POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 4/3

Many Lawmakers Miss Filing Deadline

CQ Politics: “Scores of lawmakers missed a deadline to start disclosing their ties to political action committees as required by law. Some of them were sponsors of the law that imposed the new requirement.”

Bonus Quote of the Day

“My administration is the only thing between you and the pitchforks.” 

— President Obama, quoted by Politico, in a behind-the-scenes account of the president’s recent meeting with Wall Street CEOs.

Little Change in Ratings for Bush, Cheney

Gallup: “Neither George W. Bush’s deliberate silence about the Obama administration nor Dick Cheney’s ready criticism of it appear to have altered U.S. public perceptions about either man. The former president and former vice president are each viewed unfavorably by 63% of Americans, very similar to where they stood with the public in their final White House years.”

Mack Passes on Florida Senate Race

Rep. Connie Mack (R-FL) will run for re-election instead of the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Mel Martinez (R-FL), according to the Miami Herald.

Mack was among several Republicans considering the open seat. None have announced their candidacy while waiting to see if Florida Gov. Crist (R) seeks re-election or runs for Senate.

Said Mack to Crist: “I will be your strongest supporter and champion – regardless of whether you seek re-election or election to the Senate.”

Iowa Court Upholds Gay Marriage

Here’s an issue certain to dominate the 2012 Republican presidential race: The Iowa Supreme Court ruled that the state’s same-sex marriage ban violates the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples, the Des Moines Register reports.

The ruling makes Iowa the fourth state where gay marriage is legal.

Ben Smith: “As well as being a major win for the gay rights movement, the ruling could change the state’s landscape in 2012, bringing social issues to the fore for conservatives in the Iowa caucuses and further strengthening the hand of religious conservative favorite Mike Huckabee in his party’s 2012 caucuses.”

Grassley Passes Milestone

Heard in the CQ newsroom: 

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) cast his 10,000th vote of his Senate career. While that may not seem like a lot when compared to some other longer-serving senators, just 28 have ever achieved that may votes. 

In addition, Grassley holds the record among current senators for the longest, uninterrupted streak of consecutive votes — 5,473 over the past 16 years. He last missed a vote when touring flooded areas of his state with President Clinton in 1993.

Virginia’s Bellwether Burden

CQ Politics: “Because they elect a new governor in the year after a presidential election, Virginia voters are used to being in the national spotlight when most of the nation is taking a break from politics.”

Blagojevich Targeted Emanuel

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel “was the target of attempted extortion by former Gov. Rod Blagojevich,” the Chicago Tribune reports.

Emanuel, who was then a congressman, “was allegedly the subject of extortion in 2006 after he inquired about a $2 million state grant to benefit a school in his district. Prosecutors say Blagojevich instructed a top aide to block the release of the money, even though it had been included in the state’s budget. Blagojevich also allegedly told a high-ranking state official that Emanuel’s brother needed to host a fundraiser for him.”

Cutting Through the NY-20 Spin

First Read: “By one count, Jim Tedisco has pulled ahead of Scott Murphy by 12 votes. The spin, though, in the hours and days following the results of NY-20 has been almost nauseating. No one will know who wins this race for at least another two weeks when absentee ballots are counted. But bottom line: This is a swing district that leans slightly to the right, plain and simple. In specials, the person with the most name recognition who most fits the ideological profile of the district is supposed to win. That person was Tedisco. If this election proves anything, it’s that he wasn’t a great candidate.”

Quote of the Day

“The American public understands something must be askew if every single Republican votes against something.”

— Minority Whip Eric Cantor, when asked by reporters why Republicans have said “no” to nearly everything the Democrats have proposed.

(If memory serves me correctly, when Dems all voted against a Bush proposal they were called “obstructionists” fvm)

Budget Approved With No GOP Votes

The House and Senate approved federal budgets of about $3.5 trillion with no Republican support, “a sign of deep partisan tensions likely to color Congressional efforts to enact major policy initiatives sought by President Obama,” the New York Times reports.

“Democrats said the two budgets, which will have to be reconciled after a two-week Congressional recess, cleared the way for health care, energy and education overhauls pushed by the new president.”

The Washington Post notes the biggest dispute between the two chambers “is whether to use a powerful procedural shortcut that could allow Obama’s health, education and energy initiatives to pass the Senate with 51 votes rather than the usual 60, eliminating the need to win over any Republicans.”

No Obama Fatigue

Despite his recent media blitz, Poll Tracker shows the American public isn’t tired of President Obama yet.

Spitzer Continues Public Relations Blitz

Despite his insistence that he’s not making a comeback, former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer will be interviewed live on NBC’s Today Show on Monday morning.

It’s his first network interview since resigning from office a year ago after being linked to a prostitution ring.

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