CNN's GUT CHECK for March 3, 2014
March 3rd, 2014
05:58 PM ET
8 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for March 3, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for  March 3, 2014 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

CRISIS IN UKRAINE …OBAMA THREATENS TO ‘ISOLATE’ RUSSIA:
President Barack Obama said Monday that the U.S. was examining a series of steps to “isolate Russia” if Moscow continued its current trajectory into Ukraine:

“I spent the weekend talking to leaders across Europe and I think the world is largely united in recognizing that the steps Russia has taken are a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty, Ukraine’s territorial integrity, that they’re a violation of international law. They’re a violation of previous agreements Russia has made with respect to how it treats and respects its neighbors. And as a consequence, we got strong statements from NATO and from the G7 condemning the actions that Russia’s taken … What cannot be done is for Russia with impunity to put its soldiers on ground and violate basic principles that are recognized around the world


SAMANTHA POWER MAKES HER CASE : U.S. AMBASSADOR TO U.N. SAMANTHA POWER AT A U.N. SECURITY COUNCIL STAKEOUT: “It is a fact that Russian military forces have taken over Ukrainian border posts. It is a fact that Russia has taken over the ferry terminal in Kerch. It is a fact that Russian ships are moving in and around Sevastopol. It is a fact that Russian forces are blocking mobile telephone services in some areas. It is a fact that Russia has surrounded or taken over practically all Ukrainian military facilities in Crimea. It is a fact that today Russian jets entered the Ukrainian airspace. It is also a fact that independent journalists continue to report that there is no evidence or violence against Russian or pro-Russian communities.”

MCCAIN TO OBAMA ADMINISTRATION: THIS IS YOUR FAULT
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN, R-ARIZONA, TO CNN’S HALA GORANI ON CNN INTERNATIONAL: “We are where we are because of a feckless, misguided, delusional foreign policy that has put us in this place today. Putin is acting the way he is because he believes and very likely he will get away with it.”

PLEA FOR HELP … FORMER UKRAINE PRIME MINISTER YULIA TYMOSHENKO TO CNN’S CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR: "I am asking all the world, personally every world leader, to use all the possibilities in order to avoid Ukraine losing Crimea … The world should understand, should realize, that Ukraine on its own won’t be able to solve this issue with Russia on its own. Absolutely not possible.”

DID YOU EVER WONDER IF PROTESTORS COULD HEAR FAMOUS ACTORS CHAMPIONING THEIR CAUSE? …. While 43 million people watched the Oscars telecast in America, the Guardian reports that the telecast was blocked in Russia after actor Jared Leto mentioned the Ukraine in his Academy Award acceptance speech.

THE BUZZ: BEST PHOTOBOMB OF ALL TIME … Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres’s “selfie” may have crashed Twitter, but it was the epic photobomb by best supporting actress Lupita Nyong'o's brother, Peter Nyong'o, that stole the stunt. In the middle of the Academy Awards telecast, Degeneres grabbed a handful of A-list movie stars to partake in an Oscar “selfie,” including Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Jared Leto, Kevin Spacey, Julia Roberts, Channing Tatum and Lupita Nyong'o.

At the last moment, Lupita’s brother Peter leapt into the star-packed picture - blocking most of Angelina Jolie’s face from view. The “selfie” has been tweeted more than 2.6 million times so far, making it the most retweeted tweet ever, and breaking the record previously held by President Barack Obama.

MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks end lower as Ukraine crisis continues. Dow tumbles 155 points. S&P 500 and Nasdaq fall 0.7%.

TRAIL TRIVIA
(Answer below)
Which former presidential candidate is now the Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America?

the LEDE
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics: Democrat hopes for big upset in Maine Senate race
National Democrats are focusing on states like Kentucky and Georgia to fend off a furious effort by Republicans to retake the Senate. But Shenna Bellows thinks Maine may hold upset potential for her party, so much so that she's running and having some success recently with fundraising. – Dana Davidsen

Leading CNNMoney: Clinton adviser to lead Microsoft strategy
Mark Penn, the architect of Hillary Clinton's presidential run in 2008, is taking over as head of strategy at Microsoft. New Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wants to streamline oversight of the software giant's strategy, according to a source who was briefed on the plans but not authorized to discuss them publicly. Penn had been leading Microsoft's advertising and marketing strategy, but he split the overall strategy duties with two other executives. – David Goldman

Leading Cincinnati Enquirer: Boehner to Enquirer: Putin a 'thug'
The time has come to join with Europe to impose sanctions against Russia, House Speaker John Boehner said in an exclusive meeting at The Enquirer Monday. But Boehner did not say what sanctions should be taken in the wake of Russia’s threatening military action in Ukraine. “It’s time to stand up to (Vladimir) Putin,” Boehner said, calling the Russian leader a “thug.” “At what point do you say enough is enough. We are at that point.

