- As Middle East envoy George Mitchell leaves to try to broker peace between Israel and Hamas, Obama does his first post-inauguration TV interview with‚ the Arab station Al-Arabiya and extends the hand of friendship. The whole video is worth a watch.
- Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) will introduce a constitutional amendment requiring a special election for open Senate seats instead of governor appointments.
Said Feingold: “The controversies surrounding some of the‚ recent gubernatorial appointments to vacant Senate seats‚ make it painfully clear that such appointments are an anachronism that must end.‚ In 1913, the Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution gave the citizens of this country the power to finally elect their senators.‚ They should have the same power in the case of unexpected mid term vacancies, so that the Senate is as responsive as possible‚ to the will of the people.‚ I plan to introduce a constitutional amendment this week to require special elections when a Senate seat is vacant, as the Constitution mandates for the House, and as my own state of Wisconsin already requires by statute.”
- The first bill Obama signs will be the “Lily Ledbetter Act.”
The bill is a response to a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that said a person must file a claim of discrimination within 180 days of a company’s initial decision to pay a worker less than it pays another worker doing the same job. Under the bill, every new discriminatory paycheck would extend the statute of limitations for another 180 days.
- Obama tries to woo Republicans, as the stimulus bill hits the House floor tomorrow for a vote.