They've got muck; we've got rakes. TPM Muckraker

The Daily Muck

Half a dozen freshman Democrats have developed a habit of voting against approving the House Journal, or the minutes of the previous day’s business. The lawmakers believe that these votes, despite having no impact on legislative matters, demonstrate their independence from the party leadership and will help them retain their seats when they run as independent-minded or conservative Democrats. (Washington Post)

How the senators celebrated the holiday season: some sent out fund-raising pitches with nasty attacks on their rivals, some escaped ethics investigations unscathed, and some got married. (Washington Post)

Congress inserted nearly 9,800 earmarks totaling $10 billion into the omnibus spending bill. President Bush signed the bill but distanced himself from the earmarks and rebuked Congress. (The Hill)