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Friday Flashback: Immigration, debt ceiling, political scandals

by Take Two®

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Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) looks on during a press conference, on Capitol Hill, July 9, 2013 in Washington, DC. Boehner and the Republican leadership discussed the immigration bill and the Obama administration's decision to delay a portion of the Affordable Care Act, which will extend the deadline for employer mandated health care to 2015. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Immigration reform looks to be going nowhere, budget and debt ceiling battles may threaten economic recovery, and some Democrats are saying its time be move more forcefully to the left. 

It's time for the Friday Flashback, our analysis of the weeks' major news with James Rainey of the LA Times and from Washington DC, National Journal's Nancy Cook.

Let's start with the latest on immigration reform. It's more or less stalled in the House, but Eric Cantor, the House Majority leader has come up with a sort of modified Dream Act plan. Some see it as designed to put Democrats in a tough spot. 

Meanwhile, is there a sense among Democrats that maybe it's better to just wait, and make Republican resistance to immigration reform an issue in next year's elections?What percentage of the Senate bill will even be considered by the House?

Also, a little internal squabble among House Republicans. Iowa Congressman Steve King, a vocal opponent of immigration reform, said a few things that made Speaker John Boehner unhappy this week.

Moving on, Congress will take a nice, long August recess, and in the fall, the big issues will be the budget, and the debt ceiling. We've seen this movie before.  

Clearly the White House is gearing up for a big fight, and there's speculation that House Speaker John Boehner, who has kind of taken a back seat over the past year, is ready to come out swinging.  

An interesting response by some Democrats to what they see as Republican foot-dragging. They're calling for a more aggressive move toward something that sounds a lot like old-style populism. What's this about, and is it going to fly?

Meanwhile, there doesn't seem to be much consensus about how the economy is doing. Two headlines to illustrate: From Business Insider this week, "The US Economy Is Gaining Momentum,"  and from The Guardian, "Ten Reasons the US Economy Is Stuck." So, what is it?

Beyond the budget battles, two stories this week of politicians behaving badly. More women coming out with charges of sexual harassment by San Diego Mayor Bob Filner. Plus, the admission by New York mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner that, even after he resigned from Congress over an online sexual affair, he continued those activities with a number of women.

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