August 22, 2013

1. More impeachment talk from yet another Republican; this time it’s GOP Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma (via Political Wire). Two things to note about this. One is that this is pretty clearly a consistent Republican strategy: react to constituent demands for impeaching Barack Obama by reacting respectfully and pretending either that it’s a solid idea if only they had the votes, or that it’s just a matter of getting sufficient proof (about what? No need to get into that), or at least that it’s a close call. The other is that this is consistent with a general Republican terror of ever, ever, ever, allowing distance between themselves and whatever fringe is out there. It links, for example, all this impeachment nonsense with what Greg talked about earlier as the GOP leadership’s refusal to level with rank-and-file House Republicans.

2. Great interview with Elizabeth Warren from David Dayen. Key point: Individual Senators really can get plenty done if they want to — and not just by blocking things.

3. Jim Tankersley looks in on California, months after it raised taxes, and finds … little or no effect. Again: the conservative conventional wisdom that the economy is extremely sensitive to tax increases or decreases just isn’t matched by empirical results (or, for that matter, most people’s lived experience).

4. Similar story: Steve Benen on actual jobs created by the Affordable Care Act.

5. Why that CATO report that people on welfare have it great is totally wrong, from CBPP’s Sharon Parrott.

6. An overview of the NSA story so far, from Joshua Foust.

7. Paul Krugman vs. Karl Rove on policy isn’t really a fair fight, is it? In this case, Krugman obliterates Rove over health care.

8. Even more unfair? Rove vs. Jonathan Cohn, who provides more detail about the GOP health care agenda, and why it’s not really anywhere close to an ACA replacement.

9. Good Kevin Drum points, and questions, about deregulation and the bubble economy.

10. Would a John Bolton presidential campaign be good for the GOP? Dan Larison makes the case.

11. Worth noting: a pretty hard slam from Jennifer Rubin against Jim DeMint and Heritage. Interesting.

12. And I think Amy Walter’s logic for at least a somewhat seriously contested Democratic nomination battle in 2016 is exactly right.