CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for July 18, 2014 | 5 p.m.
— n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle
‘UNSPEAKABLE’ OUTRAGE’: OBAMA ON DOWNING OF JET … President Barack Obama called the downing of a Malaysia Airlines jet in eastern Ukraine an "outrage of unspeakable proportion." U.S. officials believe it was likely hit by a surface-to-air missile operated from a rebel-held area. Obama said pro-Russian rebels have received a "steady flow" of arms and training from Russia, including anti-aircraft weapons. He called for a "credible international investigation" and an immediate ceasefire. He also said one U.S. citizen was aboard the doomed 777. – Laura Smith-Spark and Nic Robertson
QUOTE OF THE DAY: OBAMA: “We don't have time for propaganda. We don't have time for games.”
PENTAGON: NO BOOTS ON THE GROUND IN UKRAINE … “There is no effort right now – no plan, and the President's been very clear – no intention to have a U.S. military solution to the crisis inside Ukraine,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby told reporters.
TANKS ROLL IN GAZA, HAMAS WARNS OF 'HEAVY PRICE' … Israeli tanks and soldiers plunged deeper into Gaza as the fighting against Hamas led to a high toll of casualties. Most are civilians, the U.N. said. Israeli officials said they were focused on destroying tunnels used by Hamas and other groups in Gaza to smuggle supplies. Hamas condemned the ground incursion, saying Israel will pay a “heavy price for it.” IsraeliPrime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said without action, “the price that we would pay would be much greater." President Barack Obama spoke with Netanyahu and restated U.S. support for Israel's right to defend itself against Hamas rockets.– Michael Martinez, Michael Pearson and Ben Wedeman
RUN, LIZ, RUN! Sen. Elizabeth Warren received a standing ovation and chants of "Run Liz Run" as she took to the podium Friday at a major gathering of progressive leaders and activists. While the freshman senator from Massachusetts has repeatedly said she isn't running for the White House in 2016, a group titled "ReadyforWarren" was out in force at the annual Netroots Nation conference, held this year in Detroit. – Paul Steinhauser
THE BUZZ: CLINTON WHITE HOUSE VIEWED GINSBURG, SOTOMAYOR WITH SKEPTICISM … Previously confidential memos from Bill Clinton’s White House show how two women now on the Supreme Court – Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor - were strongly criticized by administration officials at the time as they were being considered for key judicial positions, according to newly released documents from the William J. Clinton Presidential Library. – Alan Silverleib and Lisa Desjardins
MAKRET WATCH: U.S. stocks close out the week with gains, rebounding after worries over Ukraine and Israel sparked a sell-off.
What is the name of the statue that sits atop the Capitol dome?
Did you miss it?
Leading CNNPolitics: Jeb Bush, Rubio lay low on border crisis
Three Republicans with lofty aspirations nearly had their political careers derailed over risky positions on immigration. But the crisis on the southern border involving an influx of nearly 60,000 migrant children this year from Central America may help Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Rick Perry repair a broken trust on immigration with conservatives. – Leigh Ann Caldwell
Leading CNNMoney: Amazon: Read all you want for $9.99
Amazon's long-rumored e-book subscription service is now a reality: "Kindle Unlimited." The company announced the $9.99-per-month service and said it would let users "freely read as much as they want from over 600,000 Kindle books." – Brian Stelter and James O'Toole
Leading HuffPo: Bold Stance: Christie on Hobby Lobby decision
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said he supports the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling, just weeks after saying on national television that he wouldn't give his opinion on it. Christie, a potential 2016 presidential contender, offered his position on the Hobby Lobby case during a meet-and-greet event in Iowa. The Democratic super PAC American Bridge caught the exchange on video and sent it to The Huffington Post. – Amanda Terkel
Leading Politico: Republicans separate in IRS probe
Two House Republican chairmen leading the charge against former IRS official Lois Lerner used to interview witnesses together, but now they’re calling in the IRS workers separately. Republicans say the shift is meaningless. – Rachel Bade
Leading New York Times: New Rule Permits Early Release for Thousands of Drug Offenders
Tens of thousands of prisoners serving time for federal drug offenses will be eligible to seek early release beginning next year. The United States Sentencing Commission, which voted in April to reduce the penalties for most drug crimes, voted unanimously on Friday to make that change retroactive. It will apply to nearly 50,000 federal inmates who are serving time under the old rules. – Matt Apuzzo
The political bites of the day
- Bibi: Israel to expand operations in Gaza -
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU IN A TELEVISED ADDRESS: “We chose to go to this operation after we exhausted the other options and with the understanding that without this operation the price we pay will be much higher.”
