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
After months of campaigning, the Republican presidential primary officially begins on Monday (January 15) with the Iowa caucuses. Donald Trump is heavily favored to win but his margin of victory will be an important indicator as attention moves to New Hampshire on January 23, where the results are expected to be significantly closer. Ron DeSantis, meanwhile, has invested heavily in Iowa and a loss to Nikki Haley on Monday could prove decisive given her polling lead in New Hampshire, especially given the consensus that she stands to benefit from Chris Christie’s decision to drop out of the race. Conversely, if DeSantis does beat Haley for second place in Iowa, he’ll likely be looking for a decent performance in Nevada’s February 8 GOP caucuses, which Haley has decided to skip in favor of the state primary on February 6 as she prepares for the all-important vote in her home state of South Carolina on February 24.
Back in DC, a partial federal shutdown is looming as the first deadline under the laddered CR passed in November approaches on Friday (January 19). For House Speaker Mike Johnson, who announced a topline spending agreement with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday, Friday’s deadline marks a perilous moment, something that was made clear earlier this week when 13 Republicans joined Democrats to vote down a rule in protest at Johnson’s deal with Schumer. The rebellion came just a day after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said a further short-term CR, opposed by hardliners in the House, would ‘obviously’ be needed. While Johnson has not ruled it out, he could instead make the calculation that a brief pause for the agencies whose funding expires on January 19 is not worth losing his speakership over, while the most critical agencies will remain funded through February 2 under the laddered CR.
A host of news-making world figures will be in Davos next week for the World Economic Forum, which begins in earnest on Tuesday (January 16) when Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Chinese premier Li Qiang, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen, NATO head Jens Stoltenberg and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan are among notable speakers.
Assuming his plans don’t change as he struggles with lawlessness back home, Ecuador’s new president Daniel Noboa is due to speak on Wednesday (January 17), when we’ll also see interventions from Polish President Andrzej Duda and Papua New Guinean Prime Minister James Marape, two leaders facing domestic crises of their own. Also speaking Wednesday are UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Argentina’s firebrand new leader Javier Milei and French President Emmanuel Macron, who this week named 34-year-old Gabriel Attal as his next prime minister in what was viewed as a response to the rise of 28-year-old far-right figure Jordan Bordella.
On Thursday (January 18), there are interventions from Greek leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Iraqi Prime Minster Mohammed Shia’ Al Sudani, as well as OpenAI’s Sam Altman, who is taking part in a session with UK Chancellor Jeremy Hunt. As the conference winds down on Friday (January 19), IMF head Kristalina Georgieva and ECB president Christine Lagarde are among participants at a discussion on the global economic outlook. Organizers announced earlier this week that Israeli President Isaac Herzog would be participating this year too, though his intervention has yet to appear on the official program.
Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni, meanwhile, will host leaders from the 120-member Non-Aligned Movement for two-day summit on Friday and Saturday (January 19-20) directly followed by the 134-member G77’s Third South Summit which begins on Sunday (January 21). There’s no shortage of topics for leaders to discuss at the back-to-back meetings for developing nations, from the conflicts in Ukraine, Gaza, Sudan and Yemen to reforming the United Nations, where veto-power wielding nations are increasingly viewed as an anachronistic vestige of a previous world order which fails to represent the interests of the Global South.