Billy House previews the week in Congress: “Halloween week kicks off in Congress with two issues long haunted by delays, as House and Senate conferees start separate negotiations Wednesday on a budget plan and a farm-bill reauthorization. Opening remarks from participants are expected to define most of the early action. But competition for the biggest spectacle in the Capitol that same day could come from The Who's Roger Daltrey, set to perform Wednesday at the dedication of a bust of Winston Churchill in National Statuary Hall. Meanwhile, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will testify Wednesday before the House Energy and Commerce Committee about the rocky launch of HealthCare.gov.”
“Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III has quickly become a favorite of Republicans with his quest to delay the individual mandate to buy health insurance under Obamacare,” Roll Call writes. “Though that effort doesn’t seem to have much traction, it’s one that could start giving vulnerable Democrats heartburn.”
Sen. John Barrasso said HHS Secretary Sebelius is the “laughingstock of America” because of a Saturday Night Live skit that made fun of her. (Well, if that’s the case, what does he think that means for House Speaker John Boehner after what Miley Cyrus did to him?)
National Journal: “Senate Intelligence Committee leaders plan to advance legislation behind closed doors Tuesday—ironically aimed at lifting the cloak-and-dagger opacity of the National Security Agency's controversial domestic-surveillance methods.”
USA Today looks at the continuing fight to try and repeal the medical-device tax.
“The Senate’s partisan balance will move a tick to the left Thursday, when Cory Booker takes his seat as the 55th member of the Democratic caucus. And the New Jersey newcomer looks increasingly likely to make a bit of history befitting his national profile only a few days later, by providing an essential vote to advance the most important civil rights bill of the decade,” Roll Call writes. “Legislation that would prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is on the cusp of securing a filibuster-crushing supermajority of 60 senators — close enough that proponents are ready to call the question. Four Republicans have announced their support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, along with 51 of the current Democrats.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D) says the Redskins should change their name. She said it would “probably would be a good idea if they change the name.”