The Capital Weather Gang tweeted this picture of a rainbow at last night’s Nationals game from reader @DHarrisDC. The game went on, but the Nats fell to the Reds 3-2. (@capitalweather)

THE BIG IDEA:

— As Congress debates education this week, Republicans will highlight how far to the right they have moved on the issue since the No Child Left Behind Act passed in 2001. Even though the law significantly expanded the federal government’s role, only six Republican senators opposed it. Keep in mind that, running for president just five years before the law was approved, Bob Dole supported eliminating the Department of Education altogether. But George W. Bush pulled his party along with him by pushing for passage of NCLB. It was actually GOP negotiators pushing hardest for standards, challenging both teacher unions and what Bush 43 memorably called “the soft bigotry of low expectations.” In case you need another reminder, this is no longer George W. Bush’s Republican Party. Though his brother Jeb continues to support Common Core, with softened rhetoric, conservative grassroots activists have re-embraced their federalist roots and historic skepticism of any federal involvement.

Eight years after No Child Left Behind officially expired, congressional leaders want to pass a rewrite of the main federal K-12 education law that can get President Obama’s signature. The bill being considered in the House would transfer far more power away from the federal government than the Senate bill, which passed unanimously out of the HELP committee after bipartisan negotiations between Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and ranking member Patty Murray (D-Wash.). The Post’s national education reporter, Lyndsey Layton, in a Q&A with The Daily 202, notes that both bills explicitly prohibit the Education secretary from influencing state academic standards.

It’s not clear that a bill will become law, but it seems certain that any legislation that emerges from Congress would dramatically curtail the federal government’s involvement in state standards. Establishment Republicans hope that would take the political hot potato of Common Core off the table in 2016, helping Jeb Bush in the primaries.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, a key player in this week’s fight, was George H.W. Bush’s Education Secretary. Here he plays the piano in his Capitol office. (AP/Susan Walsh

But that’s not good enough for many on the right. House leaders already withdrew an education bill in February after they failed to whip the necessary Republican votes. Some conservatives complain that all they’re considering is a watered-down version of NCLB. While passage in the Senate seems assured, House leaders do not currently appear to have the votes without adding additional amendments that the White House sees as poison pills. Post education reporter Emma Brown focuses on three main flash points in her own curtain raiser this morning.

Bobby Jindal at a parade in Urbandale, Iowa. (AP/Charlie Neibergall)

— Exclusive: Bobby Jindal’s super PAC is about to lay down $706,210 for three more weeks of Iowa TV. Believe Again has been up for the past week with a commercial highlighting the Louisiana governor’s views on immigration. The fresh buy will get 1,675 gross ratings points in Des Moines, Sioux City and Cedar Rapids, plus statewide cable and some digital, from July 13 to August 2. Those three markets reach about three-quarters of caucus attendees. The Republican comes back to Iowa this week for his third trip since announcing, with town halls sponsored by the Believe Again super PAC in Cedar Rapids and Dubuque. Rep. Steve King appeared at Jindal’s Sioux City town hall last Friday.

Marco Rubio, accompanied by his wife and children, talks with Mitt Romney in New Hampshire over the weekend. (AP/Mary Schwalm)

— Sneak peek at Marco Rubio’s tech policy speech in Chicago later this morning: “We need a new president for a new age.” The Florida senator will elaborate on what a “New American Century” would look like under his leadership during a speech at 1871, a nonprofit that provides co-working spaces for start-up companies, with the promise of fresh ideas to spur innovation and improve higher education. “Today’s Technological Revolution carries extraordinary opportunities – even more, I believe, than the Industrial Revolution ever did. But we have not yet seized these opportunities, nor is it guaranteed that we will,” he says, according to excerpts shared by his campaign. “For the first fifteen and a half years of this century, Washington has looked to the past. Our economy has changed, but our economic policies have not. And we have learned, painfully, that the old ways no longer work – that Washington cannot pretend the world is the same as it was in the ‘80s, it cannot raise taxes like it did in the ‘90s, and it cannot grow government like it did in the 2000s. The race for the future will never be won by going backward.”

Steve King talks with a DREAMer outside a Donald Trump event on June 27. (Reuters/Brian Frank)

— Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) will push Speaker John Boehner for a resolution of disapproval concerning the Supreme Court’s gay marriage. It would be nonbinding but could force Republicans to go on the record anew. “We should bring it to the floor and have a debate and let people register their positions,” the congressman told The Post’s Ed O’Keefe in an interview yesterday afternoon. King, who has a lot of sway with activists in conservative northwest Iowa, wants 2016ers to weigh in more on the issue. He complained that he’s heard “a good number of tepid responses” from presidential candidates on this. “I think it’s important to let the public know where they stand,” he said.

WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING:

European finance leaders are meeting to consider a new proposal from Greece to rescue the country from its cash crunch. The meeting is set to occur at 1 p.m. in Brussels (8 a.m. Eastern), and if Greece doesn’t get a new lifeline, its cash will expire within days, paving the way for an exit from the Euro. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker lowered expectations for a quick fix. “What we are going to do today is to talk to each other and restore order,” he told the European parliament on Tuesday morning, according to The Guardian. Meanwhile, the Greek crisis poses a continuing test of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s power at home.

GET SMART FAST:

  1. In the final hours before the latest deadline, Iranian officials are reportedly demanding that ALL United Nations sanctions against the regime be lifted as part of any deal. That includes the ban on importing and exporting conventional arms, which could make an already tough sale that much tougher for the Obama administration.
  2. “Forty years after the fall of Saigon, President Obama is seeking to reconfigure a historically difficult relationship with Vietnam into a strategic partnership against China. In a meeting freighted with symbolism, Obama [today] will welcome Vietnam’s Communist Party leader, Nguyen Phu Trong, to the White House two decades after the onetime enemy nations formally normalized relations.” Vietnam is one of the 12 nations involved with the TPP talks. (David Nakamura)
  3. United States officials feel confident enough that a final Pacific trade deal is in hand that they have scheduled a meeting among the chief negotiators at the Westin in Maui during the last four days in July and have notified Congress that they expect this to be the last one, Jonathan Weisman reports in the New York Times. “Still, it will be some time before a deal is ratified. Under terms set by Congress in trade negotiating legislation last month, a July 31 agreement could not be signed until Oct. 31 or more likely the beginning of November. Congress cannot begin considering it until December.
  4. Obama announced at the Pentagon yesterday that the United States is stepping up efforts to counteract ISIS online recruitment operations of impressionable young people. “This larger battle for hearts and minds is going to be a generational struggle,” he said. (NBC)
  5. The shooting death of a woman in San Francisco by an undocumented immigrant has led to a heated war or words between the Department of Homeland Security and local officials over who dropped the ball.
  6. South Carolina’s Senate voted 37-3 yesterday to remove the Confederate battle flag from the state capitol.
  7. Many of the more than 2,000 rape kits left to languish in police departments around Virginia should have been submitted for testing but weren’t, according to a fresh audit that had been ordered up by the state’s General Assembly. If tested, they could yield DNA evidence that could identify rapists and solve crimes that have been unsolved for years. (Rachel Weiner)

POWER PLAYERS IN THE NEWS:

  1. Hillary Clinton will give an interview this afternoon to CNN’s Brianna Keilar in Iowa, her first sit-down with a national reporter since getting into the race.
  2. Former Rep. Tom Perriello (D-Va.) will be the Obama administration’s special envoy for the Great Lakes region of Africa, an appointment that covers Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. (Huffington Post)
  3. A non-profit organization created to support Marco Rubio, funded by secret donors, announced yesterday that it has raised more than $15.8 million since its creation.
  4. Carly Fiorina raised $1.4 million in her first quarter as a candidate. The Republican’s super PAC, CARLY for America, raised $3.4 million. The $4.8 million total is the most underwhelming figure from a presidential candidate so far in either party.
  5. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) raised $2.9 million for his reelection campaign last quarter and has more than $10 million cash on hand.
  6. Mitt Romney lunched yesterday with Jeb and George H.W. Bush in Kennebunkport, Maine. Columba, Barbara, Neil and George P. Bush also joined.
  7. Rep. Joe Heck (R-Nevada) formally announced he will run for the Senate seat being given up by Minority Leader Harry Reid, a recruiting win for the national GOP.
  8. Greg Lopez, former director of the Small Business Administration in Colorado, announced he plans to run for the Republican Senate nomination to challenge Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) Lopez is not a top-tier recruit. (Denver Post)
  9. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) drew a crowd of about 7,500 in Portland, Maine, yesterday.
  10. Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) attacked Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) for making the country “weaker and more vulnerable,” saying on “Morning Joe” that he should be among those held accountable if another attack occurs.
  11. Bill Cosby testified in a 2005 deposition that he got Quaaludes with the intent of giving them to young women he wanted to sleep with, and he admitted giving the sedative to at least one woman, the Associated Press reported after winning a court fight to obtain the documents yesterday.

WAPO HIGHLIGHTS:

“Cruz once clerked for a chief justice, but he’s no longer a friend of the court,” by Katie Zezima: “Cruz spent his years at Harvard Law School working to secure a Supreme Court clerkship and then made his name as a lawyer by arguing in front of the body nine times…But now, as a presidential candidate seeking support from the right wing of his party, Cruz has made excoriating the high court a central part of his campaign. After the Obamacare and same-sex marriage rulings, Cruz called for a constitutional amendment requiring members of the Supreme Court to undergo judicial retention elections and has suggested that only the people directly involved in the gay-marriage case are bound by the justices’ ruling.”

