Jonathan Bernsteinpushes Democrats to do more about judicial nominations in an op-ed for TheNew York Times:
But the Democrats share a large part of the blame as well. For one thing, the president has named only nine judges for the 17 appeals court vacancies and only 41 judges for the 85 open district court seats. That’s significantly fewer nominations than Presidents George W. Bush or Bill Clinton had sent to Congress by this time in their first terms.
Via The Monkey Cage comes an astounding chart from Suzanne Mettler in Perspectives on Politics. It shows the percentage of people who benefit from a given government program and who claim that 'they have not used a government program':
Chris Cillizza should have gone a little deeper in his analysis before making this assertion:
[A] new poll conducted by automated pollster Pulse Opinion Research for The Hill newspaper shows that people largely agree. The poll found 62 percent of people oppose raising the debt ceiling, while just 27 percent support it. (The debt ceiling is how much Congress allows the country to go into debt, and current projections show the country will need to take on more debt by the end of March in order to continue functioning as it is now.)
That bodes well for a Republican Party that has vowed to get tough on spending.
Pawlenty governed as a social and fiscal conservative for much of his term. But he campaigned on a more moderate message.
"He's always been very good at explaining that agenda and giving it a moderate patina," said political scholar Steven Smith.
In a second term, Pawlenty told voters he would work to put more money into public schools and try to expand a state subsidized health insurance program. Issues like abortion, gay marriage and guns seldom came up in his re-election bid.