With so much talk about Democrats changing the Senate rules, we thought it would wise to present this proposal from two Capitol Hill veterans who are experts in Senate procedure, protocol and rules. Lula Davis is the former United States Senate Secretary for the Majority for Democrats and Elizabeth Letchworth is the former United States Senate Secretary for the Minority for Republicans. They are co-owners of Congressional Global Strategy, LLC and make the case that the Senate can be the "greatest deliberative body" again.
"Mr./Madam President, I send an amendment to the desk and ask for its immediate consideration.
The ability for any United States senator to utter this short and simple request has become a rarity in recent years. As two formerly elected officers of the Senate, we thought it might be helpful to provide a short history lesson as to how this request has become rare and then offer a bipartisan way to bring this request back to a more routine status in the Senate.
(CNN) - The bi-partisan group No Labels, which seeks to transform the nature of problem solving in Washington, is picking up two prominent moderates, the group announced.
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman sought the 2012 Republican presidential nomination and, before that, was President Barack Obama's ambassador to China. Sen. Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat and former governor of the state, was sworn in on Thursday to his second term in Washington.
New York (CNNMoney) – More than three in four Americans will pay higher taxes for 2013, thanks to the fiscal cliff deal passed in Congress on New Year's Day.
Over 77% of filers will pay more, according to the Tax Policy Center. The average increase is expected to be $1,257, but that figure belies the wide disparity in impact. Those making less than $10,000 a year will pay $68 more in federal taxes, on average, while those making between $50,000 and $75,000 will see an $822 jump. Wealthy filers with incomes of $1 million or more will see a $170,341 spike, on average.
Washington (CNNMoney) - It's long been expected that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner would stay on long enough in the job to play a key role in the fiscal cliff negotiations. Now that the deal is done, observers say the White House has a small window to name a successor.
Geithner is expected to stay on until the end of this month.
Washington (CNN) – Rep. John Boehner was re-elected Speaker of the House Thursday.
But after roughly a dozen of his own colleagues voted for someone else or withheld their vote to protest his leadership, the Ohio Republican begins his second term tasked with leading a conference that isn't shy about bucking him.
Washington (CNN) - Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Illinois) made a triumphant return to the Senate Thursday, following a year's recuperation from a stroke.
Kirk, 53, emerged from a Capitol doorway to cheers and applause from fellow senators lined up to watch their colleague mount the steps leading the Senate chamber. He walked a little stiffly and with a cane, but was otherwise confident in negotiating the long set of stairs leading into the Capitol building.
(CNN) - After a firestorm of criticism from Northeast Republicans, the House of Representatives is expected to take up an aid package on Friday meant to address those still reeling in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.
Lawmakers will consider $9 billion in immediate assistance for flood insurance and will weigh another $51 billion in broader aid on January 15.
Washington (CNN) – House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday he was confident the House would re-elect him speaker, but conceded a few fellow Republicans would likely vote against him.
Some conservative activists have called on the House to oust Boehner following the passage of a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff. The deal raised tax rates for American households earning more than $450,000 per year. While Boehner made a last-minute effort to include spending cuts in the deal, the measure passed without them.
Editor's note: Gloria Borger is CNN's chief political analyst, appearing regularly on shows such as "AC360˚," "The Situation Room" and "State of the Union."
Washington (CNN) - So I remember thinking, when Congress and President Obama concocted the supercommittee on the deficit - and the fiscal cliff as a last resort if all else failed - that it was a generally boneheaded, albeit necessary, idea.
Conceived in desperation as a way to come up with a deal to raise the debt ceiling (and pay our bills) in the summer of 2011, it seemed like the only way out: a way to agree to do what needed to be done in the short term and to force action in the long term on the bigger picture.
Honolulu, Hawaii (CNN) - If you are a president who desperately wants to salvage your Hawaiian vacation, why stick around Washington to sign a bill when an automatic pen can do it for you?
That’s what happened Wednesday when the long-haggled over bill to avert the fiscal cliff was delivered to the White House for the president’s signature. With Obama 5,000 miles away in Hawaii, aides decided to prepare the president with an electronic version of the document for his review rather than commission a special flight to currier over the document.