Happy Easter! It’s absolutely gorgeous today in D.C. Step away from work. All of this will be here when you return.
NEWS — VP MIKE PENCE said at a dinner at U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan in Seoul that the failed North Korean missile test was a “provocation,” per Andrew Beatty of AFP, today’s pooler on Pence’s trip. “Let me assure you that under President Trump’s leadership our resolve has never been stronger, our commitment to this historic alliance with the courageous people of South Korea has never been stronger and with your help and God’s help freedom will ever prevail on this peninsula.”
LEAD OF THE DAY — WaPo’s ANNA FIFIELD in Tokyo: “With the kind of fanfare that only a totalitarian state can muster, North Korea on Saturday flaunted missiles that can theoretically reach the United States and defiantly stated that it was prepared to counter any U.S. attack with ‘a nuclear war of our own.’
“But it soon looked like a case of style over substance. North Korea somewhat ruined the impression created with the parade, which took place on the most important day of the year for Kim Jong Un’s regime, with a failed missile launch Sunday morning. The ballistic missile was fired from the Sinpo area on the east coast shortly before 6 a.m. local time, U.S. Pacific Command said. It blew up almost immediately, complicating efforts to identify the missile’s size and range.” http://wapo.st/2oAsRwO
FIRST IN PLAYBOOK — THE WHITE HOUSE WEEK AHEAD — MONDAY: The president goes to the White House Easter egg roll. TUESDAY: The president goes to Wisconsin. WEDNESDAY: The president has a “Veterans Affairs choice event,” and then hosts the New England Patriots at 1:30 p.m. to congratulate them on their Super Bowl win. THURSDAY: Italian PM Paolo Gentiloni will visit the White House and meet with the president.
— NOTES ON THIS WEEK: TOM BRADY is expected at the White House when the Pats come, according to sources familiar with the planning. … The Italian PM visit to the White House is being viewed internally as important. Italy has the second-largest troop presence in Iraq, so West Wing aides see this as more than a photo op.
TRUMP TWEETS — @realDonaldTrump at 8:18 a.m.: “Why would I call China a currency manipulator when they are working with us on the North Korean problem? We will see what happens!” … at 8:24 a.m.: “Happy Easter to everyone!” …at 9:07 a.m.: “I did what was an almost an impossible thing to do for a Republican-easily won the Electoral College! Now Tax Returns are brought up again?” … at 9:13 a.m.: “Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday. The election is over!” … at 9:41 a.m.: “Our military is building and is rapidly becoming stronger than ever before. Frankly, we have no choice!”
— NOTE: Trump has held several campaign-style rallies since winning the election.
SUNDAY BEST — CHUCK TODD speaks to HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY JOHN KELLY on NBC’s “MEET THE PRESS” — TODD: “Let me get into the issue of immigration and your role in it, and this idea of a deportation force. I know you pushed back on this phrase. But there is apparently a plan to hire 10,000 new ICE agents, 5,000 new border patrol agents. What do you call this if not a deportation force?” KELLY: “A law enforcement force. Men and women who will do their jobs in the future as they’ve done them in the past. And that is execute and uphold the nation’s laws. There are a huge number, as you know, of illegal aliens or undocumented individuals that have to be dealt with in one way or another.
“I would argue, Chuck, that we have to straighten this out. And I place that squarely on the United States Congress. It’s a hugely complex series of laws, and I engage the Hill quite a bit and get an earful about what I should do and what I shouldn’t do. But it all comes down to the law, doesn’t it? And we are a nation of laws, and I would hope that the Congress fixes a lot of these problems.” …
KELLY: “Homeland Security has not had a good relationship with the press. I am going out of my way. I’ve hired some of the best people I could find. We are leaning forward with the press. I’m sitting here in front of you right now. … We’re doing the same thing with the Hill. The House and Senate. I’ve been over numerous times to sit down with members not only hearings, but members of Congress, the Hispanic Caucus, the Democratic Caucus on the House side. I’m doing the best I can to reach out. You may not agree with what I say, or you may not like the answers I give, but they’re honest, they’re straightforward and they’re all based on the law.”
MARTHA RADDATZ speaks to NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER H.R. MCMASTER on ABC’s “THIS WEEK” –RADDATZ: “You know, one of the big concerns here, General McMaster, is how North Korea would respond to aggressive action or some sort of preemptive strike. How do you think they would respond?”
