Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner speak to reporters after meeting with President Barack Obama at the White House on April 6. (REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)
—No deal to avert a shutdown yet. President Obama called for a “sense of urgency from all parties involved” after his late Wednesday night meeting with Speaker Boehner and Leader Reid. Congress may have to stick around this weekend.
–Democrats say Republicans’ proposed one-week funding extension is unacceptable, but Boehner has secured his caucus’ conservative bloc.
–Nate Silver writes the public isn’t paying close attention to the budget debate, but a shutdown would open the political floodgates.
–House liberals will present an alternative plan to Ryan’s “Path.” An early outline says it would balance the budget with tax increases on high-income Americans, capital gains, the financial sector and corporate income, as well as make cuts to defense spending and enact a government-run public insurance option. It has about the same chance of making it into law as Ryan’s (none).
–Bryan Walsh writes the defeat of measures hamstringing the EPA’s power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions is a bittersweet victory for environmentalists.
–Montana Sen. Jon Tester says he has the votes in the Senate to delay Dodd-Frank’s swipe fee rules from going into effect.
–Wisconsin’s bitterly partisan proxy battle was the largest supreme court election in the state’s history.
–A new poll finds Obama’s reelection numbers underwater in Florida.
–Three points on this poll. 1) National primary polling is mostly meaningless. 2) The one thing it does measure for is name recognition, which can explain the attention-getting result. 3) Luke Skywalker would do similarly well in such a poll, and he has about the same chances of running for President.
–If Scott Brown evades a serious primary challenge, he looks “virtually untouchable” in his looming reelection bid in Massachusetts.
–Ramesh Ponnuru makes a case to conservatives for loose monetary policy.
–Obama’s great military reshuffle approaches.
–And you already knew this, but now it’s science: Members of Congress spend more than a quarter of their time just taunting each other.