Monday, June 1, 2015

Good morning everyone! Happy Monday to you!

Joining Morning Joe today is / are Al Hunt, Sam Stein, Kasie Hunt, Rep. Matt Salmo, David Ignatius, Gov. Jack Markell, Sen. Angus King, Bill Kristol, Fmr. Rep. Barney Frank, Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Sen. Mike Lee, Richard Engel, Sara Eisen, Ana Ortiz and more

First off, I am in shock and very upset that Beau Biden had died over the weekend. I had no clue it was at that level and its sad. Plus, he seemed like a great guy. It was shocking to hear this weekend. 

Second, I am finding it hard getting going on this rainy day although, being that is it raining so much, it may make it easier to work all day.

43 years after car crash, Beau Biden’s death leaves Joe Biden grieving again.
Earlier this month, Vice President Joe Biden delivered the commencement address at Yale University, where he recalled the 1972 car accident that killed his wife, Neilia, and 1-year-old daughter, Naomi, and left his two sons, Beau, 3, and Hunter, 2, hospitalized.

The then-30-year-old had recently been elected to the U.S. Senate.

“I got elected as the second-youngest man in the history of the United States to be elected, the stuff that provides and fuels raw ambition. And if you’re not careful, it fuels a sense of inevitability that seeps in. But be careful. Things can change in a heartbeat. I know,” Biden said. “Six weeks after my election, my whole world was altered forever. While I was in Washington hiring staff, I got a phone call. My wife and three children were Christmas shopping, a tractor-trailer broadsided them and killed my wife and killed my daughter. And they weren’t sure that my sons would live.”

Biden began commuting four hours a day from Washington to Wilmington, Del., for weeks to be with his sons in the hospital.

“I did it because I wanted to be able to kiss them good night and kiss them in the morning the next day,” he said. “No, ‘Ozzie and Harriet’ breakfast or great familial thing, just climb in bed with them. Because I came to realize that a child can hold an important thought, something they want to say to their mom and dad, maybe for 12 or 24 hours, and then it’s gone. And when it’s gone, it’s gone. And it all adds up.”

Biden strongly considered not taking an oath of office in the wake of the crash.

“I was supposed to be sworn in with everyone else that year in ’73, but I wouldn’t go down [to Washington],” he said.

Biden was eventually sworn in — at Beau’s bedside.

The May 17 speech at Yale has added poignancy following the death of Beau Biden on Saturday after a battle with brain cancer. Beau, Joe’s oldest son, was just 46 years old.

“The incredible bond I have with my children is the gift I’m not sure I would have had, had I not been through what I went through,” Joe Biden said. “Who knows whether I would have been able to appreciate at that moment in my life, the heady moment in my life, what my first obligation was.”

In an emotional speech the 2008 Democratic National Convention, Beau Biden recalled his father staying with them in the hospital.

“One of my earliest memories was being in that hospital, Dad always at our side. We, not the Senate, were all he cared about,” Beau Biden said. “He decided not to take the oath of office. He said, ‘Delaware can get another senator, but my boys can’t get another father.’ However, great men like Ted Kennedy, Mike Mansfield, Hubert Humphrey — men who had been tested themselves — convinced him to serve. So he was sworn in, in the hospital, at my bedside. As a single parent, he decided to be there to put us to bed, to be there when we woke from a bad dream, to make us breakfast, so he’d travel to and from Washington, four hours a day.”

In a statement announcing his son’s death, Joe Biden said Beau “battled brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life. … Beau Biden was, quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known.”

At Yale, Joe Biden said there were those who doubted his commitment to the office.

“Looking back on it, the truth be told, the real reason I went home every night was that I needed my children more than they needed me,” he said. “Some at the time wrote and suggested that Biden can’t be a serious national figure. If he was, he’d stay in Washington more, attend to more important events. It’s obvious he’s not serious. He goes home after the last vote. But I realized I didn’t miss a thing.”