MCMASTER: “Well, that’s what particularly difficult about — about dealing with this regime, is that it is unpredictable. This is someone who has demonstrated his brutality by murdering his own brother, by murdering others in his family, by imprisoning large numbers of people in horrible conditions for no reason, for political reasons. So this regime has given the world reason for concern. And that includes — that includes the Chinese people and the Chinese leadership as well.”
— MCMASTER on whether more troops are needed in Syria: “That remains to be seen. I don’t think so.”
K.T. MCFARLAND speaks to CHRIS WALLACE on “FOX NEWS SUNDAY” — From Kevin Robillard: “After ‘Fox News Sunday’ host Chris Wallace asked if she was on her way out because Flynn hired her, McFarland issued a corrective: ‘First of all, President Trump hired me. He gave me a call on Thanksgiving Day.’
"‘Gen. Flynn has departed, and Gen. McMaster has arrived,’ she said. ‘I’ve helped through that transition and the president and I have had a number of conversations over the last two months, really, about what my role will continue to be and where I could be best used, for what his vision is of foreign policy. I can tell you we talked about it again last night, and there are changes coming. But I’m not going to tell you what they are.’” http://politi.co/2oDBHvf
— McFarland also declined to say whether the U.S. meddled in the North Korea missile test.
JAKE TAPPER speaks with SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-Vt.) on “STATE OF THE UNION” — TAPPER: “Kansas and Georgia are red states. You’re on this red state tour that is going to kick off tomorrow. But just this week, a Democrat you supported lost an election for a special House seat election in Kansas. Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff is seeking to fill in Georgia a seat vacated by the now secretary of health and human services, Secretary Dr. Tom Price in Georgia. Are you concerned that the DNC — they’re doing this big red state tour with you, but a lot of people criticized the DNC for not sending enough resources to Kansas. So, it’s great that they’re doing this display.”
SANDERS: “… [W]hat I think has happened now, in Kansas, it is true that the Democratic candidate lost. It is true that the Democratic Party should have put more resources into that election. But it is also true that he ran 20 points better than the — than the Democratic candidate for president did in Kansas.” …
TAPPER: “Senator, I want to ask you about this horrific incident last week in which a passenger was dragged off a United flight after refusing to give up his seat voluntarily. Democratic Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky of Illinois, she is planning to introduce legislation that would ban airlines from being able to involuntarily bump passengers from flights. Airlines say that this kind of congressional meddling could — meddling could result in much higher fares for consumers. What do you think Congress should do?”
SANDERS: “Well, I think anybody who flies a lot — and, as a United States senator, I fly a lot — knows how dysfunctional, in many respects, the airlines are. They know that there are many, many delays that are caused not because of weather, but because of inappropriate practices on the part of the airlines. This overbooking, which caused this particular problem, is not unique. I have been on airlines many, many times where people have been asked to leave. And I think what we do need is to take a hard look at the airlines in this country and make them much more responsive to the consumers than they currently are. In terms of pricing, I mean, you can have two people on an airline, one is spending twice as much as another person. So, the idea of taking a hard look at airline travel and, by the way, the consolidation of ownership in the airline industry is something that I think would be a very useful effort.”
