CNN's GUT CHECK for April 1, 2014
April 1st, 2014
05:46 PM ET
6 years ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 1, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 1, 2014 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

President Obama hailed the success of the first open enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act, announcing that 7.1 million people have signed up for Obamacare.

“Despite several lost weeks out of the gate because of problems with the website, 7.1 million Americans have now signed up for private insurance plans through these market places,” Obama said at the White House. “Seven point one!”

To opponents of the healthcare law, the president sent a clear message: “The debate over repealing this law is over. The Affordable Care Act is here to stay.” He added, “History is not kind to those who would deny Americans their economic security.”

REPUBLICANS STAND FIRM IN OPPOSITION: House Speaker John Boehner’s spokesman Michael Steel said in a statement: “Despite the White House ‘victory lap,’ this law continues to harm the American people. Every promise the President made has been broken: health care costs are rising, not falling. Americans are losing the doctors and plans that they like – especially seniors suffering under President Obama’s Medicare cuts. Small businesses are afraid to hire new workers, hobbling our economic growth. That’s why we must replace this fundamentally-flawed law with patient-centered solutions that will actually lower health care costs and help create jobs.”

OVERHEARD AT THE WHITE HOUSE: BIG PAPI TO OBAMA DURING TODAY’S VISIT BY THE WORLD CHAMPION BOSTON RED SOX: “Sir, do you mind if I take my own?” Papi proceeds to take a selfie with the president before the team photo.

David Ortiz ‏(@davidortiz)
What an honor! Thanks for the #selfie, @BarackObama

RAND PAUL TACKLES GOP’S MINORITY COMPLEX … Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul thinks the GOP is misunderstood by minorities. Addressing the Latino Media Symposium on Tuesday, the potential 2016 presidential candidate emphasized that the Republican Party is not just “a bunch of rich white people.”

“But it's not only just a race or ethnic base,” Paul said. “It's also sort of working class. You go to the working class (and) they think, ‘Oh conservatives are just a bunch of rich people. They don't care about people like me.’"

On immigration, Paul insisted the GOP is not “just the party of deportation.”

But “we’ve got to get beyond deportation to get to the rest of the issues,” he declared. “Long-term unemployment's worse in the Hispanic community (and) worse in the African-American community than the white community. It just is. ...So we have to address unemployment.”

Later, Paul slammed Democrats for taking the African-American vote for granted.

“I think there's a great opportunity for (Republicans) because I think the Democrats have also taken (minority) votes for granted, particularly the African-American vote,” Paul said. “They just say, ‘It's ours. We don't even have to do anything to get that vote.’ And as a consequence, our cities are crumbling. Our education is crumbling (and) black unemployment's still twice (the rate of) white unemployment. I mean, nothing really is getting better for people in the cities.”

INSIDE POLITICS: CAMP RETIREMENT COULD CLEAR PATH FOR RYAN AT WAYS AND MEANS… There’s a new job opening in Washington now that Michigan Rep. Dave Camp, the powerful chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, has announced his intention to leave Congress after the next election.

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney’s 2012 running mate and the current head of the House Budget Committee, could have a big choice ahead of him. It would be difficult to take over the chairmanship at Ways and Means - a full time job - while also mounting a credible campaign for president in 2016. –Z. Byron Wolf

THE BUZZ: SEN. THAD COCHRAN, UNDERDOG? Forget about Matt Bevin’s challenge to Sen. Mitch McConnell in the Kentucky Republican primary or Milton Wolf’s bid to knock off Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts. The Senate primary to watch is in Mississippi.

State Sen. Chris McDaniel has the best chance of any anti-establishment Senate hopeful to knock off an incumbent, and a defeat of six-term Senate veteran Thad Cochran would send shock waves through both the national media and the Republican Party. – Roll Call’s Stuart Rothenberg

MARKET WATCH: S&P 500 ends at all-time high to kick off the year's second quarter. Dow gains 73 points, while NASDAQ surges 1.6%.

(Answer below)
Which came first: Camp David or Dave Camp?

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics: Republicans hit a nerve when it comes to Obamacare
Republicans are going all in, hoping that the payout is big. Like control of the Senate, big. Their big bet: Obamacare. The deadline to enroll in the Affordable Care Act for the year has come and gone. The Obama administration is touting the enrollment numbers as a successful first year, but Republicans think voter anger over the law is here to stay. And so Republicans running for House and Senate continue to make it central to their campaign. – Leigh Ann Caldwell

Leading Tampa Bay Times: Bush dines with Bloomberg in New York
Jeb Bush and his wife, Columba, attended a dinner with Michael Bloomberg last night in New York, a source confirms. Bush is on the board of Bloomberg Philanthropies, and he and the former mayor have long worked on education reform. – Alex Leary

Leading Boston Globe: Grossman uses kidney stone in fundraising pitch
And then there were the e-mails sent by state Treasurer Steven Grossman’s campaign for governor, invoking the candidate’s agony as he battled a kidney stone during a MassEquality candidate forum last week. “Despite suffering extreme pain from a kidney stone attack, Steve showed up to stand strongly in support for LGBT social justice and equality,” said an e-mail sent to supporters Friday morning.

