April 29th, 2014
05:36 PM ET
5 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 29, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 29, 2014 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

NBA BANS STERLING FOR LIFE … Basketball Commissioner Adam Silver slapped Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling with a lifetime ban from the sport and a $2.5 million fineTuesday over racist remarks attributed to Sterling. Silver said the National Basketball Association "will begin immediately" the process to force Sterling to sell the team, which he has owned since the 1980s.

Asked about his message to Clippers fans, Silver said, “This league is far bigger than any one owner.” – Steve Almasy and Ashley Fantz


L.A. MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI: “When you get this many Lakers to stand up for this many Clippers, you know something big is happening in L.A.”

CANTOR TO MCALLISTER: LEAVE NOW … House Majority Leader Eric Cantor called Tuesday for Rep. Vance McAllister to resign. A senior aide to the Republican leader confirmed reports that Cantor met with the embattled Louisiana congressman and said he should step down. McAllister, who was caught on video kissing an aide in his office, announced Monday he would not seek re-election in November.

McAllister later said in a statement, Cantor "did ask me to consider resigning, but I respectfully disagree with him and my family is behind my decision." – Deirdre Walsh

GRIMM: I’M NOT LEAVING… One day after being indicted for various charges in a New York federal court, Rep. Michael Grimm returned to Capitol Hill and pledged to stay there. "I'm back to work doing what the people pay me to do: represent them. So that's what's going to continue going forward," the New York Republican told CNN. – Paul Courson and Deirdre Walsh and Ashley Killough

GOP LEADERS TO GRIMM: DROP DEAD: GOP leaders are considering withdrawing financial and strategic support for Rep. Michael Grimm's re-election bid, Republican sources familiar with the discussions told CNN. By withholding party help, the GOP would likely be effectively ceding the House seat to Democrats, who see the race as one of their top pick up chances this November. – Dana Bash

NEW LOW FOR OBAMA ... According to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, 41% of Americans say they approve of the job Obama's doing in the White House, an all-time low for the President in. And Obama's approval rating is down five-percentage points from the last ABC News/Washington Post survey, which was conducted in late February and early March. – Paul Steinhauser

CHRISTIE NAMES NEW PORT AUTHORITY CHIEF… New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Tuesday nominated former state Attorney General John Degnan, a Democrat, to be the new chairman of the Port Authority Board of Commissioners. Degnan, who served as state AG under Gov. Byrne, has also served as chief counsel at Chubb. Christie praised Degnan for his independence.

THE BUZZ: CLIPPERS MAKE A BOLD STATEMENT
Team website: http://www.nba.com/clippers/one

MARKET WATCH: Stocks close higher ahead of Fed policy announcement. Dow rises 86 points. NASDAQ and S&P gain less than 1%.

TRAIL TRIVIA
(Answer below)
Who is the only sitting U.S. senator to be killed in a duel?

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin's voter ID law
A federal judge on Tuesday struck down Wisconsin's voter ID law, saying it violated the Voting Rights Act and the U.S. Constitution. The law had already been blocked by a state judge. For the law to be put back in place, supporters would have to overturn both the state and federal decisions — a possibility that appears unlikely between now and the Nov. 4 election for governor. In Tuesday's decision, U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman in Milwaukee determined the law requiring voters to show one of a narrow set of photo IDs at the polls violated the federal Voting Rights Act and established an unconstitutional burden on the right to vote. He issued an injunction barring the law from being enforced. – Patrick Marley and Jason Stein

Gut Check Full Service: STATEMENT FROM ATTORNEY GENERAL VAN HOLLEN: “I am disappointed with the order and continue to believe Wisconsin’s law is constitutional. We will appeal.”

