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- In a statement Tuesday night, Pres. Obama said that a gov't watchdog's report "shows intolerable and inexcusable behavior" by the IRS in targeting tea party groups, and he's asked Treas. Sec. Jacob Lew "to hold accountable those responsible and to ensure it never happens again" (AP). As applications "from conservative groups sat in limbo, groups with liberal-sounding names had their applications approved in as little as nine months" (USA Today).
- The CBO "now predicts" a '13 budget deficit of $642B, "more than" $200B "below" its Feb. estimate, but that "could further curb the already slowing momentum for a budget pact this year" (AP).
- MA SEN Special: "After initially viewing his chances of winning with more than a little skepticism," NRSC officials "have been convinced by a slew of public and internal polls to put their financial weight" behind ex-Navy SEAL Gabriel Gomez (R) "with a 'pretty substantial investment'" (RealClearPolitics).
- NJ GOV '13: NRA lobbyist Randy Kozuch made two donations to Gov. Chris Christie (R) earlier this year, including a $1K contribution "a few days after Christie issued his final gun proposals" last month (Philadelphia Inquirer).
- VA GOV '13: At a campaign stop Tuesday in Winchester, ex-DNC Chair Terry McAuliffe (D) said that VA "should change its law to allow" a gov. "to serve more than a single four-year term" (Washington Post).
- NYC Mayor '13: Comp. Bill de Blasio (D) has "raised all the money he is allowed to spend in the coming primary" -- and '09 nominee Bill Thompson (D) "is on track to hit the maximum soon" -- but both "still lag behind" City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D), "has since raised enough money for a possible runoff and is now soliciting contributions for a general election" (New York Times). Meanwhile, ex-NY-11 nominee Mark Murphy (D) mgr. Danny Kedem "has been brought on" as ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner's (D) mgr. (Politico).
- IA SEN: Sec/State Matt Schultz (R) "took another step toward" a run, traveling DC on Tuesday (Des Moines Register). Schultz "wouldn't say with whom he was meeting or give a timetable on his decision" (Omaha World-Herald).
- MI SEN: Rep. Justin Amash (R), in postings on Twitter and Facebook, "said Tuesday that he wouldn't let an 'anti-liberty' candidate be nominated 'without a fight'" (MLive.com).
- NJ SEN: Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ) "has fired the first volley in what could be a contentious primary battle" with Newark Mayor Cory Booker (D), "accusing" Newark "of failing to fund its obligations" to a New Brunswick-based nonprofit "that helps house and treat patients with HIV/AIDS" (Newark Star-Ledger).
- VA SEN: According to a new Quinnipiac Univ. poll of RVs, conducted 5/8-13, 59% approve of the way Sen. Mark Warner (D) is handling his job, while 22% disapprove. In the previous poll, conducted 3/20-25, 56% approved of Warner, and 26% disapproved (release).
- IA-01: Cedar Rapids Mayor Pro Tem Monica Vernon (D) "is all-but-certain" to run for the seat being vacated by Rep. Bruce Braley (D) (Cedar Rapids Gazette).
- PA-12: Ex-Rep. Mark Critz (D) said Tuesday "he is considering seeking" his old seat or the LG post in '14, but he "did not offer any hints as to which way he might be leaning" (Johnstown Tribune-Democrat).
- SC-01: Rep.-elect Mark Sanford (R) will be sworn in Wednesday at 5:15 pm, a spokesperson said (release).
- CA GOV: Gov. Jerry Brown (D) "unveiled a cautious budget Tuesday, saying the state's financial condition remains treacherously unstable" (Los Angeles Times).
- MI GOV: Ex-Rep. Mark Schauer (D) spent Tuesday in Lansing "meeting with news media and supporters to talk about a potential run" (Detroit Free Press).
- WI GOV: According to a new Marquette Law School poll of RVs, conducted 5/6-9, 51% approve of the way Gov. Scott Walker (R) is handling his job, while 45% disapprove. In the previous poll, conducted 3/11-14, 49% approved of Walker, and 44% disapproved (release).
Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day
• Benghazi, the IRS and Eric Holder's Justice Department overreaching -- could Republicans have picked three better issues to gin up base enthusiasm if they'd had their picks?
• Colleen Hanabusa may not be running for governor of Hawaii, but she's still running against Gov. Neil Abercrombie. One of the governor's missions as the titular head of his state party has been to empower a younger generation of leaders, and Sen. Brian Schatz is the poster child. No specifics have been worked out yet, but Schatz will be able to count on plenty of help from Abercrombie in the Senate primary.
