The breaking news this evening is about a possible deal on unemployment insurance benefits and the Doc Fix to go with yesterday’s cave by Republicans on the payroll tax. Which would, if it happens and then passes, close the door on last year’s budget items just in time for everyone to ignore this year’s (since everyone also agrees that everything from this year will be put off until after the election).The rest of the good stuff:
1. Jonathan Chait is not impressed with the quality of Mitt Romney’s new attacks on Rick Santorum.
2. Jonathan Cohn is not impressed with the quality of Romney’s “even more convoluted, and misleading” rhetoric on the auto bailout.
4. Amy Fried has more caucus wackiness from Maine. Nevada’s “take an extra day to get the count right” policy doesn’t look quite so bad now, does it?
5. Good Steve Kornacki post on why people still don’t take Santorum seriously.
6. What’s Ron Paul up to? Jamelle Bouie says he wants to change the Republican Party.
7. Fox News: more partisan than ideological, Paul Waldman argues. Sounds right to me.
8. Conor Friedersdorf makes a similar point about Andrew Breitbart, saying he is “so GOP establishment.”
9. Ed Kilgore takes apart Michael Gerson on contraceptive coverage.
10. Do people really want their health care coverage to be based on their boss’s morality? Adam Serwer explains.
11. Scott Brown may be with the Republican anti-contraception now, but as a State Senator? Not so much. Igor Volsky has the goods on a major birth control flip-flop.
12. Laura Clawson makes the point that Elizabeth Warren and Scott Brown are fighting over whether to frame the contraceptive flap as an economic issue or a culture war issue.
13. Senate Democrats plan to stop any attempt of Republicans to add Roy Blunt’s contraceptive plan to the upcoming highway bill, reported by Sahil Kapur.
14. Good Day 2 budget coverage: Suzy Khimm explains how Obama’s budget works with and alters the debt limit deal.
15. And the GOP spin team response was “amateur hour,” Stan Collender says.
16. John Sides tries to kill a zombie: “The white working class has not, as a whole, become more Republican. Full stop.”