Former president expect to make case “democracy itself is on the line” Democrats formally nominate Joe Biden for president Senate report lays bare Trump campaign’s Russia links US recorded 43,226 new coronavirus cases and 1,349 new deaths Sign up to our First Thing newsletter 12.53pm BST Julian Borger in Washington has a story for us
- Former president expect to make case “democracy itself is on the line”
- Democrats formally nominate Joe Biden for president
- Senate report lays bare Trump campaign’s Russia links
- US recorded 43,226 new coronavirus cases and 1,349 new deaths
- Sign up to our First Thing newsletter
Julian Borger in Washington has a story for us this morning about US secretary of state Mike Pompeo being pressed by Congressional Democrats over claims China is helping build a Saudi uranium facility. US officials suspect a mill for producing yellowcake – refined uranium ore – is being built by Chinese technicians in the desert near Al-Ula.
The three Democrats – Joaquin Castro, Ami Bera, and Theodore Deutch – asked Pompeo to provide answers to questions on whether the US had registered its concerns with Saudi Arabia and China about the alleged yellowcake factory, and whether the state department was taking steps to prevent Saudi Arabia moving on to other steps further up the chain towards producing fissile material. They also wanted to know whether the US was supporting the International Atomic Energy Agency in trying to persuade Saudi Arabia to accept a comprehensive safeguards agreement that would involve substantial monitoring and inspections.
“At the very minimum, you would expect the administration would speak out and have an opinion on these things, and do what it can to stop a country breaking out with nuclear weapons,” Castro told the Guardian.
It’s not just Barack Obama whose speech is keenly anticipated today – Kamala Harris will be delivering the biggest speech of her political career as she accepts the nomination to be Joe Biden’s vice president if he wins in November.
Marty Johnson at The Hill has been looking at the shape of that challenge. Biden needs to win over the young Black votes that aren’t nearly anywhere as certain to vote for him as elder Black voters are.
Harris will begin working to change this dynamic with her Wednesday address at the virtual Democratic National Convention, in what will easily be the biggest political speech of her career. Her speech offers a prime opportunity to try and sway the minds of young liberal voters with doubts about Biden.
But there are also some doubts among such voters with Harris, a former San Francisco prosecutor and California attorney general whose record has sometimes engendered criticism from the left. Harris has thrown herself into the issue of police reform since ending her presidential campaign late last year and returning to the Senate, sponsoring legislation to end police choke holds and visiting the Black Lives Matter mural in Washington DC.