Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos…Rand Paul tweeted Thursday that he will make a "major endorsement" tomorrow, prompting immediate speculation that the whole thing is an elaborate April Fools joke. All of which tells you just about all you need to know about the 2016 race.
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'16 from 30,000
We're thinking of creating some kind of keyboard shortcut for the phrase "overlooked today because of the latest Donald Trump news..." because we type it so often. But, here we go again:
Overlooked today because of the latest Donald Trump news was some very strong language by Hillary Clinton about Democratic rival Bernie Sanders. Clinton blasted Sanders today for describing the fracas over Trump's controversial abortion comments as "a distraction" from other problems facing the country, saying that she views abortion as a "serious issue" worthy of discussion. She made some similar comments in her interview with Rachel Maddow last night, saying "to think that this is an issue that is not deserving of reaction just demonstrates a lack of appreciation for how serious this is" - and doing it at a campaign rally today even ups the ante further. NBC's Kristen Welker points out that the fact that Clinton tied Sanders to the Trump comments, even indirectly, suggests that she's facing real concerns about her rival's momentum. The campaign is bracing for a possible loss in Wisconsin, where Sanders appears to have a slim lead, but they could be in for a bumpy ride if Sanders starts closing the gap in delegate-rich New York, too. We'd written last week about Clinton's attempts to pivot to the general election, but this kind of tough language against her primary opponent shows she knows she's not out of the woods yet.
POPPING ON NBC POLITICS
- Donald Trump held a surprise meeting with Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus in Washington this afternoon.
- New polls are showing problems for Trump, MSNBC's Benjy Sarlin reports.
- Hillary Clinton found fault with Bernie Sanders response to Trump's abortion comments, NBC's Monica Alba reports.
- John Kasich parted ways with positive message and went after Trump in a press conference Thursday, one of us writes.
- A pro-Donald Trump super PAC is planning an extensive support operation for the GOP front-runner — whether he likes it or not, NBC's Alex Jaffe reports.
- And from First Read this AM: Why Trump's controversies matter for all Republicans.
FOR THE RECORD…
"Because I like to linger over my M&Ms and enjoy them, not just pour them down my mouth."
Chris Christie, explaining his controversial method of eating M&Ms
Hillary Clinton campaigns in Syracuse, while Bill makes a stop in Wisconsin.
Bernie Sanders is also in Wisconsin. Ted Cruz is also in the Badger State.
John Kasich makes stops both in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.