A look ahead at the key events leading the news agenda next week, from the team at Foresight News. Delivered to your inbox on Fridays.
Leading the week
As pressure mounts on Ron DeSantis to jump into the Republican presidential primary, the Florida governor hits the road again next week as his book The Courage to Be Free is published on Tuesday (February 28). Following his whistle-stop tour this week to New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago for events focused on law enforcement issues, DeSantis speaks at GOP dinners in Texas next Friday (March 3) and Saturday (March 4) before heading to California to give a speech at the Ronald Reagan Library on Sunday (March 5), all clear indicators of an imminent announcement regarding his 2024 intentions.
The Republican primary will also loom large over next week’s three-day CPAC gathering at the Gaylord Hotel in National Harbor, Maryland, which kicks off on Thursday (March 2). The speaker list – which at the time of writing does not include DeSantis, though that could easily change – includes a veritable who’s who of MAGA Republicans, including former President Donald Trump, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Defeated Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, who still refuses to accept that result, will deliver the Ronald Reagan dinner address on Friday as she continues to leave the door open to a potential role as a Trump running mate.
Meanwhile, former Vice President Mike Pence, whose path to the nomination appears narrow, nevertheless continues to make moves suggestive of a campaign and will give a speech on faith in public life on Wednesday (March 1) in Michigan before heading to early voting state South Carolina on Thursday.
India will host a meeting of G20 foreign ministers on Wednesday and Thursday (March 1-2) in the country’s capital Delhi, with the conflict in Ukraine and its sprawling ramifications once again casting a shadow over proceedings. Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, who chairs the gathering, will have the unenviable task of trying to bridge differences from participants, who notably include Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Having said that, India is arguably in a unique position to mediate as a member of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) grouping as well the so-called Quad (made up of the United States, Australia, Japan and India), who are reportedly set to meet on Friday (March 3). As it happens, this year’s Raisina Dialogue, India’s annual conference on geopolitics and geoeconomics, kicks off on Thursday and is set to feature interventions from a growing list of foreign ministers in town for the G20. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is rumored to be delivering the opening keynote.
Olaf Scholz will visit the White House on Friday (March 3) for a meeting with President Joe Biden, following on from talks between the German Chancellor and Vice President Kamala Harris on the margins of the Munich Security Conference earlier this month. The Ukraine conflict is set to figure prominently in their discussions, with Washington and Berlin back on the same page following tensions over Germany’s reticence to authorize the export of German-made Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. The pair will also likely discuss broader tensions between the US and Europe over subsidies under the Inflation Reduction Act which took effect at the start of the year.