WANT A DATE?:
-- Unemployment insurance will be extended, probably next Wednesday.
-- The week of the 26th, Majority Leader Harry Reid has indicated that
the energy bill will be brought to the floor, which
provides one week for debate before the Senate takes up the Kagan
nomination. The bill will contain four titles: oil
spill response, clean energy and jobs (read: renewables), efficiency, and a
limit on carbon pollution from utilities, though Reid did not call it that.
It is unclear if there are 60 votes for such a bill, but the only way to find
out is to bring it to the floor, since some moderate Democrats and Republicans are
sitting on the fence hoping that the issue will go away.
GOVERNORS ON POLITICS: Tomorrow on the Atlantic Politics Channel, former Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles and former Oklahoma Rep. Brad Carson discuss their participation in a new Kaiser-funded initiative called the National Energy Policy Institute. It sounds wonky, but it's actually quite canny. For now, though, I asked the two veteran Democrats if they had any advice for their fellow Democrats -- just how can Democrats minimize their losses between now and November?
Carson: "I came from a state where 35 percent self-identify as Tea Partiers, so I'm a bit distorted perhaps in my appreciation for the larger American population. I don't think there is a lot you can do in four or five months. Maybe the economic data picks up, which there are some indication that it is. There aren't that many policy changes you can do, so I'd say you ride the wave and hope that maybe some of the external events help you. But it was predictable that when the President was elected that 2010 would be a difficult year. I mean, the country is deeply divided. There is 35 percent of the people who are Tea Partiers or more in some of those states. So it's probably going to be a difficult year, but there's nothing that I think anyone can do about it."