Let Me Start: Victory Lap!

Updated
By Hardball staff
U.S. President Barack Obama, flanked by Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), delivers his State of the Union speech before a joint...
U.S. President Barack Obama, flanked by Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), delivers his State of the Union speech before a joint...
Charles Dharapak-Pool/Getty Images

President Obama’s job approval rating is at a three-year high, according to a new Bloomberg Poll. You’d have to go back to 2009 to find a higher approval number for the president. Meanwhile the Republican Party’s approval ratings are tanking.

Here’s one reason why: House Republicans are doubling down on a losing strategy—saying no to President Obama’s tax increases to prevent $85 billion in across-the-board cuts that will impact all Americans when they go into effect next week. It’s becoming pretty clear that—despite what they say publicly—Republicans like the idea of the sequester and its spending cuts.

Supporters of voting rights are sounding the alarm—warning of dire consequences for minority voters if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down a key part of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act.

New York Times polling guru Nate Silver analyzes the chances that the Republicans will win control of the Senate in 2014.

In other Senate news, Ashley Judd had her first meeting with the DSCC, and Geraldo Rivera might think twice about getting in a race against Cory Booker – polls show he’d get trounced.

Virginia’s Republican Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling has yet to announce a third-party run for governor, but he finally feels free to speak out against his party’s lurch to the right.

For the first time in over a decade, Karl Rove’s star is falling – and his critics in his own party smell blood. Rove’s defending himself against his attackers, including the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward, who accused Rove of trying to create a “politburo.”

Florida Governor Rick Scott is the latest Republican to reverse course and agree to expand Medicaid in compliance with ObamaCare.

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Hardball - Let Me Start

Let Me Start: Victory Lap!

Updated