* Simon Rosenberg has a good piece on why it’s premature to declare immigration dead, one that is very fair to the House Republicans’ position and soberly games out how they could come around to supporting citizenship.

* Michael Tomasky on why moderate Republican voters who might actually be open to citizenship are being completely overlooked: They have no one really representing them in Congress.

* Jonathan Cohn continues to rigorously document why Obamacare is not proving the “train wreck” conservatives are hoping it will, though he cautions the law’s supporters should remain very attuned to the possibility of a bumpy ride ahead.

* HuffPo has the latest on the IRS scandal: The Treasury inspector general conceded under Dem questioning that his audit of IRS targeting was not complete, and the story is now less about the persecution of conservatives but about the audit and its author.

* Also, remember those 5,500 hundred emails from IRS screeners that turned up no political motivation but didn’t get into Russell George’s audit? Sam Stein tweets from today’s hearing:

George says he didn’t mention investigator turned up no political motivation after 5,500 email review because an email coulda been destroyed

Really?

* Nice Dave Weigel post puncturing Darrell Issa’s continuing claim that the targeting of conservatives came from “somewhere outside the IRS.” As Weigel notes, this isn’t exactly the scandal that was advertised.

* House Republicans formally withdraw from defending the Defense of Marriage Act, which is not surprising but represents a kind of final concession of defeat. Now about that anti-gay marriage plank in the party platform.

* Jennifer Rubio catches Marco Rubio accidentally admitting that Republicans who can’t stop voting to repeal Obamacare should perhaps consider offering an alternative.

* Good point by David Firestone: The fact that we’re hailing the current activity in the Senate as a thaw only shows how low our expectations have fallen when it comes to basic compromising in Congress — and no, it’s not the fault both sides, but of Tea Party extremists.

* Oh, and Thomas Perez was confirmed today as Labor Secretary. Steve Benen comments:

Take a look at the roll call for today’s vote and you’ll notice something interesting: literally every member of the Senate Democratic caucus voted for Perez and literally every member of the Senate Republican caucus voted against him.

When was the last time a cabinet nominee was confirmed on a strict party-line vote? According to the office of the Senate Historian, it’s never happened before. Ever.

Though the Senate did vote to overcome the initial filibuster of Perez by 60-40, showing that the deal Dems won to avert the nuclear showdown continues to hold.

* Ari Berman on why the GOP’s new voter ID push in North Carolina is harsher than many expected, again confirming that those who would restrict voting have only been emboldened by the SCOTUS Voting Rights Act decision.

* And via Taegan Goddard, it never, ever, ever, ends:

Growing numbers of Republicans in Congress are setting their sights on a new target in looming fiscal showdowns this autumn over government funding and the debt limit: “Obamacare.”

Several Republicans are pledging to oppose a stopgap government spending bill that will be needed by October 1 unless it withholds funds from the implementation of President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law — especially its core requirement that uninsured Americans obtain health coverage.

For those keeping track, Republicans have now tied the debates over immigration, student loans, the IRS story, the filibuster, funding the government, and the debt ceiling to the drive to repeal Obamacare.

What else?

 

Greg Sargent writes The Plum Line blog, a reported opinion blog with a liberal slant -- what you might call “opinionated reporting” from the left.