CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 02, 2014 | 5 p.m.
— n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
OBAMA’S BIG GREEN GAMBLE: DEMANDING CARBON EMISSIONS CUTS ... President Barack Obama is using his executive authority to take his strongest action yet against climate change – proposing new EPA regulations. The chief of the Environmental Protection Agency will announce a proposal Monday that would require power plants to cut their carbon emissions by 30% by 2030, a source briefed on the matter told CNN. -Josh Levs, Kevin Bohn and Erin McPike
COAL STATE LAWMAKERS, CANDIDATES BLAST OBAMA’S MOVE:
1) Wyoming (39% total U.S. coal production)
SEN. JOHN BARRASSO, R-WYOMING, IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CNN: “Our economy is on the ropes right now and these regulations are just a one-two punch.”
2) West Virginia (11% total U.S. coal production)
SEN. JOE MANCHIN, D-WEST VIRGINIA, IN A STATEMENT: “Today’s rule appears to be more about desirability rather than reliability or feasibility, with little regard for rising consumer prices, the effects on jobs and the impact on the reliability of our electric grid.”
3) Kentucky (8% total U.S. coal production)
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL, R-KENTUCKY, IN A STATEMENT: “Today’s announcement is a dagger in the heart of the American middle class, and to representative Democracy itself.”
ALISON LUNDERGAN GRIMES, D-KENTUCKY, IN A STATEMENT: “When I'm in the U.S. Senate, I will fiercely oppose the President's attack on Kentucky's coal industry because protecting our jobs will be my number one priority."
ENDANGERED SOUTHERN DEMOCRATS DISTANCE THEMSELVES ... Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-Louisiana, says that while “it is important to reduce carbon in the atmosphere, this should not be achieved by EPA regulations. Congress should set the terms, goals and timeframe.” Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Arkansas, says he has “serious concerns that the EPA’s proposal will undermine the affordable and reliable electricity Arkansans currently enjoy.”
QUOTE OF THE DAY: HOUSE SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER REACTS TO OBAMA’S PLAN: “The president’s plan is nuts. There’s really no more succinct way to describe it.”
CONTROVERSY SURROUNDS BERGDAHL SOLDIER SWAP... Bowe Bergdahl, the former prisoner of war released over the weekend in a swap for five Taliban prisoners, is receiving treatment in a German hospital following five years in captivity. The U.S. says Bergdahl's health was rapidly deteriorating, forcing the government to act fast to secure his freedom ... (But) lawmakers are questioning whether the U.S. should negotiate with terrorists and whether the White House violated federal law by not notifying Congress in advance of the Taliban prisoners' transfer.
“The United States does not leave our men and women in uniform behind,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Monday.
FELLOW SOLDIERS CALL BERGDAHL A DESERTER, NOT A HERO ... Questions surround the circumstances of Bergdahl's disappearance. Conflicting details have since emerged about how the militants managed to capture Bergdahl. Published accounts have varied widely, from claims that he walked off the post to one account that he was grabbed from a latrine. According to firsthand accounts from soldiers in his platoon, Bergdahl, while on guard duty, shed his weapons and walked off the observation post with nothing more than a compass, a knife, water, a digital camera and a diary. – Jake Tapper
One former Army Sgt. Appearing on “The Lead with Jake Tapper” Monday called Bergdahl “at best a deserter, at worst a traitor.” U.S. Army Sgt. Josh Korder, who served with Bergdahl in Afghanistan, said Bergdahl’s actions were a “very big betrayal.”
THE BUZZ: APPLE UNVEILS iOS AND OS X YOSEMITE ... Apple unveiled iOS 8, an update to the operating system that powers iPhones and iPads. It will be available for download in the fall. One of the biggest additions to iOS 8 is a new HealthKit application. The app will monitor users' heart rates, sleep, weight and blood pressure among other health-related information. HealthKit will allow clinicians at the Mayo Clinic to send health information to a user's app, which can in turn send that data to a user's primary physician. It also syncs with third-party fitness devices and apps. – CNN Money’s David Goldman
THE KICKER: GOOD TIMING, APPLE ... A new report shows U.S. consumer spending has hit a six-year high. Americans' reports of daily spending spiked in May, averaging a six-year high of $98 - $10 higher than the April average. This is also up from May 2013 ($90), and is the best figure for the month of May since 2008. – Gallup’s Justin McCarthy
MARKET WATCH: S&P 500 finishes at third straight record high, Dow sets second straight closing mark. NASDAQ slips 0.1%.
Which book sparked a series of environmental protests, contributing to President Nixon’s decision to create the Environmental Protection Agency in 1970?
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics: Rubio in Iowa on eve of key primary
Marco Rubio's in Iowa Monday. The first-term Republican senator from Florida is in the Hawkeye State to campaign for state senator Joni Ernst, the frontrunner in Tuesday's GOP Senate primary. – Paul Steinhauser
Leading CNNMoney:Your car is a computer and can be hacked
Imagine driving down the highway at 70 miles per hour, when suddenly the wheel turns hard right. You crash. And it was because someone hacked your car. It's not far-fetched science fiction. It's the near-term future today's hackers are warning about. – Jose Pagliery
Gut Check Full Service: Check out the new CNN Money website page as part of the brand’s June 1 relaunch. CNN Money also released three new Flipboard magazines today, called "Cool cars: Hot wheels and deals" Cybersecurity: How safe are you? and "Future of media with Brian Stelter".
