In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Russ Feingold, the former senator who has been one of the most outspoken critics of the modern campaign finance system, is contemplating a run to reclaim his Wisconsin seat in 2016. If he does, he will have to grapple with the increased influence of super PACs and outside spending since his last campaign. He'll have to either embrace them and risk charges of hypocrisy, or shun them and risk defeat.

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WASHINGTON — The House's top two leaders are on the verge of securing a sweeping deal to permanently fix a gaping hole in Medicare that has haunted Congress for more than a decade while also securing significant long-term savings in the program.

And shockingly, it has broad support among Democrats and Republicans, including even some hardline conservatives who have spent years thwarting bipartisan agreements.

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WASHINGTON — Democrats slammed the House GOP for targeting Social Security in its new budget resolution unveiled Tuesday, contending that the move is part of an emerging Republican strategy to create a crisis atmosphere and set the stage for dramatic changes in how the program works.

Though the budget was mostly similar to previous years' budgets, one major new item was a provision to prohibit a traditionally routine transfer of funds from the Social Security retirement fund (which is solvent through 2033) to the Social Security Disability Insurance fund, which has long been projected to become insolvent in 2016. It was a formal affirmation of a rule adopted by House Republicans on the first day of the new Congress to block such a "reallocation."

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