CNN to feature Hickenlooper in town hall next week

CNN to feature Hickenlooper in town hall next week
© Greg Nash

CNN will feature former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, one of the most recent Democrats to declare a 2020 presidential bid, in a town hall next week in Atlanta, the network announced Wednesday.

The March 20 event from CNN Center at its headquarters in Atlanta will be moderated by the network's chief political correspondent Dana Bash. The Hickenlooper event marks the ninth town hall CNN has offered this year.

Hickenlooper, 67, officially launched his candidacy on March 4. In the announcement, he referred to President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE as a "bully" while adding, "As a skinny kid with coke-bottle glasses and a funny last name, I've stood up to my fair share of bullies."

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After Trump said Hickenlooper refused "to acknowledge capitalism," the Democratic presidential hopeful accused the president of preferring to have a "divisive fight" than a discussion around solving issues.

"Americans are dealing with serious challenges around the affordability of healthcare, education and housing and an economy that hasn’t produced jobs that pay," Hickenlooper said in a statement to The Hill earlier this week. "President Trump would rather have a divisive fight argument about labels than have a real discussion about how to solve these problems."

"Fomenting division is his way of distracting us from the fact that he is actually making things worse for Americans, by giving tax breaks to the ultra-wealthy and big corporations while proposing devastating cuts to Medicare, imposing tariffs that hurt farmers and consumers and hollowing out the Affordable Care Act," he added.

The comments came after Trump told Breitbart News in an interview published Monday that Hickenlooper was "ashamed" of the word "capitalism."

Last week, Hickenlooper would not definitively answer a question regarding whether he considers himself a proud capitalist. 

"The labels, I'm not sure any of them fit," he said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

Hickenlooper would later clarify his comments in an interview with CBS News

"I'm happy to say I'm a capitalist, but I think at a certain point the labels do nothing but divide us."

Other 2020 hopefuls to appear in town halls hosted by CNN the past couple months include Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisJ.J. Abrams, Shonda Rhimes to host Kamala Harris fundraiser Warren, Klobuchar call on FTC to curtail use of non-compete clauses Pollster says 'it's certainly not looking good' for Trump ahead of 2020 MORE (D-Calif.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharWarren, Klobuchar call on FTC to curtail use of non-compete clauses Republican strategist predicts his 2020 Dem primary final four Chicago mayor race mirrors national push for more women in office, says columnist MORE (D-Minn.) and Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersWarren, Klobuchar call on FTC to curtail use of non-compete clauses RNC says it raised .6 million in February Pollster says 'it's certainly not looking good' for Trump ahead of 2020 MORE (I-Vt.); Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardChicago mayor race mirrors national push for more women in office, says columnist Biden leads CNN poll, but Harris, Sanders on the rise CNN to host town hall with Cory Booker in South Carolina MORE (D-Hawaii); former Rep. John DelaneyJohn Kevin DelaneySolving climate change the American way CNN to host town hall with Cory Booker in South Carolina Howard Schultz to be featured in Fox News town hall MORE (D-Md.); South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D) and former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz.

CNN will also feature Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren, Klobuchar call on FTC to curtail use of non-compete clauses Pollster says 'it's certainly not looking good' for Trump ahead of 2020 Big Tech is not the enemy, Sen. Warren MORE (D-Mass.) in a town hall on Monday.

Each candidate has received a full hour in prime time. All have declared their presidential candidacies except for Schultz, who is still weighing an independent bid.