February 7th, 2014
05:39 PM ET
11 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 7, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 7, 2014 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

FIRST ON CNN: READY FOR HILLARY HEADS TO SOUTH CAROLINA … Ready for Hillary, the independent group laying groundwork for a potential Hillary Clinton presidential bid in 2016, will make its first public foray into the early primary state of South Carolina later this month with a fundraiser in the state capital of Columbia. The low dollar event – the price of admission is just $20.16 – will be hosted by state Rep. Bakari Sellers “and special guests,” according to a copy of the Feb. 20 invitation obtained by CNN. – Peter Hamby

QUOTE OF THE DAY: VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN TO KATE BOLDUAN ON CNN’S “NEW DAY” ABOUT WHETHER HE WILL RUN FOR PRESIDENT IN 2016: “There may be reasons I don’t run, but there’s no obvious reason for me why I think I should not run.”

CHRIS CHRISTIE AND RICK PERRY: 'THEY JUST DON'T LIKE EACH OTHER' … In Perry-world, Christie is seen as pompous and disrespectful, both to his fellow governors and the sense of collegial decorum that has ruled the governors association for years. To Christie and his allies on the committee, Perry is regarded as unserious, past his prime and too conservative for the national stage. When Christie traveled to Dallas and Fort Worth on Thursday for a series of closed-door meetings with leading governors association donors, Perry was hundreds of miles from the scene. – Peter Hamby

MOVE BY MONTANA GOVERNOR COULD HELP DEMOCRATS IN 2014 MIDTERMS … Montana Lt. Gov. John Walsh now has the job he's already been running for: U.S. senator. Montana Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock Friday named Walsh, a fellow Democrat, to fill the remainder of the term of Sen. Max Baucus, who was overwhelmingly confirmed Thursday as U.S. ambassador to China.

Gut Check Full Service: With Baucus gone, Republicans see Montana, a state that leans conservative, as a strong pickup possibility in November midterms. The GOP needs to win back six Democratic held seats to reclaim control of the Senate. The have a strong candidate in Rep. Steve Daines, the likely Republican nominee. – Paul Steinhauser

CONGRESS CHECK BY @LisaDCNN: Workdays in DC this year? Senate: 15, House: 15. Bills finished this year: 7. Major bills: Two spending measures (CR, Omnibus), one Farm Bill. Some others: renamed flight centers, reauthorized the 1-800 poison control line. Not done: debt ceiling, tax extenders, military sexual assault legislation, long-term deficit plan and any sort of jobs legislation. In limbo: unemployment insurance extension, immigration reform, Keystone pipeline, mental health reform, gun legislation, Postal Service reform and a host of others.

THE BUZZ: ADVERTISERS MAKE $900-MILLION BET ON OLYMPIC WINTER GAMES … Despite threats of terrorism and other problems at the Games, no major advertiser has canceled its order for commercial time during NBCUniversal's 1,539 hours of coverage. In fact, marketing experts said the controversies could help pique viewers' interest, which in turn should drive TV ratings — at least during the initial days. – Meg James

MARKET WATCH: Stocks end choppy week with gains as weak jobs data is seen slowing Fed’s stimulus reduction. Dow gains 161 points.

TRAIL TRIVIA
(Answer below)
Who is the only person in Olympic history to win a gold medal in both a summer and winter Olympics?

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics.com: Inside Politics: Boehner says 'never mind' on immigration
Whatever you think of his politics, House Speaker John Boehner has a great sense of humor. So perhaps he won't mind the question framed this way: What happened, in the course of just one week, to make Speaker Boehner the Miss Emily Litella of immigration reform? – John King

Gut Check DVR: Catch John King’s new show ‘Inside Politics’ on Sunday at 8:30am E.T. with guests Jonathan Martin, Robert Costa, Nia-Malika Henderson and Amy Walter.

Leading CNNMoney: Lew: Debt ceiling must be raised by Feb. 27
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew told Congressional leaders Friday in essence that the full faith and credit of the United States could be in jeopardy after Feb. 27 if lawmakers don't raise the debt ceiling. That's when Lew now estimates Treasury will run out of special accounting maneuvers to ensure all the country's bills are paid in full and on time. – Jeanne Sahadi

Leading Kentucky Courier-Journal: Bill Clinton to campaign for Alison Lundergan Grimes in Kentucky
Former President Bill Clinton — known as the “Big Dog” — will come to Louisville this month for a campaign event for Grimes, who is running for the U.S. Senate and trying to topple Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. – Joseph Gerth

Gut Check Full Service: Why they call Bill Clinton ‘Big Dog’

Leading Drudge: Scary Sochi Show!
Performers take part in the opening ceremony for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics February 7, 2014. – David Gray

Leading HuffPo: Republicans Still Seen As Falling Behind In Election Data Wars
When Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney in the 2012 U.S. presidential election, many political strategists saw it as a triumph of the Obama team's technological prowess, allowing it to identify likely Democratic voters and get them to the polls. – Gabriel Debenedetti

Leading Politico: Democratic groups counter Kochs’ Senate push
A collection of Democratic-aligned groups are launching a coordinated push in 2014 Senate races to counter heavy spending from the powerfully funded conservative organization Americans for Prosperity, Democratic strategists said Thursday evening. – Alexander Burns

Leading New York Times: Senator Races to Renew Ties, if Not Make a Home, in Kansas
It is hard to find anyone who has seen Senator Pat Roberts here at the red-brick house on a golf course that his voter registration lists as his home. …The house on a country club golf course that he lists as his voting address belongs to two longtime supporters and donors — C. Duane and Phyllis Ross — and he says he stays with them when he is in the area. He established his voting address there the day before his challenger in the August primary, Milton Wolf, announced his candidacy last fall, arguing that Mr. Roberts was out of touch with his High Plains roots. “I have full access to the recliner,” the senator joked. Turning serious, he added, “Nobody knows the state better than I do.” – Jonathan Martin

HOT SOTS
The political bites of the day

– Biden: I’ve got time –
VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN IN AN INTERVIEW ON CNN’S “NEW DAY” ON WHEN HE WILL DECIDE ABOUT 2016: “Realistically, a year this summer.”

– Biden: LaGuardia like a third world country –
VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN AT AN EVENT IN PHILADELPHIA THURSDAY: “If I blindfolded someone and took them at 2 o'clock in the morning into the airport in Hong Kong and said 'where do you think you are?' They would say, 'this must be America. This is a modern airport’ …If I took them blindfolded and took them to LaGuardia airport in New York, he would be like 'I must be in some third world country.' I'm not joking."

Gut Check Full service: DONALD TRUMP TO CNN’S CANDY CROWLEY ON APRIL 17 2011: “We're becoming a Third - absolutely a Third World nation. You land your plane at LaGuardia Airport - you go to LaGuardia Airport - it's like a Third World airport.

– de Blasio: Biden's comments "inappropriate" –
NEW YORK MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO TO REPORTERS FRIDAY: “I respect the vice president but I think his comments were inappropriate … The airport manages an extraordinary amount of traffic and the people who work there make it work under very difficult circumstances, and so, as a proud New Yorker, I didn't like that comment and I think it was not the right way to talk about it."

– Sessions ad claims he took Pelosi out of power –
REP. PETE SESSIONS, R-TEXAS, IN A NEW CAMPAIGN AD: (SESSIONS) “Remember that? (Referring to Obama swearing in) It looked bleak. The press said conservatives were an endangered species. I said it was time to get to work.” (NARRATOR) “Pete Sessions: He led the conservative takeover of Congress, took Nancy Pelosi out of power.”

– Obama has March Madness in mind –
PRESIDENT OBAMA AT MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY SIGNING THE FARM BILL: "I'm also here to do some scouting on my brackets."

TOP TWEETS
What stopped us in 140 characters or less

Ivan Watson (@IvanCNN)
Turkish Transport Ministry official tells CNNTurk Ukrainian man who tried to hijack Pegasus Air Flight w/bomb threat demanded to go to Sochi

Vaughn Sterling (‏@vplus)
CNN JUST IN – DHS Secretary: “Syria has become a matter of homeland security” as extremists try to recruit Westerners

Chad Pergram ‏(@ChadPergram)
Despite apptment of Walsh to Senate today, Senate is out. So Walsh won't be sworn-in until next week.

Kurtis Lee ‏(@kurtisalee)
Poll: Republican Ken Buck nearly even with Sen. Mark Udall http://bit.ly/1dt2A4J #coleg #copolitics

Steven Dennis ‏(@StevenTDennis)
New WH line re: trust & immigration. Jay Carney noted GOP rejected immigration under Bush. "Was it because they didn’t trust him? No."

Jackie Calmes ‏(@calmesnyt)
WH invited 50 lawmakers, R & D, to join Obama in MI to sign bipartisan farm bill. All Rs said no, Carney says. Cold (don't mean MI temp, 14)

Scott Bland ‏(@HotlineScott)
Meanwhile, NRCC investing heavily in digital development to catch up with DCCC, which raised over $19M online in 2013 http://www.nationaljournal.com/hotline-on-call/house-democrats-exploit-their-technological-edge-in-fundraising-20140207

Father Christian (@Ranger1325)
Since @WendyDavisTexas now seems to be for open carry, will @MomsDemand come out against her like they did @DLoesch?

Robert Yoon (@yoonrob)
"I hate to lose" - @MittRomney ending his 2008 prez campaign on this day in 2008.
http://cs.pn/1gTi2zk (clip from @CSPANVL)

Cindy Scott ‏(@cindyscott54)
THIS makes my day. From Captain Mark Kelly, Gabby Giffords driving the Circuit Of The Americas in their street... http://fb.me/2P1EXkSXe

State of the Union ‏(@CNNsotu)
Safe in #Sochi? Fmr @DHSgov Sec. Janet Napolitano joins @crowleyCNN from Sochi to discuss Olympic security. 9a Sunday http://cnn.it/NfC5e6

TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer

Edward Eagan is the only athlete in Olympic history to win a gold medal in both a summer and winter Olympic Games. Representing the U.S., Eagan won the gold for boxing in the 1920 Summer Olympics in the light heavyweight event in Antwerp and also won the gold in the 1932 Winter Olympics as a brakeman on the four-man bobsled in Lake Placid.

Eagan, a Yale and Harvard Law School grad, later served as chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission.

GUT CHECK WINNER’S CIRCLE
(why aren’t you in it)

Congrats to Matthew Gilbertson ‏(@MattRGilbertson) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check Trivia question.

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