The Washington Post: “On Wednesday, following a bipartisan prayer service at St. Peter's Catholic Church, Boehner will recite the oath and take the gavel from Pelosi with the attendant pomp and no more - except, perhaps, a few tears. Then the 61-year-old Ohioan will deliver his maiden speech to the new House, which includes a huge cadre of freshmen lawmakers. Many are rambunctious Republicans who sailed into Washington with the tea party winds and are determined to use their majority to undo President Obama's legislative record.”
“In his speech, Boehner intends to survey the difficult choices facing the country and pledge to ‘listen to the American people’ and to reform the way the House has operated in the past under control of both parties, according to a GOP leadership aide.”
“The Republican agenda for the new Congress that convenes Wednesday may have a greater impact on the 2012 elections than on the lives of Americans in the next two years,” the AP writes of their plans to cut spending, roll back the Obama health care law and investigate administration officials.
"President Obama will be playing defense from the get-go when Congress convenes Wednesday, with the new GOP House majority planning to vote to repeal the health-care laws even before his State of the Union Address later this month," the New York Post says. "Obama also faces an onslaught of investigations by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which will be chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). He vowed to probe wasteful spending by the administration."
Speaking of Issa, Politico reports that he has released a list of the investigations he’s likely to launch. “Issa is aiming to launch investigations on everything from WikiLeaks to Fannie Mae to corruption in Afghanistan in the first few months of what promises to be a high profile chairmanship of the top oversight committee in Congress. According to an outline of the committee’s hearing topics obtained by POLITICO, the House Oversight and Government Reform is also planning to investigate how regulation impacts job creation, the role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the foreclosure crisis; recalls at the Food and Drug Administration and the failure of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission to agree on the causes of the market meltdown.”
"The GOP has to decide whether to try to forge a bipartisan deficit-cutting deal with the president or to take a stand on deep spending cuts and wait until a possible GOP president in 2013 to enact changes," The Hill writes.
Despite the prevalence of filibusters, "Sen. Harry Reid set a record during the 111th Congress by becoming the chamber’s most successful Majority Leader in history at killing attempted filibusters," Roll Call writes.
When she's sworn in again, "Sen. Barbara Mikulski this week will become the longest serving female senator in U.S. history."
Rep. Danny Davis will remain in Congress rather than run for mayor of Chicago, and he endorsed former Sen. Carol Moseley Braun.