CNN's GUT CHECK for February 27, 2014
February 27th, 2014
06:26 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 27, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | February 27, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

PRESIDENT OBAMA GETS PERSONAL …

RAW LANGUAGE FROM THE PRESIDENTIAL PODIUM ANNOUNCING INITIATIVE TO HELP YOUNG PEOPLE OF COLOR: Announcing “My Brother’s Keeper,” an administration initiative where leading foundations and businesses will donate at least $200 million over five years towards mentoring programs aimed at minority youth of color, President Obama talked about the mistakes he made when he was younger: “When I was their age, I was a lot like them. I didn’t have a dad in the house. And I was angry about it, even though I didn’t necessarily realize it at the time. I made bad choices. I got high, not always thinking about the harm that it would do. I didn’t always take school as seriously as I should have. I made excuses. Sometimes I sold myself short.”

MORE OBAMA: “… In the aftermath of the Trayvon martin verdict, with all of the emotions and controversy that it sparked, I spoke about the need to bolster and reinforce our young men and give them the sense that their country cares about them and values them and is willing to invest in them and I’m grateful that Trayvon’s parents, Sabrina and Tracy are here.”

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
CNN's GUT CHECK for February 26, 2014
February 26th, 2014
06:25 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 26, 2014

CNN’s POLITICAL GUT CHECK | for February 26, 2014 | 5 p.m.
— n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

BREAKING … COLORADO SENATE RACE JUST GOT A LOT MORE INTERESTING: John King reports: Colorado Rep. Cory Gardner, a Republican elected in 2010, has decided to run for Senate, two sources tell CNN.  The 39-year-old Gardner joins a crowded field of Republicans seeking the GOP nomination, and will be considered a serious contender for the nod. Among those in the race are Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck, state Sen. Owen Hill, and state Rep. Amy Stephens.

The winner of the June 24 GOP primary will face Sen. Mark Udall in November. Udall was elected in 2008.

Just last year Gardner stated he would not run for the Senate in 2014, but as the political landscape appeared to be getting better for Republicans he reconsidered, said one of the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Republicans only need a net gain of six seats to win back control of the Senate chamber in November.

MIDTERM SUB-PLOT:  HARRY REID VS. KOCH BROTHERS …

REID:  “What is going on with these two brothers who made millions of dollars last year in an attempt to buy our democracy is dishonest, deceptive, false and unfair. Just because you have huge amounts of money you should not be able to run these false, misleading ads by the hundreds of millions of dollars. They hide behind all kinds of entities, Mr. President.  It’s not just their front organization, American for Prosperity. They give money to all kinds of organizations Lots of money. See when you make billions of dollars a year, you can be as immoral and dishonest as your money will allow you to be. It’s too bad they’re trying to buy American and it’s time that the American people spoke out against this terrible dishonesty of these two brothers who are about as un-American as anyone that I can imagine.”

AND THE RESPONSE… From Philip Ellender, Koch Companies Public Sector, LLC: “We are disappointed, but not surprised, that Senate Majority Leader Reid has once again falsely attacked Charles Koch and David Koch today on the Senate floor. The Democrats in general and Senator Reid in particular have targeted Charles Koch and David Koch and tried to silence their disagreement on important public policy issues since 2010.”

CRUZ MISSILE … CRUZ ANGERS GOP COLLEAGUES –AGAIN. Ted Barrett and Dana Bash report: Several Republican senators said Wednesday they were surprised and angered after a news report revealed that their GOP colleague, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, made a recent fundraising appeal for a tea party group that is trying to defeat GOP incumbents it doesn’t believe are conservative enough.

The senators said Cruz’s efforts appeared to violate his own pledge to no longer target sitting Republican senators in favor of tea party-backed candidates in the hard-fought 2014 campaign in which Republicans believe they have a chance to win back control of the Senate. In addition, the fundraising appears at odds with Cruz’s position as Vice Chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the organization that works to elect and re-elect Republicans to the Senate.

“I am stunned that Sen. Cruz is involved in this fundraising effort for a group that has targeted his colleagues in the Republican caucus,” Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, told CNN. “I’m particularly surprised because I thought he had agreed to no longer engage in that kind of activity of supporting groups that were targeting people he serves with every day in the Republican caucus.”

Collins is running for re-election but doesn’t appear to be a target of the group for whom Cruz did the appeal.

CHRISTIE: WHAT, ME WORRY?

WATCH ME THROW THE POLLSTERS UNDER THE BUS … Gov. Chris Christie drew laughter from a room full of New Jersey residents when he cracked wise about poll numbers:   "The only two professions in America where you keep getting paid even when you are always wrong affect my life everyday - pollsters and weathermen," said the Governor, as snow came down in Long Hill, New Jersey.

