CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 10, 2014 | 5 p.m.
– n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
OBAMA: “I’M STANDING HERE TODAY” BECAUSE OF LBJ … Joined by three former presidents Thursday to mark the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, President Barack Obama honored Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society and the historic measures that helped pave his way to the White House. "New doors swung open for everybody. Not all at once, but they swung open," Obama said. They "swung open for me" and "that's why I'm standing here today."– Kevin Liptak
PELOSI: GOP HOLDING UP IMMIGRATION REFORM DUE TO RACE …
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi suggested Thursday that Republicans are blocking action on immigration reform because of racial issues. "I think race has something to do with the fact that they're not bringing up an immigration bill," Pelosi told reporters at her weekly press conference. “I've heard (House Republicans) say to the Irish, 'If it was just you, this would be easy.'"
Pelosi sidestepped a question about whether race has contributed to the icy relationship between congressional Republicans and Attorney General Eric Holder, but said Hill Republicans "generally speaking…are disrespectful to the representatives of the President's administration, very disrespectful."- Deirdre Walsh
BOEHNER: ‘THERE’S NO ISSUE OF RACE HERE’: “The frustration is, is that the American people have not been told the truth about what happened at the IRS,” the Speaker said at his weekly press conference. “The American people have not been told the truth about what happened in Fast and Furious. The administration has not told the American people the truth about Benghazi.”
HOUSE PANEL VOTES TO HOLD LERNER IN CONTEMPT … The Republican-led House Oversight Committee voted 21-12 Thursday to charge former IRS official Lois Lerner with contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about the agency's targeting of conservative and other groups. The vote sets up a full debate on the House floor, followed by possible court battle over the Fifth Amendment and a potential standoff with the Justice Department. – Lisa Desjardins
STATEMENT FROM LERNER ATTORNEY WILLIAM TAYLOR: “We are not surprised by today’s partisan contempt vote. The notion that the majority is engaged in objective oversight or fact-finding is pure fiction. The vote is the latest event in the majority’s never-ending effort to keep the IRS story alive through this fall’s mid-term elections.”
HOUSE PASSES RYAN BUDGET … The House approved Rep. Paul Ryan’s 2015 budget in a largely party-line 219-205 vote. Twelve Republicans opposed it; no Democrats voted for it. The plan would cut over $5 trillion in spending, repeal Obamacare and make dramatic changes to Medicare and Medicaid. Ryan’s plan has no chance of clearing the Democratic-controlled Senate, bit promises to be a key issue for both parties in the midterms.
CNN Opinion from Rep. Paul Ryan: A budget that trusts the American people
CNN Opinion from Rep. Steve Israel: The Republican budget: An assault on the middle class
RYAN’S PATH TO PROSPERITY MIGHT BE ROCKY ROAD IN IOWA …
With his budget approved by the House, Paul Ryan is turning his attention to Iowa to headline a high-profile Republican event that will only fuel speculation he's laying the groundwork for a potential presidential run in 2016. – Deirdre Walsh
OBAMCARE KEY FOR REPUBLICANS IN THE MIDTERMS … Sixty-four percent of registered Republicans in a new national survey say a candidate’s stance on the Affordable Care Act will be very important in their voting decision this November, compared to 52% of Democrats and 45% of independents.
THE BUZZ: COLBERT TO SUCCEED LETTERMAN ... Stephen Colbert will succeed David Letterman as host of "The Late Show," CBS announced on Thursday, one week after Letterman told his audience that he would retire sometime in 2015. CBS said Colbert had signed a five-year contract to helm the iconic late-night broadcast.
Colbert naturally had the last laugh in Thursday's news release.
"Simply being a guest on David Letterman's show has been a highlight of my career," he stated. "I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave's lead. I'm thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth." – Brian Stelter
RUSH’S TAKE: CBS Declares War on Heartland of America … “No longer is comedy going to be a covert assault on traditional American values.”
MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks take a drubbing, with tech shares hard hit. NASDAQ skids 3%. Dow loses 268 points. S&P 500 falls 2%.
Who was the last president to never earn a college degree?
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics.com: Bill Clinton stumps for congressional candidate, family
Former President Bill Clinton showcased two types of politics on Thursday - electoral politics and in-law relations.Standing in a ballroom flanked by campaign signs in downtown Philadelphia, Clinton proudly endorsed would-be Rep. Marjorie Margolies for Congress, telling the audience that if the former congresswoman returned to Congress, she would "make you proud, she will vote right… she will do things that stand up she needs to stand up and she will cooperate when we need cooperation." – Dan Merica
Leading Star Ledger: S&P downgrades New Jersey's debt rating, criticizing Christie's budgets
Financial analysts at Standard & Poor’s downgraded New Jersey’s debt rating today, flagging Gov. Chris Christie’s budget practices as something that should give pause to investors. – Salvador Rizzo
Leading Drudge: Holder Snaps
A fed-up Attorney General Eric Holder is accusing congressional critics of launching “unprecedented, unwarranted, ugly and divisive” attacks on him and the Obama administration. During a speech to the National Action Network in New York on Wednesday lauding the organization’s effort to advance racial equality, a heated Holder went a little off-script.
