The Turning Point: Politico’s John Harris and Alexander Burns argue that it’s hard to know how history will remember President Obama’s second inaugural address. Will it mark a signal event when Obama realized Republicans would never be with him, so it’s time to stand up for what’s right? Or will it be remembered as a moment when the president naively over-estimated the mandate of his re-election victory.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testifies on Capitol Hill today about the Sept. 11th attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans. We’re not expecting any bombshell revelations, but the way Republicans handle their questioning should tell us a lot about what kind of opposition they’ll be in the months ahead.
Already the president can chalk up one victory: Republicans today will likely vote to extend the debt limit without demanding the spending cuts they want. It’s a major shift in strategy for the GOP, which fears being blamed if the country goes into default.
The NRA is firing back at President Obama’s gun policy, and no doubt turning off more mainstream voters in the process. Wayne LaPierre defended ‘absolutism’, denounced by the president in his inaugural address, and criticized Obama’s efforts to increase gun safety. We know where LaPierre stands and we know what the American public wants. So what will the Republican party do now? Continue to put Guns Over People?
Good things happen to Republicans who criticize the extremists in their own party: Everyone loves them. Case in point — New Jersey governor Chris Christie.
Benjamin Netanyahu’s slim victory in the Israeli elections is actually a rebuke to his hardline policies, as a center-left party led by a charismatic leader had a strong finish in the vote.