NSA Domestic Surveillance Program Expires After Senate Fails to Reach Deal.
PHOTO: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY, left, walks from his office with staff to the floor of the Senate on a rare working Sunday, on Capitol Hill, in Washington, May 31, 2015.
The NSA's domestic surveillance program expired at midnight after the Senate failed to reach a deal to pass legislation Sunday evening.

The expiration came after the Senate convened for a rare Sunday session to deal with the expiring provisions of the Patriot Act.

Before adjourning without reaching a deal, the Senate made some progress, clearing a key procedural hurdle on the USA Freedom Act, but due to procedural objections by Sen. Rand Paul, the Senate was unable to hold any additional votes to move forward with the measure.

Three key provisions of the Patriot Act expired at midnight -- Section 215, which authorizes the NSA's bulk collection of Americans' phone records; a roving wiretap provision that allows law enforcement officials to monitor terror suspects that use multiple phones; and a program that officials can use to monitor "lone wolf" terror suspects, not connected to any known terrorist organizations. The NSA started the shutdown process at 4 p.m. Sunday. It will take an entire day to reboot the system, if Congress passes legislation reforming the metadata collection program.

Senators returned to Capitol Hill Sunday afternoon, just hours before key provisions of the Patriot Act, including the NSA's controversial bulk collection of American's phone records, were set to expire.

The Senate cleared a key procedural hurdle on the House-passed USA Freedom Act with a vote of 77 to 17. But objections by Paul, R-Kentucky, delayed further votes on the measure.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell originally opposed the House-passed USA Freedom Act, but Sunday, he said it was the only option.

"It certainly is not ideal," McConnell said. "This is where we are, colleagues. A House-passed bill with some serious flaws. An inability to get a short-term extension to try to improve the House-passed bill in the way we would normally do this." The White House urged lawmakers to act quickly in the coming days to reach an agreement to pass the House bill.

"The Senate took an important -- if late -- step forward tonight," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said in a statement Sunday. "We call on the Senate to ensure this irresponsible lapse in authorities is as short-lived as possible. On a matter as critical as our national security, individual senators must put aside their partisan motivations and act swiftly."

Shortly before the vote, McConnell tried to hold a vote for a two-week extension the "lone wolf" and roving wiretaps provisions. But Paul, who has said he will force the expiration of the NSA's domestic surveillance program, objected.

It was a tense moment between Paul and McConnell, who has endorsed Paul's 2016 presidential bid. Speaking on the Senate floor, McConnell blasted the opponents of the NSA program, a direct shot at Paul.

"We shouldn't be disarming unilaterally as our enemies grow more sophisticated and aggressive and we certainly shouldn't be doing so based on a campaign of demagoguery and disinformation launched in the unlawful actions of Edward Snowden," McConnell said.

Paul has promised to use procedural maneuvers to "force the expiration" of the domestic spying program.

"We are here this evening because this is a very important debate. This is a debate over the Bill of Rights. This is a debate over the Fourth Amendment. This is a debate over your right to be left alone," Paul said on the Senate floor Sunday. "We are not collecting the information of spies. We are not collecting the information of terrorists. We are collecting all American citizens' records all of the time.

"I'm not going to take it anymore. I don't think the American people are going to take it anymore," Paul said.

Early in the afternoon, Senate Democrats urged McConnell to pass the USA Freedom Act.

"Just take it up and pass it," Sen. Patrick Leahy, one of the lead sponsors of the measure, shouted on the Senate floor.

"The time for excuses and inaction has passed. The American people, the intelligence community professionals that strive to protect them deserve better. We have a few hours to work things out and pass the USA Freedom act, but there's no room for error. There's very little time," Leahy said. "The deadline to act is midnight tonight."

Rand Paul blasts PATRIOT Act Surveillance on Senate Floor During Last Minute Debate (UPDATE: USA Freedom Act Moves Forward in Senate)

"Get a warrant!"

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) took to the Senate floor Sunday afternoon as debate wrapped up to reiterate, very, very loudly, his opposition to renewing the mass data collection authorities of Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act. He had argue with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) over Senate procedures first to get permission to speak. McCain, for his part, argued that the increase in terrorism (he said the Middle East is literally burning) is proof that we need Section 215 "more than ever," despite the lack of evidence that the mass collection under Section 215 actually contributed in any successful efforts to halt terrorist attacks.

