POLITICS

HUFFPOST HILL - Can Hillary Clinton Disseminate Thousands Of Pages Of Emails And Have It All?

03/09/2015 05:26 pm ET | Updated Mar 09, 2015

Lindsey Graham has never sent an email, but lest you think the South Carolina senator a total luddite, he *has* figured out the medicine reminder on his Jitterbug. The GOP opposed negotiations with Iran by negotiating with Iran. And a new poll finds Fox News is the most-trusted network news outlet, a development undoubtedly buoyed by Bill O’Reilly’s enterprising D-Day reporting. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, March 9th, 2015:

BLESSED ARE THE PEACERUINERS, FOR THEY SHALL BE CALLED TOM COTTON - Grim: "Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), the organizer of a controversial letter warning Iran that the U.S. government will not necessarily abide by any agreement Iran strikes with the Obama administration, previously told a conservative audience that the goal of congressional action should be to scuttle talks with Iran. The U.S. should, instead, engage in a policy of 'regime change,' he argued... Cotton, for his part, has made no secret that he wants the talks to fail. 'The end of these negotiations isn't an unintended consequence of congressional action. It is very much an intended consequence. A feature, not a bug, so speak,' Cotton said in January, speaking at a conservative conference hosted by the advocacy group Heritage Action for America. Cotton's bald admission would be less interesting had he not been the one to spearhead a Senate effort revealed Monday by Bloomberg View -- an open letter to Iran's leaders signed by 47 Republican senators. The letter explains the workings of the American government to the Iranian regime." [HuffPost]

About that explanation of our constitutional government: they flubbed the role of the Senate in ratifying treaties, as Harvard law professor and former Bush administration honcho Jack Goldsmith pointed out.

Reminder that Tom Cotton loves war.

CLINTON TO TALK ABOUT EMAILS - While we're engaged in this collective email shaming, can we focus our wrath on whomever invented the "Hey" email solicitation? Also everyone at MoveOn.org. Politico: "Hillary Rodham Clinton will soon address the controversy over her use of a private email account at the State Department, and is likely to hold a press conference in New York in the next several days to answer reporters’ questions, according to three people close to the potential Democratic frontrunner. The decision to address the issue, made in the last several days, comes amid a cascade of criticism following New York Times and Associated Press stories in the past week, reporting that Clinton had possibly violated State Department policy by channeling her emails through a private server housed in her suburban New York mansion. The pressure on Clinton has ratcheted up as critics, including some congressional Democrats, have called on her to publicly address the reports. That pressure only increased on Monday as a spokesman for President Obama told reporters that Clinton and the president had, in fact, exchanged emails using Clinton’s private email account during her tenure at Foggy Bottom from 2009 to 2013." [Politico]

Haircuts: Eliot Nelson, Jen Bendery, Paige Lavender, Donte Stallworth.

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Thanks in large part to Republicans cutting unemployment insurance at the state level, the percentage of unemployed people who receive benefits is at a historic low, according to the Economic Policy Institute. And at the time of the previous low point, in 1984, federal benefits were available. Not this time. "Because there were no federal benefit extensions in 2014, workers who exhausted state benefits had less protection from the harm caused by unemployment than any similar cohort of jobless workers since the late 1950s -- when Congress first began benefit extensions,” EPI's Rick McHugh said. [EPI]

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CRIMINAL CHARGES AGAINST MENENDEZ COULD COME SOON - NBC New York: "Criminal charges against U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, could come later this month as a federal grand jury continues to hear evidence in the case, sources familiar with the investigation tell NBC 4 New York. Menendez has been under federal criminal investigation in connection with his ties to Florida eye doctor Salomon Melgen. The senator has admitted he accepted free private plane trips from Melgen, including a 2008 trip to the luxury resort of Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic. The senator has said he later repaid almost $70,000 for his trips on the doctor’s jet." [NBC New York]

The Michigan attorney general subpoenaed HuffPost reporter Dana Liebelson, but then backed off.

