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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Stories to Watch: 11/16/10

Was flipping through the channels this morning and made the mistake of watching part of Morning Joe on MSNBC. I hate how chipper morning news programs are -- it's like a freakin' kids' show. Anyway the subject of Russ Feingold came up and someone -- I don't remember who -- said he was running for president in 2012. All it takes is one pundit to take a stab at something and all the others treat it as gospel. Russ's campaign says he "has no current plans to run for anything." A word to the wise; common wisdom is always too much of the former and too little of the latter. Now here's the news...

AFL-CIO head Richard Trumka say that there's serious consideration among Democrats and the White House of an up-or-down vote on extending middle class tax cuts -- alone. This is an idea that's been picking up some steam. "Liberals are pushing for this course of action -- rather than a fake 'compromise' on extending all the Bush tax cuts temporarily -- because it would represent a genuinely confrontational approach, forcing Republicans to choose between supporting Obama's tax cut plan and opposing a tax cut for the middle class," writes Greg Sargent.

Let's not delude ourselves here. If Democrats and Republicans compromise on extending the $250k+ cuts, we're going to be right back here in two or three years, because there's no way in hell the GOP will say, "A deal's a deal -- we're honor bound to let this one go." No, they'll just start screaming and crying that, "Now is not the time to raise taxes!" regardless of how the economy's doing. Because for them, there's never a time to raise taxes.

A House panel finds Carlie Rangel guilty of 11 of 13 ethics charges against him. What happens now? Probably nothing.

Murkowski blames DeMint and the 'baggers of keeping Republicans out of the Senate majority. A good call. In other Murkowski news, Joe Miller looks like toast.

Tina Fey disses Sarah Palin bigtime while receiving the Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for American humor, so of course, PBS edits it out.

More on the inevitable GOP/tea party civil war.

Finally, a GAO report says healthcare reform law will decrease the debt -- but only if the whole thing is implemented. Will this silence cries for partial repeal from the debt-phobic GOP? Of course not.

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