PALACE INTRIGUE — “Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump: Pillars of Family-Driven West Wing,” by Peter Baker, Glenn Thrush and Maggie Haberman on A1 of the NYT: “More openly than any president before him, Mr. Trump is running his West Wing like a family business, and as he has soured on Mr. Bannon, his combative chief strategist, he has turned to his daughter and son-in-law. Their ascendance has some conservative supporters fretting about the rising influence of the urbane young New Yorkers, as some moderates and liberals swallow concerns about nepotism in the hope that the couple will temper the temperamental president. …
“Lately, he has pushed to overhaul the criminal justice system, a goal that Mr. Trump embraced as a candidate near the end of the campaign when he tried to siphon black voters away from Hillary Clinton. But Mr. Kushner is running into opposition from Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who favors toughening, not relaxing, mandatory minimum sentences. …
“When Ms. Trump does intervene, her father listens — although he does not always take her advice. One person close to the family described her influence as a delayed-action fuse: At times the president will mention a point Ms. Trump made, uncredited, days later. …
“Mr. Trump would prefer the situation with Mr. Bannon to stabilize, according to people familiar with his thinking, and to keep Mr. Bannon on board, albeit in a more circumscribed role, than see him become a populist critic outside the gates. Mr. Bannon intuitively understands the president’s connection to white working-class voters and his instinct to demolish political norms.” http://nyti.ms/2plSggy
OBSERVATION KING MATT NUSSBAUM — “Has Trump found religion in the Oval Office?: The president is mentioning God more than ever during his public appearances”: “President Donald Trump has increasingly infused references to God into his prepared remarks — calling on God to bless all the world after launching strikes in Syria, asking God to bless the newest Supreme Court Justice, invoking the Lord to argue in favor of a war on opioids.” http://politi.co/2p7us03
FOR YOUR RADAR — “Turks vote in historic referendum on expanding Erdogan’s power,” by Reuters’ Tuvan Gumrukcu and Humeyra Pamuk: “Turks cast their votes in a referendum on Sunday that would give sweeping new powers to President Tayyip Erdogan and herald the most radical change to the country’s political system in its modern history. Opinion polls have shown a narrow lead for a ‘Yes’ vote, which would replace Turkey’s parliamentary democracy with an all-powerful presidency and may see Erdogan in office until at least 2029. The outcome will also shape Turkey’s strained relations with the European Union. The NATO member state has curbed the flow of migrants – mainly refugees from wars in Syria and Iraq – into the bloc but Erdogan says he may review the deal after the vote.” http://reut.rs/2ppCpKS
FOR THE HILL — “4 takeaways from the town halls terrorizing the GOP,” by Kyle Cheney and Rachael Bade: “Republicans eager to flee Capitol Hill after squandering weeks on failed negotiations to repeal Obamacare are finding little refuge at home, where furious throngs of liberal constituents await. Halfway through the two-week Easter break, it’s clear that the energy on the left to protect Barack Obama’s health law — and oppose President Donald Trump — is still soaring. … POLITICO reporters traveled to nearly a dozen town halls to document the tumultuous homecoming Republicans faced. Here are four takeaways from Congress’ first week on the road, with reporting from Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Oregon, New Jersey, New York and Texas. … 1) Republican AHCA critics sharpened their skepticism of the bill … 2) The House GOP’s civil war is getting noticed beyond the Beltway … 3) Republicans have gotten better at handling hostile crowds … 4) Taking on Trump is a winner for Republicans.” http://politi.co/2oN0ZYj
DEMS’ TAKE ON GEORGIA SPECIAL — The much-watched special election for HHS Secretary Tom Price’s House seat is Tuesday. Republicans have more than a dozen candidates running, and Democrats have coalesced around Jon Ossoff. If Ossoff clears the 50 percent mark, there will be a June runoff. Democrats are selling Ossoff’s inability to close the deal as a win. Their thinking: Ossoff will finish first with more than 40 percent of the vote and be in a strong position for the runoff. “The extent to which Republicans will stay home or defect, and that Democrats will turn out, is unknown. We are in uncharted special election territory,” emailed one Democrat involved in the race. “There are 18 candidates splitting the vote – including 4 other Democrats – so it will be hard for anyone to win outright, regardless of their popularity.”
TRUMP’S WASHINGTON — “Trump’s Beyoncé-free Easter Egg Roll,” by Nancy Cook: “Last year’s White House Easter egg roll featured a surprise visit from Beyoncé; athletes from the NBA and Washington Redskins; and a performance by actress and singer Idina Menzel, the voice behind that catchy song from the movie ‘Frozen.’ This year, the big act for the Trump administration is the Martin Family Circus, a six-person family band from Nashville that’s driving up to D.C. for the annual event in an RV.
