power plants, at least one or two every week to meet demands,” she added. “We have dozens of pipelines already crossing our border from Canada, so we have to look at all of this.”

As Secretary of State in 2010, Clinton said she was “inclined” to support Keystone. Her husband, President Bill Clinton, called in 2012 for embracing the pipeline, and Clinton recently hired former Keystone lobbyists Jeff Berman as a consultant to her campaign, though he will not be a policy advisor.

At least one of Clinton’s closest advisors opposes the pipeline. John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chairman, notably recused himself during his time in the Obama Administration in 2013 from advising on Keystone XL policy because he was a staunch opponent of the project.

Podesta is now advising Clinton on a full range of climate issues, a Clinton campaign official told TIME.

Keystone has long been a rallying call for environmental activists who saw it as a critical last stand in the face of congressional inaction against climate change. Large protests began gathering regularly outside the White House beginning four years ago, with a stream of activists arriving in red traffic vests and polar bear costumes. The virulent opposition took an almost apocalyptic tone: the prominent NASA scientist James Hansen said in June 2011 the pipeline was “game over” for the fight against climate change.

As the climate fight is waged on other fronts, like the federal courts and with the White House’s limits on carbon emissions, Keystone has lost some of its dire urgency for environmentalists compared with four years ago.

Moreover, some evidence shows the actual emissions from the pipeline may not be significant. A State Department review showed in January 2014 the pipeline would deliver 830,000 barrels of oil per day from the Canadian tar sands, or an extra 1.3 million to 27.4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere each year.

However, because Canadian companies would almost certainly extract the oil anyway, the State Department review also said Keystone XL would likely not have a major effect on the removal of fossil fuels from the ground. Keystone is “unlikely to significantly impact the rate of extraction in the oil sands or the continued demand for heavy crude oil at refineries in the United States,” the department said.

A more recent Environmental Protection Agency letter to the State Department disagreed, however, arguing that the 1,179-mile pipeline would increase oil production by making it cheaper to transport.

Clinton has proposed expanding the United States’ reliance on clean energy dramatically by 2027, moving a third of U.S. energy to renewable sources within ten years of taking office and increasing the amount of solar capacity 700% by 2020. She would extend tax incentives for renewable and give grants to states that adopted clean energy measures.

By not opposing Keystone and giving few details about restricting the fossil fuel industry, Clinton has also avoided scrutiny from businesses and oil companies.

“It’s obvious what Clinton’s thinking is: she’ll be better than any Republican elected, probably by a mile. She simply expects environmentalists to fall in line,” said Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the University of Virginia. “And she wants to keep her business sector happy.”

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley have both criticized Clinton for not taking a stance on Keystone XL. “It is hard for me to understand how one can be concerned about climate change but not vigorously oppose the Keystone pipeline,” Sanders said in a statement. O’Malley has vigorously opposed the pipeline and called for 100% reliance on renewable energy by 2050.

Clinton’s punt on Keystone is not the first time a Democratic candidate has avoided the issue. Four years ago, President Obama announced he was subjecting the pipeline to an Administration review, effectively delaying a decision until after the 2012 election.

Still, for some, Keystone remains a barometer of Clinton’s conviction on climate change.

“Keystone is also a proxy for other questions about extreme energy: Will she stand up to the fossil fuel industry on opening the arctic to oil exploration,” Bill McKibben, a prominent climate change activist said in an email. “What about offshore drilling? Continued leases of coal in the powder river basin?”

“These are things a president gets to decide, so we need to know what she thinks,” McKibben said.

TIME 2016 Election

Hillary Clinton Pledges to Install 500 Million Solar Panels if Voted President

“We are on the cusp of a new era”

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Sunday made tackling climate change one of her key goals were she to enter the White House, pledging to have more than half a billion solar panels installed nationwide by the end of her first term in office.

Clinton also called for a major increase in other renewable-energy sources, saying she wants every U.S. home to be powered by clean energy within a decade, reports Reuters.

“I want more wind, more solar, more advanced biofuels, more energy efficiency,” she said at a weekend rally in Iowa. “And I’ve got to tell you, people who argue against this are just not paying attention.”

The two goals were unveiled in a video posted to Clinton’s campaign website Sunday, and are part of a comprehensive agenda on climate change that will be laid out over the next few months.

“We are on the cusp of a new era,” she said in the campaign video. “We can have more choice in the energy we consume and produce.”

According to the former Secretary of State’s campaign, her climate-change agenda will increase output of solar energy by 700% by the end of the decade.

On Monday, the presidential candidate will explain her clean energy plan in more detail at a tour of an energy-efficient transit station in Des Moines, Iowa.