Paul noted that "the right to be left alone" is one of our most cherished of rights. And in response to senators like Dan Coats (R-Ind.) saying Americans had been deceived by surveillance opponents, Paul reminded the Senate floor and C-Span viewers, "The head of intelligence agency lied to the American people, and he still works there." And he also reminded the Senate that a federal court has already ruled that Section 215 doesn't actually authorize mass metadata collection about Americans. Paul's position: Want to get records about Americans suspsected of crimes? Get a warrant. Paul is tweeting out some quotes from his speech here.

The Senate is currently in recess after these debates for negotiations. They will return for votes of some sort at 6 p.m. Eastern time. The only real option on the table that can pass tonight and be signed by President Barack Obama immediately is to pass the USA Freedom Act, which adds more restrictions to data surveillance and prohibits the feds from snatching up all records from telecom and Internet companies (More about the Freedom Act here).

I'll update this blog post when action actually happens.

Update (6:25 p.m.): Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) attempted to get two-week extensions for the two other surveillance tools ("lone wolf" and roving wire taps) set to expire. Paul objected and killed the effort, saying that these tools were being used against Americans for reasons other than fighting terrorism. 

Update (6:30): After failing, McConnell has called for reconsideration of the USA Freedom Act, which barely failed to pass in the Senate last time. They are now holding a new cloture vote to try to pass it.

Update (6:45): The cloture vote will pass. It's still being tallied, but has passed the 60-vote threshold. (Sen. Rand Paul voted no. He's on the record as saying the USA Freedom Act doesn't go far enough in reforming surveillance.)

Update (7:10): The cloture vote has passed 77-17. Sen. Rand Paul is now speaking, concerned about the details of the USA Freedom Act, worried that bulk data collection will continue, but with the records at the phone companies rather than at the NSA.

Update: Here's The Hill explaining what happens now for both the USA Freedom Act and Section 215 (and other expiring parts of the PATRIOT Act).

Update (7:45): Probably the final update for the evening. The Senate is now allowing speeches about the USA Freedom Act. Sen. Paul just finished a lengthy speech about his concerns with the act. He wants amendments to be an option, which means this legislation will have to go back to the House for approval. So the three surveillance tools that had a sunset deadline tonight are actually going to sunset. Wave goodbye to Section 215 and mass collection of Americans' telephone metadata.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Paul's partner in pushing forward reform and blocking reauthorization of Section 215, is on the floor now continuing the argument against mass data collection.

Here's Sen. Paul's first speech, courtesy of CNN:
Sen. Lindsey Graham makes announcement on presidential run today. LIVE coverage of announcement on WYFF 4, WYFF4.com and mobile app
Sen Graham discusses his possible presidential run
Sen. Lindsey Graham is set to join the 2016 Republican presidential race, and a campaign announcement is coming in the small South Carolina town where he grew up. Graham has called at 10:30 a.m. news conference to make his announcement from Main Street of his hometown in Central.

His White House ambitions are rooted half a world away in the Middle East.

The three-term senator has already said he wants to put 10,000-plus more U.S. troops into Iraq, adding to the several thousand now working as trainers and advisers.

He also says it could take even more troops to stabilize the Middle East over time, adding that "more American soldiers will die in Iraq and eventually in Syria to protect our homeland."

On May 28, Graham retired from the United States Air Force Reserves after more than three decades of service. The senator turns 60 this summer, which is the mandatory retirement age for the Air Force Reserves.

On May 8, the Graham campaign said he would make an announcement in June about a presidential run. He later confirmed on "CBS This Morning" he would make the announcement in Central on June 1.

In April, Graham dropped serious hints about his potential White House bid.

"It's good to be home with people who talk like I do," the senator said. "The next president of the United States should have an accent. That's the only thing I'm going to say about that."

WYFF News 4 will provide extensive coverage of the Graham announcement that includes Geoff Hart anchoring live coverage from the studio, with Nigel Robertson and Patrick Hussion live in Central.


