Monday Rundown

  • Does new DSCC Chair Bob Menendez have the Schumerosity to effectively succeed Chuck Schumer at the helm of the DSCC?
    The DSCC raised $10.4 million through March 31 – and had $7.2 million cash on hand, according to campaign finance reports. That’s a faster pace than Schumer clocked in his first quarter as DSCC chairman.Strong fundraising, even in the economic downturn, along with early recruitment successes including Robin Carnahan in Missouri and Paul Hodes in New Hampshire show that Menendez has the chops; but, there’s a lot of time left on the clock, and Menendez has to keep up the pace.
  • Illinois: Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky is considering a 2010 Senate bid and says that she will make a decision by June 8.  An internal poll that Congresswoman Schakowsky released shows her narrowly leading but in a statistical dead heat with state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, 24% to 22%, with Roland Burris at 18% and 36% undecided.  I find any poll with Burris at 18% a bit questionable.  We should know Schakowsky’s decision in six weeks, so stay tuned.
  • Colorado: A second little-known Republican has entered the 2010 GOP Senate primary.  Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck announced that he will join the primary scrum alongside Republican Aurora councilman Ryan Frazier to see who gets to challenge Senator Michael Bennet.  Republicans still considering a bid include conservative talk radio personality Dan Caplis and former Rep. Bob Beauprez, who got crushed by Bill Ritter in the 2006 gubernatorial race.
  • Florida: WaPo’s Cillizza reports that a decision from Republican Gov. Charlie Crist regarding a 2010 Senate bid is expected by May 5, just eight days from today.  (Florida’s legislative session concludes this Friday.)  I’d suggest that the sooner the announcement, the more likely that he’ll run for Senate; as such, if he does announce something next week, I’d expect a Senate run.  That said, at least one veteran political reporter in Florida thinks that Crist would have a tougher go of it in a 2010 Senate campaign than a lot of people think.
  • Louisiana & Pennsylvania: Susan Collins wasn’t alone. Hookerlover David Vitter and Arlen Specter were among the first Republicans to talk up eliminating pandemic flu preparedness funding from the economic stimulus bill.  Meanwhile, the threat of the pandemic swine flu is already compromising our economic health as well as the public health.
  • Missouri: In another sign that Senate Republicans just don’t get it, Kit Bond says that releasing photos documenting torture will endanger our troops.  Ummm, “Kit,” anyone with half a brain might counter that the fact that the George W. Bush administration engaged in torture is what might endanger our troops – not that there are photos of it.  I wonder how Roy Blunt and Sarah Steelman, the Republicans vying to succeed Bond, feel about the issue.
  • Ousted Republican John Sununu has an opinion piece in today’s Wall Street Journal with a resoundingly ridiculous premise.  The headline and subheadline:

National Health Care With 51 Votes

  • Ramming a bill through Congress is not in the public interest.Republican Senators, current and former, are possibly the only people on the planet that would describe having a majority vote as “ramming a bill through Congress.”  This is how out-of-touch with reality Sununu and his former Republican colleagues are.  The op-ed contains hilarious lines like:The historic precedent of open debate, and the requirement of 60 votes to close debate, are completely short-circuited.Budget reconciliation was never intended to push through dramatic and expansive new programs. …

    The threat to use reconciliation to drive through dramatic policy changes such as a national health-care program also destroys any incentive for good-faith negotiations over the details between the Democrats and Republicans. …

    Why should anyone negotiate with him in good faith with such a threat hanging over the deliberations? Taking a bipartisan approach means committing to working with the other side, not just offering to talk until things don’t go your way. …

    Misusing reconciliation undermines him on two counts: It shows a lack of confidence in his own ability to pass an agenda using the regular legislative order.

    Sununu’s crocodile tears about “precedent,” “good-faith negotiations,” and “the regular legislative order” are nothing more than sanctimonious BS.  Sununu knows full well that, since Republicans became the minority in the U.S. Senate, they have abused the filibuster, effectively changing Senate policy unilaterally such that it now takes 60 votes to pass anything at all.  Senate Republicans’ record-setting abuse of the filibuster has obliterated “precedent,” “good-faith negotiations,” and “the regular legislative order” to which Sununu refers.  Democrats opting to employ reconciliation, if they so choose, simply prevents Senate Republicans from further abusing the system.  The brilliant Steve Benen offers additional thoughts on the idiocy of Sununu’s column.


Senate Guru, you need to get on twitter… all of the blogers are doing this now… you will expand your following if you get on twitter… plus, you can send your site updates through a Twitterfeed to Twitter and facebook.Great job above.

Hokie Guru…

by: hokieguru @ Mon Apr 27, 2009 at 18:57:48 PM CDT


The Florida Legislature won’t be going into recess on Friday unless they can get a Budget passed and this isn’t looking to happen.More:…

by: NatchGreyes @ Mon Apr 27, 2009 at 21:47:29 PM CDT

Republicans can’t even count

No wonder they screwed up the budget and economy so badly:

“Misusing reconciliation undermines him on two counts: It shows a lack of confidence in his own ability to pass an agenda using the regular legislative order.”

Even if true, that only looks like one count to me :). –Kibitzer

Click here for the new senate guru blog…

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