* Good: Senator Harry Reid announces on the twitters Republicans will be forced to vote again on renewing unemployment insurance, and notes Dems need only one more GOP Senator. Remember, GOPers up in 2016 in blue and purple states are sweating the pressure on this issue.
* Republicans were very excited today when they thought Senator Joe Manchin came out for repeal of Obamacare. Alas, in the real world, the hunt for a single red state Dem who is actually breaking with Obamacare continues.
* I could not agree more with Jonathan Bernstein: Whoever wins the special election in Florida’s 13th District, and Dem Alex Sink seems to be favored, it will tell us exactly nothing about the political climate next fall. No matter: The outcome’s significance will get hyped mercilessly, and it will be excruciating.
* Dylan Scott has a good overview of the success Virginia conservatives are having in blocking fellow Virginians from benefitting from the Medicaid expansion, despite having lost a big election about this only a couple months ago.
* Brian Beutler goes deep into Americans for Prosperity’s latest ad hyping Obamcare victimization, and how it shows the larger story the law’s opponents are telling is mostly fabricated from top to bottom.
* Sobering stuff from Ed Kilgore on why Republicans — in this round of elections, anyway — can rest easy in the knowledge that their lack of any serious agenda for combatting poverty and inequality will probably cost them nothing.
* A good, quick take from Paul Krugman on why Obama’s nixing of Chained CPI matters:
This is a big deal, not just because of the concrete implications for retirees, but because it signals the end of an era. BowlesSimpsonism is dead; “responsible” policy will no longer be defined as the search for a fiscal Grand Bargain. We might even be on the path to grappling with America’s real problems.
* Also, as Zachary Goldfarb details, Obama is on safe political ground in moving away from deficits, because the public just doesn’t care about that issue. Also: Americans really do care about jobs!
* Your sorely needed Friday comic relief: Jonathan Chait offers a useful summary of the absurdity of GOP criticism of Obama’s rescinding of the Chained CPI offer:
Republicans claim to believe the following things:
– The long-term deficit is a looming catastrophe of the highest magnitude;
– C-CPI would help avert that catastrophe;
– Obama has made a terrible mistake by pulling back his offer to adopt C-CPI;
– Republicans cannot offer any concessions at all in return for this policy change.
* Takedown of the day: Stephen Stromberg does a nice job taking apart Charles Krauthammer’s misleading attack on climate science.
* And can we please drop the Scott-Brown-for-Senate charade already?