“What makes Act of Congress a somewhat surprising addition to the Broken Congress genre is that Dodd-Frank would seem to be an example of the system working: Politicians responded to the perceived needs of their constituents, and a bill was passed. Yet, Mr. Kaiser argues, the process itself illustrated what’s wrong with Washington, and the legislation ultimately passed more because of luck and circumstance than the wisdom of judicious lawmakers.”
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) told Newsmax that the Obama administration is guilty of disseminating “deliberate misinformation” regarding the Benghazi attack and continues to “stonewall” efforts to uncover the facts behind the tragedy.
He also predicted that the Benghazi affair could lead to President Obama’s impeachment.
“Our nation has seen judgment not once but twice on September 11 and that’s why we’re going to have ‘9-11 Pray’ on that day. Is there anything better that we can do on that day rather than to humble ourselves and to pray to an almighty God?”
— Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), quoted by Huffington Post, promoting a day of prayer on September 11.
New Yorker: “It’s a cliché, of course, but it really is true: in Washington, every scandal has a crime and a coverup. The ongoing debate about the attack on the United States facility in Benghazi where four Americans were killed, and the Obama Administration’s response to it, is no exception. For a long time, it seemed like the idea of a coverup was just a Republican obsession. But now there is something to it.”
The Week: Should Hillary Clinton testify on Benghazi again?
Andrew Sullivan: “It all reminds me of Whitewater.”
Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer (D) told a gathering of union leaders” that he has not decided on a possible run for U.S. Senate in 2014, but indicated he would need their support if he does,” the AP reports.
“The two-term governor is considering a bid to replace fellow Democrat U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, who is stepping down after six terms.”
“My heart breaks for Minnesota.”
— Miinesota State Rep. Peggy Scott (R), quoted by the Minneapolis Star Tribune, on the Minnesota House approving same-sex marriage legislation.
Federal Reserve officials “have mapped out a strategy for winding down an unprecedented $85 billion-a-month bond-buying program meant to spur the economy–an effort to preserve flexibility and manage highly unpredictable market expectations,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
“Officials say they plan to reduce the amount of bonds they buy in careful and potentially halting steps, varying their purchases as their confidence about the job market and inflation evolves. The timing on when to start is still being debated.”
The Chicago Sun Times reports that controversial former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) is on the short list to replace former Illinois GOP chairman Pat Brady.
“The Republican State Central Committee held an hour-long conference call last night and came back with these names as finalists. The list may grow before Friday’s deadline, with a handful of people who were nominated but could not be confirmed as interested. In all, 30 people were nominated and the nominations included other women — but numerous nominees said they were not interested.”
“I’m a damn good Republican and a good conservative Republican who
believes in things that I believe in. But that does not mean that I
would ever put party before my state or party before my country.”
— New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), in a forthcoming interview on NBC News.
Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) said that he will not run for Georgia’s open Senate seat, Roll Call reports.
“Price would have been the fourth Republican congressman to launch a Senate bid. By declining, he leaves the door open for former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel to potentially join the current crop of GOP candidates: Reps. Paul Broun, Phil Gingrey and Jack Kingston.”
A source tells National Review that Handel is “more than likely” to enter the race.
A top Internal Revenue Service admitted the agency “inappropriately flagged conservative political groups for additional reviews during the 2012 election to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status,” the AP reports.
Organizations were singled out because they included the words “tea party” or “patriot” in their applications for tax-exempt status.
Just out: Inside Bush v. Gore by Charley Wells.
“After two years of being front and center in the GOP’s fight with President Obama, House Speaker John Boehner seems to be missing in action from messaging and legislative battles, worried Republicans told BuzzFeed this week.”
“True, Boehner still does one or more on-air press events a week, and aides said he’s actively preparing for the fiscal fights looming on the horizon. But with no presidential nominee to be the party’s public face and set its agenda, that role has fallen to the Ohio Republican. And his members worry he’s not doing enough.”
Marc Ambinder notes that conservatives are outraged that no one is outraged over the Obama administration’s response to the Benghazi consulate attack last year.
“If everything is an outrage, then nothing is an outrage. When the rapper Common visited the White House, it was an ‘outrage’ to Sean Hannity. When union workers were called in for Sandy repair in New York, that was also ‘outrageous.’ Heck, Hannity found it awful and outrageous that Obama’s daughters would dare take a spring break during the sequester. I’m literally going down the Google search results for ‘Hannity’ and ‘outrage.’ Replace Hannity with the talk radio host of your choosing.”
“It’s the flip side to Bennett’s argument: If you judge motivations always, you will not really be able to truly apply the force of judgment to genuine moral deviations. Your shame supply will dwindle. ”
Pew Research looks at the new Census Bureau report on the ethnic breakdown of voters and “if you’re a Republican thinking of running for president one day, you may be a bit concerned.”
“First, whites were 74% of voters last year at a time when they were just 63% of the population. This racial turnout gap is driven by the fact that a disproportionate share of non-whites are either too young to vote, not eligible to vote (because they’re not citizens), or just don’t vote. All of these factors could change over time.”
“Second, if we look at the 2060 projections, we can see that there’s a lot more diversity yet to come. The Census Bureau makes its projections based on an analysis of fertility rates, mortality rates and immigration trends. They’re not set in stone. Things change. But they give a sense of the general direction of things. And many of these future demographics are already a reality–for example, about half of newborns in 2010 were non-white.”
A heavily-funded national conservative group, American Future Fund, “is coming to the aid of New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte, the first-term Republican taking heavy criticism for her opposition to the Manchin-Toomey gun control bill,” Politico reports.
The group launched a new ad today.
ThinkProgress: “But the American Future Fund appeared unable to find voters who agree with Ayotte’s position, as a cursory search of individuals in the advertisement reveals that the supposedly typical New Hampshirites are actually long-time Republican party activists and officials. Polls show that 91 percent of New Hampshire adults support expanded screenings.”