April 4th, 2014
05:12 PM ET
8 years ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for April 4, 2014

CNN's GUT CHECK | for April 4, 2014| 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

MIDEAST PEACE TALKS ON LIFE SUPPORT: After more than a dozen trips to the Middle East and 14 months of unbridled optimism on the prospects for Mideast peace, and his own ability to negotiate it, John Kerry on Friday finally sounded defeated. “We have an enormous amount on the plate,” he said. “There are limits to the amount of time and effort that the United States can spend if the parties themselves are unwilling to take constructive steps in order to be able to move forward.” – Elise Labott

GIRL POWER… A DOUBLE STANDARD? Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton participated in a question-and-answer session with the IMF’s Christine Lagarde at the Women in the World Forum in New York. … (Clinton) and Lagarde provided the largely female audience with a memorable image when the two clasped hands in a high-five celebrating women's political power.

“The double standard (for powerful women) is alive and well,” said Clinton. “I think in many respects the media is the principal propagator of its persistence.”- Rachel Streitfeld

BUT FOR PELOSI, IT WAS ALWAYS EXPECTED … The House Democratic leader tells CNN’s Candy Crowley that she has “had to have a very thick skin about every kind of thing that was thrown at me,” in an exclusive interview that will run in full Sunday on “State of the Union.”

Asked if she agreed with Clinton that the media does have a double standard for women in power, Pelosi said, “If Hillary Clinton thinks there is a double standard, she’s been in the main event – and that is a presidential race – then I respect that. From my own standpoint, I never expected anything but a double standard. I don’t know if it’s the media or whether people say things that’s news that you have to cover.”

[twitter-follow screen_name='GutCheckCNN']

INSIDE POLITICS: SPRINGTIME FOR JOB GROWTH? The U.S. economy added 192,000 jobs and the unemployment rate held steady at 6.7% in March, according to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday morning. The figure is just shy of expectations for 200,000 jobs to be created. The idea had been that the warming weather will help kick-start the job market, and Democrats hope that with it will come a sunnier outlook for them, too. – Z. Byron Wolf

“Democrats…have slowed down job creation—with ObamaCare, with wasteful spending, and with intrusive regulations. Today’s jobs report could be so much better, but Democrats in the Senate won’t pass Republican jobs bills.”

JUDGE: OHIO MUST RECOGNIZE SAME-SEX MARRIAGES … "I intend to issue a written decision and order by April 14 striking down as unconstitutional under all circumstances Ohio's ban on recognizing legal same-sex marriages from other states," said Judge Timothy Black. – Bill Mears

CAMPAIGN WATCH: FORMER TOP CHRISTIE AIDE TO RUN BROWN'S SENATE BID … A former longtime close aide to Scott Brown is rejoining the former senator from Massachusetts as he moves closer and closer to running for the Senate in neighboring New Hampshire. Colin Reed, deputy communications director for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, confirmed to CNN Friday that he's left his job in Trenton to serve as Brown's campaign manager. – Paul Steinhauser, Mark Preston, and Peter Hamby

7 MONTHS TO GO, 7 KEY DATES FOR THE MIDTERMS … We’re seven months to the day before Election Day 2014. Here are seven important dates between now and November that could impact the midterm elections:

Mid-April – new Obamacare numbers released
May 20 – Kentucky and Georgia primaries
June 3 – Mississippi and Iowa primaries
Late June – Hobby Lobby SCOTUS ruling
June 30 – The last day of the second quarter of fundraising
Late summer/early fall – Some states will announce how much premiums are rising next year for Obamacare-mandated health insurance policies
October 3 – Last jobs numbers before the midterms are released
– Paul Steinhauser

THE BUZZ: BUSH 43 PAINTS PUTIN … CNN’s Kevin Bohn reports from Dallas: As former President George W. Bush unveils his paintings of world leaders for the first time publicly, he said he expects some of the leaders who were his artistic subjects to be surprised at the quality. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Dalai Lama are among those Bush chose to paint. More than two dozen never-before-seen portraits by Bush will go on public display Saturday at his presidential library in Dallas.

Dan Coats has a sense of humor. Indiana’s GOP senator jokingly blamed Russia for his attendance Thursday at the wrong subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill. "I think the Russians have been messing with my schedule," said Coats, who was recently hit with personal sanctions by Moscow as part of a diplomatic tit-for-tat over Ukraine. On Friday, Coats put out a press release with the subject line reading, “A funny thing happened on the way to the hearing.”

