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27 Feb 2012 15:20


Politics: Reports: In boon to Democrats, Bob Kerrey will seek old Senate seat after all

  • Bob’s Back: After previously saying he’d sit 2012 out, it looks like former Democratic Senator Bob Kerrey will run for his old Nebraska Senate seat after all (it’s currently held by Democrat Ben Nelson, who’s retiring). Kerrey’s decision to run is significant, as Republicans would almost certainly take the seat if he opted out, due to a rather weak Democratic bench in the Cornhusker State. However, Kerrey is generally regarded as a strong candidate, and his candidacy is perhaps Democrats’ best shot at retaining control of the seat . In an election year when Democrats have to defend 23 Senate seats, versus only 10 for Republicans, every little bit counts. [Author’s note: Apologies for using the word “seat” so many times in this article]. source

19 Jul 2011 01:50


Politics: The Best Two Sentences of the Night

  • Responsibility without conviction is weak, but it is sane. Conviction without responsibility, in the current incarnation of the Republican Party, is raving mad.
  • George Packer • On how each party is handling the (possible) debt ceiling increase. source

18 Jul 2011 23:38


Politics: Cantankerous Corker Criticizes Colleagues

  • Basically, most Senators in this body are nothing but two-bit pawns…to lay out the groundwork, if you will, for 2012 election.
  • GOP Senator Bob Corker • Saying what everyone knows but rarely acknowledges: If a presidential election wasn’t lurking around the corner, this whole debt ceiling debate would be playing out much differently. This is really harsh language for a senator, especially when used in reference to his colleagues. Last week, Corker accepted blame, on behalf of the Republican party, for bringing our country to the brink of another economic collapse. source

30 Jun 2011 10:37


Politics: The Senate’s skipping its upcoming recess, working straight through

  • All because of that pesky debt ceiling thing: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that the only fireworks members of the Senate would see next week would be strictly of the political kind — all in an effort to solve the pesky debt ceiling issue that’s been dogging Congress for a couple of months. If they can’t figure it out by August, it could have a dire effect on the overall economy, but Republicans want cuts to coincide with any sort of debt ceiling deal. Not every Senator is on board with this recess idea, by the way. We’re feeling less confident about their ability to fix this mess by the day. source

27 Apr 2011 15:53


U.S.: Senate GOP’s feet may be held to the fire on Ryan budget

  • [We’ll] see if Republican senators like the Ryan budget as much as their House colleagues did.
  • Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid • Speaking on a conference call to reporters about his plan to force a vote on Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget in the Senate. This is prototypical “hardball” politics, and implies a more aggressive Harry Reid than we’ve typically seen. Basically, the Ryan budget calls for Medicare privatization, an enormously unpopular idea with the American public. Having seen the boisterous reactions GOP House members have weathered since returning to their home districts, Reid now knows he can force the Republican senators either to vote for it and poison their records, or vote against it, abandoning the lockstep unity congressional Republicans showed off so well during the first two years of President Obama’s term. It’s the obvious political move, and a potent one to boot. source

04 Apr 2011 16:12


Politics: Democrats pledge to filibuster anti-Planned Parenthood amendment

  • 41 Senators want to retain public funds for Planned Parenthood source
  • » Why this number matters: Forty-one is the magic number of senators needed to mount a filibuster and, in doing so, block a bill’s passage. Harry Reid has already stated that the anti-Planned Parenthood amendment passed by the House of Representatives won’t be included in the final legislation; however, with this group this size backing him up, Reid’s words now carry much more weight. Interestingly, while the Gang of 41, as someone will undoubtedly refer to them sooner or later, is composed entirely of Democratic-aligned senators, three Republicans have also voiced opposition to stripping Planned Parenthood of federal funds. This will undoubtedly complicated budget negotiations going forward, but we’re nonetheless heartened to see this many senators stepping up to defend such a vital national service. Here’s to hoping they remain intact.

16 Mar 2011 22:40


Politics: Comebacks: Sharron Angle to run for open House seat in 2012

  • She’s back! After losing an election to one of the most unpopular politicians in the country, in the biggest election year for her party since 1994, Sharron “Second Amendment Remedies” Angle has announced that she’ll be running for the House of Representatives in 2012. She may have a shot at winning this time, so long as she doesn’t do something silly, like suggest that Hispanic students are actually Hispanics in disguise. source

03 Jan 2011 21:00


Politics: Harry Reid breaks filibuster-blocking record

  • 69% the failure rate of filibusters in the last Congress source

16 Dec 2010 20:33


Politics: Harry Reid kills omnibus spending bill over earmarks non-issue

  • what Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s killing the Senate’s huge, trillion-dollar omnibus spending bill, which would keep the government running through September, in favor of a smaller one.
  • why Complaints about $8.3 billion in earmarks – which we pointed out last night are not a big deal – may make it hard for the bill to pass. It needs to pass by Friday to avoid a government shutdown. source
  • » Our point still stands: The problem with the bill was not the earmarks. The problem was that it was a trillion dollars, but a few senators have made earmarks the issue, which sucks, because the earmarks are a tiny part of the plan and if they would’ve gone to some random bureaucracy had they not been earmarked for the states.

18 Nov 2010 20:44


Politics, U.S.: Remains from the Sharron Angle campaign

  • the election is over. Sharron Angle narrowly lost her bid to unseat Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid in Nevada. But Jon Ralston has unearthed a few last bits of trivia about her campaign, including who played Reid in debate prep, the code used by staff to warn of media presence, and Angle’s complicated feelings on dictatorships. Oh, how we miss the election. source