1. Jamelle Bouie asks what Mitt Romney would have to do to shake the idea that he’s basically competent. Good question.
2. Steve Benen makes a good point about health care reform. When Barack Obama’s bill was being debated, Republicans claimed that they liked about “80%” of the bill. Now? Nothing. So what happened?
3. A good postmortem on American Elect from Brendan Nyhan.
4. State legislative ideological ranking expert Boris Shor has been looking at Nebraska and finds that Deb Fischer has a much more conservative voting record than Jon Bruining did: “If her voting behavior was unchanged in the move from statehouse to Congress, she would be somewhere between Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Scott Johnson (R-WI).”
5. General note: if you’re a reporter who covers Congressional elections and you don’t know about Boris Shor, you’re falling behind.
6. Fascinating: apparently the reason that Americans haven’t been moving as much has to do with longer-term changes in job-hunting and job markets. Brad Plumer reads the reports.
7. Paul Krugman has a nice set of graphs comparing Bush-era job growth with Obama-era job growth. Well, growth is the wrong word, isn’t it? Not a comparison that supports Bush – and Krugman doesn’t even run a version in which Bush gets “credit” for the first few months of 2009, which would really make his record ugly.
8. Ed Kilgore has an interesting read of the “repeal and replace” question.
9. Why we’re going to keep talking about contraceptives all year, from Sarah Kliff.
10. You’ll definitely want to hear from Adam Serwer about the House’s latest votes on indefinite detention of American citizens.
11. Serwer: “Tyranny: Clinton era tax rates. Not tyranny: Govt locking up its own citizens without having to charge them with a crime.”
12. Jonathan Cohn on yet another danger to the Affordable Care Act. This one is about broker fees, and comes from, among others, a familiar face: Ben Nelson.
13. Media Matters on the strange disappearance of the usually ubiquitous Tom Mann and Norm Ornstein.
14. And Tim Murphy brings us “The 43 Most Metrosexual Presidents of All Times.”