“I mean, they don’t ever have to have it right and then they come back the next day and they sound just as authoritative as they used to right? It’s crazy.” – Ashley Killough

BUT PERHAPS HE SHOULD WORRY … LESS THAN A THIRD OF REPUBLICANS WANT CHRISTIE TO RUN … More Republicans say they wouldn't like Chris Christie to run for president in 2016 than those who say they want him to launch a White House bid, according to a new national poll released Wednesday … Forty-one percent of Republicans questioned in the poll say the New Jersey governor should not run for the GOP nomination in 2016, while 31% say Christie should launch a bid.

… AND A CHENEY DISSES RAND PAUL

Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney)

Must read by @JRubinBlogger re @SenRandPaul recent naive & dangerous foreign policy pronouncements. tinyurl.com/ldevllj

IN THE STATES … Texas' ban on SAME SEX marriage ruled unconstitutional A federal judge has struck down Texas' ban on same-sex marriage, ruling Wednesday it has no "rational relation to a legitimate government purpose." The decision is the latest in a series of federal and state court moves to overturn current laws forbidding gay and lesbians from legal wedlock.. – Bill Mears

PERRY: DON’T MESS WITH TEXAS

TEXAS GOV. RICK PERRY AFTER THE RULING: "Texans spoke loud and clear by overwhelmingly voting to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman in our Constitution, and it is not the role of the federal government to overturn the will of our citizens. The 10th Amendment guarantees Texas voters the freedom to make these decisions, and this is yet another attempt to achieve via the courts what couldn't be achieved at the ballot box. We will continue to fight for the rights of Texans to self-determine the laws of our state."

THE BUZZ: PAPAL INTRIGUE  As the anniversary of his surprising resignation approaches, Pope Benedict XVI has rejected as “simply absurd” the speculation that he was forced to step down, and he said he still wears the distinctive white papal cassock for “purely practical reasons.”

“At the moment of my resignation there were no other clothes available,” Benedict wrote in a brief letter to an Italian journalist that was published on Wednesday. – Religious News Service’s David Gibson

MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks end lower. Dow slips 26 points. NASDAQ and S&P 500 drop 0.1%.

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
February 25th, 2014
06:14 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 25, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 25, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

DEVELOPING … RUBIO ON 2016: HILLARY CLINTON WOULD ‘STRUGGLE’ … Sen. Marco Rubio, said he thinks if Hillary Clinton runs for president she would "struggle to win on multiple fronts." Rubio, speaking to Wolf Blitzer on CNN’s “The Situation Room,” said, “I think she's going to be asked to account for her time as secretary of State and I don't think it's the sterling success people think it is. Quite frankly, much of the foreign policy failures we see in place today began when she ran the Department of State."

Asked about his mentor, Jeb Bush, Rubio said that Bush, who served two terms as the Sunshine State governor, wouldn't be a factor on his own decision making process for a White House run. The senator said Bush would be a "formidable candidate," but added "my decision will be based on me, not what anybody else decides."

"If I feel I can make a difference…from that office, to lead us in that direction, that's something I would have to strongly consider," Rubio told Blitzer, adding he'll make a decision "later this year, early next year."

THE COMEBACK KID HITS THE BLUEGRASS STATE

GRIMES CALLS IN CLINTON 8+ MONTHS BEFORE THE GENERAL ELECTION… Bill Clinton, arguably the most effective Democratic surrogate in politics, traveled to Kentucky Tuesday to campaign for Alison Lundergan Grimes, who hopes she can knock off Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in one of the most watched Senate races of 2014. Clinton is a long-time friend of Grimes’ father, Jerry, who chaired Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign in Kentucky.

BILL CLINTON: “I watched both the Kentucky victory and the Louisville victory over the last few days and I like both the coaches, both the teams and I cheer for them both to win. But I don’t have a problem making a choice in this race for the Senate.”

GRIMES MAKES HER SOUNDTRACK …. AND SHE SHOULD HAVE STOPPED AT KATY PERRY? “For the pundits that are here in the room in case you are wondering what our theme song is, well I will tell you. I am a Neil Diamond ‘Kentucky Woman’ through and through but you will hear, over the course of this campaign especially on behalf of the women of this state – 53% of the electorate – a little Katy Perry ‘Roar’ and by the end of this, by the end of this race, eight months from now we will be bringing home our Kentucky girl Miley Cyrus with a little “Wrecking Ball” straight to the Guardian of Gridlock.”

CLINTON TO KENTUCKY: YOU’VE BEEN GOOD TO ME
“I love Kentucky. You’ve been good to me. You voted for me twice. You have been great to Hillary.”

