CNN's GUT CHECK for May 8, 2013
May 8th, 2013
04:54 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for May 8, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 8, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

SLAMMED: OBAMA ADMINISTRATION RESPONSE BLASTED AT BENGHAZI HEARING Top Republicans and witnesses ripped the Obama administration's response to last year's deadly attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, calling key executive branch officials unresponsive in the critical hours after the assault and uncooperative in the investigations that followed. Our goal "is to get answers because their families (of the victims) deserve answers," said California Rep. Darrell Issa, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, which heard from State Department "whistleblowers" at a hearing on Wednesday. – Alan Silverleib Dan Merica

MORE: For a full account of the House’s Benghazi hearing, scroll down to What Caught Our Eye.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for May 7, 2013
May 7th, 2013
04:59 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for May 7, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 7, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

NOT A CAREER CHOICE: The weight loss surgery Gov. Chris Christie underwent in February was not a precursor to seeking higher office, the New Jersey Republican asserted Tuesday. Christie, speaking in public for the first time since his surgery was revealed, said the decision instead was based on his commitment to his family. “It's not a career issue for me. It is a long term health issue for me. And that is the basis upon which I made my decision,” Christie said, saying that “the steps I've taken are for me, and Mary Pat, and the kids.” – Kevin Liptak

TONIGHT: Voters in coastal South Carolina will decide tonight who will fill the vacant U.S. House seat in the state's 1st Congressional District. The two leading candidates on the ballot are former two-term Gov. Mark Sanford, who's seeking political redemption as he runs for the seat that he once held for six years, and Elizabeth Colbert Busch. – Jim Acosta, Matt Hoye and Paul Steinhauser

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CNN's GUT CHECK for May 6, 2013
May 6th, 2013
05:00 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for May 6, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 6, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

MENTOR VS. MENTEE: IMMIGRATION REFORM PITS DEMINT VS. RUBIO On Friday, Sen. Marco Rubio described former Sen. Jim DeMint as a “great man” and a “mentor.” On Monday, DeMint ran roughshod over the Senate immigration reform effort in part spearheaded by Rubio. – Ashley Killough

LATEST FROM BOSTON: A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation tells CNN that investigators believe that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was the one accessing Inspire magazine on the computer that came from the Cambridge apartment that he and his wife – Katherine Russell – shared. The official confirmed not only that the computer had Inspire magazine and other materials of interest on it, but that the Inspire materials included instructions on bomb-making. – Carol Cratty

MARKET WATCH: S&P closes at a record high of 1,618. NASDAQ adds 0.4%, while the Dow slips 4 points.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for May 2, 2013
May 2nd, 2013
05:01 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for May 2, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 2, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

DEVELOPING: TENTH STATE SET TO MAKE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE LEGAL Rhode Island was set to become the tenth state in the nation, and the last in New England, to legalize same-sex marriage Thursday as final legislation cleared procedural hurdles in the state legislature. Gov. Lincoln Chafee, an independent, has pledged to sign the bill immediately following its final passage.

REPEALED: O’MALLEY SIGNS DEATH PENALTY REPEAL Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a potential Democratic presidential candidate, signed legislation into law today that ends his state’s use of the death penalty. In those cases in which the state has filed a notice to seek a death sentence, "the notice shall be considered withdrawn and it shall be considered a notice to seek a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole under specified circumstances," according to O'Malley’s office.

MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks rally on positive jobs data at home and a rate cut abroad. NASDAQ adds 1.3% to close at 12-year high.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for May 1, 2013
May 1st, 2013
04:59 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for May 1, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for May 1, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

JUST IN: CUTBACK CIVIL LIBERTIES TO FIGHT TERROR? Although worries about terrorism have edged up following the Boston Marathon bombings, only four in ten Americans say they are willing to give up some civil liberties to fight terrorism, according to a just released CNN/Time/ORC International survey. FULL POLL

LATEST FROM BOSTON: THREE MORE ARRESTS IN BOSTON ATTACK... Two classmates of Boston Marathon bomb suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and a third person face federal charges in connection with the April 15 attack, federal law enforcement sources said Wednesday. They were expected to appear before a federal judge Wednesday afternoon, U.S. government sources said. For the latest, go to CNN.com.