OBAMACARE SPENDING ESTIMATES DOWN - Thanks, Obama. Jeff Young: "Net spending on subsidies for private health insurance and greater enrollment in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program will total $1.2 trillion from next year through 2025. That's 11 percent less than the Congressional Budget Office projected just two months ago. The new estimate doesn't account for spending cuts and tax increases in the law, which the budget agency previously projected would result in a net decrease in the federal budget deficit because of Obamacare. A continuing, historic slowdown in the growth of national spending on health careduring recent years is one major reason for the Congressional Budget Office and Joint Committee on Taxation's re-evaluation of the Affordable Care Act's cost. Economists agree that the recession and slow recovery played a major role in keeping down health care spending as Americans' wallets were tight, and experts predict that spending will rise more quickly as the economy continues to improve. No consensus has emerged regarding the influence of Obamacare's cost-containment initiatives on this trend, but the congressional scorekeepers have incorporated lower health care spending and lower premiums into their calculations." [HuffPost]

SCOTUS REJECTS CONTRACEPTION MANDATE CHALLENGE - Antonin Scalia, gettin' out of your diaphragm. Reuters: "The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday threw out an appeals court decision that went against the University of Notre Dame over its religious objections to the Obamacare health law's contraception requirement. The justices asked the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reconsider its decision in favor of the Obama administration in light of the June 2014 Supreme Court ruling that allowed closely held corporations to seek exemptions from the provision. The court's action means the February 2014 appeals court ruling that denied the South Bend, Indiana-based Roman Catholic university an injunction against the requirement has been wiped out." [Reuters]

Hey, Politico, you also might want to add that "former treasury official" Tony Fratto is also "wall street consultant" Tony Fratto: "FORMER TREASURY OFFICIALS ALSO GIVE CURRENCY RULES THUMBS DOWN: Tony Fratto, a former Treasury official, argued Thursday that it's not even easy to measure the effects of currency manipulation on the trade balance, especially given that there are so many forces that affect a currency's value, such as expectations of monetary policy changes and economic growth. 'The correlation is really weak if you can find it at all,' he argued." [Politico's Morning Trade]

Lindsey Graham revealed yesterday that he has never sent an email.

In our inbox: "The International Mustache Hall of Fame today opened its doors and includes the likes of Tom Selleck, Dr. Martin Luther King, Salvador Dali, President Theodore Roosevelt, John Oates, Rollie Fingers and others. Oates called it, '....perhaps the most deeply satisfying moment of my career.'"

OBAMA LIBRARY DECISION DELAYED FOR CHICAGO MAYORAL ELECTION - Plus this gives them more time to suss out the "Private Property Seized By President Obama's Shock Troops" wing. AP: "President Barack Obama will hold off on announcing the location for his future presidential library until after Chicago's runoff election for mayor, two people familiar with the decision said, in a bid to avoid politicizing his legacy project. Last year the Barack Obama Foundation, which is screening proposals for the library, said the president and first lady Michelle Obama would announce the winner by the end of March. But with the Chicago race still up in the air, the announcement is no longer expected until after the April 7 runoff, said the individuals, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss the library...But the individuals with knowledge of the delay said that Obama and his foundation wanted to avoid injecting the library decision into the political fray — or to be seen as giving Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel an unfair advantage." [AP]

FOX NEWS MOST TRUSTED & MISTRUSTED NEWS NETWORK - Only seven percent of respondents think MSNBC is the most trustworthy news network, which undoubtedly would be higher if "Dr. Nancy" were still on the air. USA Today: "On the national front, 20% said they trusted Fox 'a great deal' while 35% said "somewhat." CNN (18% for "a great deal" and 43% for 'somewhat'), NBC News (14%, 46%), CBS News (14%, 50%), ABC News (14%, 50%) and MSNBC (11%, 41%) followed. 'Fox News may be the most trusted in the network and cable news race, but they all take a back seat to your local news,' said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll...Underscoring cable news' more overtly political slant, 26% of respondents also said they didn't trust Fox News "at all" as a news source, the highest among the national TV news outlets mentioned in the survey. MSNBC came in second at 24%." [USA Today]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a buffalo saying wut up.

SO LONG! - Mediaite: "Exactly five years ago this week, as the Congressional debate over the Affordable Care Act was coming to its eventual conclusion, Rush Limbaugh made a bold statement about his future as a resident of the United State of America. Speaking to a caller who expressed concerns about the impact of Obamacare on the U.S. healthcare system, Limbaugh said, 'If this passes and it’s five years from now and all that stuff gets implemented, I am leaving the country. I’ll go to Costa Rica.'" [Mediaite]

COMFORT FOOD

- A timelapse of mold growing.

- The inside of a driverless Mercedes.

- Recreating the clocktower scene from "Back to the Future" with LEGOs.

TWITTERAMA

@alexburnsNYT: We have officially entered the "Will Sen. [NAME] return the $[SUM] they got from Bob Menendez?" phase of the story

@evanmcsan: “hello, I’m Senator .”

@AliWatkins: wait can we make @SenTomCotton's official hashtag #TCOTT.

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