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On this week’s Slate Political Gabfest, Emily Bazelon, David Plotz, and special guest Dave Weigel discuss the fiscal cliff deal, the dysfunctional Congress, and the decision by the Journal News to publish a map of gun permit owners. Plus, David interviews Slate's “War Stories” columnist Fred Kaplan about his new book, The Insurgents: David Petraeus and the Plot To Change the American Way of War.
Here are some of the links and references mentioned during this week's show:
- David mentions Matt Yglesias’ support for the payroll tax; Matt also reviewed the winners and losers in the fiscal cliff deal.
- Dave Weigel mentions a tax that benefits Puerto Rican rum; Wonkblog’s Brad Plumer looks at all of the weirdest instances of fiscal cliff pork.
- How crazy will the new, 113th Congress be? Dave Weigel introduces some of its new members.
- Dave Weigel also interviewed several outgoing congressmen about how bad things have gotten.
- David asks Emily if Obama can use legal jiujitsu to get around a debt ceiling standoff. Among others, Jack Balkin has looked at how the 14th Amendment might affect a debt ceiling crisis. And the New Republic’s Jeffrey Rosen analyzed how the Supreme Court might react if the president acted unilaterally.
- By another strategy, Matt Yglesias explores the platinum coin option.
- David mentions Politico’s reconstruction of the fiscal cliff talks and their report of some impolite remarks John Boehner made to Harry Reid.
- Emily says the “big sort” could inhibit deal-making in Congress; she’s referring to Bill Bishop’s exploration of whether American neighborhoods are becoming more politically homogenous.
- Another factor, Dave Weigel agrees, is gerrymandered districts. Dave refers to analyses showing that despite their minority, Democratic House candidates actually won the popular vote.
- Emily has more on the decision by the Journal News to publish a map showing every handgun permit holder in two New York counties.
- Slate’s own data project is tracking every gun death since the Newtown, Conn., shooting tragedy.
- Fred Kaplan’s new book is The Insurgents: David Petraeus and the Plot To Change the American Way of War.
Emily chatters about skate skiing and lattes, despite David’s scorn.
David chatters about a brilliant new writer he discovered on Diane Ravitch’s blog.
Topic ideas for next week? You can tweet suggestions, links, and questions to @SlateGabfest. The email address for the Political Gabfest is firstname.lastname@example.org. (Email may be quoted by name unless the writer stipulates otherwise.)
Podcast production by Mike Vuolo. Links compiled by Jeff Friedrich.