By Tracy Bloom
PAC a Punch: A Democratic super PAC—not the local or state Democratic Party—is behind a clandestine recording taken at a strategy session at Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s campaign headquarters in Louisville, Ky., a local Democratic operative said Thursday. McConnell and his advisers can be heard on the leaked tape joking about opposition research on Ashley Judd, the actress and activist who at one point had considered running for the Democratic nomination in the upcoming Senate race. The audio was secretly taped two months ago, but was just released by Mother Jones this week. McConnell has been hit with an ethics complaint because of the recording. (Read more)
Break the Bank: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., took aim at her latest target during a hearing Thursday, but this time she had some help. Warren, along with fellow Senate Democrat Sherrod Brown of Ohio, blasted federal bank regulators, accusing them of putting the interests of big banks first. As she has against financial officials in the past, Warren was tough in her line of questioning for the regulators, criticizing them for not immediately turning over the records of borrowers who were considering suing their banks. “You have made a decision to protect the banks but not to help the families who were illegally foreclosed on,” she said. “Families get pennies on the dollar for being the victims of illegal activities.” One thing’s for sure—we need more lawmakers in Washington like Warren, Brown and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who this week introduced legislation to break up the big banks. (Read more)
Looking for Trouble: Here we go again. Warmonger and ex-Vice President Dick Cheney is sounding the alarm bells on the ongoing crisis in North Korea. According to a GOP leadership aide, Cheney addressed Republican leaders in Congress on Tuesday, telling them that the U.S. is in “deep doo doo.” The former veep discussed North Korean ruler Kim Jong Un while also sharing his own history dealing with Saddam Hussein. “You never know what they’re thinking,” he said. Cheney, who not too long ago underwent a heart transplant, also reportedly advised the group to not “eliminate any possibility.” New heart, same old Dick. (Read more)
Weiner’s Comeback: Former disgraced New York Congressman Anthony Weiner—who resigned his office in 2011 after he admitted to sending racy pictures over Twitter—is mulling a return to the political arena. In a New York Times Magazine article, the Democrat expressed interest in entering the crowded field of the upcoming New York City mayoral race. “I don’t have this burning, overriding desire to go out and run for office,” he said. “It’s not the single animating force in my life as it was for quite some time. But I do recognize, to some degree, it’s now or maybe never for me, in terms of running for something. I’m trying to gauge not only what’s right and what feels comfortable right this second, but I’m also thinking, How will I feel in a year or two years or five years? Is this the time that I should be doing it? And then there’s the other side of the coin, which is ... am I still the same person who I thought would make a good mayor?” Before the scandal temporarily halted his political aspirations, Weiner was considered the front-runner in the race for mayor and had already amassed a $5 million war chest. Now, however, he’ll likely be the underdog. (Read more)
Video of the Day: Political polar opposites Bernie Sanders and anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist may not usually see eye to eye, but they agree that President Obama’s budget is horrible. They part, however, on the reasons. During Thursday’s edition of CNN’s “The Situation Room,” the pair ended up in a verbal tussle over why the budget proposal is so terrible, arguing about such components as Wall Street bailouts and entitlements. Take a look.