“President Trump spent weeks comparing the size of his inauguration crowds to President Obama’s, yet for the White House’s first big public event — the Easter egg roll — officials have gone out of their way to lower expectations. While last year’s crowd was estimated at about 37,000 people, press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that only 21,000 are expected on Monday — though the White House has ordered 18,000 eggs, ‘in line with past years,’ according to Spicer, who participated in the event as the Easter Bunny in 2008.” http://politi.co/2p7r2dY
THE JUICE …
— “THE CIRCUS” SNEAK PEEK: MARK HALPERIN visited the Marist Institute for Public Opinion after President Donald Trump bombed Syria. The show airs tonight at 8 p.m. on Showtime. 4-min. video http://bit.ly/2nR9ti0
— CNN’s DAN MERICA profiles Keith Schiller, Donald Trump’s longtime bodyguard and, as one former top campaign aide put it, the “most underestimated person on Trump’s team.” http://cnn.it/2oAAMtS
SNL LAST NIGHT – “Donald Trump Cold Open” – In the Oval Office — Trump (played by Alec Baldwin): “Look around Mike, we’ve had such great memories in this room.” Mike Pence (Beck Bennett): “Oh, if these walls could talk.” Trump: “Oh my God! Can they? Wasn’t me!” Pence: “Ooh, oh, no sir that’s just a saying.” Trump: “Like I was saying, so many memories in this room. This is where I met with the Chinese president.” Pence: “That was at Mar-a-Lago sir.” Trump: “This is where I ordered the Syrian strike.” Pence: “That was also at Mar-a-Lago sir.” Trump: “This is where I showed classified information to the Japanese prime minister.” Pence: “That was in front of a bunch of waiters at Mar-a-Lago, sir.”
Trump: “Well, I know one thing that was here for sure. Remember when I refused to shake the hand of that little German boy?” Pence: “Hmm … you mean Angela Merkel?” Trump: “Whatever his name was. The point is these 100 days have been such a success and I’m so sad is finally coming to an end.” Pence: “No sir, you still have over 1300 days left.” Trump: “I don’t know. Have you seen my tweets about North Korea? This could all be over by Monday.” 6-min. video – Jimmy Fallon plays Jared later in the segment http://bit.ly/2oDIK7l
–“Easter Message from Sean Spicer” – Spicer in an Easter Egg costume (played by Melissa McCarthy): “Now in defending the President’s decision, unlike Syrian leader, umm, the leader of, what is his stupid name? I got Bazooka Felicia Ahmad Rashad. At least Hitler never used chemical weapons. And everyone freaked. They were all like, ‘boo-hoo, boo-hoo, what about the Holocaust centers?’ And yeah, I know they’re not really called Holocaust centers. Duh! I know that. I’m aware. I clearly meant to say concentration clubs. … P.S.: you should know I am sensitive to the fact that they were sent there on trains. At least they didn’t have to fly United, am I right?” 4-min. video http://bit.ly/2p7DJp3
2020 IS HERE! — “The 2020 New Hampshire primary has begun,” by the Boston Globe’s James Pindell: “Over a week in late April, three potential 2020 candidates will be in the state that traditionally hosts the nation’s first presidential primary. Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Republican, will stop to promote his new book. Former vice president Joe Biden will address Democrats at their annual fund-raising dinner. And former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley will speak at Democratic activities in three towns. …
“State Senator Lou D’Allesandro, a Democrat, said that O’Malley, ‘e-mails me all the time, but he just doesn’t connect with people for some reason.’ D’Allesandro is currently intrigued by US Senator Mark Warner of Virginia. He spoke with him via phone last week to discuss the impact of Trump’s budget on the Granite State (D’Allesandro called Warner — not the other way around). D’Allesandro said he has also been in contact with former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson, who ran for president in 2008. And D’Allesandro is especially excited to hear Biden’s message in the state later in the month. ‘What Joe has always understood is that we as a party have to connect to the working-class people and get them to believe that we are working for them. That did not happen in the last presidential election,’ said [D’Allesandro].” http://bit.ly/2oAxJlu
