* The House passes a third temporary bill funding the government at cut rates, but patience is running out, so now the pressure is really on both sides to reach a long-term deal.
* Michael Crowley makes the case that Obama has played rope-a-dope with the House GOP on the budget and is now ready to go on the attack.
* Eric Cantor demands that Obama show leadership.
* In an ideal world, polls showing that the public agrees with Dems would stiffen their spines a bit and perhaps even give them a bit of (gasp!) leverage.
* Perry Bacon on how Obama advisers are hoping he can ride a subtle downward trend in unemployment all the way to reelection.
* Good news and bad news on Social Security: The Hill reports that Obama’s economic advisers are telling him to cut Social Security benefits, but also, encouragingly, that his political advisers are telling him it would be daft.
* Sam Stein on how Obama officials are looking for ways to pass gun control reform by going around Congress, which seems implacably hostile to reform of any kind.
* The little secret that the right is trying to hide from you is that the interests of public and private sector workers are largely in sync with one another.
* The little secret that the right is trying to hide from you is that public and private workers alike are all falling behind.
* It’s not just liberals: A writer for the conservative National Reivew is now coming out against the abuse of Bradley Manning.
*Josh Marshall asks: Is Governor John Kasich going the way of Scott Walker?
* House Republicans crank up efforts to defund NPR in the wake of the James O’Keefe sting that NPR failed to fight back against.
* I’m not sure O’Keefe cares one way or the other, but if Glenn Beck is questioning your credibility, you’re in a pretty awful place.
* And Tea Party chieftains Michele Bachmann and Steve King are upset with the House GOP leadership for being insufficiently zealous and single-minded about defunding Obamacare.
What else is happening?