POLITICS
09/29/2015 05:38 pm ET Updated Sep 29, 2015

HUFFPOST HILL - Government Shutdown Just Hitting Snooze Button

John Boehner giving up his gavel won't prevent another government shutdown from possibly happening come December, because sacrificing one's career is only worth two (2) months of government funding. Confronted with poor polling, Jeb Bush's campaign is urging donors to be like the candidate and exhibit very low levels of excitement. And one of Rand Paul's Super PACs has gone dark, having wasted all its money renting chainsaws, woodchippers and other power tools he's used to unleash the American dream. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Tuesday, September 29, 2015:

THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN IS DEAD. LONG LIVE THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN! Laura Barron-Lopez: "Congress may currently look like a bit of a mess after coming to the cliff of a government shutdown and backing away, but December will be the real test for the legislature. Both chambers are preparing to pass a clean government funding measure and send it to the president on Wednesday for his signature, hours before the Sept. 30 deadline. The problem is that the bill only includes enough money to keep the government running until Dec. 11, at which point the battles already raging in Congress will hit a fever-pitch. With House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) exiting at the end of October, the December deadline will be in the hands of new leadership -- presumably current House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who is running to replace Boehner. If conservatives have their way, McCarthy will listen to them more than his predecessor did and take an aggressive stance on core conservative policies, forcing as many presidential vetoes as possible." [HuffPost]

CECILE RICHARDS HAS HAD IT WITH THESE PAP SMEARS - Dan Vergano: "Instead of debating hidden camera videos, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards spent Tuesday defending her group’s finances to Congress. The highly partisan House Oversight Committee hearing, chaired by Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah, came as one of four committees investigating the $1.3 billion women’s health care group in the aftermath of videos released by an anti-abortion group over the summer. 'Does Planned Parenthood really need federal subsidies?' Chaffetz asked to begin the hearing, announcing that he wanted to focus on some $528 million in federal health care payments, most of it reimbursements for medical check-ups and tests reimbursed under Medicaid paid to Planned Parenthood. The fight matters because of the ongoing efforts in Congress to pass a federal budget for 2016. Some anti-abortion Republicans are refusing to pass a budget unless Planned Parenthood loses all federal funding. The hearings were triggered by a series of secretly recorded and highly edited videos alleging illegal fetal tissue sales by Planned Parenthood. 'Planned Parenthood is the only health care provider for many women in many places all over the country,' Richards said at the hearing. She was the sole witness at the hearing, and appeared voluntarily." [BuzzFeed]

Even Planned Parenthood haters hated today's hearing.

JASON CHAFFETZ SUFFERS BURN - Jen Bendery: "Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) laid into Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) on Tuesday for grilling Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards over her salary -- something she suggested he wouldn't have done had Richards been a man. Chaffetz had just finished needling Richards, who was testifying before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, about why her salary increased by more than $100,000 between 2009 and 2013. Maloney was not pleased. 'I first would like to register my opposition and my objection to the chairman beating up on a woman, on our witness today, for making a good salary,'Maloney said. 'The entire time I've been in Congress, I've never seen a witness beaten up and questioned about their salary,' she continued. 'Ms. Richards heads a distinguished organization providing health care services to millions of Americans. I find it totally inappropriate and discriminatory.' As Maloney spoke, the camera panned to Chaffetz, who sat there with a weak smile on his face, fiddling with something on his desk. It was a long several seconds." [HuffPost]

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DARK MONEY GOES DARK - Alex Isenstadt: "One of the three super PACs supporting Rand Paul’s presidential campaign has stopped raising money, dealing a damaging blow to an already cash-starved campaign. In a Tuesday telephone interview, Ed Crane, who oversees the group, PurplePAC, accused Paul of abandoning his libertarian views -- and suggested it was a primary reason the Kentucky senator had plummeted in the polls. 'I have stopped raising money for him until I see the campaign correct its problems,' said Crane, who co-founded the Cato Institute think tank and serves as its president emeritus. 'I wasn’t going to raise money to spend on a futile crusade. I don’t see the point in it right now,' he added." [Politico]

Raul Grijalva's annual taco fest is tonight at the American Legion.