Check back at 10:30 a.m. to watch a livestream of the announcement on WYFF4.com and the WYFF News 4 mobile app.

O'Malley jumps into presidential race, offers progressive alternative to Clinton.
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley<a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/05/30/politics/martin-omalley-2016-presidential-announcement/index.html" target="_blank"> launched</a> his presidential campaign May 30 in Baltimore with an appeal to the party's progressive base that he hopes will upend the conventional wisdom that Hillary Clinton is destined to clinch the Democratic nomination.<br /><br />"This is the urgent work calling us forward today: to rebuild the truth of the American Dream for all Americans," O'Malley said at his rally. "And to begin right now."
Martin O'Malley launched his presidential campaign Saturday with an appeal to the party's progressive base that he hopes will upend the conventional wisdom that Hillary Clinton is destined to clinch the Democratic nomination.

The former Maryland governor unveiled his campaign in Baltimore, the city where he was once mayor -- a role that is central to his political persona. But his Baltimore credentials could become more of a challenge than he initially thought after a riot erupted in the city in April. Speaking in rolled-up sleeves at Federal Hill Park, O'Malley began with a call for economic fairness and closing the gap between rich and poor in America.

"This is the urgent work calling us forward today: to rebuild the truth of the American Dream for all Americans," O'Malley said. "And to begin right now."

He touched upon last month's unrest in Baltimore, saying the aftermath of Freddie Gray's death was about more than race or policing in America, but about "the scourge of hopelessness" in the nation's cities.

"There is something to be learned from that night, and there is something to be offered to our country from those flames," he said.

A small group of protesters tried to interrupt his speech, shouting remarks like "black lives matter" and blowing on whistles. As O'Malley discussed the problem of income inequality and concentration of wealth, one protester angrily yelled out: "You did that! It was you!"

But the protesters largely failed to be a disruptive presence at the launch event, where O'Malley's supporters, numbering in the hundreds, reacted enthusiastically to his speech.

O'Malley also took a shot at Clinton and Republican Jeb Bush, using an attack on Goldman Sachs to suggest they were too close to Wall Street to be advocates for the less fortunate in America.

"Recently, the CEO of Goldman Saches let his employees know that he'd be just fine with either Bush or Clinton. I bet he would," O'Malley said. "Well, I've got news for the bullies of Wall Street: The presidency is not a crown to be passed back and forth by you between two royal families. It is a sacred trust to be earned from the people of the United States, and exercised on behalf of the people of the United States."

Taking on Hillary
Perhaps O'Malley's biggest challenge is finding a way to dent the Clinton political machine while also proving that he's a competitive candidate in his own right -- not just a backup for progressives who would rather see Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts in the White House. A Quinnipiac University poll released this week places Clinton 56 percentage points ahead of O'Malley. Saturday's announcement was not a surprise. Over the past year, the 52-year-old traveled repeatedly to the early nominating states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina to spark voters' attention to his likely bid.

On the road, O'Malley touts a string of progressive actions he oversaw as governor of Maryland. Under his leadership, the state tightened gun laws, implemented a progressive tax code and legalized same-sex marriage. He also expanded the state's health care rolls, championed Obamacare and signed a bill raising the state's minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

Yet O'Malley found himself defending that Maryland record recently when riots broke out in Baltimore over the death of a 25-year-old African-American man under police custody. The treatment of Freddie Gray, which sparked a national dialogue about police conduct toward racial minorities, drew renewed scrutiny to the controversial zero-tolerance policing strategy that O'Malley advocated for as mayor -- part of an aggressive strategy to crack down on crime.

In an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper last month, O'Malley declared that Baltimore saw a "record reduction in violent crime" under his watch.

There are "probably now 1,000 mostly young, poor African-American men who did not die violent deaths in our city" because of these policies, O'Malley said. Carly Fiorina, a former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, announced her bid for the Republican nomination on May 4. In 2008 she served as an adviser to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, and in 2010 she unsuccessfully ran for Barbara Boxer's Senate seat in California. 