MARKET WATCH: Friday's tech sell-off spoils Dow and S&P's record-setting week. NASDAQ’s 2.6% drop pushes it lower for the week.

(Answer below)
What was David Letterman's first on-air television job?

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics.com: Inside Politics: Democrats' good week
Democrats know the history: 2014 is all but certain to be a tough year. But there is a sense among some top Democratic strategists that the political climate is shifting in ways that could keep the midterm climate from turning from bad to disastrous. Perhaps it is wishful thinking, and it is important - very important - to note how things look in April is often not how they turn out come November. – John King

Gut Check DVR: Catch John King’s ‘Inside Politics’ on Sunday at 8:30am E.T. with guests Nia-Malika Henderson, Jonathan Martin, Amy Walter, and Ryan Lizza.

Leading Drudge: Mideast Mess!
Washington said Friday it was reviewing its push for a Middle East peace agreement as a spiral of tit-for-tat moves by Israel and the Palestinians took hard-won talks close to collapse. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who has invested more than a year of intensive shuttle diplomacy in the talks process, said there were "limits" to the time Washington could devote to it. – John Davison

Leading HuffPo: Forget It: Supreme Court Pushes Reform To The Brink
The Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission on Wednesday has potentially big implications for the future of limits on campaign money, far beyond the aggregate contribution limits it struck down. The McCutcheon case could reverberate for years to come because of its embrace of the definition of corruption in the 2010 Citizens United decision. In that case, Justice Anthony Kennedy's opinion limited "corruption" to the quid pro quo trading of favors for money. – Paul Blumenthal

Leading Politico: Dems pray for economic spring
This was supposed to be the year the U.S. economy would finally break out of the doldrums — the year it would deliver the kind of robust growth that could lift President Barack Obama’s dismal approval ratings and help Democrats avoid a shellacking in November. It now looks like that dream is fading fast. – Ben White

Leading New York Times: For Many Republican Incumbents, Challenge From Right Fizzles
None of the six Republicans in South Carolina’s House delegation or any statewide elected officials stepped forward to take on Mr. Graham. Instead, as his June primary approaches, the incumbent is using some of his $7.5 million in campaign funds to fill televisions screens in the state with ads as he faces a field of relative no-names. – Jonathan Martin

The political bites of the day

- Pryor: Knowing now what I didn’t know in the past, I would still vote for Obamacare -
MARK PRYOR, D-ARKANSAS TO LOCAL TV STATION KARK: ANCHOR: “Knowing now what you know now, would you have voted for (Obamacare) back then?”
PRYOR: “You know, I would have. Of course I would have wanted to see some changes back then. I think on something like this it’s big, it’s complicated, it’s difficult. So if you get 80% of it right, you’ve really done something. We probably did get 80% of it right.”

- Congressman: Congress needs a pay hike -
REP. JIM MORAN, D-VIRGINIA, IN AN INTERVIEW WITH ROLL CALL: “I think the American people should know that the members of Congress are underpaid … I understand that it’s widely felt that they underperform, but the fact is that this is the board of directors for the largest economic entity in the world … Our pay has been frozen for three years and we’re planning on freezing it a fourth year. … A lot of members can’t even afford to live decently in Washington."

Gut Check Full Service: The current salary for members of Congress is $174,000 per year. The average household income as of 2012, the most recent data available from the U.S. Census bureau, is $82,843.

- Jeb Bush and Bobby Jindal in ad to promote newrepublican.org -
BUSH: “If you believe that every parent ought to be able to choose their child’s school, and that the economy should be driven from the bottom up, not the top down from Washington, then you’re thinking like a New Republican.”
JINDAL: “If you don’t think the Republican Party should be the party of big government, big business or big anything, you’re thinking like a New Republican.”

- Bush: Putin dissed my dog -
FORMER PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH TALKING TO HIS DAUGHTER JENNA BUSH HAGER ON THE TODAY SHOW: “Our dear dog Barney, who has a special spot in my heart, I introduced him to Putin. Putin kind of dissed him. ‘You call that a dog?’ A year later, your mom and I go to visit Vladimir at his Dacha outside of Moscow, and he says, ‘Would you like to meet my dog?’ Out bounds this huge hound, obviously much bigger than a Scottish Terrier. And Putin looks at me and says, ‘Bigger, stronger and faster than Barney.’ I took it in. I didn’t react. I said, ‘Wow, anybody who thinks ‘my dog is bigger than your dog’ is an interesting character.'”

