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 TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' 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 HarrisCastro swears off donations from oil, gas, coal executives Harris leads California Democrats in condemning HUD immigrant housing policy Billionaire's M gift to Morehouse grads points way to student debt solution MORE (D-Calif.), Amy KlobucharAmy Jean Klobuchar2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan Samantha Bee slams 2020 Democrats who go on Fox News Poll: Harris, Warren climb as Biden maintains lead MORE (D-Minn.) and Bernie SandersBernie Sanders2020 Democrats join striking McDonald's workers Billionaire's M gift to Morehouse grads points way to student debt solution Poll: Nearly half of Clinton's former supporters back Biden MORE (I-Vt.); Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardCNN's O'Rourke town hall finishes behind Fox News, MSNBC Progressive Democrat says Trump victory shed light on divide between Silicon Valley, rural US Anita Hill: Female 2020 Democrats 'not being taken seriously' MORE (D-Hawaii); former Rep. John DelaneyJohn Kevin DelaneyOvernight Energy: Democrats ask if EPA chief misled on vehicle emissions | Dem senators want NBC debate focused on climate change | 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan CNN's O'Rourke town hall finishes behind Fox News, MSNBC MORE (D-Md.); South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D) and former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz.

CNN will also feature Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenThe Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan On The Money: Senate passes disaster aid bill after deal with Trump | Trump to offer B aid package for farmers | House votes to boost retirement savings | Study says new tariffs to double costs for consumers Overnight Energy: Democrats ask if EPA chief misled on vehicle emissions | Dem senators want NBC debate focused on climate change | 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan 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.