• State Rep. Pat Murphy's early announcement in IA-01 left him uncontested for a while, but it's no surprise a pair of challengers have emerged in recent days to challenge him for the Democratic nomination. Nor is it surprising that both are women. IA Dems are eager to break the state's streak of all-male congressional representation, and a solidly Dem open House seat offers them their best opportunity to do so.
• Vincent Sheheen won't start campaigning until the end of the legislative session, but he's taking full advantage of the platform he's got. After targeting Nikki Haley with ethics legislation last week, he's now working to set up a fund for the millions of residents whose Social Security numbers were hacked under Haley's watch. Note who he's working with: Treas. Curtis Loftis, who was considered a potential Haley primary challenger before deciding to seek reelection.
• David Paterson wouldn't be alone in contemplating a run to replace Charles Rangel, if Rangel retires instead of seeking reelection. Former Assemblyman Adam Clayton Powell IV (D), who has twice unsuccessfully challenged Rangel and whose father once held the seat, has said he'll run if Rangel steps aside. Meanwhile, state Sen. Adriano Espaillat (D), who narrowly lost to Rangel in last year's primary, is also eyeing another run. It's important to remember that redistricting transformed Rangel's seat into a majority Hispanic district, something Paterson acknowledged last night on NY1. If Rangel passes and Paterson and Powell both run, they could split the black vote, clearing a path for Espaillat to win the nomination.
HAIR OF THE DOG
Police in Mount Washington, KY, "said when the lights went out" at a ValuMarket grocery store Sunday night, video shows Trevor Runyon "drank some beer, smoked cigarettes, cooked and ate six steaks, some shrimp and a birthday cake." Runyon "also allegedly soiled himself and got clothes to change into" (WAVE-TV).
FRESH BREWED BUZZ
- Ex-Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-AZ) "plans to marry his partner of eight years," Hector Alfonso, Saturday at the Cosmos Club in DC (Arizona Daily Star).
- L.A. mayoral hopeful Eric Garcetti (D), who "seems to have done everything in his 42 years except pitch for the Dodgers and kayak to Borneo," is "George Plimpton, Bono and 'Seinfeld's' Mr. Peterman all rolled into one" (Los Angeles Times).
- According to a draft for the script for "Rodham," a "new flick" about ex-Sec/State Hillary Clinton's (D) "younger days," Clinton and ex-MA Gov. William Weld (R) "were crushing pretty hard on each other" when they served as Watergate-era House Jud Cmte staffers, "until Bill Clinton swooped in and stole Hillary away!" (Boston Herald).
- "Ha, ha, ha. Oh, give me a break. ... What a bunch of bunk" -- Ex-Sen. Al D'Amato (R-NY), on Quinn's revelation Tuesday that she's suffered from alcoholism and bulimia (NY1).
- Caroline Kennedy, "who has been mentioned in reports as a candidate to become" U.S. amb. to Japan, "was selected as Juror No. 7 for the trial of an accused Manhattan drug dealer — even though the prosecutor assigned to the case once taught her children tennis" (New York Daily News).
- "Greeting Prince Harry at the Jersey Shore the best way I know how; with his own Royal Fleece" -- a tweet from Christie, who toured areas of the storm-ravaged Jersey Shore with Harry on Tuesday
- The Nat'l Cathedral is home to a statue of Darth Vader.
- The winner is Erica Best, and here's her Swizzle Challenge: "In honor of the new season of 'Arrested Development' premiering at the end of May, what is the psychological condition that prevents Tobias from removing his jean cut-offs? Hint: There are dozens of them!" The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question -- and wins a brand-new Cornballer.
NJ'S EARLY BIRD SPECIALS
- Eric Holder in the Hot Seat as Congress Probes Scandals
- Democrats in Triage Mode on White House Scandals
- Energized by Washington Scandals, the Tea Party Is on a Roll
- What the AP Subpoena Scandal Means for Your Electronic Privacy
- Are Health Care Costs Healing Themselves?
"I wake up in the morning, everything is not my fault -- it's really a great feeling" -- Ex-NY Gov. David Paterson (D), asked about a possible NY-13 run if Rep. Charles Rangel (D) retired. Paterson didn't rule it out, though he predicted Rangel "would nevertheless seek another term" (Politicker).
"I ran out of gas. I... I had a flat tire. I didn't have enough money for cab fare. My tux didn't come back from the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. Someone stole my car. There was an earthquake. A terrible flood. Locusts! It wasn't my fault, I swear to God!" -- "Jake Blues," ("The Blues Brothers").
Reid Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
Steven Shepard, Executive Editor