BUSINESS BURST — “Older Workers Challenge Firms’ Aggressive Pursuit of the Young,” by WSJ’s Jacob Gershman: “PricewaterhouseCoopers bills itself as the ‘place to work for millennials,’ who have taken jobs and internships with the accounting giant in droves. The firm annually recruits thousands of newly minted college graduates. The firm’s aggressive pursuit of youth is now the focus of a class-action suit, part of an emerging wave of litigation that is both testing the boundaries of age-discrimination liability and casting a legal cloud over college recruitment programs. Employment lawsuits alleging age bias aren’t new and are usually brought by fired employees. Cases like the one against PwC allege discrimination against job applicants, whose civil rights involve a surprisingly unsettled area of law.” http://on.wsj.com/2oDyuMb
JUSTICE WATCH — “‘Apprentice’ contestant, Sen. Cotton pal emerge as Trumpworld favorites for top South Florida prosecutor job,” by Florida Playbook author Marc Caputo: “Two young Cuban-American Republicans from Miami are leading contenders to be South Florida’s top federal prosecutor in what, sources tell POLITICO, is one of the most important federal jurisdictions to Donald Trump because it covers his home away from the White House, Mar-a-Lago. Both state Rep. Jose Felix ‘Pepi’ Diaz, 37, and John Couriel, 39, have interviewed with the Justice Department and were recommended, along with longtime attorney Jon Sale, for the Southern District of Florida U.S. Attorney post by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio … Diaz is seen by some as a slight favorite because he has had a personal relationship with the president since 2006 when he was a contestant on Trump’s TV show, ‘The Apprentice.’” http://politi.co/2ppGejg
IF YOU READ ONE THING — NYT A1, “With Trump Appointees, a Raft of Potential Conflicts and ‘No Transparency,’” by Eric Lipton, Ben Protess and Andrew W. Lehren: “President Trump is populating the White House and federal agencies with former lobbyists, lawyers and consultants who in many cases are helping to craft new policies for the same industries in which they recently earned a paycheck. The potential conflicts are arising across the executive branch … In at least two cases, the appointments may have already led to violations of the administration’s own ethics rules. But evaluating if and when such violations have occurred has become almost impossible because the Trump administration is secretly issuing waivers to the rules. …
“In several cases, officials in the Trump administration now hold the exact jobs they targeted as lobbyists or lawyers in the past two years. Trump White House officials had over 300 recent corporate clients and employers, including Apple, the giant hedge fund Citadel and the insurance titan Anthem, according to a Times analysis of financial disclosures. (The White House has released disclosures for only about half of its roughly 180 current senior political employees.) And there are more than 40 former lobbyists in the White House and the broader federal government.” http://nyti.ms/2ogcmVu
GET SMART FAST — WILLIAM J. PERRY in Politico Magazine, “How to Make a Deal With North Korea: Escalating tensions have made a diplomatic solution possible. It might be the last chance we have”: “The danger is not, as some believe, that North Korea will make good on its bluster and actually launch a surprise nuclear attack. The North Korean leadership, while it is evil and sometimes reckless, is not crazy or suicidal. Their primary goal is to sustain the Kim dynasty and, against all odds, they have shrewdly succeeded in that for many decades. They know that if they launch a nuclear attack, the American response would bring death to them and devastation to their country.
“The primary danger instead is that North Korea might overplay its hand and provoke a military response from South Korea. This could quickly expand into a larger conventional war, inevitably involving the United States, which has almost 30,000 troops based in South Korea. North Korea would lose such a war, and as the leadership sees their regime collapsing, they might then launch their nuclear weapons in one last desperate move—a Korean Armageddon. Our diplomacy should be tailored to prevent that catastrophic outcome.” http://politi.co/2ojJ5Zz
WHAT JAKE AND BOB COSTA ARE READING — “California Journal: Deadheads aren’t the only ones who’ll enjoy this ‘Long Strange Trip,’” by the L.A. Times’ Robin Abcarian: “I can’t imagine that anyone will walk away from ‘Long Strange Trip,’ Amir Bar-Lev’s remarkable four-hour documentary about the Grateful Dead, without a newfound appreciation for the band’s music and its place in American popular culture.” http://lat.ms/2ojBV7x
BONUS GREAT HOLIDAY WEEKEND READS, curated by Daniel Lippman:
