The Washington Post

Happy Hour Roundup

* Big doings in the Wisconsin state Supreme Court race: After error corrections in vote counting edged David Prosser into a lead, JoAnne Kloppenburg has now retaken a slim lead of 125 votes. Brace yourselves: This will continue going back and forth, and a recount also looms.

* But: It looks like thousands of votes have now been “found” in Waukesha county, and the majority of them could go to Prosser, throwing the race to him, though details are extremely sketchy.

* Nate Silver doesn’t think anything is amiss with the “found” votes:

So I don’t think there’s any conspiracy here ... Waukesha’s vote total had been slightly lower than you might expect.

Either way, keep in mind the long view: This sort of thing will only inflame passions further, whatever the results in this race, and will only stoke the energy of the recall drives.

*Still no budget deal, and neither Harry Reid nor John Boehner will say what the remaining sticking points are.

* Boehner’s camp is reportedly insisting on cuts in the range of $39 billion, while Reid’s team is countering with an offer of around $34 billion.

* Obama vows to veto the GOP’s short term proposal funding the government with steep cuts, a declaration that Dems won’t be bullied by the GOP’s chief strategy for increasing pressure in the home stretch.

* Meanwhile, Senate Dems are preparing to pass their own temporary government funding bill — without the cuts — and challenge Republicans to reject it, in a preemptive effort to pin blame for a shutdown on the GOP.

* Chuck Schumer continues to draw a hard line on the riders defunding Planned Parenthood and the EPA, saying if the GOP doesn’t relent, a shutdown may be unavoidable.

* Meanwhile, a House GOP aide says that any riders Republicans drop must be offset by more spending cuts. Bottom line: The “riders” are being used for brinkmanship by both sides.

* Whoops: Now that Kloppenburg may win, Scott Walker is downplaying the race’s significance, even though his allies spent weeks hyping the race’s significance when they thought Prosser was the sure winner.

*Uh oh: New video surfaces of top recall target Randy Hopper boasting about his early support for Scott Walker. Destined for a recall ad?

* Blood-pressure-quickening rant of the day: John Cole versus Paul Ryan’s Medicare proposal.

* What if Ryan’s proposal — gasp — could also lead to the dreaded “rationing” of health care?

* And Charlie Cook warns Republicans: Playing with Medicare fire could be suicidal.

What else is happening?

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


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