TRUMP TAX PLAN GOOD FOR TRUMP - So much for that whole populism thing he had going. Zach Carter: "Donald Trump's tax plan would increase the national debt by more than 75 percent over the next decade, according to an analysis by a conservative think tank. Trump claims on his website that his plan 'doesn't add to our debt.' But the businessman-birther, who believes wrongly that vaccines cause autism, should at least recognize when numbers don't add up. The plan, introduced on Monday, promises massive benefits for wealthy Americans. Trump would reduce the top income tax rate from 39.6 percent to 25 percent, slash the tax rate for the largest corporations from 35 percent to 15 percent, lower the tax rate on stock and bond profits, and entirely eliminate the estate tax. That last tax applies only to the estates of dead millionaires, while securities earnings overwhelmingly flow to the very richest households. As a result, the Tax Foundation found that Trump's plan would boost the incomes of the top 1 percent of taxpayers by 21.8 percent, while those of the lowest-income Americans would rise by only 1.4 percent. The national debt, meanwhile, would jump by $12 trillion over the next decade." [HuffPost]

The Monkey Cage notes a strong correlation between Donald Trump's poll numbers and media coverage.

JEB! PANIC! Eli Stokols: "For the past week, Jeb Bush's campaign advisers have been using a new data point to convince nervous donors that he’s still the candidate to beat: Bush’s lead in the political prediction markets. Just one problem: Beginning Sunday night, PredictIt, the biggest of the online sites and the one referenced last week by top Bush advisers and confidants, placed Florida Sen. Marco Rubio ahead of Bush at the head of the GOP pack. The sudden evaporation of yet another data point in his favor explains the tension in and around Bush’s campaign this week on the eve of the third-quarter Federal Election Commission fundraising deadline. His top bundlers, summoned to Miami for a last-minute call-a-thon, are working hard to convince increasingly anxious donors of their candidate’s strength. Bush’s team is highlighting the benefits of its sizable financial advantage -- mainly, a top-notch national organization -- in an effort to focus attention on the campaign’s durability but also to demonstrate its superiority in relation to Rubio, whose rise in recent polls represents a growing threat." [Politico]

THE RACE TO BE A BIG CHEESE SOMEDAY - Emma Dumain: "There won’t be a race for majority whip if the current No. 3 House Republican, Steve Scalise of Louisiana, doesn’t beat Budget Chairman Tom Price of Georgia for majority leader. (The draft Trey Gowdy movement doesn’t seem to have any backing from the South Carolina Republican.) But at least two lawmakers so far are officially banking on the likelihood of Scalise moving up in the ranks, clearing the way for a successor. Rep. Patrick T. McHenry of North Carolina, the appointed chief deputy whip, and Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas, the chairman of the Rules Committee, both sent letters to colleagues late Tuesday morning announcing their intentions. McHenry, one of the youngest members of GOP leadership -- he turns 40 in October -- told colleagues the Republican Conference needed 'a new culture based on trust, communication, and collaboration.'" [Roll Call]

PAUL RYAN MOVES OBAMACARE REPEAL - The House Ways and Means Committee moved a reconciliation bill that may someday sit atop the heap of other Obamacare repeal bills, Stephen Ohlemacher reports: "Obama can still veto it, but the vote could provide a blueprint for dismantling the law if Republicans retake the White House in 2016. Under Senate rules, minority Democrats can block most legislation because it requires 60 votes to advance a bill, and Republicans have only 54 senators. Under the special process, called reconciliation, the Senate can pass legislation with just 51 votes. Reconciliation is limited to certain tax and spending measures, so Republicans can't use it to repeal the entire health law. But they can gut it." [AP]

John Boehner's likeness has been removed from a local Trader Joe's.

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Enjoy the oral history of Joe Theisman's broken leg.

MARK LEIBOVICH INTERVIEWS PROMINENT BIRTHER - "Where does this end? I kept asking Trump this as we sat around his office and rode around in limousines and airplanes. 'I have no idea,' he always said, sometimes modifying the noun with a big, unclassy profanity. 'But I'm here now. And it’s beautiful.'" Get this, from later in the piece when "a few stragglers from 30 Rock were now running on foot after the limo on Sixth Avenue. 'Look at these people,' Trump said, turning around to see them. 'It’s literally a little bit sad.'" Even Donald Trump thinks Trump supporters are sad. [NYT]

COMFORT FOOD

- Funny dog tweets.

- Cats politely refuse affection.

- Mulder and Scully are back.

- A glowing sea turtle has been discovered.

TWITTERAMA

@mollyesque: Ever feel like, despite decades on earth, you’ve never figured out what to do with your hair? Do a Google Image search for "Trey Gowdy."

@jbendery: Five hours later, Planned Parenthood hearing done. People's hearts and minds all changed on abortion now.

@joshgondelman: I hope to someday receive the first-ever MacArthur "Well, He's Trying" Grant.

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