"Yes, I am running," Fiorina said on ABC's "Good Morning America." "I think I'm the best person for the job because I understand how the economy actually works. I understand the world; who's in it." Republican Dr. Ben Carson announced he was running for President during a speech May 2 to thousands in Detroit. The retired neurosurgeon and surprise conservative star had been exploring the idea of running for a few months before the announcement.

"I'm probably never going to be politically correct, because I'm not a politician," he said in his announcement. "I don't want to be a politician. Because politicians do what is politically expedient -- I want to do what's right." Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee formally announced his candidacy at a rally in Hope, Arkansas, on May 5. Huckabee unsuccessfully ran for the Republican nomination in 2008. This is his second attempt.

"I truly am from Hope to higher ground," Huckabee told the crowd during his announcement. "So it seems perfectly fitting that it would be here that I announce that I am a candidate for President of the United States of America." Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination from a factory on the outskirts of Pittsburgh on May 27. Santorum, who ran unsuccessfully in 2012, is widely considered the most socially conservative candidate who will enter the race. 

"As middle America is hollowing out, we can't sit idly by as big government politicians make it harder for our workers and then turn around and blame them for losing jobs overseas. American families don't need another President tied to big government or big money," he said during his kickoff rally. Former New York Gov. George Pataki formally announced his bid for the White House in a YouTube video released on May 28. The Republican served three terms as New York's governor, including during the 9/11 attacks.

"My vision was not a partisan vision. It was a vision about people, about what we could accomplish together," Pataki said as he narrated a four-minute announcement video. "If we are to flourish as a people, we have to fall in love with America again." Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley launched his presidential campaign May 30 in Baltimore with an appeal to the party's progressive base that he hopes will upend the conventional wisdom that Hillary Clinton is destined to clinch the Democratic nomination.

"This is the urgent work calling us forward today: to rebuild the truth of the American Dream for all Americans," O'Malley said at his rally. "And to begin right now." Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has made a name for himself in the Senate, solidifying his brand as a conservative firebrand willing to take on the GOP. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has made a name for himself in the Senate, solidifying his brand as a conservative firebrand willing to take on the GOP's establishment. He announced he was seeking the Republican presidential nomination in a speech on March 23. 

"These are all of our stories," Cruz told the audience at Liberty University in Virginia. "These are who we are as Americans. And yet for so many Americans, the promise of America seems more and more distant." Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, officially announced his presidential bid April 7 at a rally in Louisville. Paul is the son of former presidential hopeful Ron Paul of Texas. 

"Today I announce with God's help, with the help of liberty lovers everywhere, that I'm putting myself forward as a candidate for President of the United States of America," Paul said at the rally. Hillary Clinton launched her presidential bid on April 12 through a video message on social media. The former first lady, senator and secretary of state is considered the front-runner among possible Democratic candidates.

"Everyday Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion -- so you can do more than just get by -- you can get ahead. And stay ahead," she said in her announcement video. "Because when families are strong, America is strong. So I'm hitting the road to earn your vote, because it's your time. And I hope you'll join me on this journey." Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, announced his 2016 bid with a rally in Miami on April 13, a day after Clinton announced. He's a Republican rising star who swept into office in 2010 in a wave of tea party fervor.

"Grounded by the lessons of our history, but inspired by the promise of our future, I announce my candidacy for President of the United States of America," Rubio told supporters at Miami's Freedom Tower. Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont who caucuses with Democrats, announced his run in an email to supporters on April 30. He has said the United States needs a "political revolution" of working-class Americans to take back control of the government from billionaires. 

"This great nation and its government belong to all of the people and not to a handful of billionaires, their super PACs and their lobbyists," Sanders said at a rally in Vermont on May 26. Carly Fiorina, a former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, announced her bid for the Republican nomination on May 4. In 2008 she served as an adviser to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, and in 2010 she unsuccessfully ran for Barbara Boxer's Senate seat in California. 

"Yes, I am running," Fiorina said on ABC's "Good Morning America." "I think I'm the best person for the job because I understand how the economy actually works. I understand the world; who's in it." Republican Dr. Ben Carson announced he was running for President during a speech May 2 to thousands in Detroit. The retired neurosurgeon and surprise conservative star had been exploring the idea of running for a few months before the announcement.

