October 2, 2013

1. Beyond the spin and the gaffes and the photo ops, the real news of the day on the shutdown is that the count of Republicans who say they support a clean CR has reached 18; Jennifer Bendery is doing a great job keeping it.

2. Brian Beutler is certainly correct that the now-18 Republicans who publicly support a clean CR and the many others who reportedly support one could have ended the shutdown before it began. I’m not sure whether he’s right that they have the parliamentary means to do so now, but he may be correct.

3. My own sense is that this won’t be won by parliamentary maneuvers, but that as the public majority for a clean CR and re-opening the government gets large enough — I’m saying somewhere between 25 and 60 Republicans would be the tipping point — Boehner’s position will be increasingly untenable and he’ll eventually have to fold. Especially if the real number who wants that path is a substantial portion of his conference, and maybe the majority.

4. Josh Marshall: “I saw this movie before during the Impeachment pseudo-crisis. The fabled GOP moderates never appear.”

5. Not on that list of 18, but still question what Republicans are doing: Rep. Mike Rogers, Republican of Michigan. One key to all of this: the rules of “neutral” journalism allow reporters to say that the side with all the internal arguments and dissent is losing, and that’s clearly the Republicans right now.

6. Speaking of which: Bloomberg View is particularly harsh to the Republicans.

7. While Jamelle Bouie wants Republicans to take responsibility for their actions. Good luck with that! But he’s right that it’s not exactly a mystery which party spent all year threatening to shut down the government if it didn’t get its way.

8. Rick Perlstein on the myth of ideologically extreme Democrats and what it tells us about the “neutral” press.

9. Tweet of the day, from James Downie: “BREAKING: GOP NOW WINNING SHUTDOWN 4 GAFFES TO 3. NOTHING ELSE MATTERS.

10. Sarah Kliff does some digging to confirm that most of the “glitches” at HealthCare.gov are probably related to capacity; also, that most of those who couldn’t get in now intend to come back later. Both of which are good news for the Affordable Care Act rollout.

11. It all reminds Kevin Drum of other product rollouts he’s watched that (mostly!) work out just fine. Key point: a buggy first few days isn’t a real problem, and of course if the real problem is too much demand, that’s not a problem at all.

12. Fox ran a story on how one family would be hurt by Obamacare. Alex Koppelman could have done a simple debunking, but instead he does a deep look inside the costs and benefits of the new law. Really good.

13. Don’t miss Jonathan Cohn on the ACA rollout.

14. “I still am a very strong Republican, but this… I’m so happy that this came along,” Sy Mukherjee talks to one former Obamacare skeptic who learned what it would do for his family.

15. An analysis of the polling on the debt limit, from Ariel Edwards-Levy.

16. I’ve linked to arguments that the shutdown won’t matter much in 2014; here’s Jessica Taylor making the case that Republicans could really be hurt.

17. And all of this is producing some good thinking about political parties and what’s wrong with the Republicans. I don’t completely agree with Ed Kilgore’s take, but it’s very plausible, and you should read it (where I differ? I think there’s more hucksterism where he tends to see true believers).