Social Security Secure:

Leading Senate Democrats say that when it comes to “fiscal cliff” negotiations, Social Security is off the table. In a speech on Tuesday, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin stated that the entitlement program does not contribute to the deficit and should therefore not be included. Durbin’s position is backed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who has made it clear he will not participate in any budget talks that consider Social Security. (Read more)

Troubled GOP: A group of Republican senators who talked with U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice on Tuesday said they are “more disturbed” about the prospects of her becoming secretary of state after the meeting. Sens. Lindsey Graham and Kelly Ayotte both claimed they would block her confirmation if she’s tapped by President Obama to replace Hillary Clinton. The primary concerns about her qualifications for the job are related to the administration’s response to the deadly terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. (Read more)

Men Rule the House: Despite the historic gains made by women in the 2012 election, Congress is still very much a man’s world. To whit: A man will hold every major committee leadership position in the GOP-controlled House in the 113th Congress. (Read more)

One More Time: Rick Santorum and his sweater vests may make another go at the White House. The failed GOP presidential candidate said he is considering running again in 2016. Santorum told The Weekly Standard: “I’m open to it, yeah. I think there’s a fight right now as to what the soul of the Republican Party’s going to be and the conservative movement, and we have something to say about that. I think from our battle, we’re not going to leave the field.” (Read more)

Arresting Development: A group of nude demonstrators took over House Speaker John Boehner’s office Tuesday to protest cuts to AIDS funding. They chanted “Boehner, Boehner, don’t be a dick, budget cuts will make us sick,” and “Fight AIDS. Act up. Fight back.” Police threatened to arrest the protesters for indecent exposure, which led the seven demonstrators—four men and three women—to put their clothes back on. The three female protesters were eventually arrested anyway after they stayed to talk to reporters. (Read more)

Hot Commodity: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s approval rating has soared in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. According to a new Quinnipiac poll, 72 percent voters, including more than half of Democrats, approve of the job that Christie is doing in the state. Another poll shows he’s the favorite to win the governor’s race in the Garden State next year. (Read more)

Video of the Day: As mentioned in Monday’s edition of Politics Today, some Republicans are distancing themselves from Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge. But that’s not far enough for former GOP Sen. Alan Simpson, who joked with MSNBC’s Chris Matthews that he would like to see the anti-tax advocate drown in a bathtub.

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig