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By Andrew Rafferty and Carrie Dann

Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos... Dozens of World War II planes flew over the National Mall on Friday, and somehow none of them took the title of “Most Unique Aircraft to Fly Into D.C. in 2015.” Thanks again, gyrocopter.

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Most of the GOP field will be slinging red meat at a South Carolina conservative conference tomorrow, but we’re most interested in how Jeb Bush will be received at a very different kind of gathering. He heads to Lynchburg, Va., to deliver the commencement address at Liberty University, the evangelical institution founded by Baptist Minister Jerry Falwell. He holds conservative positions on abortion and life issues. (See: “Schiavo, Terri” and this line from early excerpts of the speech: “Wherever there is a child waiting to be born, we say choose life, and we say it with love.”) But, the right wing of the Republican party still views him with suspicion because of his stance on issues like Common Core and immigration. He is staunchly opposed to same sex marriage, but some have questions about his commitment to talking about the issue with the passion of his competitors. And after the flap over adviser James Baker’s comments, some evangelicals are wary of where he stands on Israel, too. Now, at the place where rival Ted Cruz launched his own campaign, we will see if can make any real headway with a part of the party that is skeptical of whether or not he is fully in their corner.


NBC’s Kristin Donnelly has a look at Obama’s trip to Portland to sell his trade deal at Nike headquarters, even as the liberal community remains divided.

Our colleagues over at note that Christie is breaking with other Republican rivals by saying that NSA phone data collection should continue.

NBC’s Mark Murray breaks down what mattered (and what didn’t) this week in 2016 politics.

We learned a lot about the 2016 field from our NBC/WSJ poll, and we broke it all down this morning in First Read.


Special thanks to DC bureau intern Ben Florance for helping with clips for the last several months

FIORINA: The New York Times writes about Fiorina’s most recent explanation of her dismissal from Hewlett-Packard.

RUBIO: The Washington Post writes about Marco Rubio’s “most loyal friend and support,” David Rivera, who’s the target of a federal ethics investigation.

BUSH:Politico reports on his $100 million May.

GRAHAM: He’s looking to make his 2016 announcement around June 1, Politico reports.


“Somebody told me that the pinot noir in Oregon is top-notch, right?”

  • President Obama during remarks at Nike in Oregon.


The South Carolina Freedom Summit, sponsored by Citizens United, features addresses from Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina, Bobby Jindal, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry and Scott Walker.

Jeb Bush gives a commencement speech at Liberty University in Virginia.

Rand Paul holds a “Disrupting Democracy” discussion with tech groups in San Francisco.