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- U.S. employers added 192,000 jobs in March, while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 6.7%. (AP)
- In GA SEN, Rep. Jack Kingston (R) released a new TV ad, which features a President Obama impersonator leaving a message on Kingston's answering machine, saying, "Let me be clear. I do not want you in the Senate." (release)
- In IA SEN, Rep. Bruce Braley (D) did his first interview with Iowa reporters since the video of him calling Sen. Chuck Grassley (R) "a farmer from Iowa who never went to law school" surfaced. Braley: "Being a farmer is a great qualification to have to serve in the United States Congress. And the fact is that I have spent my whole life living with, working for and working on behalf of farmers, trying to be their voice in the House of Representatives." He went on to say: "I made a mistake. And good people who listened to my comments – people who I respect and admire – were upset by what I said." (Des Moines Register)
- "Still, Braley has not hit the airwaves with an introductory TV ad yet. Allied groups have been boosting him on the air, but Braley still hasn't gone up. ... Braley's campaign says it intends to go up later in the year." Braley adviser Jeff Link: "Well, we might. It's an option we're discussing. We've had a plan in place to introduce Bruce either before or around the June primary." (Washington Post)
- Also in IA SEN, Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE) will campaign in Des Moines later this month for state Sen. Joni Ernst (R). (Weekly Standard)
- In NC SEN, Gov. Pat McCrory (R) said state House Speaker Thom Tillis (R) "has the best chance to win a general election" of all the GOP candidates in the race. (Washington Post)
- In NE SEN, Midland University President Ben Sasse (R) raised more than $850,000 in the first quarter and has more than $1 million cash on hand. (release)
- In the OK SEN Special, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) endorsed Rep. James Lankford (R). (release)
- In SD SEN, former Gov. Mike Rounds (R) raised "around" $730,000 in the first quarter and has more than $1 million cash on hand. (Sioux Falls Argus Leader)
- In SC SEN, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R) launched a new TV ad highlighting his bill that would allow states to opt out of Obamacare. (release)
- In WV SEN, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) "will headline three fundraisers in Morgantown and Charleston on Friday and Saturday for" Secretary of State Natalie Tennant (D). (Roll Call)
- In CA-52, former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio (R) raised $410,000 in the first quarter and has over $1.2 million on hand. (release)
- In GA-01, surgeon Bob Johnson (R) launched his first TV ad, which is a biographical spot that emphasizes his Christian values. (release)
- In IL-13, Rep. Rodney Davis (R) raised "more than" $600,000 in the first quarter and has "more than" $940,000 cash on hand. (Roll Call)
- In OH-08, House Speaker John Boehner "is running his first" TV ad "in four years. The ad is on the air in the Cincinnati and Dayton television markets until April 16." Boehner "has three opponents in the May 6 primary election, but is widely expected to sail to victory." (Politico)
- In WI-06, state Sen. Glenn Grothman (R) will challenge Rep. Tom Petri (R) in the GOP primary. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
- In IL GOV, businessman Bruce Rauner (R) launched a new TV ad featuring his wife Diana, who's a Democrat. "I'm voting for him anyway because I know Bruce will take on both parties to fix Illinois," she says. (release)
- In ME GOV, a new union-backed PAC, Maine Forward, will support Rep. Michael Michaud (D). (Waterville Morning Sentinel)
- In MD GOV, Attorney General Doug Gansler (D) launched his third TV ad of the race, highlighting his support for a higher minimum wage and closing corporate tax loopholes. "The six-figure ad buy will air on broadcast stations in the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. markets." (release)
- In MI GOV, former Rep. Mark Schauer (D) announced on Thursday that Oakland County Clerk Lisa Brown (D) "will be his running mate." (Detroit Free Press)
- According to a new NPR poll of national RVs, conducted by Democracy Corps (D) and Resurgent Republic (R) from March 19-23, 46% approve of the job Obama is doing as president, while 51% disapprove. (release)
- The poll also shows Democrats leading the generic congressional ballot 44-43%. (release)
Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day
