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The Lid: Rubio vs. The New York Times

Image: FILE: NYT Names Former BBC Director Mark Thompson As New Head

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Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos… McDonalds has hired former Obama press secretary Robert Gibbs to help “build a more modern, progressive burger company.” We’re hoping that this is part of some kind of elaborate administration personnel swap that ends up with Hamburglar's nomination as an undersecretary of the Interior or something.

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'16 AT 30 THOUSAND

Marco Rubio finds himself in a spot today particularly cherished by famed GOP pols: right in the middle of a big ol’ fight with the New York Times. On the day that the Gray Lady published an in-depth investigation of Rubio’s “questionable financial decisions,” the Florida senator is calling out the “elitist” newspaper for “suggesting that I’m not rich enough to be president!” It’s a tough piece, but Rubio is also reaping a certain benefit from the story now. He’s sent out a fundraising email pegged to the Times’ coverage, and campaign chief Terry Sullivan went so far as to tweet: “Something you won't hear from me often: Thank you @nytimes

Our take: For starters, on Earth Two, where the New York Times declined to run its much-ridiculed piece Monday on Rubio’s (very relatable) run-ins with Florida’s red-light cameras, this financial story probably packs a much bigger punch. But here in our world, Rubio is able to paint the money story as just the latest followup to the traffic ticket “scoop,” widely panned as a cheap shot.

And/but: Even though Rubio might end up with a net boost from this NYT fight when it comes to GOP primary voters, questions about his personal finances are likely to persist with the larger electorate. Forget the fishing boat, but his personal use of a state party credit card, his fiscal entanglements with ex-Rep. David Rivera and his relationship with Norman Braman will still get play. And, by the way, those stories all could poke some holes in the “I’m like most Americans” argument he’s made about his personal cash woes.

POPPING ON NBC POLITICS

CAMPAIGN QUICK READS

BUSH: The Washington Post reports that Bush has filed paperwork with the Florida Division of Corporations to run for president.

SANTORUM: Santorum called the campaign stop that brought out four people in Iowa a success.

CLINTON: The best way to snag an interview with a Clinton staffer might be to hop aboard the Vamoose bus from New York to Washington, the Washington Post writes.

CHRISTIE: Some good news for the New Jersey governor: The state’s Supreme Court sided with him in a legal fight with public worker unions over pension funds, the AP reports.

FOR THE RECORD…

“I’ve got a lot of friends. We’ll have a rotating first lady.”

-- Lindsey Graham on how he would handle being a bachelor in the White House.

TOMORROW’S SKED

Jeb Bush leaves Germany and heads to Poland.

Ben Carson holds three campaign stops in Iowa.

Hillary Clinton has two fundraisers in Boston.