OVERNIGHT FINANCE: Warren wing hits back

TOMORROW STARTS TONIGHT: WARREN-WING V. PRAGMATIC PROGRESSIVES. You already know because this morning your hometown newspaper reported that moderate Democrats are pushing back against Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenHere are the potential candidates still eyeing 2020 bids Sanders unveils education plan that would ban for-profit charter schools Warren policy ideas show signs of paying off MORE's (D-Mass.) populist political rhetoric, fearing it'll be disastrous in the 2016 cycle. Even Howard Dean, founder of the liberal Democracy For America, told me that Warren is "right on policy, but the rhetoric needs to be toned down...  The rhetoric about wealth creation needs to be scaled back because Americans like wealth creation... Our program cannot be soak the rich. That's a mistake and alienates middle class people."


It's Dean -- who is backing Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWarren policy ideas show signs of paying off Biden at campaign kickoff event: I don't have to be 'angry' to win Top Dem: Trump helps GOP erase enthusiasm gap; Ohio a big problem MORE for president while DFA tries to draft Warren into the race -- whose comments particularly fired-up Warren-wingers:

-- Robert Borosage, co-director of the progressive Campaign For America's Future: "They're trying to re-write what happened in the last election... That's hilarious and pathetic... The notion that there's a tension between talking about how the rules are rigged and economic growth and that you have to choose between them is wrong both intellectually and politically... Howard Dean is wrong on the facts... People feel like the rich are getting away with murder and the rich aren't paying their fair share. That's the first thing people want to hear from politicians."


-- BILLIONAIRE INVESTOR WARREN BUFFETT on CNBC's "Squawk Box" this morning: "She would do better if she was less angry and demonized less... I believe in hate the sin but love the sinner. I also believe in praising by name and criticizing by category and I'm not sure that I've totally convinced Elizabeth Warren that's the way to go... It's a mistake to get angry with people that disagree with you. In the end, we do have to work together." My recap on Buffett: http://bit.ly/1wM5kVV

THIS IS OVERNIGHT FINANCE, and you can expect the centrists versus Warren fight to intensify as President Obama pushes Democrats to help him secure new trade deals. Tweet: @kevcirilli; email: kcirilli@thehill.com; and subscribe: http://thehill.com/signup/48. Pick it up, it's only Monday... SO -- House of Cards... I'm only on episode three of the new season. But, um...

FRANK UNDERWOOD'S JOBS PLAN DOES NOT MAKE SENSE. AT ALL. NOT EVEN A LITTLE BIT. Danielle Kurtzleben for Vox: "President Frank Underwood's 'America Works' program -- a plan to create 10 million jobs at the expense of entitlement programs -- is one of the key plot points of House of Cards, Season 3... Frank's plan is a terrible idea... Come to think of it, after two seasons, plus three episodes of this one, we have yet to see a Federal Reserve chair show up in House of Cards. And if Underwood is trying to pull unemployment artificially low, you can imagine the central bank would be concerned. Will we get to see the Fed chair march into Underwood's office and tell him he's lost his everloving mind? Also: can this please be a Janet Yellen cameo?" http://bit.ly/1K7YSnt

-- MORE ANALYSIS, via economist Benjamin Studebaker's blog: "As much as I like House of Cards, 'America Works' doesn't work. But it does provide us with a fun and interesting opportunity to talk about where our economy and our welfare state might be going. The irony is that we're probably headed in the opposite direction from the one Underwood illustrates. Instead of fewer entitlements and more jobs, the future probably holds fewer jobs and more entitlements." http://bit.ly/1zQN6Uq

