CNN's GUT CHECK | for June 5, 2013 | 5 p.m.
– n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
RICE GETS PROMOTION: SUSAN RICE TO REPLACE TOM DONILON AS NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER… President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced he was bringing longtime confidante Susan Rice, the U.N. ambassador to the White House to succeed Tom Donilon as national security adviser. The president also said he would nominate Samantha Power of the National Security Council to succeed Rice at the United Nations. – Jessica Yellin and Tom Cohen
BORDER SECURITY A MUST: RUBIO RAMPS UP PRESSURE ON IMMIGRATION BILL… Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, one of the lead backers of the Senate immigration reform effort, says he will not support his own bill if amendments to boost border security don't pass. – Jim Acosta and Deirdre Walsh
MARKET WATCH: Dow and NASDAQ suffer worst drop in nearly two months. Dow falls 217 points to end below 15,000.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt took the United States off the gold standard on this day in 1933. What subsequent president totally abandoned the gold standard?
We wrote last week that there is a wealth of evidence that points to an America that is coming back from the economic brink. Home prices, consumer confidence and the Dow all have ticked upward in the past few years – a good sign, no doubt.
But there is still the lingering effect of abnormally high unemployment – over 7%.
Sometimes, though, that number is difficult to put into context. Who is counted in that 7% and how many people does that actually mean?
Annalyn Kurtz, our colleague at CNN Money, has given a bit of perspective on the unemployment number and the results are staggering.
“The jobs crisis is still truly a crisis,” Kurtz writes. “The staggering statistics get repeated so often they can become numbingly abstract. About 12 million Americans still remain unemployed, but who can wrap their head around that number?”
The way to imagine that many people, Kurtz writes, is to think about them in terms of the total population of New York and Los Angeles combined.
That is just the start, though.
Next up: the underemployed – those people who want full-time work but can’t find it because of business conditions or economic reasons.
The total number of underemployed – eight million people – is equivalent to the populations of Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia and Phoenix combined.
And then comes to the people who have dropped out of the job market altogether and are no longer looking for employment – meaning they are no longer calculated in the unemployment rate.
There are two million people who recently dropped out of the job market – roughly the size of Dallas and San Francisco combined.
When talking about the economy, it is important to note that while things are getting better, there are still metropolis sized groups of people who are feeling the pain of economic downturn.
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics: Polls: Obama remains steady amid warning signs
While President Barack Obama's overall approval rating appears to be holding steady, numbers from two new national polls on the trio of current controversies may give the White House cause for concern. – Paul Steinhauser
Leading Drudge: She Got In My Face
First lady Michelle Obama experienced a rare face-to-face encounter with a protester late Tuesday – approaching the activist and threatening to leave a fundraiser if the person did not stop interrupting her speech. – Paul Wallsten for The Washington Post
Leading HuffPo: 'Thrown Under The Bus': Republican Defends Obama Pick
While some Republicans continued to criticize Susan Rice Wednesday over her now-infamous Sunday show appearances in the aftermath of the attacks in Benghazi, Libya, Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) came to her defense. – Luke Johnson
Leading Politico: Susan Rice to be new NSA, Samantha Power to replace her at U.N.
National Security Adviser Tom Donilon is stepping down after four years on the job and will be replaced by United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice — the latest in a series of defiant appointments likely to rile the GOP and fire up the Democratic base. – Glenn Thrush
Leading The New York Times: Two Liberal Voices for Intervention, but Not in Syrian War
In naming Susan E. Rice and Samantha Power to key national security posts, President Obama has turned to two prominent advocates of liberal interventionism, a foreign-policy credo that calls for the United States to act aggressively to defend human rights – by military means, if necessary. – Mark Landler
The political bites of the day
- Two IRS employees put on administrative leave because of conferences -
INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE ACTING COMMISSIONER DANNY WERFEL IN A WRITTEN STATEMENT TO THE PRESS: “When I came to IRS, part of my job was to hold people accountable. There was clearly inappropriate behavior involved in this situation, and immediate action is needed.”
- Lawmakers, family remember Sen. Lautenberg -
JOSH LAUTENBERG, SENATOR LAUTENBERG’S SON, IN A EULOGY FOR HIS FATHER: “If my father was here he would have really loved this party I tell ya. He’d say, `Wow, look at all these people. You couldn’t get the Israeli prime minister or the Pope? Oh, that’s OK.”
FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON: “As Frank would say, ‘you know it is not where you sit that counts it is where you stand.’ And there was never any doubt where he stood. He did stand with those families who keep their children safe from toxic chemicals, from smoking, from drunk driving. He stood with the victims of gun violence and HIV AIDS.”
- Republican lawmaker sees no immigration reform this summer -
REPUBLICAN REP. JOHN FLEMING OF LOUISIANA AT A PRESS CONFERENCE ON CAPITOL HILL: “Oh no, I don't think there's any chance that comprehensive (immigration) would pass this summer, not fully into law. It may pass in the Senate, but I don't see it passing into law as early as the summer.”
- Biden talks up work with the Western Hemisphere -
VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN IN A WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL: “There is enormous potential — economically, politically and socially — for the U.S. in its relations with countries of the Western Hemisphere. … As leaders across the region work to lift their citizens out of poverty and to diversify their economies from commodity-led growth, the U.S. believes that the greatest promise—for Americans and for our neighbors—lies in deeper economic integration and openness.”
- Obama not about to do Ray Lewis dance -
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA AT AN EVENT HONORING THE SUPER BOWL CHAMPION BALTIMORE RAVENS: “Then of course you can't think about Baltimore without thinking of Ray Lewis and Ed Reed, two of the greatest defenders who ever played the game. These two won’t be wearing purple next year, everybody's going to have to get used to that. It's welcome news for quarterbacks. Ray retired on top, coming back from a tricep injury, which I believe was caused by that dance he does. (Ray asks him to do the dance) No I'm not doing that dance.”
What stopped us in 140 characters or less
TRIVIA ANSWER from @DanMericaCNN
In an effort to stop people from hoarding gold and increase the Federal Reserve's ability to inflate the money supply, President Franklin D. Roosevelt took the United States off the gold standard on this day in 1933. The United States had been on the gold standard since 1879.
After leaving the gold standard, the Roosevelt administration first set the price of gold at $20.67 per ounce. A year later, the government increased the price of gold to $35 per ounce, increasing the worth of the Fed's gold holdings by roughly 70 percent.
In 1944, under an agreement known as Bretton Woods, the U.S. guaranteed other currencies to gold.
It wasn't until 1971, under President Richard Nixon, that the gold standard was abandoned. In the early 1970s, foreign banks held more dollars than the U.S. held gold, meaning that the country was at risk of a run on gold.
In Executive Order 11615, Nixon closed the gold window.
"I have directed Secretary (John) Connally to suspend temporarily the convertibility of the dollar into gold or other reserve assets, except in amounts and conditions determined to be in the interest of monetary stability and in the best interests of the United States," Nixon said in a televised address on August 15, 1971.
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