The Sunday Shows In Five Bullet Points

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Did you miss the Sunday Shows?  Here's all you need to know, in five bullet points:

1. On Meet the Press, Sec. State Hillary Clinton went out of her way to praise China's efforts to contain the DPRK's threat. Clinton said the US wants DPRK to "come back to the table" but won't "reward them for .. half measures."

2. On Face the Nation, Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN) all but begged the White House to get more involved in the health care negotiations on Capitol Hill. He said he would vote against the House bill as currently constituted. He said that a surtax on so-called "Cadillac" insurance plans might be something that his Blue Dog pound might be able to support. He also praise-checked the Wyden/Bennett health care bill.   Quote:

"The White House needs to assert more authority," ... "I'll be relieved when they take over the marketing of this, because Congress has done a terrible job"

3. On This Week, Sen. Kent Conrad said that the Senate did not have 60 votes to pass a health care bill.  On Face, White House senior adviser David Axelrod said that artificially imposed deadlines (like, um, the president's) no longer mattered, and that he remained confident that Obama would sign into a law a reform package worthy of the name by the end of the year. He used the quintessential Axelrodian phrase "intriguing" to describe an excise tax on expensive health insurance plans.  (The White House floated the idea that Ax would say this; one hand washed the other.) Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that she had enough votes, right now, to get an aye vote on health reform. On Fox News Sunday, WH spoksman Robert Gibbs said that Democrats are "80%" there on the way to an agreement.

4. No one seemed to care about Sarah Palin.

5.  Clinton, on Russia and VP Biden's comment that Russia is inherently weak and will yield to US prerogatives:  "We want a strong, peaceful and prosperous Russia" and that the relationship had begun to be reset. Clinton said she was Obama's chief adviser on foreign policy, and that it was her idea to ask special envoys to serve as principal negotiators in certain regions. (She namechecked William Seward, y'all!)

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Marc Ambinder is an Atlantic contributing editor. He is also a senior contributor at Defense One, a contributing editor at GQ, and a regular contributor at The Week.

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