First Read’s morning clips:
Obama Agenda:Where the uninsured live
AP finds “half” of the uninsured “live in just 116 of the nation's 3,143 counties.” And: “half the uninsured people ages 19-39 live in 108 counties.”
More: “Federal officials have identified 25 key metro areas to focus on. The top two are in Texas: Dallas and Houston. Next come Miami and Atlanta. In the Northeast, the northern New Jersey megalopolis and Philadelphia are on the list. Midwest markets include Detroit, Cleveland and Indianapolis. Southern cities also include Nashville, Tenn., and Charlotte, N.C. Washington is largely steering clear of states that are leading their own sign-up efforts, such as California, New York and Illinois.”
“The Obama administration on Wednesday will detail plans to establish seven regional hubs tasked with helping Americans to mitigate the scourge of climate change,” USA Today writes. “The centers, which the administration is calling ‘climate hubs,’ will be overseen by the Department of Agriculture. They are tasked with studying fires, invasive pests, flooding and droughts and using the research to provide guidance to farmers, ranchers and forest landowners to cope with the problems.”
Obama’s having drinks with House Democrats today.
Jesse Ventura is “off the grid” in Mexico to avoid drones. Folks, this man used to be governor of a state.
President Obama praised CVS for its decision to no longer carry tobacco products.
“Israel's chief negotiator in talks with the Palestinians has rebuked her fellow ministers for criticizing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's peace efforts,” AP writes. “Tzipi Livni told Israel Radio on Wednesday that some members of the governing coalition are opposed to any kind of peace agreement, and that the recent verbal attacks on Kerry are ‘shocking.’”
Now, there’s a picture. You can see the California drought from space.
Congress: Do House Republicans fight on the debt ceiling -- or punt?
Different day, same old GOP conference. “After several days of talks with their members, House Republican leaders have not been able to identify a debt ceiling package that could pass with only GOP support, according to multiple senior aides.
In fact, they’re nowhere close,” Politico writes.
Tea Party Rep. Raul Labrador on what should happen if Speaker Boehner pursues immigration reform this year: “I think it should cost him his speakership,” he told Roll Call.
“Eyeing a new majority, Senate Republicans are seeking to trample the immigration reform blueprint crafted by their counterparts in the House,” The Hill reports.
The Hill: “The Senate will take another shot at passing legislation this week that would renew a federal unemployment benefits program although Republican complaints about the process could hamper progress. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has set up a cloture vote for Thursday on a new measure that would provide a three-month reauthorization of the emergency program that is paid by extending a ‘pension smoothing’ provision.”
“The latest Republican attack on Obamacare is powerful and simple: ‘no insurer bailouts,’” Politico writes. “But never fear, Democrats are ready with a response: ‘Well, that’s not really what it is. The provision in question is actually called ‘risk corridors,’ which is a mechanism for compensating health insurers in case their actual costs are at least 3 percent higher than their projected costs. But it’s only temporary, until they get better data on who their customers are. And if their costs are lower than they expected, they actually pay the government.’”
Rep. Steve Cohen says Philip Seyour Hoffman’s death from an apparent drug overdose is “a crime committed by our government.”
It’s not just more than 100,000 people who signed a White House petition to deport Justin Bieber. Sen. Mark Warner thinks he should be deported, too.
Off to the races: Clay Aiken running for Congress
Politico writes of the CBO report that “what matters politically is how the numbers look in attack ads. And in this election year, ‘2 million lost jobs’ is a Republican ad-maker’s dream.”
But just a question for Washington’s reporters… Don’t facts still matter?
The Washington Post’s fact checker: “No, CBO did not say Obamacare will kill 2 million jobs.”
Politico says Chris Christie’s loss is Scott Walker’s gain.
Rand Paul, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich, and Donald Trump are headed to New Hampshire April 12 to speak at a Citizens United/Americans for Prosperity event.
MAINE: The liberal Progressive Change Campaign Committee has announced it’s endorsing Shenna Bellows (D) in the race to challenge Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME); Collins is the big favorite to hold on to this seat.
NORTH CAROLINA: Clay Aiken’s officially running for Congress, AP reports. Aside from his performance career, Aiken is a special-education teacher in Wake County. “The 35-year-old Aiken is expected to face former state commerce secretary Keith Crisco of Asheboro and licensed professional counselor Toni Morris of Fayetteville in the Democratic primary,” AP writes. The primary is May 6.
Here’s his kick-off video. He makes his difficult upbringing, income inequality, and working with special-ed children a focus. He notes that he was appointed by President Bush to serve on a special-needs committee.
Here’s an irony: Aiken and Ed Gillespie, running for the Senate in Virginia, may be the only two candidates to allude to former President George W. Bush in a positive way, and Aiken actually names him.
Programming Notes. *** Wednesday’s “The Daily Rundown” line-up: Chuck discusses the new CBO Report with former CBO Director Douglas Holtz-Eakin and American University’s Dante Chinni. Then Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) joins Chuck to discuss his new healthcare proposal. Plus, we’ll speak with the Chief Science Officer of the American Heart Association, Rose Marie Robertson about the announcement that CVS will stop selling tobacco products in their stores. All that plus a jam-packed data bank, the latest on the winter weather hitting the country and Chuck’s Wednesday Takeaway.
*** Wednesday’s “Jansing & Co.” line-up: MSNBC’s Ari Melber, subbing for Chris Jansing, interviews the Washington Post’s Ed O’Keefe, the Atlantic’s Molly Ball, MSNBC.com’s Geoffrey Cowley, Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC), and Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA).
*** “MSNBC Live” Line-Up at 11:00 am ET: MSNBC’s Richard Lui interviews Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), the Huffington Post’s Jacqueline Howard, Igor Volsky from Think Progress, msnbc.com’s Suzy Khimm, and The Root’s Corey Dade.
*** Wednesday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviews Rep. Mike McCaul, NBC Terror Analyst Michael Leiter, Politico’s Maggie Haberman and the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza and Eugene Robinson.
*** Wednesday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: MSNBC’s Tamron Hall interviews Politico’s Alex Isenstadt, Florida Time-Union’s Larry Hannan, and University of Michigan Law Professor Samuel Gross on exonerations reaching a record level in the United States.