"I'm probably never going to be politically correct, because I'm not a politician," he said in his announcement. "I don't want to be a politician. Because politicians do what is politically expedient -- I want to do what's right." Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee formally announced his candidacy at a rally in Hope, Arkansas, on May 5. Huckabee unsuccessfully ran for the Republican nomination in 2008. This is his second attempt.

"I truly am from Hope to higher ground," Huckabee told the crowd during his announcement. "So it seems perfectly fitting that it would be here that I announce that I am a candidate for President of the United States of America." Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination from a factory on the outskirts of Pittsburgh on May 27. Santorum, who ran unsuccessfully in 2012, is widely considered the most socially conservative candidate who will enter the race. 

"As middle America is hollowing out, we can't sit idly by as big government politicians make it harder for our workers and then turn around and blame them for losing jobs overseas. American families don't need another President tied to big government or big money," he said during his kickoff rally. Former New York Gov. George Pataki formally announced his bid for the White House in a YouTube video released on May 28. The Republican served three terms as New York's governor, including during the 9/11 attacks.

"My vision was not a partisan vision. It was a vision about people, about what we could accomplish together," Pataki said as he narrated a four-minute announcement video. "If we are to flourish as a people, we have to fall in love with America again." Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley launched his presidential campaign May 30 in Baltimore with an appeal to the party's progressive base that he hopes will upend the conventional wisdom that Hillary Clinton is destined to clinch the Democratic nomination.

"This is the urgent work calling us forward today: to rebuild the truth of the American Dream for all Americans," O'Malley said at his rally. "And to begin right now." Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas has made a name for himself in the Senate, solidifying his brand as a conservative firebrand willing to take on the GOP's establishment. He announced he was seeking the Republican presidential nomination in a speech on March 23. 

"These are all of our stories," Cruz told the audience at Liberty University in Virginia. "These are who we are as Americans. And yet for so many Americans, the promise of America seems more and more distant." Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, officially announced his presidential bid April 7 at a rally in Louisville. Paul is the son of former presidential hopeful Ron Paul of Texas. 

"Today I announce with God's help, with the help of liberty lovers everywhere, that I'm putting myself forward as a candidate for President of the United States of America," Paul said at the rally. Hillary Clinton launched her presidential bid on April 12 through a video message on social media. The former first lady, senator and secretary of state is considered the front-runner among possible Democratic candidates.

"Everyday Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion -- so you can do more than just get by -- you can get ahead. And stay ahead," she said in her announcement video. "Because when families are strong, America is strong. So I'm hitting the road to earn your vote, because it's your time. And I hope you'll join me on this journey." Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, announced his 2016 bid with a rally in Miami on April 13, a day after Clinton announced. He's a Republican rising star who swept into office in 2010 in a wave of tea party fervor.

"Grounded by the lessons of our history, but inspired by the promise of our future, I announce my candidacy for President of the United States of America," Rubio told supporters at Miami's Freedom Tower. Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont who caucuses with Democrats, announced his run in an email to supporters on April 30. He has said the United States needs a "political revolution" of working-class Americans to take back control of the government from billionaires. 

"This great nation and its government belong to all of the people and not to a handful of billionaires, their super PACs and their lobbyists," Sanders said at a rally in Vermont on May 26. Carly Fiorina, a former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, announced her bid for the Republican nomination on May 4. In 2008 she served as an adviser to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, and in 2010 she unsuccessfully ran for Barbara Boxer's Senate seat in California. 

"Yes, I am running," Fiorina said on ABC's "Good Morning America." "I think I'm the best person for the job because I understand how the economy actually works. I understand the world; who's in it."His standing took a hit last year when Maryland voters rejected his handpicked successor in the governor's race, Democrat Anthony Brown. Brown lost the statehouse to Republican Larry Hogan.

"I can tell you my feelings were hurt," O'Malley said about the loss. "We had done a lot of really good things in Maryland, and in the end you did not hear much about it during the campaign."