Leading CNNPolitics.com: Reid says he's receiving "ugly, vile, vulgar" threats
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, acknowledged Tuesday he is receiving what he called “ugly, vile, vulgar” threats after he labeled supporters of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy “domestic terrorists” last week. “Each day that goes by, it's hard for me to comprehend how ugly, vile, vulgar, and threatening people are, sending letters to my home and making other threats,” said Reid, speaking slowly to reporters, with long pensive pauses and even shaking his head. “So I don't know who's mad at me, but it's a long list, I guess,” Reid continued. On Monday the US Capitol police said it was looking into “threatening statements made toward Senator Reid.” – Dana Bash

Leading CNNMoney: The biggest tax breaks in 2014
Lambasting corporate tax "loopholes" makes for a rousing populist speech. But when it comes to how much revenue Uncle Sam gives up every year because of tax breaks, the greatest amount by far goes to individual taxpayers. And "by far," think close to 90%. – Jeanne Sahadi

Leading Drudge: Russia Threatens Astronauts Over Sanctions
Russia warned Tuesday that American astronauts on the International Space Station could be hurt by new US-led sanctions over the escalating crisis in Ukraine, where pro-Moscow militants seized more public buildings in the east. – Anna Smolchenko, with Michel Moutot in Lugansk

Leading HuffPo: John Boehner's Challenger Loses Job Over 'Electile Dysfunction' Ad
Speaker of the House John Boehner's (R-Ohio) primary challenger was dismissed from his adjunct professorship at a small Christian college over a web ad in which he said Boehner suffers from "electile dysfunction." J.D. Winteregg had taught at Cedarville University in Ohio for the past three years. Winteregg's campaign released an ad fashioned after commercials for Cialis, the erectile dysfunction drug. – Smantha Lachman

Leading Politico: DOD under fire for farming out sex-assault survey
Pentagon officials confirmed Tuesday they’ve entered into a deal with the RAND Corp. to take over the biennial study of gender issues for active duty military members — and those results will be sent to President Barack Obama by the end of the year. The last version of that report counted an estimated 26,000 unwanted sexual contacts in 2012 and gave victim advocates a powerful data point as they pushed Congress and the White House to make major changes to the military justice system. – Darren Samuelsohn

Leading New York Times: Ending Asia Trip, Obama Defends His Foreign Policy
While he flatly rejected the Republican portrait of him as feckless in the face of crises like Syria, Mr. Obama seemed to be wrestling with a more nuanced critique, that aside from one or two swings for the fences — the nuclear negotiations with Iran, for example — his foreign policy had become a game of small ball. – Mark Landler

HOT SOTS
The political bites of the day

– Garcetti gives Silver a thumbs up: –
L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti TO CNN’S Christiane Amanpour ON NBA COMMISSIONER ADAM SILVER’S REMARKS: “Those are exactly the sorts of strong statements we need to stand up against these hateful comments.  And again, my sentiments tonight are with those players.  And I think this has taken hopefully a burden off their shoulders so they can concentrate on what they do well.”

– Fudge on Sterling’s fate: ‘Best thing that could have happened’ –
Congressional Black Caucus CHAIR Rep. Marcia Fudge: "I think it was the best thing that could have happened – not just for the Clippers, but for the United States of America – to take into consideration that we can’t allow people, whether it be a sports team or head of any other institution – to speak that kind of vile language and get away with it. I'm very pleased."

– Mitch McConnell on Sterling punishment: ‘Sounds good to me’ –
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL, R-KENTUCKY, TO CNN’S DANA BASH: “It's (an) outrageous, unacceptable comment. Have they now made a recommendation?” BASH: “To ban him for, for life - the harshest possible penalty. Ban him for life from the games. A $2.5 million fine. And Silver is urging him to sell the team.” MCCONNELL: “Sounds pretty good to me.”

– Biden: ‘Kick the crap’ out those who commit sexual assault –
VICE PRESIDENT BIDEN releasing A White House Task Force REPORT ON STUDENTS AND Sexual Assault: Where I came from, “if a man raised his hand to a woman, you had the job to kick the crap out of him.”

– Boehner: Up to Obama to pass immigration reform –
HOUSE SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER AT A HILL STAKEOUT: “We're going to continue to work with our members and have discussions to see if there's a way forward. But the president has to take action himself. He's got to show the American people and show the Congress that he can be trusted to implement the law.”

– Lew: Russia’s feeling the economic pinch from sanctions –
TREASURY SECRETARY JACK LEW AT A HEARING ON CAPITOL HILL: “There has been a quite substantial deterioration in Russia's already weak economy. We see it in their stock exchange, we see it in their exchange rate. We see it in a number of important economic indicators. They were downgraded to one notch above junk.”

