Here's what we're looking at today:
What kind of party is the Republican Party? In his New York Times column, David Brooks writes that the Republican Party has been offered the deal of a century -- "trillions of dollars in spending cuts in exchange for a few hundred million dollars of revenue increases" -- but it won't take the deal because it has been overrun by fanatics who will never, ever consider anything that increases revenues. Brooks concludes that independent voters will see that the Democrats are the ones willing to compromise, while the Republicans have proven they are unfit to govern. http://nyti.ms/jtXOp0
In other government gridlock news, Tim Pawlenty thinks the shutdown in his home state of Minnesota will somehow help him. He's up with a radio ad in Iowa touting his record of confrontation with labor unions and Democrats in the state legislature. Here's the ad (h/t Politico's Morning Score): http://bit.ly/jdt2lQ
Fourth of July weekend brought all the Republican presidential candidates out to parades, barbecues and other celebrations in New Hampshire and Iowa. The most interesting nugget -- when Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman crossed paths at the same parade in Amherst, NH. According to the New York Times, Mitt welcomed Jon to New Hampshire, saying it must be lovelier than Beijing. Huntsman's response is here.
Finally, the charges against former IMF head Dominique Strauss Kahn are about to be dropped. Investigators have major doubts about the accuser's credibility, and DSK will go free at his next court appearance in two weeks, if not sooner. The big question: Can he ever regain his political stature? http://yhoo.it/jZg2vT