What stopped us in 140 characters or less
Reince Priebus (@Reince)
Labor force participation at Aug 1978 levels. #ObamaCare & Dem spending & intrusive regs have slowed job creation gop.cm/60139GJl

Nancy Pelosi ‏(@NancyPelosi)
Today's report shows economy is moving in the right direction. Time to focus on jobs, not a #GOPbudget that takes us in the wrong direction.

Ben White ‏(@morningmoneyben)
One hopeful note for Ds: Clinton only POTUS to beat 6-year itch since WWII. Job creation in March '98? Just 151K. http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet

Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton)
"Great to meet the strong & brave young women from #PussyRiot, who refuse to let their voices be silenced in #Russia"

Charles Babington (@cbabington)
GOP blasts Sen. Pryor for defending Obamacare vote. And if he didn't, GOP would say "Pryor admits vote was wrong!" No great choice for Dems

Jacqui Corba (@jm_corba)
. @AP photog Anja Niedringhaus who was tragically killed in Afghanistan had recently done series on women lawmakers cbsn.ws/QLb0kS

Michael Calderone ‏(@mlcalderone)
Fusion names @ryannerz as the first network Chief Cannabis Correspondent. http://bit.ly/1lrwVYq

Elizabeth Titus (@emtitus)
First couple @Nationals Park political fundraisers of the year are on the board: politicalpartytime.org/search/Venue_N…

Bryce Harper (‏@Bharper3407)
So incredibly happy and proud to be part of the @Gatorade family! Something I've wanted ever since I was a kid! #WinFromWithin

Elizabeth Dias. (‏@elizabethjdias)
Obama gave Pope Francis garden seeds. Queen Elizabeth gave him whiskey and venison. +1, Queen.

John Lewis (@repjohnlewis)
I'll never forget hearing the news 46 years ago today that my friend, my mentor, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had been assassinated.

TRIVIA ANSWER from @sarafischer

David Letterman’s first on-air television job was as a local reporter and weekend weatherman for the Indianapolis television station WLWI, now called WTHR. Letterman had previously worked in radio for WNTS AM.

Even while reporting serious breaking news about the weather, Letterman always managed to slip some humor into his forecasts. He once predicted hail stones "the size of canned hams," and another time congratulated a tropical storm for being upgraded to a hurricane. Occasionally, Letterman would also report the weather for fictitious cities

(why aren’t you in it)

Congrats to Ryan Sloane (@RyanSloaneCNN) and Larry Shaughnessy (@LAShaughnessy) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check Trivia question.

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Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. Chris-E...al

    Yes Bush was a great leader and has made a very fine artist . I sure miss his strong moral god fearing beliefs that made us truely a shining city . I think this prez is trying to make us a joke to the world ? With his do as you want polices ? It will take years to get our respect back frm this joker .

    April 4, 2014 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  2. Gurgyl

    --yes, Bush is a leader because he went to Iraq war knowing Bin Laden in Pakistan, yes, he was a leader nonetheless he can not differentiate between India and Pakistan. He was a leader to choose criminal Dick Cheney, Donald Rummy the dummy.

    April 4, 2014 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  3. don in albuquerque


    Bwahahahahahahaha. Yeah, God fearing beliefs, like the belief its okay to fill thousands of graves for no reason. Don't think I understand, or would even like to know your God.

    April 4, 2014 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  4. Silence DoGood

    " moral god fearing beliefs "
    .....meaning conservative Christian values I am sure. Would you have said the same of a devout Muslim or Hindu or liberal-Christian? If not, say what you mean and don't hide behind a euphemism.
    Beware everyone! The slippery slope away from the 1776 vision toward a Christian Theocracy is paved with nice sounding phrases.

    April 4, 2014 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  5. The REAL TRUTH...

    @Chris-E...al – I sure miss his strong moral god fearing beliefs that made us truely a shining city . I think this prez is trying to make us a joke to the world ? With his do as you want polices ? It will take years to get our respect back frm this joker .
    The worst President in our history has long gone back to Dallas (or Crawford) where he belongs. Luckily, he can't do anymore damage by painting.. this Prez has managed to get the country into a better state after the garbage he inherited from the Bush administration.. and in spite of all the blocking the Grand Oligarchy Party has done since Jan 2009.

    April 4, 2014 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  6. Name

    I have no doubt George Bush is a nice man. Honest and a good father. Gonna make a great grandpa. But, he was a horrible pres.