“For some workers at Trump’s D.C. hotel, route to U.S. wasn’t always legal,” by Antonio Olivo: “For weeks, dozens of construction workers from Latin America have streamed onto the site of the Old Post Office Pavilion in downtown Washington and taken pride in their work building one of the city’s newest luxury hotels…a Trump company may be relying on some undocumented workers to finish the $200 million hotel, which will sit five blocks from the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue, according to several who work there…Interviews with about 15 laborers…revealed that many of them had crossed the U.S-Mexico border illegally before they eventually settled in the Washington region to build new lives… A Trump spokeswoman said the company and its contractors follow all applicable laws.”

“Here are the secret ways super PACs and campaigns can work together,” by Matea Gold: “Before former Florida governor Jeb Bush (R) announced his bid in mid-June, the Right to Rise super PAC filmed footage of him that the group plans to use in ads. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign is collaborating directly with Correct the Record, a super PAC providing the Democratic hopeful’s team with opposition research. Top advisers to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) have been positioned at two big-money groups as they await his presidential announcement next week. GOP candidate Carly Fiorina has gone even further, outsourcing core functions such as rapid response and event preparation to her allied super PAC, the aptly named ­CARLY for America.”

SOCIAL MEDIA SPEED READ:

— ZIGNAL VISUAL: Hillary Clinton is the focus of the mainstream media, but Bernie Sanders has closed the enthusiasm gap on Twitter. Zignal Labs, our campaign analytics partner, reports that Clinton commands far more television coverage, but Sanders is actually getting more buzz across social media. While Sanders had 6 percent more Twitter mentions than Clinton on Monday (53,448 vs. 50,668), the former Secretary of State had nearly two-and-a-half times as many television mentions (998 vs. 417). A similar gap existed in online news mentions (3,203 for Clinton vs. 1,247 for Sanders). “We are worried about him, sure,” Clinton spokeswoman Jennifer Palmieri said on MSNBC yesterday. “He will be a serious force for the campaign, and I don’t think that will diminish.” Here is an hour-by-hour chart tracking mentions of Sanders and Clinton.

july6totalmentions

–WHAT EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT:

Pictures of the day:

President George W. Bush, former First Lady Nancy Reagan and the Dalai Lama celebrated birthdays on Monday:


Happy Birthday to the best big brother a kid could ask for. (jebbush)

Today *#91;is] the birthday of President @GeorgeWBush & the 80th birthday of His Holiness the @DalaiLama of Tibet. (speakerboehner)

A special lady who’s done so much for our Country (@cathymcmorris)

Tweets of the day:

The White House tweeted highlights from the July Fourth fireworks:


It doesn’t get much better than celebrating America with the people you love. (@WhiteHouse)

Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) celebrated International Kiss Day with a photo of his wife, Alma:


Upon thy cheek I lay this zealous kiss, as seal to the indenture of my love. -Bard #HappyInternationalKissDay (@cbrangel)

Instagrams of the day:

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and family enjoyed Disneyland:


Happiest place on earth.-Disneyland’s Space Mountain with the whole family (repkevinmccarthy)

Mike Huckabee celebrated National Fried Chicken Day by working behind the counter at Chick-fil-A (he also gave customers food through the drive-thru window):


Great day campaigning in Anderson, #SouthCarolina as @govmikehuckabee works the counter @ChickfilA #fits #Huckabee2016 (jhogangidley)

GOOD READS FROM ELSEWHERE:

— New York Times, “Forget What I Said. That Scott Walker Call? Never Happened,” by Jonathan Martin: “Last Wednesday, Stephen Moore, a scholar at the Heritage Foundation who is an outspoken supporter of an immigration overhaul, described a recent telephone call with Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, in which he said Mr. Walker had assured him he had not completely renounced his earlier support for a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants … On Sunday, after three days of pressure from Mr. Walker’s aides, Mr. Moore said that he had ‘misspoken’ when recounting his call with Mr. Walker — and that the call had never actually taken place. The turnabout by Mr. Moore came after he was quoted Thursday in a Times article detailing Mr. Walker’s shifts on immigration, same-sex marriage and ethanol subsidies to protect his early lead in Iowa, where he is facing a well-financed challenge from Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, among other rivals.”

“So, what exactly is Mr. Walker’s current position on immigration? Asked if he supported any path to citizenship or legal status for illegal immigrants, Mr. Walker’s spokeswoman, AshLee Strong, did not directly respond … This is the second time this year that Mr. Walker has been reported as saying privately that he was open to an immigration overhaul beyond measures to address the border, only to have his aides later deny such assertions were made.”

