Morning Must Reads: End-Around

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Rep. Mike Castle listens to testimony during a hearing about the American International Group on Capitol Hill March 18, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

–There are a bunch of interesting primaries today in Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin and D.C. Jay previewed the best races last week.

–Chris Cillizza teases out the new Democratic strategy of focusing on Minority Leader John Boehner. It might nibble at the margins in the long game, but it’s really not any kind of coherent plan for the next six weeks. As Cillizza points out, voters have no idea who Boehner is and a few DNC ads running on cable aren’t going to change that. There’s little doubt that Obama, despite his poll numbers, is a more palatable persona to most Americans than the GOP’s top man in the House. But as much as Democrats might want it to be, the midterms won’t be a choice election between national figures.

–As Jay notes, the word is that Obama will pick Elizabeth Warren to head up the CFPB in some fashion or another. I’d say that from a practical perspective, an official who clears the standard¬†confirmation process¬†is better positioned to do his or her job. Politically, I’m not sure why Obama would want to run an end-around on Congress. If part of the idea of picking Warren is to rally the base (she is well-qualified for the post, but it’s hard to argue she’s the only strong candidate), a public fight in the Senate might not be so bad. She knows her way around a congressional grilling and a high-profile hearing would be liberal cat-nip at a time when Dems could use the enthusiasm boost.

–Jerry Brown looks to mend fences on the Bill Clinton front.

–Republican Senator Dick Lugar is at the center of the coming START ratification fight.

–Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon creeps up on the once presumptive shoo-in Democrat Richard Blumenthal in Connecticut’s Senate race.

–Mitch Daniels is quietly testing the 2012 waters from¬†Indianapolis.

–John Heilemann considers Obama’s options should Rahm Emanuel depart.

–And worth re-posting: the Elizabeth Warren rap:

What did I miss?

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