    April 4, 2014 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  7. Thomas

    Yes Bush was a great leader and has made a very fine artist . I sure miss his strong moral god fearing beliefs that made us truely a shining city . I think this prez is trying to make us a joke to the world ? With his do as you want polices ? It will take years to get our respect back frm this joker .

    GW Bush is why we lost respect in the world , and why we wasted trillions of dollars on wars that drained us as our adversaries watched with enjoyment as we bled on our own swords .

    As for GW and his paintings , his art work is only important because he was President .

    April 5, 2014 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  8. Thomas

    The U.S. Attorney in New Jersey has convened a grand jury to investigate the involvement of Governor Chris Christie’s office in the George Washington Bridge scandal.

    Darrell Issa , where are u ?

    April 5, 2014 01:16 am at 1:16 am |
  9. J Anthony

    @Chris E al: awake from your partisan slumber.

    April 5, 2014 08:02 am at 8:02 am |
  10. Phyllis Gwendoline Williams

    From I was a child 80+ years ago I was told that Peace between Israel & Palestine (Genesis 16: 12) would come after
    Armageddon, and until now the prophetic word seems to be true.

    April 5, 2014 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  11. Phyllis Gwendoline Williams

    It seems that it is time for the 'world men' (women) to become real men (Ephesians 1: 23)(smile)

    April 5, 2014 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  12. Donna

    Women need to stop being so whiny about their treatment. Politics is a contact sport. Don't expect to be treated nicely and get special treatment because you are a woman. Blacks use the race/victim card as a shield to stop valid criticism and women use the gender/victim card the same way. To all of you, if you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen.

    April 5, 2014 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  13. it must be said

    Pelosi is bat shiite crazy. She has said stuff that is FAR DUMBER than Palin has ever said, yet she gets a pass in the LSM. This woman is a cancer on this nation. God help this country if she EVER gains control of the US House of Representatives ever again.

    April 5, 2014 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  14. Neutral Observer

    Trust me Nancy, all are gonna need much more than just a thick skin after our healthcare goes down the drain

    April 5, 2014 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  15. Neutral Observer

    A double standard for Hillary, yes but not against her but for her. Who else could fail at so much and succeed at so little and be considered likely next President. Whitewater (a failure in her own words), the state dept (look at how far back we are in middle east and now even Europe), even how she handled the whole monika thing. Face it folks, if it wasn't for being first lady first and growing up wealthy second, this woman wouldn't be where she is. And to be true, there are women success stories in this country, a lot of them. But I'd say the human race would be better off if all women could just avoid the Hillary example.

    April 5, 2014 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  16. Tampa Tim

    Neutral – Perhaps you could share your binders full of women's success stories with us.

    April 5, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  17. don in albuquerque


    Maybe you had not noticed it but our health care is already down the drain. The good 'ole USA ranks 37th in the whole big world-right behind Costa Rica. We spend more out of pocket on health care then anybody else in the world. You don't think it was time for somebody to do something? Anything?

    April 5, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  18. Thomas

    Women need to stop being so whiny about their treatment. Politics is a contact sport. Don't expect to be treated nicely and get special treatment because you are a woman. Blacks use the race/victim card as a shield to stop valid criticism and women use the gender/victim card the same way. To all of you, if you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen.

    Males shouldn't post as Females !

    April 5, 2014 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  19. don in albuquerque


    Wow, according to your post you must hate about half the country. How do you feel about hispanics? Go ahead, make my day....shoot for 3/4 of the country.

    April 5, 2014 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  20. Chris-E...al

    Don@ dont pick on donna dems have all the right answers for women you no ? Hows that working 4 ya don now ? Get use to it . Dems have lied 2 women 4 years an did nothing ! They even pickd 0bambi over Mrs. Clinton ? excus m gag .

    April 5, 2014 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  21. don in albuquerque


    You make me proud I'm a Dem everytime you post.

    April 5, 2014 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  22. Thomas

    Don@ dont pick on donna dems have all the right answers for women you no ? Hows that working 4 ya don now ? Get use to it . Dems have lied 2 women 4 years an did nothing ! They even pickd 0bambi over Mrs. Clinton ? excus m gag .


    Don't pick on Donna ,Chris you are Donna ...

    April 5, 2014 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  23. Neutral Observer

    Don, our health care already is? Has worked fine for me. The 3 times Ive needed an MRI I was in one within a week.

    April 5, 2014 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  24. Gurgyl

    GOP is pretty much gone to dogs.....

    April 6, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
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