This promises to be a weird week politically in the Congress and at the White House simply because of the schedules on both Capitol Hill and 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
President Obama starts the week with a focus on the economy and the November elections. On this Monday, he does a town hall meeting on CNBC and then travels to Philadelphia to rally votes for Democratic Senate candidate Joe Sestak, the guy who defeated Sen. Arlen Specter, but now trails in the polls.
Mr. Obama hangs around the White House on Tuesday and part of Wednesday, but then shifts into foreign policy mode for the rest of the week, which will be focused on the yearly meeting of the United Nations General Assembly.
In other words, his speech on foreign policy and whatever is said by Hugo Chavez and Muammar Qaddafi won't exactly push votes one way or the other.
Meanwhile in Congress, Democrats in the House will barely be in Washington, D.C.
Democratic leaders decided late last week not to have any votes on Monday or Tuesday in the House, as the first votes aren't even scheduled until 6:30pm on Wednesday.
In other words, that gives Democrats more time to campaign back home for November.
So if you are looking for a deal this week on extending the Bush tax cuts, that seems sort of unlikely, with the House not in town until Wednesday, and the President out of town for the second half of the week.
The Senate has no votes until Tuesday afternoon, when gridlock seems the likely outcome over Democratic efforts to move to a defense policy bill, which would feature an immigration measure backed by the White House.
There has been a lot of talk that Democrats want to send everyone home next week to campaign.
That tells me that Democrats are very worried about November, and would much rather be home than stuck in Washington, D.C.
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