HUFFPOST HILL - Amtrak To Introduce New Disquiet Car For Poverty Gawking

04/28/2015 06:00 pm ET | Updated Apr 28, 2015

President Obama will make up for the poor optics of attending the White House Correspondents Association dinner while Baltimore burned by throwing a lavish state dinner tonight. Tomorrow’s Orioles-White Sox game at Camden Yards will be played in front of an empty stadium, which technically will make the Marlins the home team. And Joe Scarborough recalled the poverty he witnessed in Baltimore while riding through on the Acela. He went on to discuss his fond memories of visiting the Philadelphia Zoo while in the dining car. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Tuesday, April 28th 2015:

BERNIE SANDERS TO ANNOUNCE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN - Rumor is his campaign manager will be a pair of wool Darn Tough socks. A jaundiced 1982 copy of The Nation will handle comms. Bob Kinzel :"VPR News has learned from several sources that independent U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders will announce his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination on Thursday. Sanders will release a short statement on that day and then hold a major campaign kickoff in Vermont in several weeks. Sanders' basic message will be that the middle class in America has been decimated in the past two decades while wealthy people and corporations have flourished. His opposition to a proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal (T.P.P.) shows how he plans to frame this key issue of his campaign." [VPN News]

@aedwardslevy: Say this for Bernie Sanders: he's polling at 3x O'Malley's support http://t.co/M9bxlx5H2s pic.twitter.com/36CotFD403

Will fund her campaign through the sale of 12 printer cartridges: "Carly Fiorina says she’s running for president. 'I can say that I will be making a formal announcement in the very near future. And I am very encouraged by what I’ve experienced here in New Hampshire over the last many months,' Fiorina said Tuesday during a sit down interview with NH1 News.But Fiorina refused to confirm reports that she’ll make that announcement on May 4. Asked if she could share details on her campaign launch, she said 'no, I won’t tell you that.' Fiorina’s interview with NH1 News came as she kicked off a three-day swing through the first-in-the-nation primary state. And it came on the same day that the Supreme Court was hearing a major case on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage." [NH1]

Ali Watkins profiled the one person to be punished in the wake of the Senate's CIA's torture report: a person who helped publish the torture report.

REID PICKS UP ROCK ON SENATE FLOOR, HURLS IT AT MR. PRESIDENT - Reid gave quite the radical defense of the Baltimore protesters this afternoon. Mitch McConnell called for them all to be arrested. One guy is retiring, the other thinks his party can win the White House on the backs of angry white voters. Guess which? "The violent protests in Baltimore are an understandable response to a system that is rigged in favor of the rich and that leaves children and young men with little hope or opportunity, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Tuesday afternoon. "We cannot condone the violence we see in Baltimore, but we must not ignore the despair and hopelessness that gives rise to this kind of violence," Reid said, providing a condemnation of the violence that seemed more dutiful than heartfelt. "So let’s condemn the violence, but let’s not ignore the underlying problem." Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), meanwhile, was less interested in the root cause of the unrest, and instead called for law enforcement to start pressing charges. "I hope the investigation into illegal behavior will be be concluded soon and those who've been engaged in criminal behavior will be promptly pursued and charged," McConnell said. McConnell was referring not to the police officers involved in the killing of Freddie Gray, but rather to those in the streets.

Remember, Rand Paul understands black America: "On Tuesday, Republican presidential candidate Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) told conservative radio host Laura Ingraham about his own ride through the city. 'I came through the train on Baltimore (sic) last night, I'm glad the train didn't stop,' he said while laughing." [HuffPost's Amber Ferguson]

They should run the "People Will Come, Ray" speech on the JumboTron the whole time: "The Baltimore Orioles announced Tuesday that the team's Wednesday game against the Chicago White Sox will be closed to the public. So basically, they are going to be playing in front of an empty stadium." [HuffPost]

Haircut: Chris Vieson (h/t Chris Vieson)

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HAPPY SCOTUS GAY DAY - This case is starting to feel a bit like the jurisprudential version of finishing a gym class to fulfill your graduation requirements. Ryan Reilly and Jen Bendery: "The Supreme Court on Tuesday seemed to be debating how -- not if -- same-sex marriage should become legal in every state in the country. During oral arguments, the nine justices weighed whether now is the right time to force states to let same-sex couples marry, pointing to how quickly public opinion has shifted on the issue. Thirty-seven states and Washington, D.C., currently recognize same-sex marriage. Justice Anthony Kennedy, who is considered a swing vote and who was a key figure in striking down the Defense of Marriage Act back in 2013, suggested the court may be moving too quickly to force states to marry same-sex couples. 'This definition has been with us for millennia,' Kennedy said of opposite-sex marriages. 'It's very difficult for the court to say, 'Oh, well, we know better.'' However, Kennedy noted that about 10 years had passed between when the Supreme Court struck down separate-but-equal racial discrimination and laws banning interracial marriage. That's about the same amount of time between when the Supreme Court ended sodomy laws and the present, he said." [HuffPost]

