LOW MORALE: "In a letter Thursday to the GAO, Reps. Elijah E. Cummings (Md.), the ranking member on the [House Oversight and Government Reform Committee]; Stephen Lynch (Mass.) and Gerald E. Connolly (Va.) said low morale 'may be compromising the federal government’s ability to serve the American people.' Citing the recent three-year freeze on basic federal pay rates, unpaid furlough days for some workers and a partial government shutdown, the representatives began their letter with something the workforce well knows: 'The last few years have been challenging for federal employees,'" writes Joe Davidson. Our Make Government Work! legislative package is a first step in increasing efficiency in government: Joe Davidson for The Washington Post: How bad is federal employee morale?
'HOUSE OF CARDS' EFFECT: "Partisan gridlock has at times slowed proceedings in Congress virtually to a halt. Not on Thursday. Both the House and Senate Thursday passed a jumble of high-profile bills under rapid, occasionally eyebrow-raising, and sometimes downright sneaky procedures," write Kristina Peterson and Michael R. Crittenden. House Republican and Democratic leaders allowed a measure to pass by organizing a quick vote right after regrouping from a recess. The bill is a 12-month patch preventing a 24 percent cut to doctors' Medicare payments from going into effect next week, which was up against waning support from lawmakers for a longer-term deal: Kristina Peterson and Michael R. Crittenden for The Wall Street Journal: Crazy Day: A House, and Senate, of Cards
UKRAINE BILL PASSED: The House and Senate both passed measures that would provide aid to Ukraine and impose sanctions on Russia, edging Congress closer to sending a comprehensive package to the White House to respond to the crisis in Eastern Europe: Seung Min Kim for POLITICO: Ukraine bills clear House, Senate
PROBLEM SOLVER BIRTHDAY: Happy birthday to Problem Solver Rep. David McKinley! Read about the Congressman here.
NO LABELS RADIO: Start your Saturday with us! Listen to No Labels Radio with Gov. Jon Huntsman tomorrow at 10 am., Eastern time, on SiriusXM's P.O.T.U.S. (channel 124) as he speaks with Gov. Rick Perry, Problem Solver Rep. Scott Peters and Rep. Michael Burgess. Tweet with us using #NoLabelsRadio! If you missed last week's show, you can hear our conversation with Senate Chaplain Barry C. Black here.
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STAT OF THE DAY: More than six million people have signed up for the Affordable Care Act, according to the White House: Roberta Rampton for Reuters: Obamacare enrollment tops six million as deadline looms: White House