Leading Drudge: Oscar Liberation!
12 Years a Slave was named best picture, while supporting actress honors went to the film's Lupita Nyong'o. John Ridley won best adapted screenplay.

Leading HuffPo: MoveOn Launches Campaign Targeting Republicans Over Obamacare Medicaid Expansion
MoveOn's billboard campaign, which begins on March 3, will detail how many local residents have been denied health care coverage without the expansion. The Texas billboard, for example, takes aim at Republican Gov. Rick Perry and reads: "Welcome to Texas! Where Gov. Perry has denied 1,046,000 Texans health care and now all Texans are paying for it. It’s like a whole other country." – Sabrina Siddiqui

Leading Politico: Rand Paul in crosshairs of tax evasion war
When a bipartisan Senate panel last week lambasted Swiss bank Credit Suisse for helping rich Americans evade billions in taxes, some watching the high-profile hearing couldn’t help but notice an elephant in the room.
That is, Sen. Rand Paul. – Rachel Bade

Leading New York Times: Pressure Rising as Obama Works to Rein In Russia
As Russia dispatched more forces and tightened its grip on the Crimean Peninsula on Sunday, President Obama embarked on a strategy intended to isolate Moscow and prevent it from seizing more Ukrainian territory even as he was pressured at home to respond more forcefully. – Peter Baker

HOT SOTS
The political bites of the day
– Feinstein: Russia doesn’t care about our threats –
CHAIRMAN OF THE SENATE SELECT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN, D-CALIFORNIA, IN A STATEMENT: “I do not believe that threats mean much to Russia’s leadership. Instead I believe the recognition and satisfaction of the interests of both sides are paramount.”

– Inhofe on Russia: ‘I warned this day was coming’ –
SEN. JAMES INHOFE, R-OKLAHOMA, IN A STATEMENT: “Throughout this Administration, I have also warned that if the United States does not maintain a ready and capable military, we would surrender our global influence and leave a vacuum that will be filled by Russia. I warned this day was coming, and it is here. President Obama's attempt to seek peace through apologetic diplomacy while defunding and dismantling our military has failed. Today our enemies don't fear us and our allies no longer respect us.”

– McCain: Ukraine crisis result of 'flexible' Obama –
MCCAIN TO CNN’S WOLF BLITZER: “This president tells - my famous overheard conversation - Vladimir that I'll be more flexible when I'm reelected. Well, look - what has this flexibility gotten us?”

– Candidate uses ‘American Hustle’ in newest campaign ad –
FORMER SEN. LARRY PRESSLER, R-SOUTH DAKOTA, IN A CAMPAIGN AD FOR ANOTHER TERM AS SENATOR AS AN INDEPENDENT: "American Hustle shows the FBI making real-life bribes to Washington politicians … I know, because as your U.S. senator, I turned them down … This is the type of honest leadership I would bring to Washington, D.C."

– Bibi stresses Israel’s need for protection against Iran nuclear power –
ISRAEL PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU TO REPORTERS IN A MEETING WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA: “The greatest challenge, undoubtedly, is to prevent Iran from acquiring the capacity to make nuclear weapons. I think that goal can be achieved if Iran is prevented from enriching Uranium and dismantles fully its nuclear installation facilities. Mr. President, if that goal can be achieved peacefully and through diplomacy, I can tell you no country has greater stake in this than Israel.”

– Kerry: This is about testing Iran –
SECRETARY OF STATE JOHN KERRY IN A SPEECH AT THE AMERICAN ISRAEL PUBLIC AFFAIRS COMMITTEE CONFERENCE (AIPAC): “Our eyes are wide open, and this process is not open-ended. This is not about trusting Tehran. This is about testing Tehran.”

– Reid on Ukraine: We should wait for the E.U., wait this out a while –
SENATE MAJORITY LEADER HARRY REID IN AN INTERVIEW WITH POLITICO: “The most important thing is for us – the United States – to make sure that we don’t go off without the European community … We have to work with them. Their interests are really paramount if we are going to do sanctions of some kind. We have to have them on board with us … We couldn’t do congressional action if we wanted, we can’t get in the damn building. I think we should just play this out for a while.”