- Warren: We will overturn Hobby Lobby! -
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN AT THE NETROOTS CONFERENCE
“We believe that immigration has made this country strong and vibrant, and that means reform, and we are willing to fight for it! Oh, and we believe that corporations are not people, that women have right to their bodies, we will overturn Hobby Lobby, and we will fight for it!”
- Bill Clinton on Malaysian airliner: 'It's pretty tough' -
FORMER PRESIDENT CLINTON IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CNN: “Thinking about those people, knocked out of the sky, it's pretty tough ... This gathering, we do this on a regular basis, have these international AIDS conferences. And I try to go to all of them because I'm always so inspired by what other people are doing and what we can learn from them. Since I left office it's been kind of a regular part of my life. Thinking about those people, knocked out of the sky, it's pretty tough.”
Gut Check Full Service: The disaster claimed the lives of a number of people headed to the International AIDS Conference, scheduled to begin on Sunday in Melbourne, Australia, the International AIDS Society said Friday. Among the Victims Is top AIDS researcher Dr. Joep Lange, who was headed to the H.I.V. conference.– New York Times
- Christie now says he supports Hobby Lobby ruling -
CHRISTIE AT A CAMPAIGN EVENT FOR GOV. TERRY BRANSTAD IN IOWATHURSDAY: "Do I support the Supreme Court decision in the Hobby Lobby case? I do."
- McCain: Had I won in 2000, Iraq war might not have happened -
JOHN MCCAIN AT A CNN/NATIONAL JOURNAL POLITICS ON TAP EVENT: "If presented with that same evidence today, I would vote the same way … I respected and trusted the secretary of state, Colin Powell. But it’s obvious now, in retrospect, that Saddam Hussein – although he had used weapons of mass destruction – did not have the inventory that we seemed to have evidence of. Which now looking back on it, with the benefit of hindsight, (the evidence) was very flimsy.”
Gut Check DVR: Watch Inside Politics this Sunday at 8:30am with John King and guests Peter Hamby, Maggie Haberman, Molly Ball and Jonathan Martin.
And after catch State of the Union with Candy Crowley at 9am and again at noon for an exclusive interview with Senate Intelligence Chairman Dianne Feinstein, D-California, as well as House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, and Gen. Philip Breedlove, the NATO commander In charge Of U.S. intelligence in the investigation of the crash in flight MH17.
What stopped us in 140 characters or less
Sen. Tammy Baldwin (@SenatorBaldwin)
Proud that @WhiteHouse is signing executive order banning workplace discrimination against #LGBT workers of federal contractors & govt -TB
amy walter (@amyewalter)
In '08, McCain & Obama were hottest surrogates for midterm cands; in '14 it's Paul & Warren http://cookpolitical.com/story/7523
Chris Cillizza (@TheFix)
Hillary Clinton is going to be the Democratic nominee. So why is anyone else running?http://wapo.st/1jY0S5w
Rob Lockwood (@RobLockwood)
@TheFix um, Ready for Warren has an original theme song. HRC still doesn't. Advantage: Warren https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZqCFxg2ez44 …
Robert Costa (@costareports)
Rendell on Clintons watching Warren: they're paying attn, but "sagacious enough to understand" she couldn't raise $ http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/with-liberals-pining-for-a-clinton-challenger-ambitious-democrats-get-in-position/2014/07/18/b2892f80-0e1b-11e4-b8e5-d0de80767fc2_story.html …
Justin Bank (@bankonjustin)
Just as Obama calls for a ceasefire MT @TerryMoran: BREAKING: Shots fired by rebels at int'l team of investigators as they approach wreckage
Michael McAuliff (@mmcauliff)
OK, so Todd Akin just compared his treatment for 'legitimate rape' to Hillary's defending a child rape suspect- live: http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/todd-akin-firing-back/53c8486a78c90a0aab00030c …
Ron Fournier (@ron_fournier)
Twitter has arrived RT @NoahCRothman: Whoa RT @ron_fournier: Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. @CharlieCookDC . The Babe Ruth of #FFs
If at first u don't succeed sky diving is not for u
TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer
The bronze Statue atom the Capitol dome is called ‘Freedom.’ Designed by sculptor Thomas Crawford, the statue stands 19 feet 6 inches tall and weighs approximately 15,000 pounds.
GUT CHECK WINNER’S CIRCLE
(Why aren’t you in it?)
Congrats to Sean Evins (@Evins) for being the first to correctly answer today’s Gut Check trivia question. Hats off to all of our winners today who answered correctly.
WANT TO SIGN UP?
Do you have a friend who wants to sign up for GUT CHECK or our CNNPolitics Breaking News Alerts? Click here, log on and scroll down: http://www.cnn.com/profile/#my_alerts
Tips or comments? Our inbox awaits: firstname.lastname@example.org