AND MCCONNELL GETS THE RETORT … SENATE MINORITY LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL, R-KENTUCKY, AT A GOP PARTY STAKEOUT: “In 2008 both Bill and Hillary Clinton came to town including the day before the election and I won by a 100,000 votes. So I welcome President Clinton back to Kentucky. Every time he has come it has been really good for me.”

ARIZONA GOV. JAN BREWER EXPECTED TO VETO 'RELIGIOUS FREEDOM' BILL Dana Bash reports: All signs indicate Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer will likely veto politically-charged legislation that supporters say promotes religious freedom and opponents contend discriminates against gays and lesbians. Brewer did not signal her intention either way in an exclusive interview with CNN on Monday at the National Governors Association meeting in Washington."I can assure you, as always, I will do the right thing for the state of Arizona," she said.

DNC HUNTS FOR 2016 CONVENTION CITY … Mark Preston reports: As many as three dozen mayors from Atlanta to Sacramento received a letter earlier this month inquiring whether their cities were interested in hosting the 2016 Democratic National Convention. It was no small request.

Hosting a national political convention comes with a hefty price tag, between $50 million to $60 million, but the payout could be triple the investment or more. Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, who hosted the 2012 Republican National Convention, estimated that the economic impact to his city was “well beyond $200 million.”

Among the cities that received letters from the DNC are: Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus-Ohio, Dallas, Detroit, El Paso, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Nashville-Davidson, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Orlando, New Orleans, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Portland, Sacramento, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, Tampa.

AMERICANS' CONFIDENCE IN THE ECONOMY IMPROVES SLIGHTLY
More believe the U.S. economy is getting better than said this in prior weeks – Gallup’s Rebecca Riffin

THE BUZZ: WE’LL TOAST TO THAT … Hall of Fame shortstop, Ozzie Smith, has partnered with Budweiser, the Official Beer of Major League Baseball, to make Opening Day a holiday, beginning with a petition launched today at WhiteHouse.gov.

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
CNN's GUT CHECK for February 24, 2014
February 24th, 2014
06:32 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 24, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 24, 2014| 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

JEB BUSH … BRINGING IT ON
Bush was the featured guest Monday at the Long Island Association's biannual luncheon, a popular stop for White House hopefuls, and his comments added to the buzz around his own potential 2016 run:
FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
February 21st, 2014
05:38 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 21, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 21, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

NUGENT APOLOGIZES: Ted Nugent apologized Friday for the “subhuman mongrel” comment he used to describe President Obama after multiple calls from Republican lawmakers to apologize, including from Sen. Rand Paul:

Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul)
Ted Nugent's derogatory description of President Obama is offensive and has no place in politics. He should apologize.
FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
February 20th, 2014
05:45 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 20, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | February 20, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

DEVELOPING… THE ERA OF BIG GOVERNMENT IS BACK? OBAMA BUDGET TO BOOST SPENDING, DITCH ‘GRAND BARGAIN’ – “The White House budget to be released early next month will propose $56 billion in new spending on domestic and defense priorities and drop a proposal that was included in last year's budget as a way to attract Republican support - a plan that would have included less generous payouts of Social Security benefits.”

“The budget would aim to reduce the emphasis on austerity that has been the preoccupation of American politics for the past four years and also highlights top Democratic priorities in a year when Democrats hope to save their majority in the Senate.” - Washington Post’s Zachary Goldfarb

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
CNN's GUT CHECK for February 19, 2014
February 19th, 2014
05:36 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 19, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 19, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

WARNING…. NEW TERROR THREAT …The U.S. government has warned airlines that terrorists may try to detonate a new type of shoe bomb on flights into the U.S., intelligence and law enforcement officials tell CNN's Evan Perez. The officials cautioned that there is no indication of a specific plot, but rather the warning is the result of intelligence gathered in recent weeks. Homeland Security officials issued the warning out of caution, according to the officials.
SARAH PALIN IS BACK IN THE GAME: “IF HE IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR TED NUGENT, HE IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME”… Sarah Palin makes her first 2014 endorsements, starting with Greg Abbott for Governor of Texas, “If he is good enough for Ted Nugent, he is good enough for me!” She also endorses House candidate Katrina Pierson, Pete Sessions' primary challenger in Texas. Here’s a great read from Peter Hamby to read why Palin matters: http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/25/politics/return-of-sarah-palin/

HILLARY CLINTON SURFACES AS ISSUE IN REPUBLICAN SENATE RACE … CNN’s Peter Hamby reports: Each one of Lindsey Graham's five underfunded Republican primary opponents have been struggling to gain traction in the race and emerge as the South Carolina senator's leading conservative opponent … For the first time, one of Graham's opponents has tried to make hay out of his gracious attitude toward Clinton - and it's another signal that Clinton's standing among Republicans has diminished since she left the State Department a year ago and inched her way back into the political spotlight.

