1. Republicans and Democrats are calling on Obama to take action against Russia after Malaysia Flight 17 was shot down over the Ukraine.
“The Obama administration’s U.N. ambassador, Samantha Powers, told the Security Council Friday that pro-Russian separatists in Eastern Ukraine had access to the missile system thought to have been responsible for bringing down the plane, and she said investigators can’t rule out the possibility that the rebels had Russian assistance in operating the system.”
While Republicans are certainly directing their attacks at President Obama for not doing more to control the situation in the Ukraine, Democrats are not letting the president off the hook either.
2. Kentucky Democratic Rep. John Yarmuth says people should not underestimate Rand Paul’s chances in the GOP presidential primary, but says Paul will never be elected president.
“I think it’s a mistake to underestimate him, and I’ve been telling people for months that in my opinion, if [former Florida Gov.] Jeb Bush does not run, Rand Paul has as good or better a chance of being the nominee as anyone else on the Republican side,” he said on Friday on the “Bill Press Show.”
Rand Paul is currently polling high in the field of GOP candidates and has made efforts to broaden his appeal to moderate Republicans and independent voters. While Yarmuth says Paul should not be underestimated in the GOP primary, he should probably not underestimate the Kentucky senator in a general election either — especially 2 years out.
3. Single-candidate Super PACs have not only become essential for high-profile elections, but down-ballot House races as well.
“As one of their first to-do items, congressional hopefuls are now asked to identify wealthy family members, friends or business associates willing to spend on behalf of their candidacies. As a result, deep-pocketed political patrons and special interests have a greater ability than ever before to influence the outcome of individual races, with a relatively modest investment of funds.”
A former GOP leader interviewed for the article says that anyone giving advise to campaigns who does not mention Super PACs would be committing “political malpractice. ”
4. 3 conservative groups are planning more than 300 anti-illegal immigration protests for the weekend.
“The American Legal Immigration Political Action Committee (ALIPAC), Overpasses for America and Make Them Listen are coordinating an effort among other Tea Party-associated political groups, which fiercely oppose the federal government’s housing of undocumented immigrants arriving into the country and what they consider a deliberate lack of enforcement of current immigration law.”
The protests, to take place nationwide, are in response to the humanitarian crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, in which tens of thousands of children from Central America are entering the United States illegally. It is estimated that over 90,000 children and teenagers from this region will come to the U.S. by the end of 2014.