BUZZING AT THE CAPITOL:

— The Hill, “Obama to host Senate Dems,” by Jordan Fabian: “President Obama will host Senate Democrats for a meeting and reception on Tuesday, a White House official said. The White House says the gathering will mostly be a social occasion. But it gives the president a chance to huddle with his allies in Congress who have a long to-do list this month, including a partisan standoff over government spending that could result in a shutdown. The White House is also expected to lean heavily on Senate Democrats to support a nuclear agreement with Iran if one is reached this week.”

Reuters, “Hoax letter to Russian media seeks to tie U.S. senator to Ukraine,” by Patricia Zengerle: “A forger sent a hoax letter to Russian media in an apparent bid to convince journalists that a senior U.S. lawmaker, Senator Richard Durbin, was trying to tell Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk how to run his government, Durbin’s office said on Monday…It suggested that Yatsenyuk ‘invest every effort’ to keep some officials in place, including the agriculture minister and the head of the country’s nuclear monopoly. But it said the U.S. Senate feels some others do not have the qualities necessary for their jobs.”

HOT ON THE LEFT

Abby Wambach kisses wife after World Cup win. From Yahoo News: “Abby Wambach celebrated the United States’ 5-2 victory over Japan in the Women’s World Cup final on Sunday [by] racing to the stands to kiss her wife, Sarah Huffman. Coming on the heels of the Supreme Court’s historic decision to legalize same-sex marriage, the significance of the moment wasn’t lost on gay rights supporters watching on television. On Twitter, many noted how far American culture has come since the last U.S. Women’s World Cup victory in 1999.”

HOT ON THE RIGHT

Inside the Obamas’ $12 million summer vacation spot in Martha’s Vineyard. From the Daily Mail: “The 8,100-square-foot home features seven bedrooms, nine bathrooms, a basketball/tennis court, hot tub, infinity pool and views of the Elizabeth Islands … In addition to golf, the Obamas usually spend their vacations out and about on the island, going for bike rides in Manuel F Correllus State Forest and spending days at the beach. But it appears the Obama girls like a bit of pampering as well. The [Boston] Herald reports that the Obamas have a manicurist booked to visit them three times a week during their vacation.”

DAYBOOK:

–What’s happening today on the campaign trail: Marco Rubio will deliver his first major domestic policy address of the campaign in Chicago, focusing on technology issues, before attending a fundraiser in Windsor Heights, Iowa, hosted by Chris Hagenow. Hillary Clinton will give her first national television interview of the 2016 election cycle to CNN at 5 p.m. Ben Carson will speak at a business breakfast in New Hampshire hosted by Renee Plummer.

–On the Hill: The House and Senate will reconvene after the Fourth of July recess. Evening votes are planned in both chambers.

–At the White House: President Obama will hold meetings with Vietnam’s Communist Party chief Nguyen Phu Trong, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Senate Democrats throughout the day. Press Secretary Josh Earnest will brief the media at 12:30 p.m.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “The kids and their husbands came for the week. Great to see them. Once we got through the (having new men around the house) issues and everyone kind of finding how we all fit in together, we had a lot of fun.” – Scott Brown in a characteristic post-Senate Facebook post

NEWS YOU CAN USE IF YOU LIVE IN D.C.:

— It’s going to be hot today. “A narrow area of high pressure offers a window of drier and mostly sunny weather today, but the trade-off is the heat with highs in the upper 80s to low 90s,” per the Capital Weather Gang. “Humidity is at moderate intensity (providing a heat index that could reach middle 90s during the afternoon) with dew points mainly in the middle to upper 60s.”

— The Nationals are struggling with more injuries. “Center fielder Denard Span left Monday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds after two innings with recurring back spasms, replaced in the outfield by Matt den Dekker. And in the fifth inning, third baseman Yunel Escobar was replaced in the infield by Dan Uggla because of left hamstring tightness. By the sixth inning, the only Nationals on the field who were expected to be starters this season were shortstop Ian Desmond, catcher Wilson Ramos and right fielder Bryce Harper. The Nationals have successfully withstood many injuries this season, and they tried their best to do so, too, in Monday’s rainy 3-2 loss.” (James Wagner)

VIDEO OF THE DAY:

Interns for Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) have maybe too much fun channeling Taylor Swift: 

Three bonus Vines–

John McCain could not catch a foul ball that came right to him during an Arizona Diamondbacks game last week. The Arizona senator joked that the sun was in his eyes.

George W. Bush wore black socks and Crocs with his gym shorts. The conservative site IJ Review poked fun at him for it.

Joe Sestak, the Democratic Senate candidate in Pennsylvania, twice tripped over children as he worked his way along a parade route. A tracker from America Rising PAC caught it on film.