POLITICS

HUFFPOST HILL - John Kasich Slowly Mutating Into A 1950s PSA On Hygiene

Someone is trying to FOIA President Obama’s “Game of Thrones” screeners, though we could just wait for President Sanders to put them on The Pirate Bay. Short of having an endorsement from John Rocker, we’re not sure there’s much more Ted Cruz can do to ensure he loses New York. And John Kasich warned students not to drink too much alcohol in college lest they get sexually assaulted, making us wonder why his campaign slogan isn’t, “John Kasich 2016: You’re Not Going Out Looking Like *That,* Young Lady.” This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, April 15th, 2016:

GOP MULLING MAKING CONVENTION EVEN MORE OF A GOAT RODEO - They have a color guard lined up, but not a band to play the Benny Hill theme on repeat. Alex Isenstadt and Shane Goldmacher: "The Republican National Committee is expected to debate a proposal next week that would dramatically shift the balance of power at this summer’s convention — and impose a new rulebook for selecting the party's nominee. The proposal, which will top the agenda during a meeting of the Rules panel at the RNC’s annual spring meeting in Hollywood Beach, Fla., would fundamentally alter how the convention is conducted, further empowering the delegates to determine the course of the proceedings...The proposal is the brainchild of Solomon Yue, an RNC officer and Rules Committee member from Oregon. It would replace the system used at Republican national conventions for decades, which mimic those used by the U.S. House of Representatives, with Robert’s Rules of Order, a design that’s often used to oversee civic and organizational meetings. Some see the idea as a recipe for utter chaos, and one that could open the door to mischief-making. With thousands of delegates on hand, it’s easy to imagine a scenario where objections pile up, jamming up floor proceedings and turning the convention into a train wreck — all before the eyes of a national audience." [Politico]

Bernie Sanders released his 2014 tax returns today. He basically made no money outside his Senate salary and gave $150 to charity.

DEMS TRYING TO DO STUFF ON ZIKA, SAY GOP NOT DOING ENOUGH STUFF - What they don't realize is Republicans already have plenty of DEET stockpiled at the Capitol. Mike McAuliff: "Democratic lawmakers in the House of Representatives on Friday tried to jumpstart the stalled emergency funding process to address the threat of Zika virus, and warned House Republicans that they will attempt to force a hearing on the matter. With warm weather and mosquito season imminent, little progress has been made in passing the funding health experts seek to combat the bug-borne menace, which officials warned this week is more dire than previously thought. House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) recently declared that his committee was working on the drafting the legislation. But he has also complained that the White House hasn’t provided significant information about what it wants to do with the money. From Democrats’ perspective, however, the White House has amply explained why it needs $1.9 billion as soon as possible to try to mitigate the Zika threat. Three of them sent Rogers a letter on Friday, noting that committee rules say the chairman has seven business days to call a special meeting if three members demand one, and that the majority of the committee can hold its own if the chairman refuses." [HuffPost]

Reid Ribble and Zephyr Teachout joined the latest HuffPost Politics podcast.

NOBODY IS QUITE SURE WHAT TO MAKE OF THIS - A white Republican lobbyist has been giving money to Democratic Senate candidate Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.), who is African-American, because, the lobbyist says, the Senate’s not diverse enough. Sam Geduldig first gave $200 to the Edwards campaign last year, an amount too low to appear on federal campaign finance documents. But now he’s giving more. 'I was lobbying the Senate the other day and I noticed Cory Booker was the only black Democrat,' Geduldig told The Huffington Post in an email, referring to the Democratic senator from New Jersey. 'The institution needs diverse senators, like the House. That’s why I am contributing.' Geduldig served as a top aide to former House Speaker John Boehner before switching to the private sector in 2007. With a $400 donation on Thursday (for which he shared an email receipt with HuffPost), Geduldig said his total giving to the Edwards campaign has topped out at $800 so far. ' think the Senate is broken and I think the reason the senate is broken is there’s no diversity,' Geduldig said. 'I think the only way it will work is if there’s more diversity in the Democratic caucus.' An Edwards campaign spokesman said he didn’t have much to say about the donations, other than to 'agree that we believe the Senate needs more diversity and the perspective of someone like Donna Edwards.'" [w/ HuffPost's Paul Blumenthal & Ryan Grim]

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WHOLE LOTTA MONEY FROM NOT MANY PEOPLE - "A small core of super-rich individuals is responsible for the record sums cascading into the coffers of super PACs for the 2016 elections, a dynamic that harks back to the financing of presidential campaigns in the Gilded Age. Close to half of the money — 41 percent — raised by the groups by the end of February came from just 50 mega-donors and their relatives, according to a Washington Post analysis of federal campaign finance reports. Thirty-six of those are Republican supporters who have invested millions trying to shape the GOP nomination contest — accounting for more than 70 percent of the money from the top 50. In all, donors this cycle have given more than $607 million to 2,300 super PACs, which can accept unlimited contributions from individuals and corporations. That means super PAC money is on track to surpass the $828 million that the Center for Responsive Politics found was raised by such groups for the 2012 elections." [WaPo]