– Jindal: Democrats don’t think much of Americans –
GOV. BOBBY JINDAL, R-LOUISIANA, IN A CNN OP-ED: “While it is true that we as Republicans need to do a better job articulating our principles and being the party of bold new ideas, the Democrats have a far worse problem. Democrats need to stop being the party that thinks Americans themselves are stupid. … If The Nation, President Obama, or anyone else on the left thinks the American people are too dumb to pick a school or health plan, they should say so publicly — and in so many words.”

TOP TWEETS
What stopped us in 140 characters or less

Vaughn Sterling (‏@vplus)
JUST IN: Clippers statement: "“We wholeheartedly support & embrace the decision by...Adam Silver today. Now the healing process begins.”

Brian Ries (@moneyries)
Donald Sterling told @FoxNews the LA Clippers are 'not for sale’ before Silver's announcement video.foxnews.com/v/352064361000…

Cory Booker (‏@CoryBooker)
Too soon man, too soon RT @charlessahm Who wants to buy the #Clippers with me and move them to #Newark? (PS I'm only good for like $1,000)

Josh Kraushaar ‏(@HotlineJosh)
Going the Mark Sanford route RT @dfriedman33: NRCC Won't Back Grimm http://nydn.us/1m6SWLB

DCCC National Press Secretary Josh Schwerin (‏@JoshSchwerin)
So far "zero tolerance" means not pushing Grimm out and letting him keep his $100k from leadership

The Lead CNN (‏@TheLeadCNN)
Newly released Benghazi documents reinforce White House push that video was to blame http://cnn.it/1ixuTHp – @jaketapper reports

Luke Russert (‏@LukeRussert)
#GOP members in #Louisiana delegation call onVitter & Landrieu to put a hold on Burwell's nomination to HHS http://scalise.house.gov/sites/scalise.house.gov/files/documents/Letter%20to%20Senators%20Landrieu%20and%20Vitter%20on%20Burwell%20Nomination%204_29_14.pdf

Paul Steinhauser ‏(@psteinhauserCNN)
The new spots announced by the US Chamber of Commerce brings to nearly 20 the # of ads the group's run in '14 cycle http://cnn.it/1jefGd5

daveweigel (‏@daveweigel)
Sarah Palin endorses Taylor Griffin in primary against anti-war GOP Rep. Walter Jones. #NC03

Taylor Griffin ‏(@tgriff7)
"I consider Governor Palin to be the epitome of a principled conservative." http://bit.ly/1rJBtMt  pic.twitter.com/qQU2eVbZ16

Cassie Cope ‏@cassielcope)
ICYMI: @CondoleezzaRice is coming to South Carolina to campaign for U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham. http://www.thestate.com/2014/04/28/3414976/sc-politics-condoleezza-rice-to.html?sp=/99/132/312/169/#storylink=cpy … #buzz #thestate

David Daniel (‏@CNNLADavid)
No relation! RT @Tennessean What a coinkydink! Jack R. Daniel runs for #TN House to represent Lynchburg district, home of @JackDaniels_US

TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer

California Senator David Broderick, the only sitting senator to die in a duel, was killed in September 1859. Broderick, an anti-slavery Democrat, was killed in a duel with the state’s chief justice, David Terry. Terry accused Broderick of betraying the Democratic Party, an assertion which prompted Broderick to call Terry a dishonest judge and a "miserable wretch." Terry then challenged Broderick to a duel.

The two met south of San Francisco at Lake Merced. Terry shot Broderick in the chest. In 1889, Terry himself was gunned down after threatening the life of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Field.

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

Congrats to Steve Liguori (@SteveL3877) and Erin Robinson (@SomeWherErin) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check trivia question.

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Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    "We've all heard of the comments that were recently made by Mr. Sterling from the LA Clippers, who is a Democrat"
    -Sean Duffy (R-WI)

    Again: STERLING IS A REGISTERED REPUBLICAN. Is even this outrageously false claim by the GOP/Teatrolls too dangerous for you to correct, CNN? I mean, there's a lot...A LOT...of ad revenue to be made this year off AFP and Crossroads ads for the midterms....wouldn't want to lose out on any of it by correcting their lies, would you?

