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First Read's Morning Clips

A roundup of the most important political news stories of the day

OBAMA AGENDA: Saudi king pulls out of White House summit

"Saudi Arabia’s monarch pulled out of a summit to be hosted by President Barack Obama on Thursday, in a blow to the White House’s efforts to build Arab support for a nuclear accord with Iran," writes the Wall Street Journal.

More, from the AP: "The absences will put a damper on talks that are designed to reassure key Arab allies, and almost certainly reflect dissatisfaction among leaders of the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council with Washington's handling of Iran and what they expect to get out of the meeting."

ICYMI: Barack Obama on Elizabeth Warren's claims against a new global trade partnership, in an interview with Yahoo News: "She's absolutely wrong."

CONGRESS: McConnell vs. Reid on fast-track bill

The Wall Street Journal: "Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s efforts to complete fast-track trade legislation by the end of the month are running into an old nemesis: Harry Reid."

The House will consider a 20-week abortion ban this week, Roll Call notes.

OFF TO THE RACES: What happened to the “middle class” – well, at least the term?

The New York Times notes that candidates aren't using the term "middle class" as much – as economic tiers shift and shrink.

"Senior executives from seven of the biggest U.S. banks gathered or dialed into a March 31 meeting on the 51st floor of the Bank of America Tower in New York to discuss the upcoming election cycle and how the firms can counteract what they view as false and damaging statements about large banks, according to emails reviewed by The Wall Street Journal and people familiar with the meeting."

Republicans in South Carolina had some tough talk on foreign policy in South Carolina this weekend.

Hillary Clinton looks resilient with New Hampshire Democrats in a new Bloomberg/ Saint Anselm poll, while Rand Paul and Scott Walker lead with Republicans.

BUSH: POLITICO questions whether Jeb Bush's decision to delay jumping into the 2016 race is hurting his chances of winning the nomination.

In an interview to be aired Monday on FOX News, Jeb Bush says he would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

At Liberty University, he spoke about the role of religion in public life.

CARSON: On FOX News Sunday, Carson talked Ukraine, flat tax and judicial review.

CLINTON: The New York Times reports on Hillary Clinton's brother, Tony Rodham. "On and off for two decades, the affable Mr. Rodham has tried to use his connections with his sister and his brother-in-law, former President Bill Clinton, to further a business career that has seen more failures than successes. The connections to the Clintons have given Mr. Rodham, a self-described “facilitator,” a unique appeal and a range of opportunities, like addressing Chinese investor conferences and joining an advisory board of a company seeking permission to mine for gold in Haiti."

The Washington Post asks the question: "What do to with Bill?" MORE: "Bill Clinton is a political animal who logged 168,000 miles on the campaign trail in 2014. Yet senior aides say he does not plan to do any campaign activities for his wife in 2015, including fundraisers for her campaign or allied super PACs. He has said privately that she should lead the campaign on her own, aides said."

"The Clinton presidential operation may look like a juggernaut from the outside, but her attempts to marshal early support in the home states of long shots are evidence that she feels the need to protect every flank, no matter how weak the opposition appears," writes the Boston Globe.

HUCKABEE: Mike Huckabee, asked about promoting a dietary supplement that claims to cure diabetes: "I don't have to defend everything that I've ever done."

FIORINA: Check out Chuck Todd's interview with Carly Fiorina, who defended her opposition to the trade deal being pushed by the president.

The Meet the Press team also looks at why Carly Fiorina was fired from H-P.

PAUL: Rand Paul says he didn't know what military exercise Jade Helm was when he was asked about it last month.

RUBIO: The New York Times wrote over the weekend about Marco Rubio's close relationship with South Florida auto dealer Norman Braman.

In an interview with Kasie Hunt, Rubio defended his relationship with Braman, saying he "has never asked me to do anything for his business in my time in Washington DC."

WALKER: “Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said Saturday he would end the budget sequester requiring automatic defense and domestic spending cuts if he became president, a critical issue in South Carolina, a state with a large military economy and site of the first primary in the South,” McClatchy writes.

And around the country:

INDIANA: Marlin Stutzman is running for Senate, Roll Call writes.

NEW YORK: The fallout from that big NYT expose on nail salons: Gov. Andrew Cuomo has ordered emergency measures to combat abuse of workers.


*** Monday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: Tamron Hall, speaks with VICE Sports contributor Jessica Luther about the Jameis Winston suit, NBC's Kerry Sanders in Van, TX on severe weather , and Owner of the world-renowned hot rod shop Gas Monkey Garage star of Discovery's hit series Richard Rawlings Fast N' Loud.

*** Monday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviews Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza, the AP’s Julie Pace, the New York Times’ Jeremy Peters, NBC Senior Vatican analyst George Weigel, and Nicholas Burns.