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Thursday, May 14, 2015
544 Days Until Election Day 2016It's Thursday, May 14, 2015, I'm Gabe Fleisher for Wake Up To Politics, and reporting from WUTP world HQ in my bedroom - Good morning: THIS IS YOUR WAKE UP CALL!!!
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- Race to 45: Bolton Announcing 2016 Decision John Bolton will hold a conference call with reporters at 12:15 PM today where he will announce whether or not he is launching a 2016 Republican presidential bid.
- Bolton, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations under President George W. Bush, will also post a video to Facebook on his decision.
- If he does jump in the crowded GOP presidential primary, Bolton will be the seventh candidate to do so.
- Race to 45: Numbers to Know A new 2016 poll was released by Fox News this morning. Here are the numbers to know:
- GOP: Jeb Bush and Ben Carson led the Republican primary with 13% each. Scott Walker took 11%, Huckabee 10%, Rubio 9%, Paul 7%, while Christie and Cruz were both at 6%. Perry, Santorum, Kasich, Fiorina, Jindal and Graham all took 2% or less. This is definitely higher numbers for Carson and Huckabee than we’ve seen in the past.
- DEM: Hillary Clinton’s stranglehold on the Democratic nomination holds for now: the poll shows her taking 63% of the vote, compared to Elizabeth Warren’s 13%, and 6% from both Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders. Webb, Chafee, and O’Malley all take 2% or less.
- GEN: In general election match-ups, Hillary Clinton beats all potential opponents except Jeb Bush, who leads her 45% to 44%.
- The other GOP candidates who come closest to Clinton are Huckabee (-3%), Rubio (-4%), Cruz (-5%), Walker (-6%), and Carson (-6%).
- Sanchez to Announce: In or Out of CA SEN? Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) is reportedly set “to make a significant political announcement” at 11 AM today at the Santa Ana train station. Politico reported Tuesday that the announcement would be that she is running for the open U.S. Senate seat in California, although the congresswoman has said she has not yet made her decision.
- If Sanchez does run, it would mean challenging state Attorney General Kamala Harris (D), who jumped in the race just days after Sen. Barbara Boxer announced her retirement.
- Although Sanchez appeals to moderate and Latino Democrats, it will be difficult to go against Harris, a popular politician with fundraising prowess who has already been elected statewide.
- Kirk Airs First 2016 Senate Ad Welcome to the race for control of the Senate, 2016 edition. Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk (R) has cut an ad for his re-election campaign, which will start airing on TV today: the first TV ad of a 2016 Senate campaign.
- According to the Chicago Tribune, “In the 60-second ad, Kirk narrates footage of his physical rehabilitation coupled with his military history as a former intelligence officer in the Naval Reserve. The ad is interspersed with video of his climb up the steps of the Capitol in Washington almost a year after having the stroke.”
Capitol Hill News
- Senate: Schedule Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) have struck a deal on trade.
- Today, two Democratic measures the party had hoped to attach to the trade bill will get stand-alone votes: one of these “would crack down on currency manipulators,” while the second would “expand trade with Africa,” Politico writes.
- These provisions, especially the former, are controversial and even if they are passed by the Senate, they will have a tough time in the House and could even face a presidential veto.
- In exchange for holding those two votes, the Senate will also hold a cloture vote on the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill. This measure, which is linked with Trade Adjustment Assistance (“which is intended to help workers who lose their jobs as a result of expanded trade,” according to Politico), would grant President Barack Obama the authority to fast-track trade deals through Congress.
- This debate is important right now because Obama is preparing to send his controversial 12-nation trade deal, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), to Congress.
- The deal is supported by President Obama, but opposed by members of his own party – even as it is supported by Republicans. This set up the odd dynamic Tuesday of a test vote of the TPA bill failing because just one Democrat supported the agenda set by their party’s leader, even as all the Republicans voted with Obama.
- Now, however, TPA is expected to advance, getting the votes necessary for today’s cloture votes and passing next week. Then, the measure will head to the House, where Speaker John Boehner expects it to eventually pass, saying Tuesday, “Obviously, I’m still optimistic that the Senate will figure out how to deal with this, they’re having a little bump in the road over there. But at the end of the day, I think there’s a majority in the House and Senate for giving this president trade promotion authority and I’m hopeful that the Senate will act soon, and when the Senate does, I expect we will act shortly thereafter.”
- House: Schedule The House votes today on a bill giving Congress review power over a nuclear deal with Iran. The measure was passed by the Senate last week in a 98-1 vote.
- The fate of the bill hinges on whether GOP leaders will allow amendments to be added to it: if so, a number of amendments could be added on turning Democrats off from supporting it, although Boehner is not expected to allow that.
White House Watch
- The President’s Schedule President Obama’s summit with Gulf leaders continues at Camp David today.
- At 10:20 AM, the President will depart the White House, arriving at Camp David a half-hour later.
- Throughout the day, Obama and the Gulf leaders will hold working sessions at Camp David. The summit is with leaders from Gulf Cooperation Council countries: Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia.
- Of those six nations, just two of their rulers are attending the summit (Qatar and Kuwait are both sending their respective Amirs, or kings). Oman sent a deputy prime minister, while Bahrain, Abu Dhabi, and Saudi Arabia each sent a Crown Prince (the latter also sent a deputy crown prince as well). Where are the real leaders? According to the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, King Salman is busy with the “scheduled humanitarian ceasefire in Yemen and the opening of the King Salman Center for Humanitarian Aid.” Meanwhile, the King of Bahrain apparently snubbed Obama to attend a horse show with Queen Elizabeth.
- What the Gulf leaders want to discuss with Obama, from the Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/persian-gulf-leaders-to-press-obama-to-strengthen-us-security-relationship/2015/05/11/60d16ece-f811-11e4-a13c-193b1241d51a_story.html?wpisrc=nl_readin&wpmm=1
- A 5 PM press conference will wrap up the summit: Obama leaves the presidential retreat at 5:55 PM and arrives back at the White House at 6:25.
- The First Gentleman Bill Clinton went on the “Late Show with David Letterman” Tuesday, and was asked if he would move back into the White House.
- Clinton said: “First of all, Hillary has to win the nomination. If she wins the nomination, then she has to win the election. If she wins the election, the chances are 100 percent that I'll move back.”
- And then he added: “If I’m asked.”
- Now that we’ve nailed that down, as well as Clinton’s title (First Gentleman), the next question: will he fulfill the traditional duties of the President’s spouse?
- Probably not, Susan Swain told Daily Mail. Swain, the co-CEO of C-SPAN who produced the network’s series on First Ladies and authored a book on the subject, said “The best guesstimate with the Clintons is that Chelsea Clinton would take over that role [of hostess duties].”
- Daily Mail wrote, “If [Chelsea] were to manage the East Wing in a Hillary Clinton White House, it would clear her father Bill’s plate to take on a policy role in the new administration or continue working with his non-profit…”
- While there is precedence for daughters (or daughters-in-law, sisters, and nieces) taking over hostess duties for the First Lady, if Chelsea were to do so, it would mean moving from New York and picking up her life at the Clinton Foundation.
- Personally, I have a hard time seeing Bill continue at the Clinton Foundation (it’s too messy) or Chelsea leaving it…meaning he might leave her to lead the non-profit. In that scenario, Bill would probably still keep more of a policy portfolio at the White House, and the Social Secretary (and maybe Hillary herself) picking up the hostess duties.
- The point is…if Hillary does win, we will be in uncharted territory, folks.
Question of the Day
- Today’s Question Who was Camp David named for?
- Answer by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org before tomorrow morning and get your name in tomorrow’s Wake Up!