2020 Democrats commend troops, not Trump, for Syria raid

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Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speaks at the J Street National Conference, with the hosts of “Pod Save the World,” Tommy Vietor, left, and Ben Rhodes, Monday, Oct. 28, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic presidential candidates are heaping praise on U.S. military forces who pulled off the weekend raid that left Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi dead.

But they’ve made clear that commendation doesn’t extend to President Donald Trump.

Nearly one year before Election Day, the raid is a reminder of how developments overseas can quickly influence the presidential campaign.

Trump is eager to turn al-Baghdadi’s death into a defining moment of his administration, one that could remind waffling Republicans why they support him.

And Democrats, who have largely been focused issues such as health care and combating rising college debt, must now decry Trump’s foreign policy without appearing to disparage U.S. forces. It’s a balance that could be tough for the White House hopefuls to pull off.

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