* Nate Silver looks at polling data on immigration and discovers that Republican voters are far more moderate on immigration reform than is commonly supposed; it turns out there’s lots of room for a Republican to move to the center.
In fact, if GOP voters are asked about a path to citizenship with requirements like background checks and payment of back taxes, their views look barely different from those of independents and Democrats. This is similar to what GOP pollster Whit Ayres has argued.
* Good point from Brian Beutler: After spending months telling people they shouldn’t sign up for health insurance, conservatives are outraged that the open enrollment period had a deadline and therefore now people can’t buy insurance.
* The Congressional Budget Office’s latest projections for the Affordable Care Act show the cost coming in $100 billion less over the next decade than they thought the last time they made a projection. #Obummercare
* Greg has been pointing out that gung-ho pro-repeal GOP Senate candidates are equivocating on the Medicaid expansion in their states. The latest: Arkansas Senate candidate Tom Cotton can’t quite say whether he supports the “private option” manner in which Arkansas is attempting to expand Medicaid.
* Speaking of the former senator from Massachusetts who would like to be the future senator from New Hampshire, Former New Hampshire governor John Sununu, stumping for Brown, offers an intriguing reason voters should oust Sen. Jeanne Shaheen:
“She votes with Elizabeth Warren. She votes with [Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Ed] Markey. She is the third senator from Massachusetts.”
Brown presumably did a spit-take at this particular argument.
* Lucia Graves gets at a key point: Republicans are criticizing the White House for having fewer women than men in high-paying positions — criticism made possible by White House’s transparency on salaries — as a way of arguing against a bill that would force corporations to have similar transparency on salaries
What would happen then? Would a Republican Senate let Barack Obama — fundamental transformer of America, shredder of the Constitution — appoint a new swing justice? Given a backdrop in which conservatives, having grown deeply pessimistic about their political future, have invested deeply in a legal movement that uses aggressive readings to roll back the state? With every conservative interest group mobilizing for battle, with a vast array of social and economic policy hanging in the balance?
It may seem implausible that Republicans would simply refuse to allow Obama to appoint any justice to such a vacancy. That is only because things that haven’t happened before are hard to imagine. But such a confrontation is not only a logical outcome but the most logical outcome. Voting to flip the Supreme Court would be, if not a political death warrant for a Republican Senator, then certainly taking one’s political life into one’s own hands. Politicians do not like political death warrants — certainly not for the benefit of the opposing party’s agenda.
Over the last five years, again and again Republicans have taken norms that people treated like rules — like using the filibuster sparingly — and said, “to hell with that.” Every time, Dems have been shocked and dismayed. And there’s nothing in the Constitution saying you can’t refuse to let the President fill a seat on the Supreme Court.
* Back in Kentucky, McConnell is arguing his support for ousting Sen. Bob Packwood over his serial sexual harassment means the ladies should know he has their best interests at heart. Steve Benen looks back on the Packwood controversy and finds McConnell wasn’t exactly putting aside partisan concerns.
* Tomorrow is tax day, and Gallup finds more than half of Americans think their taxes are too high. Over at the Prospect, I explained why American taxes are quite low and quite flat, and also that you should be honored to pay your share for the common American good.
* At their party convention over the weekend, Nevada Republicans stripped their opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion out of the party platform in an attempt to steer clear of divisive social issues.
* The Washington Post and the Guardian received Pulitzer Prizes for their stories on Edward Snowden’s revelations about the National Security Agency. Some Republicans were outraged, but this should have surprised no one. Was there a bigger story in 2013?
* The GOP’s big money boys are back in the saddle: “After a stretch of anemic fundraising, the Karl Rove-backed American Crossroads super PAC raised more cash in March than it did during the previous 14 months combined, according to summaries of campaign filings released Monday.”
* And here’s an offer Dems can’t possibly refuse: Two Republican congressmen write an op-ed saying they’ll favor extension of unemployment benefits if we approve the Keystone XL pipeline, make it easier for employers to knock workers off health coverage, repeal the medical device tax, and put Ronald Reagan’s face on all American currency. OK, maybe not the last one.