TIME 2016 Election

Dispute Continues Over Hillary Clinton Testifying Before Benghazi Panel

Clinton's spokesman said there was a deal, but the committee's representative said no agreement had been reached

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the House Benghazi Committee remain at loggerheads over the conditions under which she would testify before the committee, probing the killing of four Americans in the September 2012 attack in Libya.

Clinton campaign spokesman Nick Merrill announced Saturday that Clinton had agreed to testify before the committee in a public hearing in October, but the committee’s communications director, Jamal Ware, said no agreement had in fact been reached.

“Earlier this week we were pleased for Secretary Clinton to receive an offer from Congressman Gowdy to appear before the committee in a public hearing in October, and yesterday accepted his invitation,” Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill said in a statement.

“Secretary Clinton’s campaign may want to reach out to her lawyer, Mr. David Kendall, with whom the Committee has had ongoing conversations,” Ware said. “As of last night, Mr. Kendall was still negotiating conditions for her appearance.”

According to Ware, Kendall had two conditions for Clinton testify: that the questions be limited in scope to the Benghazi committee’s jurisdiction, and that the date remain firm despite the State Department’s alleged slow production of documents to the committee.

In recent months the committee has expanded its purview into investigating Clinton’s use of a private email server rather than a government email account. On Friday, a pair of inspectors general announced that they had found messages containing classified information among the 30,000 emails Clinton has turned over from the server, contrary to Clinton’s assertion in March. The inspector general for the intelligence community also notified the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the possible compromise of classified information being kept outside of government control, in reference to Clinton’s private server.

Ware said the committee believes that the email issue is well within its purview.

“Her email arrangement clearly falls within the scope of the Select Committee’s jurisdiction, which is charged by the House under the Resolution to look at Executive Branch efforts to comply with congressional oversight as well as the administration’s response in the aftermath of the tragic attacks in Benghazi,” he said.

A public hearing would mark a small victory for Clinton, who has pushed to testify in public, despite committee chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy’s hopes for her to testify in a classified setting.


#BlackLivesMatter: Liberal Activists Shift 2016 Endorsement Rules

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI—AFP/Getty Images People gather at the Confederate Museum during a protest in Charleston, South Carolina on June 20, 2015.

A liberal activist group changes its 2016 endorsement process after a #BlackLivesMatter protest

Democracy for America, a progressive grassroots network, will change its candidate endorsement process in response to a Black Lives Matter protest in Phoenix last weekend.

After a racial justice protest halted a meeting with Democratic presidential candidates on Saturday, the one-million-member network will now include candidates’ proposals for addressing racism among the central criteria for DFA’s endorsements, according to an advance copy of the announcement obtained by TIME.

The criteria apply to candidates from local elections to the presidential level.

Additionally, in its questions of candidates in local races, DFA will ask how candidates will support the Movement for Black Lives and confront racism and our “culture of white supremacy,” according to the DFA announcement.

“We want the candidates we endorse to not only say that #BlackLivesMatter, we want these candidates to know that progressives—including those in organizations with largely white memberships and staff like DFA—expect them to stand up to, name, and address systemic racism as fundamental and foundational to the movement to end income inequality,” wrote Charles Chamberlain, DFA’s executive director, in a note likely to appear on the group’s website next week.

DFA represents an important bloc of activist progressive voters, many of whom give small-dollar donations to candidates, canvass and make telephone calls before the elections. Founded by Howard Dean in 2004, the group can be a barometer of Democratic enthusiasm and has played an important role in mobilizing liberal voters in recent elections.

DFA is weighing endorsing a Democratic candidate in the primary but has not yet committed to throwing its support behind a candidate before the general election. Its new rules may have the greatest impact on state and congressional races.

The group’s change to its endorsement process follows a protest at Netroots Nation, the largest gathering of progressives in the country, where a few dozen Black Lives Matter activists interrupted a town hall meeting featuring Democratic presidential candidates Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders.

The protest flummoxed the candidates and left them scrambling over the following days to address racism. O’Malley and Sanders have all since said “Black lives matter” and sought to address systemic racism, as has Hillary Clinton, who did not attend the event.

The new approach announced by DFA marks a significant shift for one of the country’s largest progressive activist networks and reflects the influence the Black Lives Matter movement is having on the presidential race.

“At Netroots Nation, #BlackLivesMatter leaders called on all of us to use our power to respond to the current state of emergency,” said Chamberlain. “Democracy for America is ready to heed that call to action and make sure it has real electoral consequences in 2016 and beyond.”

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