MARKET WATCH: May begins with a nearly 1% drop in U.S. stocks as investors react to weak economic data. Dow drops 138 points.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for April 30, 2013
April 30th, 2013
04:52 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 30, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 30, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

DEVELOPING: Standing behind the podium Tuesday, President Barack Obama confidently discussed the first 100 days of his presidency and promised that his administration will get things done in Washington despite an atmosphere he described as divided and politically dysfunctional.
The questions at the news conference ranged from the administration’s policy on Syria to a hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay. If you missed his remarks this morning, we have excerpted some of the highlights below in What Caught Our Eye.

ONE THE RISE: Home price rise continues to pick up speed The S&P Case-Shiller index of home prices in 20 major markets posted a 9.3% rise over the last 12 months. That's up from the 8.1% rise in January. It's the biggest 12-month gain in the index since May 2006. – Chris Isidore

MARKET WATCH: S&P 500 ends April at record high. Dow closes up for 5th straight month. NASDAQ at highest level since Nov. 2000.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for April 29, 2013
April 29th, 2013
04:52 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 29, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 29, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

DEVELOPING: Pentagon steps up planning for potential military intervention in Syria “There is intensified planning in the works as more precise information comes in on the Syrian regime's potential use of chemical weapons and the body of evidence grows,” a senior administration official said. The official, who has direct knowledge of the effort, declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the situation. If President Barack Obama were to order action, it could involve thousands of U.S. troops. But all of the options face serious military challenges. – Barbara Starr

FROM CONVENTION HOST TO TRANSPORTATION HEAD: President Barack Obama tapped Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx on Monday to head the Transportation Department. If confirmed by the Senate, Foxx would replace Ray LaHood. – Kevin Liptak

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CNN's GUT CHECK for April 26, 2013
April 26th, 2013
04:05 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 26, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 26, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

FAA FURLOUGHS TO END: The House on Friday approved a measure already passed by the Senate to end air traffic control furloughs that have caused widespread flight delays. The legislation gives the FAA flexibility to deal with budget pressures stemming from government-wide spending cuts that took effect in March. President Barack Obama will sign the legislation.

LATEST FROM BOSTON: Investigators are searching a New Bedford landfill specifically looking for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's laptop, a law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation tells CNN’s Susan Candiotti. The landfill is near the suspected Boston Marathon bomber’s UMass-Dartmouth dorm room, where he was spotted after the April 15 attack. - Ben Brumfield and Greg Botelho

MONEY FOR BOSTON. NOT FOR TEXAS: Disaster donations: Texas lags way behind Boston… As millions of dollars flood into relief efforts for the Boston bombing victims, donations to devastated West, Texas, are lagging far behind. More than $26 million has been raised in the wake of the April 15 Boston blasts. And it appears that donations for West total is well under $1 million. – Blake Ellis

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CNN's GUT CHECK for April 25, 2013
April 25th, 2013
04:32 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 25, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 25, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

THE OTHER PLOT: Boston bombing suspects planned Times Square blasts, NYC mayor says The surviving suspect in the Boston bombings has told investigators that he and his brother planned to bomb Times Square, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday. The two came up with the plan spontaneously after the Boston bombing, as they talked in a car they hijacked. – Ben Brumfield and Josh Levs

RED LINE? U.S.: Intelligence points to small-scale use of sarin in Syria The United States has evidence that the chemical weapon sarin has been used in Syria on a small scale. In a letter sent to lawmakers, the White House said that intelligence analysts have concluded “with varying degrees of confidence that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale in Syria, specifically the chemical agent sarin.” – Michael Pearson

TOMORROW: Secretary of State John Kerry will deliver a classified briefing on Syria Friday to House members, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said today.

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CNN's GUT CHECK for April 24, 2013
April 24th, 2013
05:29 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 24, 2013

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 24, 2013 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

WHO IS MAILING RICIN? FBI searches for clues in ricin investigation FBI agents on Wednesday searched the former martial arts studio of a Tupelo, Mississippi man in connection with the investigation into ricin-tainted letters sent to President Barack Obama and other officials, the man's lawyer, Lori Basham, told CNN. Agents in hazardous materials suits had searched James Everett Dutschke's home on Tuesday, the same day prosecutors dropped charges against another man arrested last week on suspicion of sending the letters.

HOW WILL HISTORY REMEMBER GEORGE W. BUSH? The view of George W. Bush's presidency has improved with time, according to a CNN/ORC International Poll. Forty-two percent now say his presidency was a success, up 11 points since a CNN poll in January 2009, during his final days in office. Fifty-five percent of those questioned say Bush's presidency was a failure, down 13 percentage points since 2009. – Paul Steinhauser

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