John King has the makings of another Arne Duncan, and on some points (e.g., ESSA Title I state plans), Sen. Lamar Alexander will want to use the Senate to rein King in. However, on other points (e.g., reckless charter spending; pressuring states to deliver on that 95 percent of test takers), King and Alexander will get on just fine.
Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee announced that they will not consider any nominee put forward by our nation's president. This is unconscionable. If they carry through on this threat, it will be directly incompatible with their solemn responsibilities under the U.S. Constitution.
Let's make campaign finance reform the question candidates cannot escape. Let's move from grumbling at meetings and Tweeting about fresh outrages. Instead, every citizen, journalist, researcher and pollster can repeatedly ask candidates how they plan to make the institutions they hope to serve in stronger.
The invocation of the nuclear option last November addressed a real problem with the functioning of the Senate, paved the way for a new generation of insightful legal minds to join the ranks of the federal judiciary, and has allowed the president to address the nation's judicial vacancy crisis by accelerating the pace of confirmations. We are all better off for it.