But he added, "I was not on the ballot."

A fresh voice for the party
O'Malley is aiming to present himself as a fresh voice for the party -- one who speaks for a different generation than Washington heavy hitters such as the 67-year-old Clinton. The former governor plays guitar in his Celtic rock band O'Malley's March, and at some gigs he has occasionally bared his biceps in sleeveless shirts.

Beyond Clinton and O'Malley, Bernie Sanders is the only other Democrat who has announced a 2016 presidential bid. Sanders is also popular among liberals and garnered 15% in the Quinnipiac poll.

O'Malley has remained optimistic about his own prospects, telling CNN in March he could turn around his low numbers by outworking the competition.


"When you start off as potential candidate for president and your name recognition is low, you have to just go from county to county, from town to town and engage people in order to change that around," O'Malley said then. "I guess another way to say it is this: Look, it is not unusual for there to be an inevitable frontrunner early in a contest who has fantastic name recognition, and is therefore inevitable right up until he or she is no longer inevitable."

If the Democratic primary for President were being held today, and the candidates were Joe Biden, Lincoln Chafee, Hillary Clinton, Martin O'Malley, Bernie Sanders and Jim Webb, for whom would you vote?
                     DEMOCRATS/DEMOCRATIC LEANERS

                            POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY
                            LIBERAL.....  Mod/
                     Tot    Very   Smwht  Cons   Men    Wom
 
Biden                 9%     4%     8%    10%    10%     7%
Chafee                1      -      -      2      -      1
Clinton              57     61     57     54     47     64
O'Malley              1      -      2      2      2      1
Sanders              15     28     15     10     19     11
Webb                  1      1      1      1      2      1
SMONE ELSE(VOL)       1      -      1      1      1      1
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)      2      2      1      2      2      1
DK/NA                14      4     16     18     17     12

John Kerry breaks leg in bicycle crash; returning to US Monday and Wheaton College Removes Alum Dennis Hastert's Name From Center. Also, Bob Schieffer bids farewell as ‘Face the Nation’ moderator. This Sunday's broadcast of CBS's "Face the Nation" began with a clip of a younger — 24 years younger, to be exact — Bob Schieffer on his first day as moderator of the political talk show: "Today marks my official debut, as it were, as moderator of 'Face the Nation.' Our aim is going to be very simple here: to find interesting people from all segments of American life who have something to say and give them a chance to say it."

In his farewell message, Schieffer recalled the moment he decided to be a reporter: in the ninth grade, when he saw his byline in the school newspaper.


"I got a chance to do that. When I was a young reporter, I wanted to work for CBS, because Walter Cronkite was my hero. And I got a chance to do that," Schieffer said as black-and-white photos from his reporting career appeared on screen, including one of Schieffer and Cronkite. "And after I was here a while, I wanted to be the moderator of 'Face the Nation.' And I got do to that, and did it for 24 years." According to the Associated Press, Schieffer's career at CBS News began after he walked into the office of the bureau chief without an appointment, was mistaken for another reporter named Bob who actually had an interview scheduled that day, was let into the executive's office and then talked his way into the job.

"Maybe it's because I just love the news, but, at the time, I thought every job I ever had was the best job in the world, going behind police lines, talking to cops and soldiers and then senators and even presidents," Schieffer said. "I tried to remember that the news is not about the newscaster. It's about the people who make it and those who are affected by it." Guests on Sunday's show thanked Schieffer and showed appreciation for his work. Brennan called Schieffer an "icon in the broadcast news industry." "Let me say how much I just respect your service to our country. 'Face the Nation' is the go-to place, and I just appreciate everything you have done," Bush said.

Schieffer thanked his crew, brought them on screen to take a bow, and passed on the show to his successor, CBS News political director John Dickerson.

"I will be honest, I'm going to miss being in the middle of things, but the one thing I will never forget is the trust you placed in me and how nice you were to have me as a guest in your home over so many years. That meant the world to me. And it always will," Schieffer said on his final broadcast. "Thank you."

