What to Read Before You Unwonk Tonight

  • The Prospect’s Jamelle Bouie blogged about the most important story that’s been hiding under Newt Gingrich’s surge (a news story fit for nothing but speculation for how it will end) and other election stories—“the European debt crisis has raised the odds of a U.S. recession to more than 50 percent by early 2012, according to a new report from the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank.”
  • Other big story of the day: The Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the Affordable Care Act in March. In light of this announcement, it’s a good time to revisit Garrett Epps’ post from last week on notoriously conservative Judge Laurence Silberman upholding the law.
  • GQ just published its pizza-party interview with Herman Cain, which is a must-read. Not for the insight it lends into the pizza professional’s political acumen but simply because it is a terrific character study of a man who says incredibly interesting things but who just shouldn’t be elected president. A man who thinks Godfather’s Pizza is the best pizza in America should not be head of state. A man who doesn’t know about the operation in Libya should also not be president.
  • The Economist published two articles this weekend about different ways the Obama campaign can tackle election strategy, both demographically and geographically. These different facets of election strategy will be important to keep in mind as the sure-to-be-close general election approaches.
  • NBC's hiring Chelsea Clinton is a story I hope the media doesn’t dwell on, but Ta-Nehisi Coates makes a good point: “If you're genuinely interested in a craft, it strikes me that one should do the hard work of learning that craft.” Living in the White House for eight years does not qualify you to be an expert on political news.
  • Another reason that everyone should just ignore the Gingrich surge? A Newt Gingrich presidential campaign would be the saddest thing ever.
  • Matt Glassman pondered the idea of altering the 22nd Amendment today, and his post offers some history and fun wonky analysis of what the amendment has done and what the alternatives are.