Leading Drudge: April Fools!
The federal website for U.S. consumers to enroll in private health insurance under Obamacare ran into problems twice on Monday because of a surge of people trying to access the site hours before a midnight deadline to sign up for coverage. – David Morgan

Leading HuffPo: Forget The Past
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has a vision for this year's congressional midterm elections. Instead of the apocalyptic scenario of Democrats losing control of the Senate and cementing their minority status in the House, Schumer said he thinks the party can do just fine. – Sam Stein

Leading Politico: Paul Ryan’s budget makes big Medicare changes
Slated to be formally unveiled on Tuesday, Ryan’s budget is nothing more than a political document, which serves as an outline of Republican priorities going into the November election. But, as always, the document could set off a round of intraparty squabbling due to the House Budget Committee chairman’s broad proposed changes to Medicare, including a controversial proposal subsidizing private health insurance for those 55 and younger. – Lauren French

Leading New York Times: Corporate Lobbyists Assail Tax Overhaul They Once Cheered
Just two days after he proposed a sweeping overhaul of the nation’s tax code, Representative Dave Camp, Republican of Michigan, traveled to Park City, Utah, for a glittering fund-raiser attended by lobbyists from some of the nation’s largest corporations, all with enormous stakes in the tax battle to come. – Eric Lipton and Jonathan Weisman

Leading Washington Post: CIA misled on interrogation program, Senate report says
A report by the Senate Intelligence Committee concludes that the CIA misled the government and the public about aspects of its brutal interrogation program for years — concealing details about the severity of its methods, overstating the significance of plots and prisoners, and taking credit for critical pieces of intelligence that detainees had in fact surrendered before they were subjected to harsh techniques. – Greg Miller, Adam Goldman and Ellen Nakashima

The political bites of the day

- Christie weighs in on top Republicans contenders for 2016 -
CHRIS CHRISTIE IN AN INTERVIEW WITH FOX NEWS’ MEGYN KELLY MONDAY: "I think (former Florida Gov.) Jeb Bush would be an outstanding candidate for president. I think (Wisconsin Gov.) Scott Walker would be a good candidate for president. I think (2012 vice presidential nominee) Paul Ryan would be a good candidate for president … I think he'll (Rand Paul) be a credible candidate for president. I think Marco Rubio would be a good candidate for president.”

- American Crossroads launches TV ad supporting Speaker Thom Tillis for Senate in North Carolina –
NARRATOR: "We know where they stand. Their Obamacare deception, addicted to out of control spending and debt, attacking our common sense voter ID law...Thom Tillis, true to our values, as speaker eliminated a 2.5 billion dollar deficit and cut taxes. The conservative guts to replace Obamacare with honest healthcare reforms (and) protect our voter ID law. Thom Tillis - North Carolina values for a change.”

- #BostonStrong: POTUS reflects on Boston bombings during Red Sox visit to the White House –
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “Nearly one year ago, hundreds of thousands gathered on a beautiful spring day to run and cheer the historic Boston Marathon. But a senseless act of terror turned celebration into chaos and joy into anguish. Four people lost their lives, hundreds were injured, the city was rocked. (But) by the guiding hand of somebody who I consider one of the finest public servants that America has known, Mayor Tom Menino, who is here today, and his lovely wife, Boston stood resolute. Boston stood resolute and unbowed and unbroken. And as the smoke cleared we gained inspiration from the injured.”

What stopped us in 140 characters or less

CNN's Gut Check (@GutCheckCNN)
.@JimAcostaCNN on latest Obamacare sign-up surge: “If Obamacare was a patient, this would be a pretty miraculous recovery.” #cnn

E McMorris-Santoro @EvanMcSan
still more ACA stats from CMS: on 3/31, there were 185,700 concurrent users on previous rec: 83,000 on 12/23

Brad Dayspring (@BDayspring)
The biggest fools today will be those who point to a bloated # as evidence of #ObamaCare success. Don't be the joke.…

Emily Cahn ‏(@CahnEmily)
Democrats Facing Political Fallout on Medicare

Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT)
So: Is Dave Camp turned off enough by experience w lobbyists on tax reform that he turns down $ on K St, returns to quiet life in Midland?

Ed O'Keefe (‏@edatpost)
2014 is quickly becoming the year that committee chairmen pack up and go home. Here's why:

Lisa Desjardins (@LisaDCNN)
The @RepPaulRyan budget, only much shorter: @LisaDCNN

Elizabeth Chmurak ‏(@EchmurakCNN)
Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me? North and South Korea Trade Insults @nytimes

Frank Luntz (‏@FrankLuntz)
After finally issuing a recall for vehicles that caused 13 deaths, can GM regain the trust of the American people?

