Brian Beutler sighs:
The short version is that late last night it took a break from its regular schedule of lacking 60 votes to shampoo the chamber carpet and unanimously passed a bill that will provide the FAA unique flexibility under sequestration — and thus halt the furloughs that have been causing travel delays around the country. Today the House will follow suit, and the White House has made it clear President Obama intends to sign it. Great if you fly. Bad, bad news if you’re on head start or rely on meals on wheels or otherwise aren’t a Priority Pass holder.
Noam Scheiber gives Democrats a piece of his mind:
[I]f the political case for holding firm on the FAA furloughs was solid, the moral case was overwhelming. Consider where we stand with the sequester:
As my colleague Jonathan Cohn pointed out Thursday, the cuts have been hurting a lot of vulnerable Americans for several weeks now thanks to their effects on programs like Head Start, Meals on Wheels, and unemployment insurance. As of this week, the cuts were also nicking a lot of non-vulnerable Americans by forcing them to watch an extra loop of Headline News at Hartsfield International. At the risk of revealing my warped moral sensibilities, this strikes me as roughly in line with what you’d want in a set of budget cuts. If the political class insists on sacrifice, the sacrifice should, at the very least, be distributed among both poor and affluent. (Of course, it would be even better if they disproportionately affected the affluent, but let’s not get crazy.) This is just a basic principle of justice.