Kentucky Senator Rand Paul’s epic filibuster captured an entire news cycle this week. It also caught the ire of a few members of his own party, including Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain. The two elder members of the “Three Amigos” took to the senate floor Thursday to defend the White House’s drone program, while accusing Paul of scaremongering and simplifying the issue. Aside from bolstering Paul’s standing on the national stage, the filibuster also exposed new rifts within the GOP. The spat comes as some of those same republicans are working to mend their relationships with President Obama. One of the more notable examples happens to be Senator Graham, who due to shifting demographics and promising primary poll numbers, has placed himself in the thick of the new partisan thaw. But not every republican has that luxury. Witness Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who is currently preparing for a tough primary fight. Thus, it was probably not a coincidence that McConnell was not in attendance when the President broke bread with a group of notable republican senators Wednesday night. House Speaker John Boehner also doesn’t appear to have any dinner plans with the President any time soon. While Boehner calls the administration’s new outreach “hopeful,” the absences indicate there may be perception that there are different camps within the GOP when it comes to deal-making. On Thursday afternoon, Congressman Paul Ryan found himself on the “in” list when he attended lunch with President Obama at the White House. The President is expected to meet with House republicans next Wednesday, so all the talk of meals may be moot. But what’s becoming more clear (or less clear?) is that the Obama administration is trying to identify the republicans it can work with and the ones it can’t. But it’s also up to those GOP members to self identify. We’ll discuss compromise and a party in disarray when we see you at noon ET on msnbc.
Melissa Harris Perry, msnbc Host, “Melissa Harris Perry” (@mharrisperry)
Stephanie Cutter, Fmr. Obama Deputy Campaign Manager (@stefcutter)
Ben Smith, Editor-in-Chief, BuzzFeed (@buzzfeedben)
Kim Ghattas, State Department Correspondent, BBC/Author The Secretary: A Journey With Hillary Clinton From Beirut To The Heart of American Power (@bbckimghattas) [DC NC]
Chris Hayes, msnbc Host, “UP With Chris Hayes” (@chrislhayes)