The Lid: What We Learned From the Values Voters Summit

Image: Donald Trump
Republican presidential candidate, businessman Donald Trump, holds up his bible who was giving to him by his mother as he speaks during the Values Voter Summit, held by the Family Research Council Action, Friday, Sept. 25, 2015, in Washington ( AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)Jose Luis Magana / AP

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By Andrew Rafferty and Carrie Dann

Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos… Today in breaking news: Fed up with his annoying coworkers, an emotional Ohio man on Friday abruptly quit his terrible job.

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The Values Voters summit taking place in Washington, D.C., right now taught us a lot more than most GOP confabs do. First off, it just so happened to be taking place when news broke of John Boehner’s resignation, and the candidate reactions made evident the establishment v. outsider divide. Rubio, Cruz, Santorum, Trump, Huckabee, Carson and Jindal each said good riddance to Boehner, drawing loud applause from the gathering of conservative activists. Jeb Bush, John Kasich and Lindsey Graham -- seen as probably the three GOP candidates most closely aligned with the party’s establishment -- released tweets or statements that struck a much more positive tone towards Boehner’s service. Denouncing Boehner is clearly a mark of pride for outsiders, even for those like Rubio who are already on the inside.

The Values Voters summit also gave us a glimpse of the places in the GOP electorate where Trump’s demeanor could start to splinter his unusual coalition. NBC’s Katy Tur reports that Donald Trump got loud and prolonged boos after he blasted Marco Rubio as a “clown.” Trump did get a very warm reception at other parts of his speech, but Tur reports that the general feeling of the crowd was that the real estate mogul would have been better served sticking to attacking Rubio’s previous work on immigration. Conservative activists like those gathered for the summit play an influential role in early voting states like Iowa and South Carolina, and the reaction to Trump is another sign they aren’t all on board with his brash, brawling style.

Nerd alert! We’ll have some pipin’ hot new NBC/WSJ poll numbers out Sunday on Meet the Press, PLUS interviews with Hillary Clinton and Carly Fiorina. Check your local listings.


  • Our wrap from Republican House Speaker John Boehner’s surprise announcement that he will soon be resigning.
  • And from Mark Murray: On the same day that House Speaker John Boehner announced his resignation, a whopping 72 percent of Republican primary voters said they were dissatisfied with his and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's ability to achieve GOP goals, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
  • From Perry Bacon: Boehner Couldn't Beat Obama, so Republicans Beat Him.
  • The 2016 GOP field mostly welcomed news that House Speaker John Boehner was stepping down.
  • Donald Trump drew jeers while dinging Marco Rubio in front of conservative activists on Friday, one of us wrote.


Environmental advocate Tom Steyer is calling for an additional Democratic debate focused on climate change.

CLINTON: The AP: “The Obama administration has discovered a chain of emails that Hillary Rodham Clinton failed to turn over when she provided what she said was the full record of work-related correspondence as secretary of state, officials said Friday, adding to the growing questions related to the Democratic presidential front-runner's unusual usage of a private email account and server while in government.”

FIORINA: The Washington Post fact-checks Carly Fiorina’s claim that she went from “secretary to CEO.”

BIDEN: He’ll keynote next weekend’s dinner of the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBT advocacy group in the country.


“Zippidy do-da, zippidy day.”

  • John Boehner singing while entering a press conference announcing his resignation.


On Saturday, Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Bobby Jindal, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley all campaign in Iowa. On Sunday, Hillary Clinton and Carly Fiorina are on NBC’s Meet the Press.

Donald Trump appears on 60 Minutes.