Profiling incoming Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the Los Angeles Times writes that he was effective playing defense in the minority. "But with Democrats catapulted into control of the Senate, the former amateur boxer will assume a broader responsibility for charting alternatives to the Bush agenda… Can he cobble together a legislative record his party can be proud of? Though his low-key style masks toughness and great political dexterity, it is unclear if that will be enough."
USA Today is the latest to write how the new Democratic-led Congress could help both Washington, DC and Utah win House seats. "Monday, the Utah Legislature will set in motion a plan that would permanently increase the size of the U.S. House of Representatives for the first time since 1911" -- to 437 members.
The Washington Post adds that DC Mayor-elect Adrian Fenty and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton met with incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi about the legislation that would expand the US House.
And USA Today writes that conservative commentator Dennis Prager blasted incoming Rep. Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, for his decision to take the oath of office with his hand on a Koran. "'He should not be allowed to do so,' Prager wrote [on Townhall.com], 'not because of any American hostility to the Koran, but because the act undermines American culture.'" A spokesman to Ellison says the incoming congressman "has received hundreds of 'very bigoted and racist' e-mails and phone calls since Prager's column appeared."