The Note: The New Abnormal

"'Doing the right thing,' she suggested, 'is the right thing to do from a political perspective.'"

David Kirkpatrick implicitly says "pull the trigger, for goodnessakes!!" in his New York Times round up in the day in filibusteria --- with a nod towards the Democrats' DeLayFrist (a la: "DoleGingrich") efforts. LINK

The Washington Post's Chuck Lane profiles North Carolina judge Terrence Boyle, who has been a candidate for the federal bench for 15 years, and the political arguments over his qualifications and philosophy, race, and partisan payback that have engulfed his bid throughout. LINK

The Washington Post's Mike Allen reports that House Republican leaders are prepared to try to exert control over the federal judiciary in ways that have nothing to do with the appointment and confirmation process --- through budget, oversight, and disciplinary authority. House Judiciary Committee Chairman James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) told Allen in an interview that he would be undeterred by criticism and would be "very active" in pursuing tougher disciplinary processes for judges, including the possibility of creating an inspector general's office to oversee the federal judiciary. LINK

Social Security:

The New York Times' Toner and Rosenbaum preview Bill Thomas' Ways and Means hearing, and the Powerful Chairman's ideas for broadening the debate, while, as yet, not bridging House conference concerns about plank walking. LINK

The Wall Street Journal's Jackie Calmes looks at Sen. Santorum's wagering his re-election on Social Security.

Congress Daily AM, who we can't link to, unfortunately, quotes Charlie Rangel as saying that President Bush told him in "private" that he would not back away from private accounts and that they must be part of any bill he'd sign.

Big casino budget politics:

The New York Times' Carl Hulse only hints at the implications of a Bush veto (and override?) of the highway bill. LINK

The Washington Post's Shailagh Murray tick tocks the passage of the bill, which the Senate's 76 to 22 vote allows to grow by $11 billion, but the President insists should be capped at $284 billion. LINK

The Los Angeles Times' Richard Simon calls the bipartisan vote an example of the "power of pothole politics" as the Senate continues to be riven by partisanship in the filibuster battle. LINK

The New York Times' ed board H-A-T-E-S the emerging bill and seems to want a veto. LINK

The Congress:

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi called her party's caucus together and told them to zip the lip and not air their differences in the press, Roll Call's Erin Billings reports.

The Rosen trial:

"Some Republicans are so sure that the Rosen case will hurt Clinton that they're livid with New York Republicans, who have yet to come up with a strong candidate to challenge her for Senate in 2006," writes Deborah Orin of the New York Post and then goes on to quote Kellyanne Conway's attempt to bring Sarbanes-Oxley into the debate. LINK

The New York Sun's Gerstein reports Chicago businessman and Democratic fundraiser (and former strip club owner) James Levin is on the government's witness list and has other exclusive info. LINK

The New York Daily News team on the case sees the prosecutor's opening statement as "a blow to Clinton opponents." LINK

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