CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 8, 2012 | 5 p.m.
– n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
BREAKING: Indianapolis Star live blogs from voting places with some tough quotes from voters:
– “Jeremy Morton, 29, Noblesville, an engineer who is a Republican… He voted for Mourdock. 'It's tough for me. I think I'm probably representative of a lot of voters: I like Lugar but 35 plus years has been enough. He was elected before I was born.'”
– "Ray and Ann Alexander, Westfield, came out for the Senate race. Ann, 66, and Ray, 67, are both retired. They voted for Mourdock. 'Lugar's been in there too long,' Ann Alexander said. 'He hasn't lived here for 30-some years; what does he know about Indiana? I think he's totally out of touch with Indiana and what's going on,' Ray Alexander said."
What did President Obama describe as “one of my favorite classic books of all time?”
This line caught our eye today:
“Throughout his public life, Lugar’s strength has been following his stubborn convictions and letting his considerable intellect guide him, regardless of political risk or reward.” That power-packed sentence is from the Almanac of American Politics biography of Richard Lugar and tells the story of his career and his current primary fight.
Just taking a moment to read his biography helps put the hype into perspective:
Eagle Scout. Rhodes Scholar. Noble Peace Prize nominee. Lame Duck?
As people voted throughout Indiana today, CNN’s Dana Bash caught up with Lugar and asked him about the way Mourdock has attacked him for reaching across the aisle.
“Well of course it concerns me that people don't understand the legislative process,” Lugar said. “Some people say, well, we do understand it, and by golly, we're going to wait until we have majorities in both houses, the White House, where there's two years, four years, six years, but the country has to keep going in the meanwhile! You know, some of us have to at least come together, to think about the defense of our country.”
There are no exit polls tonight for the Indiana Senate primary race, so this is one of those humbling moments in which political insiders wait for the voters’ verdict. There is no same-day voter registration in Indiana. Voter registration for the Indiana Senate primary closed on April 9, according to the Indiana Secretary of State. The last polls close in Indiana at 7 p.m. ET.
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics: In wake of endorsement, no Romney-Santorum event yet planned
Those questioning how heartfelt Rick Santorum's e-mail late Monday night to supporters was – as it didn't get to an endorsement of Mitt Romney until the 13th paragraph – are reading too much into it, a Santorum adviser says.
Leading Drudge: Edwards donor says he told Obama camp about affair
A onetime donor to John Edwards testified Tuesday that he warned the campaign of President Barack Obama in 2008 to look closely at rumors about the former North Carolina senator's infidelity before it considered offering him any position in the administration.
Leading HuffPo: The 7 Dumbest Things GOP Politicians Have Said About Abortion Recently
Whether or not there's actually a "war on women," some in the Republican Party like to act as if they've already won it.
Leading Politico: President Obama's marriage muddle
President Barack Obama was cruising along happily in the slow lane on gay marriage, but he’s been sideswiped by his own vice president and his best friend in the Cabinet — who have veered off-message in a provocatively public way.
Leading New York Times: For a Blunt Biden, an Uneasy Supporting Role
As President Obama reviewed the comedy routine he was to deliver at the recent White House Correspondents’ Association dinner, one joke struck him as too hot. It suggested he might dump Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. from the ticket.
Leading CNN Money: The one percenters in Congress
Members of Congress are much richer than you and me. With a median net worth of $878,500, Democratic lawmakers were actually worth more than nine times the typical American household in 2010. Not bad for the party that positions itself as the defender of the middle class.
The political bites of the day
- Romney looks to take credit for auto industry resurgence -
MITT ROMNEY IN AN INTERVIEW WITH WEWS IN CLEVELAND, OHIO LAST NIGHT: “I pushed the idea of a managed bankruptcy, and finally when that was done and help was given the companies got back on their feet, so I'll take a lot of credit for the fact that this industry has come back.”
AND CHICAGO RESPONDS: Ben Labolt, the Obama campaign press secretary, on a conference call: “This is a candidate who will literally say anything, who thinks that his record and his statements don’t matter, who thinks he can reinvent himself in front of any new political audience that he’s in front of, with the magical power of the Etch A Sketch. There have been a lot of unbelievable statements during this campaign from this candidate but this might be the most preposterous of them all.”
- Biden: ‘We were the problem’ on Iran -
VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN AT A SPEECH IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA: “When we took office, let me remind you, there was virtually no international pressure on Iran. We were the problem. We were diplomatically isolated in the world, in the region, in Europe. The international pressure on Iran was stuck in neutral. As a matter of fact, Iran’s influence in the previous six years was growing in the region.”
AND BOSTON RESPONDS: Lanhee Chen, Romney’s policy director, said in a press release: “All too often, President Obama and his administration have sought to blame America first, yet Vice President Biden's reckless statement today blaming America for – of all things – the progress of Iran's nuclear weapons program, has reached a new low... The problem is not America. It is the ayatollahs who oppress their people, threaten their neighbors, and are pursuing nuclear weapons.”
- Did politics play into bomb plot leak? -
REP. MIKE ROGERS, CHAIRMAN OF THE HOUSE PERMANENT SELECT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE, IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CNN: “For it to come out when it did I do argue that it was just not very, very helpful. We are going to have to ramp it up. This town, in a political season, people need to be a little more cautious – actually they need to be a lot more cautious about how they promote this information at a time when it might not have been most beneficial to the intelligence community to do its work.”
- Clinton will wear glasses and pull her hair back when she wants -
SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CNN’S JILL DOUGHERTY: “I feel so relieved to be at the stage I'm at in my life right now Jill. Because you know if I want to wear my glasses I'm wearing my glasses. If I want to wear my hair back I'm pulling my hair back. You know at some point it’s just not something that deserves a lot of time and attention. And if others want to, you know, worry about it, I let them do the worrying for a change.”
What stopped us in 140 characters or less
Brian Beutler (@brianbeutler) May 08, 2012
Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) May 08, 2012
RNC National Hispanic Outreach Director on Romney just now: "He's still deciding what his position on immigration is."—
Chris Moody (@Chris_Moody) May 08, 2012
Bob Drummond (@bobdrummond) May 08, 2012
All you need to know about VA SEN: WaPost has Allen 46, Kaine 46. A year ago, WaPost had Allen 46, Kaine 46 -- hotlineoncall.nationaljournal.com/archives/2012/…—
Reid Wilson (@HotlineReid) May 08, 2012
Joe Biden: "No one has ever doubted I mean what I say. The problem is sometimes I say what I mean."—
Charles Riley (@CRrileyCNN) May 08, 2012
“Where the Wild Things Are” has made multiple appearances in the Obama White House.
Just last month at the 2012 White House Easter Egg Roll, Obama described Maurice Sendak’s book as “one of my favorite classic books of all time.” The president then jumped into an animated rendition of the book’s “wild rumpus dance.”
“Who can do a wild rumpus? Come on, I want everyone to do the wild rumpus. It’s the wild rumpus,” Obama read.
This was not the first time Obama read “Where the Wild Things Are.” At Obama’s first White House Easter Egg Roll in 2009, he read the book with his wife Michelle and daughters Sasha and Malia.
Maurice Sendak, author of the classic children's book, died Tuesday at the age of 83. Sendak is best known for "Where the Wild Things Are,” a story about a boy named Max who dresses in a white wolf costume and escapes his life at home by sailing to a remote land. There he discovers wild things that roar their terrible roars and gnash their terrible teeth.
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