Will Tom Cotton Be the New Face of Surveillance Reform Opposition in the Senate?

By: Tuesday November 4, 2014 3:17 pm

House Republican Tom Cotton looks set to defeat Democratic incumbent Mark Pryor in Arkansas and take over his seat in the United States Senate. If this happens, it is a distinct possibility that Cotton will become one of the most vocal opponents of any efforts to reform surveillance and constrain the National Security Agency or any other government agency’s power.


Minimum Wage Increase Makes the Ballot in Arkansas

By: Thursday September 4, 2014 3:21 pm

Arkansans will have a chance to give people making minimum wage a raise this November. On Wednesday the Arkansas Secretary of State certified that ‘An Act to Increase the Arkansas Minimum Wage’ had enough valid signatures so it would be placed on the general election ballot. It will be issue number 5.

And Then There Were Three: Tim Johnson (S.D.-Retiring) Backs Marriage Equality

By: Tuesday April 9, 2013 6:40 am

I’m simply not good at predicting these US Senate turnovers on this issue; not quite as good as Chris Cillizza, anyway. He had Tim Johnson listed first, back when there were six. I had thought not running for re-election immunized Johnson from having to take a stand on this issue; Cillizza claimed not having to face South Dakota voters might free him to speak out.

With Some Dems Nervous About Any Changes, Senate Rules Reform to Be Tweaked

By: Wednesday January 19, 2011 8:40 am

Sen. Jeff Merkley acknowledged that one component of the consensus plan on Senate rules reform put together by him, Tom Udall and Tom Harkin would probably get tweaked, and that the biggest concern for skittish Democratic lawmakers was changing the rules at all, lest they be changed on them when Republicans take over. Which is kind of an amazing commentary on the state of the Democratic Party, when you think about it.

Filibuster Reform Coalition Creaking with a Week to Go

By: Tuesday January 18, 2011 7:54 am

A week from today, the Senate will reconvene, and the first item of business will be how to deal with the rules for the 112th Congress. Three Senators – Tom Udall, Jeff Merkley and Tom Harkin – will spearhead an effort to change the Senate rules that would attempt to achieve two goals – 1) make it faster to complete legislation and confirmations on which there is broad agreement, and 2) make it harder for obstructionists to carry out filibusters, or at least to make it opaque who is doing the filibustering and why.

Bipartisan Consensus: Democrats Looking for Social Security Changes

By: Wednesday January 5, 2011 5:30 pm

This has become the bipartisan baseline in Congress. Mark Pryor is just another example, out there talking about putting Social Security and Medicare “on the table” for cuts to “bring our spending into balance.” That neither program has anything to do with the federal budget deficit is besides the point.

Social Security is under threat because Democrats have taken up the cause, under the rubric of “responsibility” and “getting our fiscal house in order.” It’s about the least propitious time to do that, but nevertheless.

Scott Brown Announces Support for Repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

By: Friday December 3, 2010 12:30 pm

Bob Gates successfully convinced Brown on the implementation process, which should concern people a bit, especially as Gates might not be around to do the implementation. Gates did say that he would not “slow-walk” things, but what about his successor? What if a President Palin reaches office without implementation in place, and she just never certifies it? I don’t know if that’s likely, but it’s something to watch.

Pentagon Survey on DADT, As Expected, Will Show Service Members Have No Problem with Gay Colleagues

By: Tuesday November 30, 2010 9:33 am

The military’s survey on attitudes toward gay and lesbian service members is slated for release today, and early reports are that they don’t really care about changes to the policy that would allow their colleagues to serve openly.

The Puzzling Question of the Rating Agencies: Congress Apparently Stumped, Unprepared

By: Tuesday April 27, 2010 4:10 pm

Congress is scrambling to get more information about how to deal with the credit rating agencies in Wall Street reform, but they haven’t come up with many answers yet.

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