A few good pieces to read

These aren’t necessarily related, but a couple of good things to read this morning.

Ezra Klein on Obamacare woes.

A very good interview with Republican strategist Mike Murphy on the battle for the soul of the Republican Party.


Where we are today

This is Tuesday.  The money will run out Thursday and we will go into default unless our political leaders come up with a solution first.  There is a deal pending in the Senate but no guarantee the House will go for it as it as it leaves Obamacare intact.  The Republicans have clearly lost the battle for public opinion over this debt debacle. and it shows in the prospective deal.

Meanwhile, here is a good analysis piece on the constitutional issues involved in the Tea Party’s political stance and preferred strategy.

Stay tuned for more as the week progresses.

Where we are, and aren’t

Things can and will change quickly at this point of the debt ceiling mess, which isn’t to say that they will change quickly enough to save us from disaster.  But here is a recap of where we are right now, here is an account of the political damage being sustained by the GOP, and here is a good analysis piece on the Republican’s dilemma by one of the best Washington journalists out there.

Still Shut

No promising news this morning and we are 10 days about from hitting the debt ceiling.  Some good stuff form over the weekend:

Here is the Washington Post’s Dan Balz on the internal divisions in the Republican Party.

Ezra Klein on the same thing.

And an excellent New York Times piece on the conservative groups at war with the traditional Republicans who are running the show and calling the shots. This shutdown has been in the works for a long time. If you want to know who to thank for this mess, here you go.

And Times columnist Nicholas Kristof calls it what it is: Governing by Blackmail.

Happy Monday!

Pre-Weekend State of Play

Lots of good stuff to read today and I may add other items to this post as I discover more. Right now , this New York Times piece is a pretty good summary of the thinking on the GOP side of the aisle.


This is pretty good too — Andrew Sullivan (who has a super interesting blog and who is the Profiles in Citizenship subject in Chapter 15) is collecting reader contributions he calls “The View From Your Shutdown.”  Worth browsing through for real life first person accounts of the toll the shutdown is taking.

Ticking Clock

It’s a crazy Monday morning, but let me quickly give you two pieces to think about as the clock ticks down to a possible (and increasingly probable) shut down at midnight tonight.  The first is from the National Review, a conservative journal with very good sourcing among Republicans.  What does that mean? It means Republicans talk to their journalists and those journalists know what they are talking about.  Costa and Strong paint a fairly grim picture of how intra-party politics is going for the Republicans.  A second view, a little less insidery but more comprehensive, is here.

Think about the split in the Republican Party in terms of the figures on American political ideologies you read about in KTR‘s Chapter 2.  Is this playing out as we would expect?  Who do you think will win and lose in this internal power struggle for control of the party?

Post-Spring Break Catch Up

All kinds of news to catch up on in these chilly early spring days.  Here are a few links to follow and think about:

  • It’s the tenth anniversary of the start of Iraq War. The political folks at NBC look at the profound impact the war has had on American political sensibilities.  Do you agree?
  • The last few days have brought into public view two faces of the Republican Party: the more radical base, as evidenced by those in attendance at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), and the “establishment,” in the form of the Republican National Committee (RNC) who produced an autopsy on what went wrong for the party in the last election.  Pay attention as the party continues to grapple with the question of whether their problem is one of substance or style — what answers to that do you hear in the coverage of CPAC and the RNC report?
  • The Senate edges closer to a bipartisan plan for immigration reform that is close to what the president has proposed.  We are still a long way from an actual bill, however. Does the RNC report (above) make reform more or less likely?