–“Do Aliens Have Inalienable Rights?” by Peter Singer in Nautilus Magazine: “What ET teaches us about our moral obligations.” http://bit.ly/2og7xuB
–“Hunting Child Predators with Canada’s Freelance Vigilantes,” by Suzy Khimm in Esquire. “The Creep Hunters want to prove that it’s possible to be ethical avengers—venturing out of normal civilian life to rid the world of darkness without crossing the line themselves.” http://bit.ly/2ojKA9R
–“What My Stroke Taught Me,” by Lauren Marks in Nautilus Magazine: “It was not just my external language that was ailing. My inner monologue, my self-directed speech, had also gone almost completely mute. In its place was the radiant Quiet. The nourishing Quiet. The illuminating Quiet. I was experiencing a near-constant sensation of interconnectedness, but my observations often lacked specific categories and dimensions. It was all happening to me and through me, but not necessarily because of me.” http://bit.ly/2pBGgnA
–“Who are the new jihadis?” by Olivier Roy in The Guardian: “The systematic association with death is one of the keys to understanding today’s radicalisation: the nihilist dimension is central. What seduces and fascinates is the idea of pure revolt. Violence is not a means. It is an end in itself.” http://bit.ly/2p3Zw0Z (h/t TheBrowser.com)
–“The Syria Catastrophe,” by Richard Beck in n+1 magazine: “The response required at this late, desperate stage is neither anti-Assad nor anti-ISIS nor even anti-imperialist — it is antiwar.” http://bit.ly/2pBO8Wj
–“Letter From a Drowned Canyon,” by Rebecca Solnit in California Sunday: “The story of water in the West, climate change, and the birth of modern environmentalism lies at the bottom of Lake Powell.” http://bit.ly/2oIjFss
–“Margaret Atwood, the Prophet of Dystopia,” by The New Yorker’s Rebecca Mead: “Her fiction has imagined societies riddled with misogyny, oppression, and environmental havoc. These visions now feel all too real.” http://bit.ly/2nNwtOZ
–“The End of Independent Film As We Know It,” by Sean Fennessey in The Ringer: “Twenty-five years ago, films emerging from festivals like Sundance disrupted the movie business, producing subversive filmmakers like Quentin Tarantino and insurgent forces like Miramax. Now, thanks to Amazon and Netflix, the disruption is coming for the indies. Filmmakers talk about the shift, and what it means for the future of movies.” http://bit.ly/2pfXCtO
–“We Have Found the Cure! (Sort Of…),” by Taffy Brodesser-Akner in Outside Magazine: “Spa treatments have gotten wild in recent years, especially in Southern California, where women pay big bucks for radical remedies like colonics, juice fasts, and a Gwyneth Paltrow fave—the life-changing V-steam. Taffy Brodesser-Akner dons a satin robe and asks: If this is the path to happiness, why am I so freaked out?” http://bit.ly/2ofOtwJ
–“The Dark Secret at the Heart of AI,” by Will Knight in Technology Review: “No one really knows how the most advanced algorithms do what they do. That could be a problem.” http://bit.ly/2ocQiv1
–“Mike Judge, the Bard of Suck,” by Willy Staley in the N.Y. Times Magazine: “From ‘Idiocracy’ to ‘Silicon Valley,’ the writer and director has established himself as America’s foremost chronicler of its own self-destructive tendencies.” http://nyti.ms/2ovAOU2
–“High Tech Cowboys of the Deep Seas: The Race to Save the Cougar Ace,” by Joshua Davis in February 2008’s Wired – per Longform’s description: “An oddball team of ship salvagers is tasked with uprighting a tipped two-football-field-long cargo ship before it sinks into the darkness of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands.” http://bit.ly/2og12rQ
–“The Mastermind Behind Coachella,” by John Seabrook in The New Yorker: “How Paul Tollett wrangles the biggest artists in the world into performing in the California desert.” http://bit.ly/2pgeccI
–“The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Get by With a Lot of Unpaid Labor,” by Corey Mintz in Eater Magazine: “Without a significant volunteer staff, many prestigious restaurants could not function.” http://bit.ly/2pgje9s (h/t Longreads.com)
SPOTTED — NBA legend and Atlanta Hawks executive vice president Dominique Wilkins yesterday smoking a cigar outside the Ritz Carlton in the West End. He was sitting with Tim Hardaway, the former NBA all-star and father of Tim Hardaway Jr., the Atlanta Hawk. … D.C. real estate mainstay Terri Robinson celebrating her 80th birthday at Cafe Milano … Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, wife Renda and family at Harry’s Restaurant Saturday afternoon. Tillerson enjoyed a chicken salad sandwich.
