June 24th, 2014
05:41 PM ET
4 weeks ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 24, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 24, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

TONIGHT: FINAL CHAPTER IN MISSISSIPPI SHOWDOWN ... State Sen. Chris McDaniel narrowly edged out six-term incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran in the primary three weeks ago, but with neither man cracking 50%, the contest has moved on to a competitive runoff that will be decided tonight. Mississippi law allows anyone to vote in the runoff, meaning Democrats can go to the polls so long as they didn't vote in the Democratic primary and they don't plan to support their party candidate in the general election. The question is whether Cochran can shore up enough support to beat back the tea party wave against him. McDaniel got about 1,400 more votes than Cochran in the primary, and national conservative groups have actively rallied around the challenger. – Dana Bash and Ashley Killough
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June 23rd, 2014
05:47 PM ET
4 weeks ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 23, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 23, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

KERRY TO IRAQIS: WE’VE GOT YOUR BACK IF YOU UNITE AGAINST MILITANTS ... U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met Iraqi leaders Monday as radical Sunni militants continue their march toward Baghdad during the country's tensest time since the U.S. withdrawal of troops in 2011. "The future of Iraq depends on decisions made in the next few days and weeks," Kerry said after meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, the man who some observers say needs to step down ... “Our support will be intense, sustained," and will be effective if Iraqi leaders unite to face the militant threat, he said. – CNN’s Chelsea J. Carter, Hamdi Alkhshali and Susanna Capelouto

Gut Check Full Service: Half the public says the U.S. doesn't have a responsibility to do something about escalating bloodshed in Iraq, according to a new national poll.
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June 20th, 2014
05:17 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 20, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 20, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

RARE FRIDAY HEARINGS TURN DRAMATIC ON CAPITOL HILL ...

1. IRS BLASTED OVER LOST HARD DRIVE: ’NOBODY BELIEVES YOU’ ... Congressional outrage over IRS targeting of conservative groups turned into a partisan back-and-forth in the House. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen defended the agency, but he sparked an uproar from Republicans by admitting it destroyed a hard drive that contained emails wanted in the targeting probe. And he did not apologize. "I don't think an apology is owed,” Koskinen told the Ways and Means Committee. One prominent Republican questioned whether Koskinen was being truthful under oath. “Nobody believes you,” House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan said. – Lisa Desjardins

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June 19th, 2014
05:45 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 19, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 19, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

MILITARY ADVISERS HEADED TO IRAQ: Seeking a middle ground between calls for tough military action and none at all, President Barack Obama said Thursday he was sending up to 300 military advisers to Iraq to help the embattled government hold off a lightning advance from the north by Sunni militants. Obama told White House reporters the goal was to prevent a civil war in Iraq that could destabilize the region, and also prevent creation of a terrorist safe haven in northern Iraq and neighboring Syria from which U.S. enemies could plan and launch attacks against American interests.
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June 18th, 2014
04:36 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 18, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 18, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

CONFIRMED: BAGHDAD REQUESTS U.S. AIR SUPPORT ... Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told members of the Senate Appropriations Committee Wednesday that the United States has received a request from the Iraqi government to use air power to help roll back gains won by Sunni militants fighting for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It’s in America’s "national security interest to counter (ISIS) where we find them," Dempsey said. – Laura Smith-Spark, Ashley Fantz and Nic Robertson
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June 17th, 2014
04:06 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 17, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 17, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

HAPPENING NOW: 5 THINGS TO WATCH IN HILLARY CLINTON'S CNN TOWN HALL ... CNN Chief International Correspondent Christiane Amanpour moderates a CNN town hall meeting with Clinton and takes questions from the audience and Tumblr at 5 p.m. ET Tuesday. Here are five things to watch for:

1. Talk of Iraq, the capture of a key Benghazi suspect, and other danger zones ... 2. Mention of marijuana and what else she hasn't been asked ... 3. Whether she is as open as she says she is ... 4. Her tone with the media ... 5. Questions from people all over the world – Dan Merica
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June 16th, 2014
05:09 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 16, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for June 16, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

UNLIKLEY ALLY: COULD THE U.S. WORK WITH IRAN IN IRAQ? The United States could end up cooperating with Iran to stop militant gains in Iraq, Secretary of State John Kerry suggested Monday in an interview with Yahoo!News. But Kerry didn't indicate that cooperation with Iran is under active discussion inside the administration.
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June 14th, 2014
07:39 PM ET
1 month ago

King: Obama wrong to hold news conference on Iraq

(CNN) – Rep. Peter King, a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, says the President shouldn’t have announced that the United States will not be sending troops to Iraq.

“I don’t think you should ever tell the enemy what you are going to do and what you’re not going to do,” King, R-New York, told CNN on Saturday, a day after the President Barack Obama made remarks at the White House. “I would have thought that with a crisis like this, he should not have called the (news) conference to announce he will look at it.”
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June 13th, 2014
06:05 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 13, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 13, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

OBAMA MULLS IRAQ AIRSTRIKES BUT SAYS NO BOOTS ON THE GROUND ...  No troops to Iraq, but other options are being considered. That was President Barack Obama's message Friday in response to the lightning advance by Sunni militant fighters in Iraq that could threaten the government of Shiite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. In a statement delivered from the White House South Lawn, Obama said the United States "will not be sending U.S. troops back into combat in Iraq," but that he would be reviewing a range of other options in coming days. – Barbara Starr and Tom Cohen
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June 12th, 2014
05:35 PM ET
1 month ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for June 12, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for June 12, 2014 | 5 p.m.
—  n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

OBAMA WEIGHS OPTIONS AS MILITANTS THREATEN IRAQ...Iraq is going to need more help from the United States and the international community, President Obama said Thursday as a militant group gained control of Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city. The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, is threatening the takeover of more cities, including Baghdad.
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