Let Me Start: Sequester Week is Here

Updated
By Hardball staff
President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office building on the White House complex in Washington...
President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office building on the White House complex in Washington...
AP Photo/Susan Walsh

Did President Obama make a major miscalculation when agreeing to the sequester? That’s the growing consensus among Republicans and even some Democrats, according to The New York Times, as the automatic spending cuts are set to kick in this week. And the nation’s governors – even the Republican ones – are in Washington warning of dire straits for the economy if the cuts are allowed to take place, which looks increasingly likely. Meanwhile the White House released a state-by-state analysis of what those cuts would mean.

Chuck Hagel is expected to win confirmation tomorrow and become the next Defense Secretary, but what will the Pentagon look like with those deep spending cuts looming? And after an ugly fight just to get there, Hagel has very little margin for error.

Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal is the latest Republican to embrace universal background checks for gun purchases. Let’s see if that hurts him in a 2016 Republican primary contest for president…

Here’s a challenge for the GOP: How to appeal to Latino voters when those charged with that gargantuan task have spearheaded the effort to take driver’s licenses from illegal immigrants. That’s the tightrope New Mexico governor Susanna Martinez is walking in today’s GOP.

It’s never too early for the question Politico’s Jonathan Martin asks today: Will Hillary Clinton clear the field in 2016?

Can You Rig It? Michigan Republicans voted overwhelmingly in support of a measure that would rig the state’s 16 electoral votes to help Republicans, despite misgivings by the state’s GOP governor.

Finally, First Lady Michelle Obama announced the Academy Award for Best Picture in a surprise appearance. The winner?  “Argo”, Ben Affleck’s story of a CIA plan to rescue the hostages held in Iran. The film won Best Picture without Affleck even being nominated as Best Director.

Let Me Start: Sequester Week is Here

Updated