On Friday, Congress agreed to repeal the part of the sequester that furloughed FAA workers. This move was made in response to a number of airlines reporting delayed flights and lengthy waits at airports.

The United States federal budget went into the sequester on March 1, 2013. Like the so-called “fiscal cliff,” the sequester was proposed in the hopes that both parties would come to an agreement about spending and taxation before the drastic measures went into effect. They did not.

Economists including Robert Reich have been vocal about the lopsided effects of the sequester and how it hurts economic recovery. While Congress has restored funding that will make it easier for people to catch their flights, programs such as Head Start and funding for cancer research, student financial aid and low-income housing are still suffering the effects of the sequester.

Should Congress be allowed to repeal the sequester in pieces? Or should it have to decide on a budget and cancel the sequester altogether?

Should Congress have to fully end the sequester all at once, or is it OK to pick and choose which parts to repeal?

Michael Tomasky, a special correspondent for Newsweek and the Daily Beast, discussed the ongoing gun control fight with John Fugelsang. Connecticut passed the most restrictive and comprehensive gun control legislation in the country on Thursday, prompting Fugelsang to ask whether a state-by-state approach is the best hope for stricter gun measures.

Tomasky says that unfortunately, such an approach won’t be effective, because “many, many guns that are used in crimes in New York, in Boston, in northeastern cities come from Virginia and Florida,” for example, and those states are opposed to gun control.

“I’ve never in my life seen 90 percent of Americans support something that is just not going to happen,” Tomasky adds of federal legislation.

Not to act, Governor, I believe, makes this Congress complicit. Because we know this will happen again.
Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.) told Eliot Spitzer that he believes Congress will be complicit in future gun deaths if they refuse to act on gun control legislation now. Watch the whole interview from “Viewpoint” (Mon-Thurs. @8E/5P) here.

Forget term limits — one Congressional rep is going to be in and out of the House before the ink dries on his security badge.

The nuns are still on their bus, and they are still kicking ass and taking names (or whatever the nun equivalent of doing that is) in the American government.

Official Washington is being very calm. But if I were a farmer, I’d be worried.

The president pressed for compromise and swift action to pull the economy away from the fiscal cliff during his first White House address to the nation since defeating Republican nominee Mitt Romney to be re-elected on Tuesday.

“We can’t just cut our way to prosperity,” President Barack Obama said. “If we are serious about reducing the deficit, we have to combine spending cuts with revenue. And that means asking the wealthiest Americans to pay more in taxes.”

Earlier in the day, House Speaker John Boehner passed the buck for the impending fiscal cliff onto the president, saying rate expirations and trillions in spending cuts are his to solve.

(Read more)

Mark Takano is just one of the many reasons we’ve declared 2012 the year of the gay candidate.

Mark Takano is just one of the many reasons we’ve declared 2012 the year of the gay candidate.

thenonprophet:

Now is never the time… @350 @BillMcKibben

Americans say they never want to “politicize” a tragedy - such as Hurricane Sandy or any of the mass shootings from this summer - by bringing up new laws and regulations that could have prevented it. Then everyone forgets about it, and no one is passionate enough to suggest new laws or regulations to prevent it from happening again. It’s a vicious cycle.

thenonprophet:

Now is never the time… @350 @BillMcKibben

Americans say they never want to “politicize” a tragedy - such as Hurricane Sandy or any of the mass shootings from this summer - by bringing up new laws and regulations that could have prevented it. Then everyone forgets about it, and no one is passionate enough to suggest new laws or regulations to prevent it from happening again. It’s a vicious cycle.

pantslessprogressive:

“Now you may say that this simply reflects divided government. But while there are many instances of divided government on that chart — the 104th Congress, for instance, when Newt Gingrich and his Republican revolutionaries faced off against President Bill Clinton and still managed to pass 333 public laws — there’s no session of Congress with such a poor record of productivity.” - Ezra Klein
Klein also points out that, while Congress is still in session, “the 112th is three-quarters done, and it’s not yet half as productive as the next least-productive congress.”
13 reasons why this is the worst Congress ever

pantslessprogressive:

Now you may say that this simply reflects divided government. But while there are many instances of divided government on that chart — the 104th Congress, for instance, when Newt Gingrich and his Republican revolutionaries faced off against President Bill Clinton and still managed to pass 333 public laws — there’s no session of Congress with such a poor record of productivity.” - Ezra Klein

Klein also points out that, while Congress is still in session, “the 112th is three-quarters done, and it’s not yet half as productive as the next least-productive congress.”

13 reasons why this is the worst Congress ever