HOUSE CMTE MOVING ON OPIOID BILL - Mary Ellen McIntire: "A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee is intending to mark up legislation related to the opioid crisis next week, Committee Chairman Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) told reporters Friday. Most, if not all of the roughly a dozen bills, will be bipartisan, he said. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy has said committee work on opioid bills should wrap up this month to be ready for May floor votes. That timeline has come under scrutiny by senators, notably Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), who has argued the Senate has already passed a bill that the House could vote on. The Senate passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act by a 94-1 vote last month. [Morning Consult]

JOHN KASICH INCREASINGLY JUST A PIPE SMOKING, CARDIGAN-WEARING DAD FROM THE 1950S - Now be a dear and help him with his slippers. Cassie Spodak: "Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Friday told a young female college student, who said she was worried about sexual harassment and violence, that she should avoid parties with a lot of alcohol. The young woman, a first-year student at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, had asked the Ohio governor at a town hall here how he would help her 'feel safer and more secure regarding sexual violence, harassment and rape' as president. In answering the question, Kasich talked about efforts in Ohio to provide support for college students facing sexual harassment, such as access to confidential reporting, rape kits and the opportunity to 'pursue justice after you have had some time to reflect on it all.' Kasich said these efforts should be extended to the rest of the country as well so that students "know exactly what the rules are" and do not feel vulnerable. He also reflected on how having two daughters affects his views on the issue." [CNN]

Whadda guy: "Republican presidential candidate John Kasich ignited ridicule -- and a flood of media coverage -- when he used a fork to eat pizza in New York two weeks ago. But he hinted the move may have amounted to political calculation. When asked by a Connecticut radio show last Friday if he employed the fork on purpose -- a major faux pas in the Big Apple -- so that he would'"get a tremendous amount of media exposure,' Kasich did not reject the suggestion. 'You don't think I’m going to reveal that, do you?' he replied." [ABC News]

TED CRUZ ISN'T GOING TO WIN NEW YORK - However the state's values will survive his onslaught, rest assured. Chris Cilliza: "Ted Cruz spoke a gathering of New York Republicans last night. It didn't go so well...WaPo's Phil Rucker was at the event -- and tweeted some of the awkwardness: 'The NY crowd’s clinking & chattering over Cruz’s speech confirms what Trump said: “Who the hell wants to talk about politics? It’s boring."..Cruz wasn't the only one who didn't get the warmest of receptions. New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez was the keynote speaker and dealt with lots of similar rudeness. And Donald Trump spoke just before Cruz -- and got a hero's welcome, according to Rucker's reporting. Add that to Cruz's past pejorative comments about "New York values" and the Texas Senator was walking into a lion's den." [WaPo]

THIS IS WHY WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS: GOVERNMENT TRANSPARENCY EDITION - Vanessa Golembewski: "At a premiere event earlier this week in Hollywood, Game of Thrones showrunner Dan Weiss revealed that President Obama is the only person outside of HBO who will see advance screenings of new episodes. That means those who traditionally view them — mainly journalists, industry folk, and the occasional fan group — have no choice but to wait. Why did Obama get these highly coveted assets? 'He's the leader of the free world,' Weiss told the crowd. 'When the commander-in-chief says, 'I want to see advanced episodes,' what are you gonna do?' So, Weiss gave them to him. And I decided this was a perfect opportunity to test the limits of the Freedom Of Information Act. If the president — and by extension, our government -- is in possession of a file, surely that file is subject to my request to see it as a U.S. citizen." [Refinery 29]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Here are some newborn gorillas.

DONALD TRUMP RUINING AMERICAN POLITICAL DISCOURSE, PT 127,088 - Here's an item by Craig Dunn, Republican party chairman in Howard County, Indiana: "At the conclusion of a long interview with Politico last week, I was asked whether or not I support Donald Trump. I said that I did not. I was then asked if there was any situation where I could see myself supporting Trump. 'If Satan was one vote away from the nomination,' I replied, 'I would consider voting for Trump if he was the only alternative.' As a result of that remark, Trump supporters have tried to make my life a living hell. I’ve received hate email to my business and political accounts. People have left hateful messages on my home and office and home phone. This is totally unprecedented in my decade as a political party chairman." [WaPo]

COMFORT FOOD

- The battle for the sea-monkey fortune.

- Why we love spice.

TWITTERAMA

@haleyhartman: i'm excited for the dystopian tv show that comes out in 10 years about if trump had won 2016

@morninggloria: Every time I give a coworker a compliment, I follow it up by saying "It'd be a shame if something happened to it" under my breath.

@emmaroller: next time you're tempted to call a statistic "whopping," ask yourself: does this number *really* whop?

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