POTUS WARNS UKRAINE: THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES… President Obama Wednesday condemned Ukraine’s government for violent action against protestors and criticized it for being partially responsible for the chaos. “I want to be very clear as we work through these next several days in Ukraine that we’re going to be watching closely and we expect the Ukrainian government to show restraint, to not resort to violence in dealing with peaceful protestors. We’ve also said we expect peaceful protestors to remain peaceful and we’ll be monitoring very closely the situation, recognizing that with our European partners and the international community there will be consequences if people step over the line.”

JUST IN … UKRAINE 'BEGIN TALKS FOR PEACE'- Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych has issued a statement declaring "the beginning of negotiations aimed at cessation of bloodshed and stabilization of the situation in the country for the sake of civil peace."

BUSH ON THE MILITARY: THEY ARE THE ONE PERCENT OF AMERICA WHO KEPT THE 99% SAFE … Speaking at a Library Military Service Initiative event Wednesday, former President George W. Bush addressed American’s lack of awareness about military veterans and the challenges they face:

“Seventy one percent of Americans said they do not understand the problems facing our veterans. You might call this a civilian-military divide. One lesson of our research is that the divide is exacerbated by public perceptions that the veteran is either a hero or to be pitied. Most veterans don’t consider themselves heroes or victims. They see themselves as Americans who took on a tough job and did it well.”

MORE AMERICANS NOW VIEW AFGHANISTAN WAR AS A MISTAKE … For the first time since the U.S. initially became involved in Afghanistan in 2001, Americans are as likely to say U.S. military involvement there was a mistake as to say it was not. Forty-eight percent of respondents said they viewed the war as a mistake, compared to 6% in 2002. – Gallup’s Frank Newport

THE BUZZ: NOW WE KNOW: PRETZEL THAT CHOKED PRESIDENT BUSH IN '02 CAME FROMLancaster, Pennsylvania. According to city native and former White House Chef John Moeller, it was a handmade pretzel from Hammond Pretzel Bakery Inc. that got into the president’s windpipe as he was watching a football game on television on Sunday, Jan. 13, 2002.

MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks end lower after disappointing housing data and Fed minutes. Dow dips 88 points. NASDAQ loses 0.8%.

FULL POST

February 18th, 2014
06:10 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 18, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 18, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

BREAKING … Kiev burns; 14 dead …Violent showdown looms over presidential power … Long-simmering tensions exploded anew in Ukraine as clashes between police and anti-government protesters left at least 14 people dead and the capital's central square afire throughout Tuesday into predawn Wednesday. The fresh violence in Kiev comes amid monthslong turmoil in what is essentially a fight over whether the country's future is alongside Russia or Europe, the latter favored by protesters.
What you need to know
• John Kerry urges Ukraine government to resume talks with opposition
• U.S. Embassy says Ukraine security "may take extraordinary measures"
• Opposition tells President: "Do not let Ukraine become a country covered with blood"
• McCain tells CNN’s Jake Tapper that President Obama should push for sanctions

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
CNN's GUT CHECK for February 17, 2014
February 17th, 2014
05:11 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 17, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 17, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

ON PRESIDENTS DAY, OBAMA’S APPROVAL RATINGS REMAIN NEAR THE LOWEST OF HIS PRESIDENCY … According to a CNN Poll of Polls compiled Monday, which averages the most recent non-partisan, live operator national surveys, the President's approval rating stands at 42%, with 53% of Americans giving a thumbs down to Obama's performance in the White House. – Paul Steinhauser

Gut Check Full Service:
Obama’s Approval Rating on Past President’s Days
2014 … 42%
2013 … 51%
2012 … 45%
2011 … 48%
2010 … 49%
2009 … 64%

FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
CNN's GUT CHECK for February 14, 2014
February 14th, 2014
04:50 PM ET
2 months ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for February 14, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for February 14, 2014 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

ON VALENTINES DAY, OBAMA SHOWS HIS PARTY SOME LOVE … President Obama visited the House Democratic Issues Conference in Cambridge, Maryland on Friday, delivering what amounted to a quick 10-minute version of his State of the Union Speech, and thanking lawmakers for sticking with him through some tough legislative battles.

"This caucus has shown time and time again, under the most difficult circumstances, the kind of courage and unity and discipline that has made me very, very proud …When you guys are unified (and) you guys stick together, this country is better off." – Adam Aigner-Treworgy
FULL POST


Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
« older posts
newer posts »