Going nuclear

GOING NUCLEAR: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said this morning he plans to use the nuclear option to reform the nomination process to remove filibusters for most presidential nominees. This is an unprecedented move, one that when Reid was the minority leader said that the “nuclear fallout” would bring even more gridlock in a chamber that is already slow moving, according to Paul Kane. One solution to avoid this hyper-partisan move is our proposal to have presidential nominees be subject to an up-or-down vote within 90 days of the nomination: Chris Cillizza and Sean Sullivan for The Washington Post: The Senate is at Defcon-1 and about to change forever. Here’s what that means.
WHY IS THIS COURT SO IMPORTANT? The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit is at the center of this fight because it examines many of the critical cases on interpreting federal law. “The appeals court has shaped enforcement of environmental, consumer-protection and antitrust law, and is likely to hear major cases in the next few years on greenhouse-gas restrictions and post-2008 financial regulation. The D.C. Circuit has also served as a farm team for the Supreme Court. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Ruth Bader Ginsburg all sat on the D.C. Circuit before their elevation to the high court,” writes Jess Bravin: Jess Bravin for The Wall Street Journal: Why D.C. Circuit, at Center of Nominee Fight, Is So Important
DEADLINE PUSHED BACK: The fiscal deal made in October raised the debt ceiling with the expected new deadline to be February 7. The Treasury Department, though, will likely use extraordinary measures to give lawmakers another month to figure out a deal. The deadline could also be pushed back even further, to May or June, based on tax refunds and revenues in the spring. Lawmakers need to use this time effectively and work to get a deal done before the last minute: Burgess Everett for POLITICO: Debt ceiling deadline pushed back
WHO WAS HIT HARDEST? Which agencies were hit hardest by the government shutdown and which ones stayed completely intact? Find out here.
REP. GARCIA ON NO LABELS RADIO: Problem Solver Rep. Joe Garcia joined No Labels Co-Founder Ron Christie on No Labels Radio last weekend to discuss the difficulty of solving problems in Congress. “There is a right way and a wrong way, and I think when folks work together there's a better chance of finding a solution,” he said: No Labels: Joe Garcia on No Labels Radio
PROBLEM SOLVER BIRTHDAY: Happy Birthday to Problem Solver Rep. Chaka Fattah! Listen to his speech at the Rally to Make Government Work! now.
ACTION OF THE DAY: Like this graphic on Facebook.
STAT OF THE DAY: Consumer spending rose 0.4 percent in October from the previous month, despite concerns about the government shutdown. Instead, consumers continued to spend due to economic improvements: Josh Mitchell and Shelly Banjo forThe Wall Street Journal: Sales Brighten Holiday Mood

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