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July 14th, 2013
02:04 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet for July 14

The verdict in the George Zimmerman trial ignited a national debate on race and civil rights. Today on “State of the Union,” NAACP President Ben Jealous told us “it feels so off that our young people have to fear the bad guys and the good guys.” Governors Rick Perry (R-TX) and Pat Quinn (D-IL) weighed in on the verdict, and their ongoing battles with state lawmakers. Perry defended the controversial abortion bill that passed the Texas legislature last week saying it isn’t anti-women. Congressmen Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Chaka Fattah (D-PA) told us about their conversations with president Obama this week.


May 19th, 2013
01:46 PM ET

State of the Union Crib Sheet for Sunday 5-19-13

Today on State of the Union, we released new polls showing the president is withstanding a trio of controversies. A CNN/ORC Poll shows his job approval rating is steady at 53%. White House Senior Adviser Dan Pfeiffer said the president is moving ahead with his second term agenda including improving the economy and immigration reform. Regarding the alarming number of military sexual assaults, Pfeiffer said the “lack of response and action …is completely unacceptable.” Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) pointed to an “error of judgment” by President Obama and then Secretary of State Clinton regarding security at the Benghazi consulate. He wondered why “no one's accepting responsibility and no one was fired” after the attacks that left four Americans dead last September.


Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) on Benghazi

“I think there was some misdirection and some political nature to the talking points, but I think that's always missed the point that what's most important is someone made a decision to put an embassy and consulate in a war-torn country with no host country to guard that embassy or consulate, leaving the guarding and security up to a militia. [extra space here?] That decision alone was a terrible and tragic error.”

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) on the IRS targeting conservative groups
“I can't believe that one agent sort of started this, one rogue agent started this, because it seems to be too widespread. And, we do need to get to the bottom of this, but I think what the American people want is just like on Benghazi. Why does Benghazi go on? No one was ever fired? So, people made tragic errors. No one's accepting responsibility and no one was fired.”

Dan Pfeiffer, White House Senior Adviser, on when the president learned about IRS targeting conservative groups
“When it came out in the news a week ago Friday, I think. And here's why. Because here's the cardinal rule when you know a situations like these, not for just for this White House but for all White Houses is you do not interfere in an independent investigation and you do not do anything to give off the appearance of interference in an independent investigation.”

Dan Pfeiffer, White House Senior Adviser, on American’s trust in government
“I think this is a long running tradition in sort of how Americans view government is they have great faith in our democracy as they should, because we have the greatest system in the world and it works. But government - there is a healthy skepticism of government in this country. And where there are problems like there were in the IRS this week, we have to address them in order to build that confidence up.”

May 12th, 2013
04:51 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet 5/12


Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) talked to Candy about the Benghazi hearings saying "clearly politics was at play" in the editing of the talking points after the attack and revelations that the IRS targeted some Tea Party groups for extra scrutiny: “It is absolutely chilling that the IRS was singling out conservative groups for extra review. And I think that it's very disappointing that the president hasn't personally condemned this and spoken out.”


May 5th, 2013
02:34 PM ET

State of the Union Crib Sheet for Sunday May 5th

Show Highlights

On this Cinco de Mayo Sunday, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin joined Candy to discuss the Boston bombing investigation and implications of the attack for immigration reform, as well as future prospects for gun control legislation.

Rep. Peter King of New York also weighed in on Boston, as well as the latest developments in the ongoing conflict in Syria.

A panel of experts including Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, Jessica Stern, Suhail Khan and Daveed Gartenstein-Ross discussed the causes and process of terrorist radicalization and ways to identify someone who has become self-radicalized.

Finally, AB Stoddard of The Hill and Jeanne Cummings of Bloomberg News broke down the week’s big political news.


April 21st, 2013
01:42 PM ET


Today on State of the Union, the Boston bombing case turns the corner from the hot pursuit of suspects to the deliberative pursuit of answers. Sen. Mo Cowan (D-MA) on the rebound of Boston. Plus, House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) on intelligence failures. And the impact of Boston on the immigration debate with Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

April 7th, 2013
04:32 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet 4/7


Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy spoke about the sweeping gun legislation his state passed a few days ago, in the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook. He responded to NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre's criticism of Connecticut's gun legislation:
"Wayne reminds me of the clowns at the circus. They get the most attention, and that's what he's paid to do. ... "Why should you be able to buy a gun or buy, you know, armor-piercing munitions? It doesn't make any sense. He doesn't make any sense, thus, my reference to the circus."

March 10th, 2013
01:16 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet 3/10


Today... Glasnost. The all-American version. President Obama's "change of approach" is met with optimism on the left and cautious optimism on the right. With the government funding bill making its way through Congress, a strong desire for immigration reform, and the president's plans to visit Democrats and Republicans this week on Capitol Hill, some bipartisan deals might be on the horizon.


March 3rd, 2013
04:49 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet 3/3

Today... minimizing the political and economic fallout from Washington's latest so-called "manufactured crisis."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) spoke about what's next now that the mandatory budget cuts are in effect and whether a bipartisan compromise is on the horizon. "We promised the American people we would do this a year and a half ago. And here we are, already walking away from the spending reductions that we promised to make without tax increases."
McConnell also weighed in on his reelection effort for 2014 and criticized a group in Kentucky that made reference to his wife's ethnicity in a tweet. "There's a left-wing group down here in Kentucky that's already issued racial slurs against my wife and already questioned my own patriotism."

February 10th, 2013
02:03 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet for 2/10

The Obama administration’s use of drones took center stage on this morning’s State of the Union. First, Candy spoke with Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) who questioned whether using drones to kill American citizens abroad was constitutional. He also looked ahead to that other State of the Union; the address President Obama will give on Tuesday night. Paul will give the Tea Party response and told Candy he believes the Tea Party still has a role to play in shaping conservative policies. Maine’s new Independent senator, Angus King told Candy he had misgivings about the unchecked use of drones.

February 3rd, 2013
01:25 PM ET

SOTU Crib Sheet 2/3


Candy Crowley sat down with Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs Chairman General Martin Dempsey to discuss Defense Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel's confirmation hearings, the U.S. troop withdrawal in Afghanistan, and the threat of al Qaeda in North Africa and lingering questions about the Benghazi attack. Panetta says his biggest concern is "if the sequester is allowed to go into effect, I think it could seriously impact on the readiness in the United States. And that's a serious issue." Dempsey echoed him "I couldn't agree more. We face a true readiness crisis."

Then our panel – The Hill's Associate Editor A.B. Stoddard, Former Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, Former Obama Adviser Melody Barnes and Time Magazine's Executive Editor Mike Duffy – talked immigration, guns, and the economy's mixed signals.

Plus, 2006 Super Bowl MVP Hines Ward shares his take on the growing focus on head injuries in the NFL "I mean, as players, we know what we sign up for. The NFL is not for everybody."

And finally, on Super Bowl Sunday what can Washington learn from football? Fmr. VA Sen. George Allen tells us they aren't so different.

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