The Wisconsin recall elections left Scott Walker safe, but showed that American democracy isn't faring as well. The bitter recall election battle there has brought into sharper relief how our politics are changing structurally and what is being lost.
Senate activity surrounding the Paycheck Fairness Act – it failed to get enough votes to overcome a GOP filibuster – more closely resembled the taping of campaign ads rather than a debate of the issue.
But the bill, which would provide several protections for women in the workplace, is unlikely to overcome a filibuster by Senate Republicans.
Without a fix, interest on some subsidized federal student loans would double to 6.8 percent starting July 1. But Thursday's Senate votes are still just theater. Expect parties to haggle over the cash until June 29.
Ahead of Tuesday's GOP primary in Indiana, incumbent Sen. Dick Lugar lags challenger Richard Mourdock by 10 points, a new poll shows. A Lugar defeat would be a convincing demonstration of tea party power in 2012 election cycle.