DHS WATCH: HOYER EXPECTS 'CLEAN' VOTE THIS WEEK. Mike Lillis and Rebecca Shabad are all over this story for The Hill: "House Democrats expect Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerLiz Cheney faces a big decision on her future NBC's Kelly O'Donnell tears up over video celebrating 25 years at network Boehner: 'I wouldn't bother' with primary challenge to Trump if I were Kasich MORE (R-Ohio) to bring a 'clean' Homeland Security funding bill to the floor this week, Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said Monday. Hoyer, the minority whip, said Democrats have the option of using an obscure House rule to force a vote on funding legislation that does not include language reversing President Obama's executive actions on immigration. But he predicted they won't have to go that route. Instead, he said he expects GOP leaders will bring a bill backed by Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Treasury rejects Dem subpoena for Trump tax returns | Companies warn trade war about to hit consumers | Congress, White House to launch budget talks next week | Trump gets deal to lift steel tariffs on Mexico, Canada Schumer calls on McConnell to hold vote on Equality Act House Dem cites transgender grandson in voting for Equality Act MORE (Ky.) to the floor. That bill, approved by the Senate last week, would fund Homeland Security though Sept. 30." http://bit.ly/18G0rbJ

-- DICK CHENEY BACK ON THE HILL, Rebecca Shabad reports: "Former Vice President Dick Cheney is scheduled to speak Monday evening with the House Republican whip team, a spokeswoman for House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) confirmed to The Hill." http://bit.ly/1CkwYR1

Back to Democratic infighting:

Moderates have been scared for months about publicly criticizing Warren and liberals' rhetoric against big businesses and their claims that the system is "rigged" against Americans.

Not anymore. Three takeaways...

1.) On policy, the root of this wonk war is all about trade agreements and Dodd-Frank. The moderate Democrats I interviewed consistently spoke about what they feel is the Warren-wing's demonization of their efforts to work with Republicans on tweaking parts of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law (Think: fiduciary standards, swap push-out, community banking regs). And then there's the looming trade fight. Warren has already come out against Obama's trade deal, saying it will be bad for workers. Obama will need moderate Democrats to go against the Warren-wing and support him if he wants to fast track his trade agreements.

2.) House Dems are key for moderates' (and Hillary Clinton). The New Democrat Coalition (NDC), a group of moderate House Democrats, will unveil an economic agenda as early as this week. That provides some cover for Hillary Clinton, who progressives have criticized as being to cozy with business as she ramps up for 2016. "I have great respect for Sen. Warren -- she's a tremendous leader," said Rep. Scott Peters (D-Calif.), one of the members working on the policy proposal. "My own preference is to create a message without bashing businesses or workers, [the latter of which] happens on the other side." Peters said that, if Democrats are going to win back the House and Senate, "it's going to be through the work of the New Democrat Coalition."

3.) Behind the scenes jockeying for control of the party's message started months ago. While the Warren-wing urged publicly for the party to double-down on progressive policies, moderates were more tepid to speak out. But leaders at three centrist groups -- the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), the New Democrat Network (NDN) and Third Way -- arranged a series of meetings with moderates after the disastrous midterm elections to "discuss the future of the party," according to a source close to the NDC... Gabe Horwitz, director of Third Way's economic program, said moderates have been arguing the case for rebranding the Democratic Party around "the middle class and middle-class prosperity." My story: http://bit.ly/1AvTAHe


CFPB chief Richard Cordray will testify before the House Financial Services Committee at 2:30 p.m. Here's Cordray's testimony, obtained first by The Hill: http://bit.ly/1ARC9pq

Third Way new senior medial relations manager Whitney Mitchell emails Overnight: "Ahead of tomorrow's 2:30 PM House Financial Services Committee hearing with CFPB Director [Richard] Cordray, we're putting out a report... The paper provides background information about CFPB and details key rulemakings and enforcement at the Bureau, including recent changes to the closely watched Qualified Mortgage rules and what to expect from the long awaited rules on payday lending." http://bit.ly/1DLhPGa

EXPORT-IMPORT BANK CAUGHT IN 2016 CROSSFIRE. My latest on the embroiled bank: The Export-Import Bank has become a Tea Party test for prospective 2016 candidates. In a series of high-profile public appearances this week, top potential Republican candidates have criticized the Bank as 'crony capitalism' and 'corporate welfare.' Congress must reauthorize the bank by June 30 or it will shut down.

-- Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward Cruz Eye-popping number of Dems: I can beat Trump 'SleepyCreepy Joe' and 'Crazy Bernie': Trump seeks to define 2020 Dems with insults The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition - Restrictive state abortion laws ignite fiery 2020 debate MORE(R-Texas) each called for eliminating the bank during public remarks at the Club for Growth's winter conference in Palm Beach, Fla., according to press reports. The Club for Growth is one of the prominent Tea Party groups opposing Ex-Im's reauthorization.Story: http://bit.ly/1aIEXvD


MAYORS PUSH FOR EX-IM: Mayors from 160 cities called for lawmakers to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank in a letter released publicly Monday but sent to Congressional leadership last month. Read the letter: http://bit.ly/1zBzs6C

BERNANKE: WE DON'T NEED 'TAYLOR RULE,' WE'VE GOT OUR OWN. Pedro Nicolaci Da Costa for WSJ: "Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said Monday that Republican efforts to force the central bank to adopt an official policy rule to conduct interest policy are redundant because the Fed already sets out clear benchmarks for its interest rate actions... Mr. Bernanke was referring to a congressional proposal to require the Fed to adopt a mathematical rule for determining interest rate policy, similar to the so-called Taylor rule devised by Stanford University economist John B. Taylor."

-- BERNANKE AT BROOKINGS: "The Fed already has a rule... It's committed to hitting a 2% inflation target and aiming for the natural rate of unemployment. These are rules." http://on.wsj.com/1N9H8Hp

POLL: ONE IN FOUR CARE ABOUT FED TRANSPARENCY. Pete Schroeder for The Hill: "A Reuters-Ipsos poll released Monday found that only 24 percent of Americans believe Congress should be able to more closely watch the Fed, and more than double that amount believed the Fed should be left alone. The findings come as conservative lawmakers, led by Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulUS ambassador to Germany ruffles State Department with budget stand Overnight Defense: Congressional leaders receive classified briefing on Iran | Trump on war: 'I hope not' | Key Republican calls threats credible | Warren plan targets corporate influence at Pentagon Rand Paul: Bolton is a 'malign influence' MORE (R-Ky.) are trying to build support for 'Audit the Fed' legislation. The bill, which would subject the central bank's monetary policy decisions to external review, has been hotly contested by the Fed itself." http://bit.ly/1wEIV2g

NEAR MAJORITY AT FED BACK JUNE INTEREST HIKE. Howard Schneider for Reuters: "Janet Yellen's premium on consensus may lead to a Federal Reserve decision the chair hasn't yet endorsed, as a near majority aligns in favor of a possible June interest rate hike. Seven of the Fed's current 17 members have now said they at least want the option of a June tightening on the table, or have pushed in general for an earlier increase amid an expectation that wages and inflation will turn higher. By contrast, there's a dwindling core of officials who say publicly that the economy and labor markets in particular still have a long way to go -- only four Fed members have in recent weeks clearly said that rate hikes won't be appropriate until much later in the year or even into 2016." http://reut.rs/1aIpewt

UP: STOCK MARKET, via Gary Strauss for USA Today: "Finally. The Nasdaq Composite capped its long march back to 5000 Monday, eclipsing the level for the first time since March 2000." http://usat.ly/1M1U52w

DOWN: MANUFACTURING, via Vicki Needham for The Hill: "Manufacturing expanded at the slowest pace in a year on a weaker pace of hiring, production and orders. The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its manufacturing index fell to 52.9 in February from 53.5 in January, the fourth straight drop and the lowest reading since January 2014." http://bit.ly/1DxBFCg

CREDIT UNIONS: Reps. Ed Royce (R-Calif) and Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) introduced the Credit Union Small Business Jobs Creation Act. The bill increases the member business lending (MBL) cap for qualified credit unions from 12.25 percent to 27.5 percent and is supported by the credit union industry.

PARTING SHOT - - > THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ELIZABETH WARREN AND TED KENNEDY. Joan Vennochi in a column for The Boston Globe: "Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) knows what it takes to go viral -- just turn left... Kennedy embraced compromise once he realized he would never become president. After that dream died, he set upon another mission: to become the leading voice on progressive causes, but also, to reach out and get something done...

"So now, like Kennedy, Warren has established herself as a strong, partisan leader, with a national voice. But she has yet to grab hold of the deal-making piece of Kennedy's mantle... That goal is especially daunting in these partisan times. It will be even more challenging over the next two years, when it's all about presidential politics and what goes viral." http://bit.ly/1wLvMyX

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