Hillary Clinton will launch her presidential campaign soon, leading some to speculate that she will run for president. Ernest Moniz says the Iran framework is a "forever agreement," which sounds like the U.S. gave Iran the other half of its heart charm bracelet. And President Obama couldn’t calm a group of kids about nearby bees, making it the second time in as many weeks the president has been unable to pacify a rowdy and disrespectful group of children about an overhyped existential threat. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, April 6th, 2015:
CLINTON CAMPAIGN WILL START SMALL - But will Hillary run? AP: "Hillary Rodham Clinton is expected to launch her campaign for president sometime in the next two weeks and will initially focus on intimate events, rather than soaring speeches to big rallies, as her team looks to put her in direct contact with voters in states with early primaries or caucuses. The goal, according to two people close to the Clinton organization, is to make Clinton's second run for the White House more about voters and less about herself. While it appears at this moment that Clinton will not face a tough primary challenge in 2016, she is aiming to show voters she plans to earn their support and won't take the Democratic Party's nomination for granted. The strategy is also aimed at playing to what Clinton allies see as her strengths. Friends and advisers have long said she is more at ease in small group settings and one-on-one conversations where she can display her policy expertise, as well as personal warmth that she sometimes struggles to convey in front of larger crowds." [AP]
Meanwhile, Joe Biden will address senior Gay Mafia capos: "On April 30th, some of the biggest philanthropists involved in this fight will gather in Dallas for 'OutGiving,' an annual conference organized by Tim Gill, the founder of Quark and an important behind-the-scenes figure in the gay rights movement, who over the last decade has worked to organize the political strategy for a large group of wealthy gay donors... On May 2, Biden will be a keynote speaker (per the Vice President's office, reporters will have an opportunity to cover his remarks... For Biden, it’s a chance to soak up some love as the Obama administration draws to a close and attention turns to Hillary Clinton. And if Clinton should get beamed up by an alien spacecraft or is otherwise incapacitated, Gill’s network will be a invaluable fundraising source, should Biden make his own run for the White House." [Bloomberg]
MONIZ DISCUSSES IRAN FRAMEWORK - If Ernest Moniz looked just slightly more evil, he'd make a great Bond villain, what with the hair and his access to uranium. The Hill: "The nuclear deal negotiated with Iran is a “forever agreement” that will last well beyond the next decade, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said Monday from the White House briefing room. Moniz, who played a key role in negotiating the nuclear pact in Switzerland, said the framework agreement provides for intrusive inspections that would ensure Iran is not racing to build a nuclear weapon. Many of those conditions would last for 25 years or more, he added, well beyond the 10-year limits on Iran’s ability to construct centrifuges. 'It’s not a fixed-year agreement; it’s a forever agreement,' Moniz told reporters at the White House. 'The access and transparency is unprecedented,' Moniz said." [The Hill]
Haircut: Elise Foley (h/t Elise Foley)
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Kansas welfare recipients will be unable to get more than $25 per day in ATM cash withdrawals under a new law sent last week to Republican Gov. Sam Brownback's desk by the state legislature. The bill also prohibits welfare recipients from spending their benefits at certain types of businesses, including liquor stores, fortune tellers, swimming pools and cruise ships. "We're trying to make sure those benefits are used the way they were intended," state Rep. Michael O'Donnell (R) said, according to the Topeka Capital-Journal. "This is about prosperity. This is about having a great life." [HuffPost]
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SUPREME COURT WON'T HEAR NORTH CAROLINA VOTING RIGHTS CASE - Now all those thousands of elderly black women who are meeting in secret to strategize how best to vote 5,000 times each will have to figure out a new approach. Reuters: "The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to review the legality of new Republican-backed voting restrictions in North Carolina that were part of a law opponents argued was aimed at making it harder for voters who tend to favor Democrats to cast ballots. The court rejected the state's appeal of an October decision by the Richmond, Virginia-based 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that found that parts of the 2013 law should be provisionally blocked while litigation continues. The law put in place a requirement that voters show certain forms of photo identification in order to cast a ballot as well as other provisions. At issue in the current case are the sections of the law that barred same-day voter registration and provisional voting for voters casting ballots outside their normal precincts." [Reuters]
ME LLAMO JEB - A Jeb Bush/Elizabeth Warren ticket would not only unify the country, but break a lot of racial barriers. Times: "In a 2009 voter-registration application, obtained from the Miami-Dade County Elections Department, Mr. Bush marked Hispanic in the field labeled 'race/ethnicity.' A Bush spokeswoman could offer no explanation for the characterization. However, Mr. Bush took to Twitter late on Monday morning to call the situation a mistake. 'My mistake! Don’t think I’ve fooled anyone! RT @JebBushJr LOL - come on dad, think you checked the wrong box #HonoraryLatino' [Bush tweeted in response to his son]." [NYT]
Wait, Jeb Bush is white?
