We could really use . . .

A budget to pass the U.S. Senate.

A public proposal in writing from the White House on entitlement reform.

A bipartisan effort on Pentagon reform and military preparedness headed by outgoing Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and former senator Evan Bayh.

An accounting of what went wrong in Libya.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) to show he can legislate and not just speechify on immigration.

The end of czars and the reestablishment of a sane confirmation process for appointees.

Less of Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and more of Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.)

Better use of reform-minded Republican governors for policy generation and lessons in inclusive conservatism.

A net for the fiscal cliff until we figure out what to do. Keep taxes and spending where they are for six months.

A real all-of-the-above energy policy.

No talk of 2016 until, say, 2014.

A talent scout for the National Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Those Democratic senators elected from red states to prove they are not rubber-stamps for President Obama.

More of Sens. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) on most every big policy debate.