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FROM THIS EPISODE

Democratic Senator Harry Reid says, "Gridlock… is ending." But Republican Lindsay Graham says, "Even when we're functioning we're dysfunctional." We look at how Washington's first budget agreement in three years brought an end to paralysis, and how long that's likely to last. Also, fighting in South Sudan leave hundreds dead, and President Obama's delegation to the Winter Olympics is as remarkable both for who's on it — and who's not. Is it a deliberate snub at the anti-gay posture of Vladimir Putin's Russia?

Banner image: (L) Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and (R) House Speaker John Boehner. Photos: Gage Skidmore

Producers:
Evan George
Andrea Brody
Benjamin Gottlieb

Today's Talking Point US Winter Olympics Delegation a Statement to Russia 7 MIN, 26 SEC

President Obama waited a long time before announcing America's delegation to the Winter Olympics in Russia. First Lady Michelle Obama led the US delegation to the Summer Olympics in London, but there's no member of the President's family in the delegation to Sochi. It does include tennis legend Billie Jean King, figure skater Brian Boitano and other openly gay athletes — an apparent slap at President Vladimir Putin's highly publicized anti-gay laws and widespread anti-gay propaganda. Fiona Hill is Director of the Center on the US and Europe at the Brookings Institution.

Guests:
Fiona Hill, Brookings Institution (@BrookingsInst)

Mr. Putin

Fiona/ Gaddy, Clifford G. Hill

Making News Fighting in South Sudan Leave Hundreds Dead 8 MIN, 21 SEC

Two years after breaking away from Northern Sudan, South Sudan is awash in weapons. Now, after an alleged coup attempt Sunday, between 400 and 500 are reported killed and 800 wounded. We get an update from Daniel Howden, East Africa correspondent for the Economist, and Bronwyn Bruton, Deputy Director of the Africa Center at the Atlantic Council.

Guests:
Daniel Howden, Economist magazine (@howden_africa)
Bronwyn Bruton, Atlantic Council (@BronwynBruton)

Main Topic Bipartisanship on Capitol Hill or Just a Holiday Breather? 35 MIN, 46 SEC

There may not be a government shutdown any time soon, but that's the best even supporters can say for Washington's first budget agreement in three years. And it leaves establishment Republicans so divided from Tea-Party colleagues there's real doubt that anything else will get done until after next year's elections. That doesn't necessarily mean the Democrats won. We look at major provisions of the $85 billion agreement, and hear about the political fallout. Is it a fitting end to a do-nothing Congress?  

Guests:
Jonathan Weisman, New York Times (@jonathanweisman)
Timothy Carney, Washington Examiner (@TPCarney)
Noam Scheiber, New Republic (@noamscheiber)
Norman Ornstein, American Enterprise Institute (@AEI)

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