By Tracey Webb
Your daily scoop of what State of the Union is watching today, February 28, 2014.
1. The Clinton papers. More than 4,000 pages of documents released by the Clinton Presidential Library is offering a new look at the workings of the Clinton White House. Among the early highlights: Hillary Clinton told Democratic leaders in Congress in 1993 that a Republican alternative to require people to get health insurance would be "a much harder sell" for her husband's administration than its ultimately defeated proposal requiring employers to provide health coverage for workers. Ironically, the mandate is the heart of what is now known as Obamacare.
2. Obama presses "Year of Action." In speech aimed at firing up his party for the midterms, President Obama laid out his agenda in a speech to fellow Democrats Friday. "The choice for Democrats is quite clear. Opportunity for a few – or opportunity for all. See, as Democrats, we have a different idea of what the future looks like – an idea rooted in our conviction that our economy grows best not from the top-down, but from the middle-out. That's what our opportunity agenda offers," Obama said in remarks at the Democratic National Committee's Winter meeting. The president also took a jab at the GOP. "The Republican Party can keep telling the country what they're against – whether it's the Affordable Care Act, or the minimum wage, or equal pay laws, or commonsense immigration reform, or the very existence of climate change. But Democrats will keep telling America what we're for," he said.
3. All in the family. The longest serving member of the House is retiring, but his wife is hoping to keep the congressional seat in family hands. Michigan Democratic Congressman John Dingell's wife, Debbie Dingell, says running for office. "I am not running to replace John Dingell. John Dingell is irreplaceable. But my drive to serve the people of this great state has led me here today," Dingell wrote in an email to supporters. John Dingell, known as the dean of House Democrats, has served in Congress for 58 years. He was first elected to fill the rest of his late father's term. A Dingell has Michigan's 12th congressional district seat since its creation in 1932.
4. What's Russia up to? Military-clad gunmen in Ukraine's pro-Russian region of Crimea showed up at two of the area's airports. Ukraine's interior minister called the move an "invasion" by Russia, but Russia is telling the U.S. that is military activities in the region are routine and not intended to threaten Ukraine's sovereignty. We'll talk about the unrest in Ukraine and its impact on what appears to be a deteriorating U.S.-Russia relationship with the Senate's number two Democrat, Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, Sunday on State of the Union.