Mark Halperin’s three things to watch for in presidential politics for Tuesday, January 27.
- Watch Barack Obama on Capitol Hill. He’s scheduled to arrive at the Capitol at noon to meet with House Republicans at 12:15 pm ET and Senate Republicans at 1:25 pm ET. Both meetings are closed to the press so watch for the readout on that. The big question is still whether he can get Republicans invested in helping him craft a bipartisan economic plan. Watch to see what progress they make.
- Watch George Mitchell’s trip to the Middle East. This is a very interesting and important trip. Watch to see what kind of symbolism he engages in and whether he goes anywhere particularly sensitive, like the Gaza Strip. Watch to see whether he gets an incremental start on making inroads in the region or achieves something bigger during his week abroad.
- Watch the real-world economy. There were tens of thousands of layoffs on Monday and, of course, more economic statistics are expected today. Watch to see if there’s any unexpectedly good economic news. But also watch to see if there’s anything particularly bad that suggests that the new administration and the Congress will need to take even bigger steps than they’re already discussing to get the economy back on track.