Deirdre Walsh (@deirdrewalshcnn)
GOP Rep Tim Murphy says house hrg on GM today "will not be the end of it" – wants GM & NHTSA to report back to Congress on fixes

Paul R. La Monica ‏(@LaMonicaBuzz)
Ford sales up more than 3% in March. Ahead of expectations. $F up 3%. $GM up 1% ... even though its sales report has been delayed.

Bob Fasbender ‏(@bobfasbender)
FT: Goldman Sachs is leaving the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Will the last trader turn out the lights? #NYSE $GS

Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods)
Sad to say I’m missing the Masters. Thanks to the fans for so many kind wishes.

Paul Kane (‏@pkcapitol)
People missing forest for trees on Tiger: … Back surgery is bad. His goal is "playing sometime this summer" – maybe.

Rick Reilly ‏(@ReillyRick)
If Tiger Woods pulling out of the Masters is real, it will be his first miss there in 20 years (13 top 10s). Bummer.

Jon Shestakofsky (‏@Shesta_Sox)
Today's Red Sox visit marks the 8th trip to the White House for a Boston-area team since 2000, more than any other metro area in the USA.

Matt Viser (‏@mviser)
Senior White House source claims there are more Red Sox fans on senior staff than any other ballclub. Not White Sox. Not Cubs.

TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer

The naming of Camp David came less than two months before the birth of than Rep. Dave Camp. The camp, however, was established years before the Ways and Means chairman was born on July 9, 1953.

In 1935, President Franklin Roosevelt’s Works Projects Administration began building the Catoctin Recreational Demonstration Area Project in Maryland’s Catoctin Mountains. Seven years later, in 1942, the camp was established as a more private place for the President to relax and entertain. FDR called the camp "Shangri-La," after the mountain kingdom first described in James Hilton's 1933 novel “Lost Horizon.”

In 1953, President Eisenhower renamed the retreat “Camp David,” after both his father and grandson. Ike wrote in a letter that Shangri-La “was just a little fancy for a Kansas farm boy.”

(why aren’t you in it)

Congrats to Peter Ubertaccio (@ProfessorU) and Larry Shaughnessy (@LAShaughnessy) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check Trivia question.

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soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    This president is a legend.

    April 1, 2014 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  2. Richard

    Why hasn't the News Media, CNN, abc, NBC, CBS investigated the results of the National Health Plan sign up; e.g., age, gender; whose paid and received a policy. Does the News Media, just take by faith that the President does not keep important information from Americans.

    April 1, 2014 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  3. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    This time next year, the St. Louis Cardinals will be visiting the White House!

    April 1, 2014 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  4. Tampa Tim

    In Florida, Rick Scott's wife is running political ads for Rick under the group, "Let's Get To Work." She has kept fact checkers busy in previous years.

    April 1, 2014 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  5. reality check

    00 would have been a more appropriate number. or maybe 00000000 vertically down the back?

    April 1, 2014 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  6. Name Uche Agonsi

    The case with GOPers/Ryan's Budget is not its feasibility or even the wisdom/moralty, but whether is the best needed goal for US economy at the moment. Any head (ugly head) could cut budget, but would it ensure, in US, economic growth, healthy.( employment and social reforms, as well as world peace (of course, maybe and just maybe, Ryan is forgetting how constrained economic growth in US will affect a world financial system that is survive the worst economic recession in over 50years,and cause yet by this same crop of GOPers). Ryan should grow up by listening to economic/financial experts, rather than playing political games with amateurish budget.

    April 2, 2014 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  7. Name Uche Agonsi

    I am not done with this Pistorius case. To be sure he is not guilty of murder, he needs to be more convincing of his innocence, rather than walkaway with smiles after murdering his lover. Apart from the unanswered earlier questions on where he picked up the gun he used to fire his lover, why he thinks his lover should prefer to lock the toilet door with key at that time of the night, as well testing Pistorius for drugs because of his unusually explosive emotional enthrancement, there are yet other questions.......the visibility and distance of his shootings from the toilet door that ensured death accuracy on the victim vis-a-vis his statement on his threatened state. Was the toilet area with light or dark. From what distance did Pistorius fired to achieve dead accuracy on his victim three times in darkness. Did he go very close to the toilet door even when he felt threatened on his .stump. If he fired a shot initially before other succession of shots does it mean the lover did not utter any sound all this time. My contention is that the cripple must pursue the helpless girl to the toilet and shot her, and drugs he used for the valentine's night love encounter.

    April 2, 2014 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  8. Marie MD

    I want to see rafaelito and his crazy minions try to take away medical care for over 7 million Americans.
    Good luck in your continued repeal of the ACA and how Americas will feel about your "caring" about the American people who bo ner keeps talking about and misquoting but knows nothing about.

    April 2, 2014 06:29 am at 6:29 am |