Presumably he was escorted out of the room and into Justice Scalia's chambers for a job: "Tuesday's high-profile Supreme Court hearing on same-sex marriage was briefly interrupted by a man screaming about gay people going to hell. About half an hour into oral arguments, the man, who was sitting in the audience, suddenly jumped up and started shouting his views. 'If you support gay marriage, you will burn in hell!' the man shouted as he was dragged out of the room. 'Homosexuality is an abomination!' … At least one of the justices didn't seem to mind the interruption. 'It was rather refreshing, actually,' Justice Antonin Scalia said to laughs." [HuffPost's Jen Bendery]

HARRY REID REALLY HATES SCOTT BROWN - Presumably Scott falls somewhere behind fat dogs and ahead of sweaty people in Reid's estimation. Igor Bobic: "After repeatedly clashing with Brown in the Senate, the retiring minority leader took one last shot at him in a New Yorker article about the legacy of Elizabeth Warren, who succeeded Brown in Congress. Reid told Ryan Lizza that, when all was said and done, he was glad Republicans rallied against the nomination of Warren as Consumer Financial Protection Agency chief because it led to Brown's demise. 'Republicans were afraid of her,' Reid said of Warren. 'So what did they do? They said they would block her nomination. And thank goodness they did. Because after that I worked with Elizabeth and others to see if she would run against Scott Brown, who I thought was one of the worst senators in the history of my being around here. I mean, what a phony. In 2011, we worked hard to get her to run.' The tough talk is characteristic of Reid's time in the Senate as a partisan bomb-thrower. It also follows recent remarks that have incensed Republicans, including his referring to his counterpart, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), as a "lump of coal” over his support for the coal industry, and calling the 2016 Republican presidential field 'losers.' [HuffPost]

T-minus five days until Larry Pfeifer joins "The Five" "In early April, John Hinderaker, one of the main authors of the conservative blog Power Line, wrote a story alleging that Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) had not been injured in an accident involving broken exercise equipment, as he said he was. Rather, Reid was likely involved in a confrontation with his brother Larry, during which he sustained broken ribs and a busted eye socket that had kept him wearing protective sunglasses since. Hinderaker based all this on a single source: a Las Vegas man name Easton Elliott who claimed to have been at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting on New Year's Eve in Henderson, Nevada, at which an intoxicated and agitated Larry came in with bloody clothes claiming to have just been in a fight with a family member. The story was a hoax. Easton Elliott was actually a former nightclub consultant named Larry Pfeifer who wanted to see just how far baseless rumor-mongering could spread among the press." [HuffPost's Sam Stein]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here's a child who has had enough.

GODALMIGHTY THIS IS THE 'MORNING JOE-'IEST THING TO EVER 'MORNING JOE' - Also they spent half the conversation blaming Martin O'Malley. Good. Stuff. Amber Ferguson: "MSNBC contributor Mike Barnicle, speaking on the network's 'Morning Joe' on Monday, cited his frequent Amtrak rides through the city in assessing the Baltimore situation. 'It’s a huge minority population in Baltimore City, especially in West Baltimore. You can see if you take the Amtrak train from Washington to New York when it rolls through Baltimore, you can see a visible display, out of both sides of your window, of poverty, of decaying neighborhoods that have been there for decades.' Fellow pundits nodded along as Barnicle described the familiar window scene. On Tuesday, host Joe Scarborough, a former congressman, reiterated Barnicle's point. 'As Mike said a couple of days ago, get on Amtrak, drive through Baltimore, parts of that city looks like a war zone and it has now for 40, 50 years,' he said. 'And you talk about the hopelessness that sets in after all of that time, it is a complete and total failure of public policy over the last past half-century.'" [HuffPost]

OBAMA BLAMES PUBLIC FOR IGNORING INJUSTICE - I mean Christ, he can't be responsible for everything. "If we really want to solve the problem, we could, it's just it would require everybody saying this is important, this is significant and that we just don't pay attention to these communities when a CVS burns. And we don't just pay attention when a man gets shot or has his spine snapped," Obama said from his metaphorical seat on the Acela.


- Touring a test kitchen

- One way to handle the riots in Baltimore.

- Ray Bradbury ruminating on friendhsip.


@aedwardslevy: I heard if you say "invisible primary" three times in front of a mirror it turns visible and then it devours you

@Alex_Roarty: A Bernie Sanders candidacy will really test the idea that a guy who looks like your AP biology professor can win presidency.

@pourmecoffee: No cameras in SCOTUS to watch historic same-sex marriage arguments because the powerful courtroom sketch artist lobby has rigged the game.

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