In it, but not of it. TPM DC

The Democratic National Committee has unveiled this new TV ad, celebrating President Obama's first 100 days:



"The First 100 Days," the on-screen text says. "Laying A Foundation For Change." The ad is set to air Tuesday and Wednesday, on national cable and in the D.C. media market.

The fact that President Obama's agenda routinely gets fewer Republican votes than you can count on one hand has become something of a running joke in Washington, and goes a long way toward explaining the acrimony between the two parties today. The administration may have been unaware that "bipartisanship" wouldn't work in practice, but they learned that lesson quickly.

But there's a more complicated, intraparty relationship--the one between party leaders and conservative Democrats--that's at least as crucial, and that's giving the administration a harder time. As we've documented, here, the White House and party leaders on the Hill have gone out of their way to squelch grassroots efforts to target Blue Dog Democrats in the House and conservative Democrats in the Senate, and, for the most part, those groups have complied. But how does the administration really feel about them?

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NYT: Exceptions To Iraq Deadlines Are Proposed The New York Times reports that the American and Iraqi governments will begin negotiating possible exceptions to the June 30 deadline for withdrawing U.S. combat troops from cities, focusing on Mosul in the North and some parts of Baghdad. Iraqi officials have agreed to classify U.S. bases in the Baghdad area as technically outside the city limits, thus holding to the letter of the agreements.

Obama's Day Ahead President Obama is speaking at 9 a.m. ET, to the National Academy of Sciences annual meeting. At 2 p.m. ET, he will welcome the University of Connecticut's women's basketball team. And at 5 p.m. ET, he will attend a reception with foreign economic, finance and environmental ministers.

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Gibbs States White House Reticence On Truth Commission Appearing on Meet The Press, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs stated the White House's reluctance for a truth commission on the torture issue, deferring instead to the ongoing work of the Senate Intelligence Committee: "Well, I think the president had great fears that the debate that you've seen happen in this town on each side of this issue, at the extremes, has -- that's taken place would be what would envelop any commission that looked backward. That's why his focus, David, the whole time is how we look forward in this country."

Poll: Close Public Divide On Torture A new ABC/Washington Post poll finds a majority of Americans supporting President Obama's decision to release the torture memos: 53% in favor, to 44% again. A slim 51%-47% majority supports investigation of whether laws were broken in the treatment of terrorism suspects. At the same time, it's a close divide on whether the U.S. should consider using torture in some cases: 49% against it, versus 48% who say there are cases where it should be considered.

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Obama: Fiscal Discipline Needed In this weekend's Presidential YouTube address, President Obama discussed his goal of making government more efficient and controlling spending, such as the re-introduction of PAYGO principles:



"We cannot sustain deficits that mortgage our children's future, nor tolerate wasteful inefficiency," said Obama. "Government has a responsibility to spend the peoples' money wisely, and to serve the people effectively."

GOP Address: Dems Have Put Us Behind France In this weekend's RNC YouTube message, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) warned that the Democrats have put behind the French on issues like fiscal discipline and energy -- so much so that the United States would be ineligible to join the European Union:



"Now of course we don't want to be in the European Union," said Alexander. "We're the United States of America. But French deficits are lower than ours, and their president has been running around sounding like a Republican -- lecturing our president about spending so much."

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It's not every day that Democrats in the Midwest will comment on a political event in the Northeast. But the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party is now chiming in on the NY-20 special election, after Republican candidate Jim Tedisco conceded defeat in the narrow race, and contrasting this with Norm Coleman's decision to bottle up Al Franken's Senate victory in litigation.

"I congratulate Jim Tedisco for doing the right thing and conceding this race. Now the people of New York's 20th congressional district will once again be fully represented in Congress," DFL Party chairman Brian Melendez says in a press release.

"Unfortunately, Minnesotans are not as fortunate. Nearly six months after Election Day -- and the meticulous and fair process that followed -- we remain without full representation in the U.S. Senate."

Full press release after the jump -- plus a similar release from the Democratic National Committee.

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Gov. David Paterson (D-NY) is making it absolutely clear -- he is running for a full term in 2010, and has just launched this revamped campaign Web site:



Said campaign communications strategist Tracy Sefl, to TPM: "This Web site is part of Gov. Paterson's announcement that he is running in 2010."

I asked Sefl whether Paterson was prepared for a potential Democratic primary against state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. "I think that Andrew Cuomo seems to be doing a good job as attorney general," she said, "and David Paterson is doing an excellent job as governor."

Of all the odd phenomena in Republican Washington, perhaps the most inexplicable is the party's embrace of Newt Gingrich--a man who hasn't been elected to political office since the kids still listened to Fastball--as a man of ideas and political relevance. Today they turned to him to articulate some of those ideas before a House Energy & Commerce Committee hearing on climate change legislation. We liked this exchange between Gingrich and committee chair Henry Waxman (D-CA) in particular:

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The Democratic National Committee is quickly seizing the opportunity presented by the party's victory in the NY-20 special election -- to gloat over all the effort that Michael Steele and the Republicans put into this race.

The Dems have released this new Web video, entitled "Broken Steele":



"That's a seat that we should be able to go in and be competitive and win," Steele is shown saying. "I'm gonna put -- make it a focal point, right out of the box."

The NY-20 special election is now officially over, with Democrat Scott Murphy the winner.

GOP candidate Jim Tedisco, who trailed by 401 votes as of yesterday's vote count, has called Murphy to concede, according to Murphy spokesman Ryan Rudominer. (The latest vote count puts Murphy ahead by 399 votes.)

Murphy takes over in the seat from its previous Democratic occupant, Kirsten Gillibrand, whose appointment to the United States Senate set up the special election for this marginal district.

The election was on March 31, three and a half weeks ago, but it took this long to get a winner because it was so close and involved a lengthy process of counting and litigation of absentee ballots. Still not all of the ballots have been reported in, but it became very clear over the last few days that there was really no way Tedisco could have pulled it off.

Tedisco has released a statement, saying among other things:

"This was a close campaign every step of the way. Ultimately, it became clear that the numbers were not going our way and that the time had come to step aside and ensure that the next Congressman be seated as quickly as possible. In the interest of the citizens of the 20th Congressional district and our nation, I wish Scott the very best as he works with our new President and Congress to address the tremendous challenges facing our country."


Speaker Pelosi's office confirms to us that Murphy will be sworn in next week.

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