Obama has faced little congressional oversight so far, but with House GOP probing into policies ranging from illegal immigration to health care, the president's oversight holiday may be over.
In the halls of Congress, the Arizona shooting has prompted calls to tone down violent rhetoric. But it will take more than reformed lawmakers to change politics' tough-talking culture.
Members of Congress called for more civil discourse and suspended some legislative business after the deadly Arizona shooting, a tragic reminder of the risks of public life.
Democrats have reported 10 incidents of threats and violence against members who voted for the healthcare bill Sunday. It is so far unclear whether the gas line at Rep. Tom Perriello's brother's house was cut as an attempt at revenge.
Rep. Charlie Wilson, the east Texas Democrat who died this week, directed millions of dollars in covert funding to help mujahedeen fighters oust Soviet troops from Afghanistan in the 1980s. But efforts at government transparency in budgeting would make that more difficult today.