September 4, 2013

* The Senate Foreign Relations Committee passes the resolution granting Obama authority to wage strikes, and it will probably pass the full Senate, but the real battle lies ahead in the House, where the terrain remains uncertain.

* Sahil Kapur on the tortured amendment language that was added to the resolution to slake John McCain’s desire for regime change, which presumably means McCain will vote Yes in the end.

* Jonathan Cohn on Bill Clinton’s big health care speech today — and how it’s a reminder that media hyping of Obamacare glitches is blotting out the big picture conversation about the law’s benefits we really need.

* Digby on the “kabuki authorization” that could enable members of Congress to support Syria strikes while claiming they reined in Obama’s authority. The question is how many in Congress really oppose the underlying mission itself.

* Sheryl Gay Stolberg has a nice look at families scraping by on food stamps that are set to get cut. Be sure to note the couple that lives by a farm owned by a House GOPer who enjoys farm subsidies but wants cuts in food stamp spending.

* Why is Obama supporting Larry Summers for Fed chair? Ryan Grim reports that Obama developed great confidence in him during the administration’s response to the financial crisis.

* Atrios responds: “Only Larry Summers can save the world from Larry Summers.”

* Brian Beutler has a fascinating deconstruction of how varying Beltway reactions to John Kerry reveal how the conventions of Beltway discourse are conspiring to keep the risks of invading Syria under wraps.

* Alex Pareene is very good on the GOP’s far right twitter bubble: the lists of people Republican members of Congress follow most on twitter and what that tells us about the conservative closed information feedback loop.

* Political geekfest alert: Josh Benson and Steve Kornacki have a good, deep dive into the Bill de Blasio mayoral candidacy and the historical echoes it’s evoking. And when I say deep dive, I mean deep dive. Jeez, guys!

* And Steve Benen on one of the wackiest whack job conspiracy theories yet: Obama is pushing for an attack on Syria to distract from Benghazi, the IRS, Obamacare, and other assorted scandals. At least, I think that’s what Joe Wilson is saying.


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