CHRISTIE TO MAKE NEW HAMPSHIRE SWING - Granite State representatives place a premium on retail politics, so Christis is going to have to go door-to-door, yelling at as many people as possible. Scott Conroy: "Christie is set to begin his longest campaign-style sojourn this year when he sets out April 14 on a four-day swing through the first primary state in the nation, The Huffington Post has learned. The extended New Hampshire visit will feature private gatherings and public retail stops around the state, punctuated by a pair of town hall meetings that the New Jersey governor’s political action committee is billing as the kickoff to a 'Tell it like it is' town hall tour. Christie’s schedule is still to be finalized, but the first town hall meeting will be held at the Lions Club in Londonderry on Wednesday, April 15. Additional events will take place in Manchester, the Seacoast Region town of Newmarket and elsewhere. Christie will hold a second town hall meeting on April 17. " [HuffPost]
SENATE DEMS LOSING PATIENCE WITH SEC - They should re-introduce Blanche Lincoln's Dodd-Frank derivatives amendment, just to freak everyone out. Zach Carter: "Senate Democrats are losing patience with the Securities and Exchange Commission over the agency's failure to implement a new CEO pay rule. Democrats have been pushing the SEC for nearly five years to move forward with the rule, which Congress required the agency to develop under the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law. The rule would mandate that companies publicly disclose the ratio of their CEO's pay to the median earnings of workers at the firm. More than three years after Dodd-Frank passed, the SEC finally proposed the rule in September 2013. But the agency has refused to finalize it for more than 18 months -- about nine times longer than the standard 60-day comment period...Fifteen Senate Democrats, including Franken and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), signed a letter to SEC Chair Mary Jo White in December, calling on the agency to finalize the rule by March 31, 2015." [HuffPost]
HUGE BLIND SPOT IN KING V. BURWELL LAWSUIT - Jeff Young's look at Alabama: "The Bentley administration, the Alabama legislature and the governor’s Alabama Health Insurance Exchange Study Commission weighed many of the same issues their counterparts in other states did. How would they finance the exchange's operations? Should a state agency or some other entity manage a new marketplace? How heavily should insurance companies be regulated? Would it better for Alabama to exert at least a little control over Obamacare, or to just let the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services do the work? One thing they didn’t seem to consider was whether Alabamians would be able to receive subsidies to make their health insurance more affordable if the state defaulted to a federally operated exchange, according to documents and interviews with principal figures in the debate. The absence of consideration of that critical provision is remarkable in light of judicial and political developments over the past year...The plaintiffs in King v. Burwell, and their allies, want the Supreme Court and the American public to believe not only that the precise wording of the Affordable Care Act -- the phrase 'established by the State' -- makes these subsidies permissible only in state-run exchanges, but that this was the clear intent of Congress and was fully understood by state officials when they were deciding which path to choose." [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a baby elephant.
- "Sesame Street," forever the greatest show on television, ran a "Game of Thrones" parody.
- A 1985 New York Times column that was not terribly kind to laptops
- "Disorderly Goat In Custody After Headbutting Door In New Jersey"
@TPCarney: There are a lot more places in that ambiguous kind-of-a-country zone than I had realized.
@elisefoley: “Thank you, Mr. Chair” is what I say when I get up from my desk.
@SteveRushin: Baseball. One inning into the season and everyone looking at their phones.
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