WEEKEND WEDDINGS — RICH BEESON, partner at FLS Connect and a Rubio, Romney and RNC alum, and KATIE PACKER, partner at Burning Glass Consulting and a Romney-Ryan alum, got married in Silverthorne, Colorado, on April 8 and New Smyrna Beach, Florida, yesterday. In Colorado they were married at the ranch of Bruce and Marcy Benson. Bruce is the president of University of Colorado and a former GOP candidate for governor in Colorado (Rich previously worked for him). Marcy was in the Reagan and Bush 41 White House. New Smyrna Beach is where Katie’s family has vacationed for years. They were joined by Rich’s kids, parents and sister and her whole family. Pics http://bit.ly/2ogabl6 … http://bit.ly/2ojDwu7 … http://bit.ly/2oMSNXZ
–“Alexandra Utsey and Christopher Jones: He Got the Job. They Got Each Other,” by NYT’s Vincent M. Mallozzi: “The bride, who is 30 … is an Asia-Pacific adviser in the office of the defense secretary in Arlington, Va. She graduated summa cum laude from Washington and Lee University, and received a master’s in public affairs from Princeton. … The groom, also 30, works in Washington as the legislative director for Representative Rick Crawford, Republican of Arkansas. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and received a law degree from George Mason University. … Ms. Utsey and Mr. Jones met in January 2010 at a bar in Georgetown, shortly after interviewing for the same staff job in Congress; it went to the groom.” With pic http://nyti.ms/2pFkFuu
BIRTHWEEK (was yesterday): DHS’s Jason Lamote, the pride of Springfield, Minn. (hat tip: James Owens)
BIRTHDAYS: former Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken, celebrating with his band mates – Jay Carney, Eli Attie, Dave McKenna, and Dave Segal – in a local recording studio — they have a tradition of changing the name every time they record. A recent name was “Big Lunch.” Special guest appearance in studio today: Sen. Al Franken … Cantor alum Doug Heye, the pride of Lewisville, N.C. and a leading oenophile – he’s celebrating at a cookout with John Scofield who is converting to Catholicism over the weekend. He will then join Sara and Ron Bonjean, Matt Dornic and Kyle Volpe in Playa del Carmen, Mexico for the 75th annual spring meeting of the Magicians’ Alliance (h/t Ron) … Ann Romney is 68, celebrating Easter and her birthday with family in California … Patriots coach Bill Belichick is 65 … Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI is 9-0 … Scott Pastrick, president and CEO of Prime Policy Group and President Clinton’s DNC Treasurer, is 62 … Chuck DeFeo, VP of products at i360, an RNC and Bush-Cheney alum and the pride of Kansas City, is 43 … Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) is 54 … Jason Embry … Sally-Shannon Birkel, U.S. Chamber of Commerce senior manager of media relations … Morgan Jones, LD to Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ) … Bradley Beychok, senior adviser and COS to David Brock, is 35 (h/ts Jon Haber) … Matt Duckworth, VP of gov’t relations at Hart Health Strategies, is 31 … Virginia Coyne, executive editor at Washington Life Magazine … Fran Holuba, founder of Chief Social Architects (h/ts Anastasia Dellaccio and Ben Chang) … Deborah Zabarenko … A Reuters trio: Andy Sullivan, Frances Kerry, and Anthony Boadle (h/t Ginger Gibson) … Zack Hubbard … former Veteran Affairs Secretary Anthony Principi is 73 …
… Heather Purcell, press secretary for Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) … Nick McGee, comms director for Rep. Larry Bucshon … Antonio Armendáriz, press secretary for regional and specialty media for the House Democratic Caucus … former Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) is 76 … American University sophomore Paige Pearson, a Schumer alum (h/t Colby Bermel) … lawyer Fred Graefe … Arezu Kay … Tori O’Neal-McElrath, VP of Demos (h/t Kelley McCormick) … Sarah Wolfson … Politico’s Aubree Abril … Ramona Oliver, senior director of the NEA’s Center for Communications … Ted Anthony, director of AP’s Asia-Pacific news … NBC News’ Mosheh Gains … Paolo Sacco of Ristorante Tosca … Jess Fuhrman … Obama CEA alum Andie Taverna … Lynn Schnurnberger … Stephen Kessler … Geoff Middleberg, principal of Dark Horse Strategy Group (h/t Josh Brown) … Christopher Finan, CEO and co-founder of Manifold Technology … Amy Kaslow … Brett Coughlin … Josh Goldstein … Matt Duckworth … Brian Bravo is 36 … Annie Bardach … Jim Hollis … Howard Bauleke … Jess Fuhrman … Arlene Branca … Mary Tabor (h/ts Teresa Vilmain) … Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is 7-0 … Martin Lawrence is 52 (h/ts AP)