TOP TWEETS
What stopped us in 140 characters or less

Jim Sciutto ‏(@jimsciutto)
Breaking: US pulls presidential delegation from #Sochi Paralympics, US athletes will still attend. #Ukraine

Kevin Bohn (@KevinBohnCNN)
On CNN McCain hits 2 Presidents "We have to regain credibility. We have none" now; says Bush should have done more when Georgia was invaded

Ben Sutcliffe (‏@SkyNewsBen)
$60bn wiped off the Moscow's Stock Exchange today, ending 10.8% down #skynews

Ray Kwong (‏@raykwong)
Michelle Obama plans weeklong visit to China this month. Malia and Sasha along for look-see. http://trov.es/1n1UCH3

Maeve Reston (@MaeveReston)
In final push to fuel Obamacare enrollment, WH says POTUS, FLOTUS & Cabinet Secs have reached 77 radio stations from Dallas to Miami

TVNewser (‏@tvnewser)
.@jaketapper and @TheLeadCNN adopt an American soldier: http://mbist.ro/1eXqDti

Chris Geidner @chrisgeidner
"Frozen" Surpasses "The Lion King" As The Highest Grossing Disney Animated Film Of All Time: buzzfeed.com/adambvary/froz… by @adambvary

Carl Lavin ‏(@FromCarl)
2.5 million RTs: Ellen’s selfie breaks Twitter http://cnn.it/Oscars2014

The Academy (@TheAcademy)
Sorry, our bad. #Oscars

TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer

Former Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Connecticut, is the CEO and Chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America. Dodd was appointed the position in March 2011. He leads the Association’s efforts to protect the intellectual property of filmmakers from cyber theft as well as protecting free speech and advancing technology to develop new platforms to deliver movies.

Dodd served in Congress for over 30 years, as both a representative and Senator from Connecticut. In the 2008 presidential cycle, Dodd ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination, withdrawing from the race in 2007 after polls showed he was falling far behind other candidates.

As for his movie resume, Dodd made a cameo appearance in the 1993 movie “Dave,” playing a role that came naturally.

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

Congrats to Matthew Gilbertson (@MattRGilbertson), Adam Sharp (@AdamS) and Steve Liguori (@SteveL3877) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check Trivia question.

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Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    "“We are where we are because of a feckless, misguided, delusional foreign policy that has put us in this place today. "

    Indeed. Invading both Afghanistan and Iraq without funding the wars, then staying in each for 10+ years and greatly depleting our military's human resources while jacking up military spending to the extent that it's now pretty much taken over our budget entirely, because hey, the red states really really love defense contractors...by definition "feckless', "ill-advised", "irresponsible" and "dangerous". And now that it's all over and the demonization of muslims didn't really give you your replacement for "commies" and your "war on terror" didn't quite give you your replacement for the Cold War, we're all wondering what you're going to attempt next to resurrect or fabricate a new one...because lord knows you guys grew up with that thinking, that mentality and, most of all, the belief that having a bogeyman and a "cold war" is terribly convenient for the political agendas and rhetoric it permits.

    March 3, 2014 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  2. Chris-E...al

    I may be wrong but if McCain and 0bama would fly into Kiev together i think the Russians would pull out of Ukraine ! After they all were treated for shock of course !

    March 3, 2014 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  3. Stuffitu

    Who is dumber Kerry or Obama? Just watched a clip of Kerry mocking Romney at the 2012 Democratic convention, for saying Russia was our greatest geopolitical foe. Love it. You won't see this stuff on the mainstream media. MSNBC has egg all over it regarding Sarah Palin correctly calling this one in 2008.

    March 3, 2014 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  4. Chris-E...al

    This Russian take over of Ukraine will likely effect our space program im sure in the comeing weeks! 0nly time will tell what that bill will be to return our astronauts safely home to earth .Can we go back to the I.S.S. ??? We will see what the Thug will do you never no in a K.G.B. chess game ! Putin may jack the space station to! Its His move to make ???

    March 3, 2014 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  5. J anthony

    The fear mongers in Congress are shameless parasites.you idiots out there howling for blood, what exactly do u want to see happen? This isn't about your ego. Ukraine is an excuse for western economic powers to get their claws into Russia.,only more thhouroughly than they did in the 90s. Your blind hatred makes you ignorant.. These conflicts are about power and resources,little else..They are also a distraction from dealing with structural root-cauaes of problems.

    March 3, 2014 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    GOP talking of foreign policy? Nonsense, their foreign policy put USA in neck-deep troubles with the cost of six trillion dollars on Iraq and Afghanistan, to day we can not feed our own people, no jobs-Bill. These guys are talking–non-sense.

    March 4, 2014 07:41 am at 7:41 am |