Overall, Martin O'Malley spoke well at his announcement speech or during it. What he said about the banks is brilliant for us lefties but honestly, ho has he voted in that regard in the past? Bernie Sanders got a huge crowd again in Minneapolis yesterday. I also think what he said on Meet The Press about his weird article in 1972 was fine. He admits that it was poorly written, etc. Like Sam Stein just said, I think he faced it and it will stop the mini controversy about it. I also (Al Hunt just said it on Morning Joe) think that Bernie is going to be trouble for the likes of Hilary Clinton. They are all speaking about their platforms as if they are far left winged candidates. I get that Bernie (Sanders) is and Martin O'Malley is almost one but he and Hilary are indeed quintessential Democrat candidates. But what they are saying is unreal and great for the likes of me and what i believe in politically.

Jack Markell is on the show soon. He and me and mostly everyone expected Beau Biden to succeed him in office next year. That is also what I could not believe about his death or not knowing how bad it was for him health wise, he was talking about running for the Governor position in Delaware. he made no bones about it even lately. That death stunk. It was shocking to me. Plus again, he seemed like a great guy. Military man. Into his family. Great politician. Great public speaker. Toad it all going then boom, he drain cancer. It blows  away and it makes me know that could die any minute too. Markell says he would have run. And, that he would have won (Governor) and that he would have been effective at that job.

Bill Kristol and Barney Frank are on the show (Morning Joe) next. What the hell is that segment going to be about and what would they ever agree on in life? That is quite a match that should make for interesting panel over the segment.

So, does Wal-Mart raise its wages for everyone to $15? That ad sort of implies it but honestly, it does not say that at all in that add. Anyone could have received a wage raise. They just kind of state that there was an overall hike which I took from it that CEO could have gotten a raise. Or, anyone at any level. Not just the low wages. I think I read somewhere when searching for that information that they still pay people $9 an hour or that is where they start with regard to entry level jobs. 

Is it me or do both (Bill) Kristol and (Barney) Frank agree about the surveillance issue in that there has never been one claim saying that anyone has infringed on our civil rights? I was not really that much against it or I think there are bigger issues to deal with but then again, if whomever is watching what Porn I use every day (so to speak), that is not cool. And, it is actually odd behavior unless you are going after pedophiles or people that abuse porn. But to watch people for the sake of it is not normal and again, it is very odd behavior for anyone to do it. 

Also, why isn't Joe Biden better qualified to be the POTUS than say a Hilary Clinton? I have asked that question so many times. I assume it is because some people do NOT take him serious enough but he is a great Politician so i don't get why the Dem's have not embraced him more than they do. Bill Kristol also just confirmed how great Hilary is for that GOP and for the hawks in that party. I have said that 98 times in the last three months. She says whatever now but man oh man has she voted and done things wile in office that are more like a GOP'er then even Obama is like one. Which I also do NOT get how people infer that he is a liberal. He speaks like one but he acts like a big business politician or I should say a politician that follows the leads of big businesses in America. I do NOT get those misconceptions but then again, he gives great speeches which is why I assume people believe him and say Hilary. She also speaks well when she is on her game. She messes up when she has to deal on the fly but that has only been a couple times in the last year.

Hang on a second. That oil in Canada is indeed 'dirty oil' and Sam Stein says it best just now, we just want to start to move away from using oil. But that oil is just like the worst crude oil we get from say Venezuela. It is not good oil. It is not clean. It is the worst of the worst types of oil. The mayor of Calgary is on Morning Joe now. This guy (Naheed Nenshi) is  a far cry from that other mayor of Toronto. But he is lying about the quality of the oil being dug up in his Province.

Oh yeah BTW, Richard Engel got married to his long time girlfriend over the weekend. I saw his Tweet about it. Congrats and Good for him. He is lucky to be in love although his wife now must have some sleepless nights considering his reporting and where he goes in this world to report our foreign affair news. He thrives on that chaos but he is so good at his job. Actually, he is on to talk about his Peabody Award given to him last night and for his report about ISIS in some small Kurdish town.

Regardless of it all today, stay in touch!