• David Perdue's (R) comments about Karen Handel's (R) education are out there now. The next question: Will they affect the Senate race in Georgia, and if so, how? Backed by self-funded TV ads, Perdue was beginning to stake a solid claim as the (narrow) leader of the GOP primary pack. Other candidates including Handel were having trouble competing with Perdue's money before, and though he's given them more ammunition, they still need to figure out how to use it. -- Scott Bland
• Democrat Mark Schauer picked Lisa Brown as his running mate on Thursday, making him the latest in a series of male gubernatorial candidates to pick a female running mate to balance out the ticket, along with Republican Bruce Rauner in Illinois and Democrat Ed Fitzgerald in Ohio. Even if elected, the lieutenant governor spot hasn't always been a pipeline to the top executive office. Nationwide, of the states that have the position (five don't) 36 states have had female lieutenant governors, while just 27 states have ever had a woman governor. -- Karyn Bruggeman
HAIR OF THE DOG
FRESH BREWED BUZZ
- "Bush 41 Reunion Looks to Burnish His Legacy" (New York Times)
- "White House officials sought valuable primetime air for a rare, impromptu Tuesday night address to tout the accomplishment of signing up more than 7 million people under the Affordable Care Act. But network officials refused to make the kind of accommodation they did previously for the announcement that Osama Bin Laden had been killed, for instance, and Obama was left instead cutting into the much smaller audiences of 'Ellen' and other daytime shows." (Buzzfeed)
- Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant (R) "has signed a bill that says state and local governments cannot put a substantial burden on religious practices. The bill sparked emotional debate in the Legislature about possible anti-gay discrimination." (AP)
- Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) appear in a TV ad "that will air Sunday to promote NewRepublican.org, a project focused on outlining a positive GOP agenda for the future." (Politico)
- "I just got a note saying I'm at the wrong hearing. ... Well, that would explain why I didn't know anything about this letter." -- Sen. Dan Coats (R-IN) (Washington Post)
- Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (D) received an invitation to a fundraiser for current Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R). "He couldn't explain why." (Tampa Tribune)
- 2008 presidential candidate John Edwards (D) "was barred from Bunny Mellon's funeral by her family," who donated $700,000 to his campaign. "Prosecutors charged he used some of the money to support his mistress." (New York Post)
- Singer Carole King will perform at a April 15 fundraiser for Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH). (New Hampshire Union Leader)
- "I think the American people should know that the members of Congress are underpaid. I understand that it's widely felt that they underperform, but the fact is that this is the board of directors for the largest economic entity in the world." -- Retiring Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) (Roll Call)
- NY-21 candidate Steven Burke (D) "has been lying about his age to newspaper reporters." He is 77 years old, not 67, as several newspapers reported. Burke "claims he wasn't lying about his age, saying it was probably just 'wishful thinking.'" (Adirondack Daily Enterprise)
PLAY OF THE DAY!
- The House returns at 9 a.m., while the Senate is not in session today.
- The Nationals host the Braves for their home opener. (Nationals Park, 1:05 p.m.)
- Obama and Vice President Biden meet with Tunisian Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa. (White House, 2:10 p.m.)
- Obama hosts a reception for Greek Independence Day. (White House, 5:40 p.m.)
- The Final Four tips off on Saturday: UConn v. Florida (TBS, 6:09 p.m.); Kentucky v. Wisconsin (TBS, 8:49 p.m.)
- The Wizards take on the Bulls on Saturday. (Verizon Center, 7 p.m.)
- Have an event for us to highlight? Email us!
- Calvin Coolidge is the only president to have been sworn in by his father.
- The winner is Carten Cordell, and here's his Swizzle Challenge: "Which first lady had walk-on roles in the movies 'Becky Sharp' and 'The Great Ziegfelds?'" The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question.
NJ'S EARLY BIRD SPECIALS
- Why Are Political Candidates Always Driving in Their TV Ads?
- The Health Care Reform War Without End
- How Hillary Clinton Escapes the 2014 Trap
- My Republican Bracket
- Wrestling With Putin
"In his gnarly, snowboarder fashion, gold medalist Sage Kotsenburg recalled his introduction to President Barack Obama on Thursday as 'chill' and noted how 'down' he was with the lingo." (Salt Lake Tribune)
"You know, I'm definitely down for some rock-climbing." -- "Tony"
"Me too, I am down. I am totally down. Mark me down." -- "George Costanza" in Seinfeld
Adam Wollner, Editor