People need to stop pretending this is business as usual and start calling this out for what it is.
* E.J. Dionne makes the progressive case for the fiscal cliff deal; as he details, an enormous amount turns on how aggressively Obama draws a line in the next round against debt ceiling hostage taking — and shifts the conversation back to the economy.
* Also, James Downie reminds us that Republicans accepted this deal explicitly because they believe it gives them more leverage in the debt ceiling fight, which raises the stakes further:
If the president caves and agrees to significant cuts and little revenue, this temporary GOP retreat will look extremely smart. If he stands firm, though, in a better political situation than the summer of 2011 and gets Republicans to concede more revenues, the president will have — on the whole — won an important victory.
One with far reaching implications for the rest of his agenda, I’d add.
* Noam Scheiber has a very pessimistic look at what lies ahead; given the fiscal deal, he can’t see a way that the President gets through the debt ceiling fight without giving major ground on spending cuts.
* John Boehner has decided he’s done with one-on-one negotiations with Obama, apparently because he feels “burned.” Worth noting that Boehner could not even get his own bill through the House, and that the final one passed with overwhelming Republican support in the Senate.
* Ryan Grim has a good explainer on why the emerging bipartisan filibuster reform proposal is weak and possibly even counterproductive. Preserving Senate comity by keeping reforms bipartisan matters more than the reforms themselves!
* Merkley’s petition calling on the Senate not to punt on filibuster reform is right here.
* A tough Post piece on how the holding and interrogating of terror suspects abroad without due process has continued under Obama, something that has generated far less angst among liberals than it did under Bush.
* I’m late to this, but it deserves a link anyway: Mark Follman takes apart the NRA myth of arming the good guys as the only way to combat gun violence.
* And Dave Weigel skewers the “pork pork pork” argument Republicans used to justify not passing disaster relief for Sandy victims.