Leading HuffPo: John Boehner Punts Unemployment Extension To White House
What would make House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) support a Senate-passed bill to restore long-term unemployment insurance to more than 2 million Americans? Ask the White House … When asked on Thursday whether he (Boehner) would heed calls from the bill's Republican co-sponsors to take up the measure in the House, Boehner said that the next steps were up to Obama. – Sabrina Siddiqui and Arthur Delaney
Leading Politico: Pressure mounts for Vance McAllister’s resignation
The chairman of the Louisiana Republican Party called on Rep. Vance McAllister to resign. “Mr. McAllister’s extreme hypocrisy is an example of why ordinary people are fed up with politics,” Roger Villere Jr. said in a statement Thursday. McAllister has become embroiled in scandal after a video surfaced this week showing him in a romantic encounter with a staffer. Speaker John Boehner told reporters Thursday that McAllister has “decisions he has to make.” – John Bresnahan, Jake Sherman and James Hohmann
Statement from Governor Jindal: "Congressman McAllister’s behavior is an embarrassment and he should resign. He says he wants privacy to work on his issues with his family. The best way to get privacy and work on putting his family back together is to resign from Congress."
The political bites of the day
– Pelosi: I’d rather pass immigration reform than win back the House –
HOUSE MINORITY LEADER NANCY PELOSI TELLS POLITICO: “It’s the biggest thing that we can do, and that’s why I’ve said to the speaker, to the press, to these groups, I would rather pass (a) comprehensive immigration reform bill than win the elections in November … There’s nothing we could accomplish in winning that would be as big as passing immigration reform.”
– Democratic Senate Majority PAC does damage control for Braley –
SENATE MAJORITY PAC IN A NEW AD BACKING BRUCE BRALEY IN IOWA: “Around here you don’t get too far without knowing your roots. Take Bruce Braley. Family farmers like us know him. His mom and dad met at a farming community event. Bruce grew up working his way through school… Bruce led the fight to pass the new farm bill and he’s been a leader on renewable fuels. So people can say what they like, but we know Bruce and we know he’s got our back.”
– Cummings draws McCarthy analogy –
REP. ELIJAH CUMMINGS, D-MARYLAND, AT HOUSE PANEL’S LERNER CONTEMPT MEETING: “I cannot cast a vote that would place me on the same page of the history books as Senator Joseph McCarthy or the House Un-American Activities Committee. And I do not draw that comparison lightly. Today, this committee is trying to do something that even Joe McCarthy could not do in the 1950s - something virtually unprecedented.”
– DNC hits MSNBC over alleged double standard –
DNC COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR MO ELLEITHEE IN A LETTER TO MSNBC PRESIDENT PHIL GRIFFIN: "For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why (“Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough) would be allowed to speak at a Republican event, but other MSNBC personalities were not allowed to speak at Democratic events. … Seems like a pretty big double standard."
– Carter knocks Hillary Clinton's handling of the Mideast –
FORMER PRESIDENT JIMMY CARTER IN AN INTERVIEW WITH TIME: "I know from experience that the best way to have the United States be a mediator is for the president himself to be deeply involved. In this occasion, when Secretary Clinton was Secretary of State, she took very little action to bring about peace. It was only John Kerry’s coming into office that reinitiated all these very important and crucial issues."
– de Blasio: Would you prefer Bush? –
NEW YORK MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO ON HIS HABITUAL TARDINESS: “George W. Bush was punctual.”
Gut Check Full Service: He was 35 minutes late for his New York Times interview.
What stopped us in 140 characters or less
Jim Acosta (@JimAcostaCNN)
Sebelius at Senate hearing says 7.5 million people have signed up for insurance under Obamacare, 400k more since last week's POTUS event.
Aaron Blake (@AaronBlakeWP)
12 GOP votes against Ryan budget include Ralph Hall (faces primary) and Broun, Gingrey and Kingston (all #GASEN candidates)
Reince Priebus (@Reince)
One of two Dems who voted for @BarackObama's #budget is retiring. The lack of seriousness is disturbing. gop.cm/60159rAF
Alana Horowitz (@achorowitz)
Rep. Vance McAllister turned to Duck Dynasty's Willie Robertson for advice following cheating scandal http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/willie-robertson-advice-kissing-congressman-vance-mcallister …
Ashley Killough (@KilloughCNN)
Hillary Clinton knocks Supreme Court's campaign finance decisions http://cnn.it/1kJl9HE | by @danmericaCNN
Tim Miller (@Timodc)
Hillary's taking advantage of letting her allies build a campaign while she avoids the scrutiny http://www.cnn.com/2014/04/10/opinion/miller-hillary-clinton-candidate/index.html …
Alex Bolton (@alexanderbolton)
Angus King, the independent senator from Maine, leaves open the possibility of joining the GOP caucus http://bit.ly/R5jkfk
Elahe Izadi (@ElaheIzadi)
Sen. Angus King on Hill story about him thinking it caucusing with Dems: must have been a slow news day.
Paul Steinhauser (@psteinhauserCNN)
Jeanne Shaheen touts her impressive fundraising figures hours before Scott Brown formally kicks off his NH Senate bid http://cnn.it/1sFH7AN
Bill Carter (@wjcarter)
Colbert: "I won't be doing the new show in character, so we'll all get to find out how much of him was me. I'm looking forward to it."
Doug Winship (@dawinship)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus sports tattoo of the Constitution on cover of Rolling Stone—and nothing else (cept Hancock’s sig) http://ace.mu.nu/archives/348445.php …
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (@OfficialJLD)
#TBT John Hancock not part of tattoo.It is a birthmark.1962 photo is proof. Apologies 2 @RollingStone #crackexcuse pic.twitter.com/h9fYXGqBSo
TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer
President Harry S. Truman was the last president to hold office without a college degree. Truman went to business school and later attended law school at night, but never received a degree from either.
Eleven presidents never earned a college degree. Interestingly, while Millard Fillmore never received a degree, he helped found what is now SUNY Buffalo. George Washington also never received a college degree, but left a bequest for the university in the nation’s capital that is now named for him.
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