21 thoughts on “United States 2020 presidential election candidates news

  1. By Samantha Storey and Nick Baumann

    Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz likes to frame his story as one of rags to riches, a classic tale.

    “I’m self-made,” said Schultz on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” last month. “I grew up in the projects in Brooklyn, New York. I thought that was the American Dream.”
    Schultz has been publicly weighing a 2020 bid for president, releasing an autobiographical book and launching a media blitz. His Horatio Alger story has been a central part of his publicity tour, using his childhood in the projects as proof of his humble origins and exposure to diversity.
    But academics and residents of those same projects in which Schultz lived, take issue with his using the Bay View Houses to describe his youth as coming from “nothing.”
    HuffPost’s Rebecca Klein was skeptical of Schultz’s narrative and discovered a different kind of projects.
    What was the seed for this story?
    A few months ago I read a book by scholar Richard Rothstein about the history of racist housing policy in America. When Schultz announced he was considering a run for president a few weeks ago, I wondered how his humble origins might play into larger policies. I started doing some digging, and as I suspected, the projects of his childhood were pretty different than the projects of today.
    How did you go about researching his claims?
    I started reaching out to scholars who had studied the history of the New York City Housing Authority as well as people who grew up in the same public housing project as Schultz. The scholars pointed me to census data that provided hard stats about the environment in which Schultz grew up. The residents provided more every day details.
    What was most challenging?
    It was a challenging story to write because nothing Schultz has said is necessarily false. He did grow up in public housing. His family may have been poor. I don’t want to discount his experiences. However, since he is so strongly claiming the projects as formative to his development, I do think it is important to clarify that they were safe, and designed for middle-class families; very different than the projects of today.
    What was most surprising?
    I spoke to a woman named Sheryl Boyce who felt like Schultz had largely abandoned the community. While Schultz has donated a lot of money to a local public school, he has not helped out the public housing project, even as it deteriorates. Boyce said there was some resentment in the community about that.
    Anything you’d like to add?
    Schultz has talked a lot about how he “doesn’t see color,” and cited his upbringing in a diverse housing project as evidence of this. My reporting challenges this narrative — his housing project was overwhelmingly white, and even still, there was a lot of racial tension in the neighborhood.

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  4. By Nick Baumann and Samantha Storey

    Molly Redden and Amanda Terkel’s reporting about Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s mistreatment of staff continues to be controversial. The focus on the senator and 2020 presidential candidate’s employment practices is sexist, some critics say. So on Friday, Terkel published a story responding to that criticism. We asked her about it.

    How did this story come about?

    I had obviously been closely monitoring the reaction to our two Klobuchar scoops. Much of the reaction was positive, and the coverage clearly broke through. But I was really frustrated to see quite a few people — often Democratic women — dismissing our coverage. The criticism that stung the most was that we were sexist. Molly and I have spent years writing about the unfair standards women in politics face, and we’ve also had many stories on toxic men in politics. The people accusing us of sexism weren’t, for the most part, acting in good faith. I wanted a way to respond to the criticism that was more productive than a tweetstorm, and I had been trying to figure out how to write a piece that responded and advanced the story. Eventually, I decided that letting our sources speak for themselves was the best way to do it. Turns out they were just as frustrated as I was!

    What was the hardest part about reporting, writing or editing the piece?

    This piece really was rattling around in my head for a couple of weeks. I wanted to hit back at the critics hard, and effectively, but not come off as petty and angry.

    What has the reaction been like?

    The reaction was fantastic. I had so many people write to me privately to tell me how grateful they were I wrote the piece because they had been just as frustrated and angry at the response to the Klobuchar coverage as I had been. Some of these people were Klobuchar staffers, but some of them were just people in politics who feel the same way that I do — toxic bosses aren’t okay, no matter what their gender is.

    What do you want readers to take away?

    I hope readers do look closely at the coverage of the 2020 election and examine whether the female candidates are being treated differently than the male candidates, based solely on their gender. Sexism obviously still exists, and it should be called out. But every negative story about a female candidate isn’t sexism. I hope that readers look closely and are able to tell the difference.

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