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Obama agenda: Will the civility last?

Paul Krugman’s New York Times column: “[T]he truth is that we are a deeply divided nation and are likely to remain one for a long time. By all means, let’s listen to each other more carefully; but what we’ll discover, I fear, is how far apart we are. For the great divide in our politics isn’t really about pragmatic issues, about which policies work best; it’s about differences in those very moral imaginations Mr. Obama urges us to expand, about divergent beliefs over what constitutes justice.”

David Brooks’: "President Obama gave a wonderful speech in Tucson on Wednesday night. He didn’t try to explain the rampage that occurred there. Instead, he used the occasion as a national Sabbath — as a chance to step out of the torrent of events and reflect... Of course, even a great speech won’t usher in a period of civility. Speeches about civility will be taken to heart most by those people whose good character renders them unnecessary. Meanwhile, those who are inclined to intellectual thuggery and partisan one-sidedness will temporarily resolve to do better but then slip back to old habits the next time their pride feels threatened."

National Journal’s Brownstein: “[W]hen political arguments are routinely framed as threats to America’s fundamental character, the odds rise that the most disturbed among us will be tempted to resist the governing agenda by any means necessary.”

"An ultimate fighter wishes he could take back the fighting words he flung at the President. In the aftermath of the Tucson, Ariz., shootings that left six dead and 14 injured, Jacob Volkmann said he regrets saying he would like to fight President Obama and 'knock some sense into that idiot.' 'I would never make that comment if that shooting happened first,' the 30-year-old UFC lightweight told the Huffington Post."

"President Bill Clinton will appear at a campaign rally with Rahm Emanuel in Chicago next week," Roll Call reports, adding, " The event will be held at the Chicago Cultural Center at 11 a.m. Tuesday."