    April 29, 2014 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  2. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I saw the news conference.
    Mr. Silver exhibited the appropriate and credible gravitas.
    Sterling's statements sounded to me as if they came from someone who's been speaking thusly for a loooong time. HIs general manager's willingness to believe that he spoke those words further reinforce this belief.
    You can't and shouldn't speak thusly about any human being.
    You definitely can't and shouldn't speak thusly about human beings that are making you richer than Croesus.
    Maybe now Mr. Sterling will have time to book himself a much needed hair and facial appointment.
    Every cloud has a silver lining....

    April 29, 2014 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    "And, while he may not have said so in the most politically correct fashion, he is absolutely correct."

    You do realize that slaves were regularly beaten, killed, lynched, raped, malnourished, treated as property, not considered human, had their spouses and children taken from them never to be seen again, lived in abject poverty and squalor, denied any education, sold like cattle, verbally and physically abused, etc....don't you? That REAL slavery is one of if not THE most dehumanizing and unholy sins and abuses that one human being can visit upon another and that nothing aside from pure genocide really compares to it? That your insistence on the analogy is backwards, retrogressive, ignorant and deeply offensive and insulting to the African American community and minorities in this country in general? That it diminishes and dismisses offhand the abhorrent history of racial injustice in this country, the suffering (and war) that it caused and the lingering institutionalized remnants of it that still exist, not to mention its objectively measurable contributions to black and minority culture in his country to this day and their experience of a second parallel Amurika that you literally know nothing about? Of course you don't. Please proceed. Your demographic Armageddon can't come soon enough, conservatives.

    April 29, 2014 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  4. Chris-E...al

    My gut tells me america is hungry for a big helping of good common sense . Vote the democrats out because you cant fix stupid .

    April 29, 2014 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  5. Bobby Sherman

    How much do you want to bet he's a Republican?

    April 29, 2014 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  6. DWB

    Maybe the thing with the Ball owner will be a wake up call for those who are. Not conected to Sports but are POLITICIANS OR wana BE POLITICIANS. who open their mouthes and say whatever about our President Will stop and think about what they are saying. Including DONALD TRUMP.Enough is enough of this crazy stuff. The Team owner has started a. Movement that includes Politicians, Journalist,President wanna bees and others. Watch your words because Black people are tired of this racist stuff.

    April 29, 2014 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  7. Hooper

    Someone took out the trash.

    April 29, 2014 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  8. tom l

    Like I have said on several occasions, you will never be able to eradicate all racists. However, if you don't notice the reaction and complete disgust and disdain for Sterling and the incredible universal support for the Clippers than you just don't want to see the progress this country has made.

    April 29, 2014 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  9. ED1

    I guess you don't have the right to a private discussion and freedom of speech in the NBA only other people have that right.

    Don't agree with what he said but I thought we had freedom of speech but not for everybody what a shame.

    To many one way streets in this Country.

    April 29, 2014 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  10. Thomas

    According to the Los Angeles Board of Elections, Sterling is a registered Republican, who first registered in California in 1974.

    Rand Paul / Bristol Palin 2016
    Dancing Aqua Buddhas

    April 29, 2014 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  11. Thomas

    Cliven Bundy / Donald Sterling 2016

    BLM Range Fed !

    April 30, 2014 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  12. Marie MD

    What a lovely 80+ man of any race.
    He makes millions from those same Black men he doesn't want his granddaughter, excuse me, his mistress to be seen in pictures with but she can bring them home and sleep with them.
    What world of family values and somebody please tell the SCOTUS that racism is not alive and well in the US.

    April 30, 2014 06:29 am at 6:29 am |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Clippers owner Donald Sterling's comments created an impossible situation moving forward. Mavericks owner Marc Cuban pointed out that ousting Sterling could be the start of a slippery slope. Yes, it would if we were to not exercise some common sense judgement. As Cuban went on to say, a person has a right to act like a moron, which I would wholeheartedly agree with. But, I also feel that when someone's moronic actions starts to accumulate innocent victims, then the line has been crossed. Sterling's comments clearly crossed that line because he was acting on his views, and imposing those views on others. He had to go.

    April 30, 2014 07:46 am at 7:46 am |