May 21, 2013

1. It’s about time: John Gramlich reports that Harry Reid “will either file cloture on Srinivasan or get a deal tonight; vote itself by end of week.” That’s Sri Srinivasan, who (if confirmed, as is likely) will be the first Barack Obama pick to be seated on the key D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

2. Great profile of Senate budget committee chair Patty Murray from Jamelle Bouie and Patrick Caldwell.

3. Julian Sanchez has been doing excellent work on civil liberties issues, including the AP story; today, he weighs in on what we should learn from the James Rosen case.

4. Remember the presidential commission that Barack Obama was going to appoint to look into voting problems in 2012? He named the members today; Rick Hasen has the details.

5. Kevin Drum tries to make the case that Republicans will successfully take advantage of scandalmania, winds up deciding that Republicans are more likely to damage themselves.

6. Speaking of which, Irin Carmon suspects that Republicans are going to wind up damaging themselves over abortion in the statewide elections in Virginia this year.

7. Is Benghazi (as a “scandal”) really all about bin Laden? That’s Ed Kilgore’s theory.

8. Paul Waldman points out the obvious (but necessary): Republicans will demonize whomever the Democrats nominate in 2016, just as they were going to demonize whomever the Democrats nominated in 2008.

9. Yes, the fringe will always be with us — but as Steve Benen points out, there’s a major difference right now between how the parties treat the fringe, and it’s not a comparison that makes Republicans look good.

10. Dylan Matthews gets inside the IRS story.

11. John Sides posts video of a panel on the 2012 elections from a recent political science conference; Ezra Klein and Nate Silver join Sides and other the political scientists. Not a high-quality video feed, unfortunately, but still worth checking out.

12. And a really nice post about the options available to individuals in politics, from Marc Ambinder. I like it, but I’ll remind everyone of another option: get involved in a party or interest group.