* Dana Milbank boils it down: “at long last, Obama has given his side a reason to fight.”
* Want to understand Obama’s proposed Medicare cuts? Jonathan Cohn explains all in one tidy, reader-friendly package.
* It’s often argued that Dems will squander their advantage on Medicare if Obama agrees to any cuts at all in the program, but Steve Benen makes the interesting case that the opposite may be true.
* And Chris Cillizza reports that Dem strategists think Obama’s fundamental commitment to preserving the Medicare program as is will enable them to foil GOP efforts to muddy the issue.
* But some liberals are still vowing to fight Obama’s expected Medicare cuts, meaning the President shouldn’t discount the possibility that he can again lose the left’s new sense of enthusiasm and goodwill.
* For now, though, relations are much improved: MoveOn goes up with a new ad on national cable featuring working people all claiming to be “Warren Buffett’s secretary,” another indication of lefty satisfaction with Obama’s newfound populism.
* Mother Jones knocks down six of the right’s leading arguments against raising taxes on the rich.
* Another veto threat? Obama’s advisers are recommending that he threaten to veto House GOP legislation that would block to key Environmental Protection Agency anti-pollution regulations, another area where administration had dismayed the left in recent days.
* Elizabeth Warren’s challenge to Scott Brown was already going to be a major, nationally watched contest, but now it’s emerging as a lynchpin for Dem efforts to hang on to the Senate.
* Andrew Sullivan, on the end of don’t ask don’t tell:
It’s another landmark in the integration of gay citizens into their own country — and a way in which gay patriotism, service and sacrifice can one day be honored in exactly the way as straight patriotism, service and sacrifice always rightly have been.
* The incredible shrinking Michele Bachmann: Her former campaign manager opines that “she doesn’t have the ability or the resources” to compete beyond Iowa.
* And a smart, but ominous, point from Ed Kilgore: The fact that there’s strong consensus among the 2012 GOP hopefuls around their anti-government ideology only serves to obscure just how radical that ideology has become.
What else is happening?