Mark Halperin’s three things to watch for in politics for Friday, February 13.
1. Watch to see if coverage of the horrible plane crash in Buffalo, New York, drives coverage everything going on with the Obama administration and Congress off the airwaves and front pages today.
2. Watch to see if there’s any fallout from Judd Gregg’s withdrawal of his nomination for Commerce Secretary. The New Hampshire Republican Senator dropped out yesterday, saying he had “irresolvable conflicts” with President Obama over the stimulus plan and the White House’s management of the 2010 census. The withdrawal came as a shock after many sources said Gregg campaigned for the job. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs hit back hard with a statement that ends “We regret that he has had a change of heart.” Watch to see how the administration and Gregg handle the continued fallout today.
3. Watch for progress on the economic front. The House is scheduled to vote on the $789 billion economic stimulus bill today and the Senate may also vote today, though Saturday is more likely. Watch to see what comes out of those votes and precisely how many Republicans — and Democrats — cross party lines. Also watch for further discussion of the administration’s banking plan.