Leading Drudge: Hero Deserter?
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the last known American POW, was freed after five years in captivity — an ordeal that began and ended in Afghanistan under a shroud of mystery. The Taliban turned over Bergdahl Saturday morning to US special forces in exchange for five notorious Islamic militants who had been held at Guantanamo Bay and will be sent to Qatar, where they will stay for a year under the terms of the trade. – New York Post’s Michael Gartland
Leading HuffPo: Elizabeth Warren On What A Presidential Bid Would Mean
Asked whether she would be running for president in 2016, Elizabeth Warren framed the coming debate as one of defining values at a critical moment. She stopped short of committing to or rejecting a White House bid, and her answer will likely further speculation about a Warren candidacy.– Ryan Grimm
Leading Politico: The Obama Paradox
In interviews with more than 60 people who have had close dealings with President Obama — his aides, lawmakers, friends, historians, critics and outside advisers — the portrait emerges of a president shadowed by a deepening awareness that his time and power are finite, and that two-thirds of his presidency is already in the past tense. – Carrie Budoff Brown and Jennifer Epstein
Leading New York Times: Unveiling New Carbon Plan, E.P.A. Focuses on Flexibility
The regulation is likely to stand as President Obama’s last chance to substantially shape domestic policy and as a defining element of his legacy. The president, who failed to push a sweeping climate change bill through Congress in his first term, is now acting on his own by using his executive authority under the 1970 Clean Air Act to issue the regulation. – Coral Davenport
The political bites of the day
– GOP’s EPA talking point: This hurts the middle class –
SEN. PAT ROBERTS, R-KANSAS, “Today’s announcement of more draconian EPA regulations from the Obama Administration threatens not only our nation’s stated goal of energy independence, but every middle class family.”
SEN. RAND PAUL, R-KENTUCKY, IN A STATEMENT: “This latest assault on our economy by President Obama will destroy jobs here in Kentucky and across the country, and will hurt middle class families.”
HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER ERIC CANTOR: “Today, President Obama's EPA launched its latest assault on hard working middle class families.”
– Shaheen: Carbon emission reductions will protect Granite State –
SEN. JEANNE SHAHEEN, D-NEW HAMPSHIRE:, IN A STATEMENT: “For too long the Midwest has been allowed to lag behind New Hampshire and other New England states in addressing carbon pollution. The draft EPA rules will get Midwest power plants to do what power plants in New England have already done and will decrease the air pollution that moves from the Midwest to our states.”
– Psaki won’t label Bergdahl a “deserter” –
QUESTION AT STATE DEPARTMENT PRESS CONFERENCE: “Would you categorize Sergeant Bergdahl as a deserter?”
STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESWOMAN JEN PSAKI: “We would characterize him as a member of the military who was detained while in combat.”
– Donilon: Taliban doesn’t need incentives to negotiate –
FORMAL NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER TOM DONILON: “With respect to incentivizing the Taliban and others who we are at war with in Afghanistan from taking prisoners - they don’t need a lot of incentive. We have been there for over a decade and they know the value of being able to take an American soldier captive. I don’t think they need any incentive to do that, frankly. I don’t find that argument persuasive.”
What stopped us in 140 characters or less
CNN NationalSecurity (@NatSecCNN)
Defense official tells @barbarastarrcnn #Bergdahl is in stable condition, “receiving treatment for conditions that require hospitalization”
Pete Dominick (@PeteDominick)
Netanyahu traded 1,027 Palestinian prisoners for 1 Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit, & Israeli public supported him. ow.ly/xx0FX
Gov. Bobby Jindal (@BobbyJindal)
When you look at the rap sheets of the 5 terrorists we released, it is ugly. http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2014/06/02/bowe-bergdahl-release-good-news-very-bad-deal/ …
Harry Enten (@ForecasterEnten)
When you still got a lot of undecideds and Ernst is at 35-37 percent, she's going to clear 35 percent almost every time.
Lis Smith (@Lis_Smith)
Great front page for @GovernorOMalley in today's @baltimoresun: "MD leads on climate rules" #climateaction pic.twitter.com/dsPLT3tuDg
Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman)
‘@EricCantor sent out a mailing saying he’s the 'no 1 person standing between the American ppl & immigration reform’ politi.co/1n49eX6
Domenico Montanaro (@DomenicoPBS)
Republican changes party to Dem and name to Cesar Chavez in attempt to win House seat he lost (h/t; @rachelwellford http://azcapitoltimes.com/news/2014/06/02/az-republican-scott-fistler-changes-name-to-cesar-chavez-party-to-democrat-for-new-congressional-bid/ …
Jeff Simon (@jjsimonWP)
NOT THE ONION: Female-named hurricanes kill more than male hurricanes because people don’t respect them. wapo.st/1hsy6Jc
TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer
The Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1970 due in part to changes in public opinion about the environment and pollution stemming from the publication of Rachel Carson's 1962 book "Silent Spring." The book addressed a range of environmental concerns, including pesticides and both air and water pollution. Carson’s book brought together over 14,000 scientists, lawyers and others across the country to work in concert toward the goal of protecting the environment.
The EPA compares the role of “Silent Spring” in the environmental movement to the role that “Uncle Tom's Cabin” played in the abolitionist movement. The “EPA today may be said without exaggeration to be the extended shadow of Rachel Carson,” the agency’s website says.
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