CONGRESS: 114th Congress begins
The Washington Post lede: "The House and Senate reconvene on Tuesday for Capitol Hill's equivalent of the first day of school: a hopeful, optimistic moment full of ceremony, lofty promises and high expectations. But almost immediately, both Republicans buoyed by historic electoral gains and Democrats in a diminished minority will plunge back into familiar political fights over energy, jobs, immigration and President Obama's executive powers."
From NBC's Alex Moe and one of us(!): "John Boehner is slated for his official re-election as the Speaker of the House on Tuesday, but - like he did last Congress - he'll have to face defections from within his own party along the way."
"The new lawmakers taking their seats in Washington on Tuesday represent not just a changing of the guard in Congress but a change in the pedigree of its members. They have spent less time marching through the traditional steps toward elected office, instead forging political identities their own way," writes the Wall Street Journal.
The White House says that allowing House Majority Whip Steve Scalise to keep his leadership role says a lot about Republicans "priorities and values," but a spokesman stopped short of calling on the Louisiana Republican to step down.
From POLITICO: "Mitch McConnell’s decision to kick off the GOP’s new Senate reign with the Keystone XL oil pipeline presents a major test of wills between a strengthened Republican Party and an increasingly go-it-alone White House."
OBAMA AGENDA: Progress emptying Gitmo?
"In a series of secret nighttime flights in the last two months, the Obama administration made more progress toward the president’s goal of emptying the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, than it had since 2009," reports the New York Times.
Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Dianne Feinstein is proposing recommendations "to prevent the future use of torture by the government," writes NBC News.
From the AP: "President Barack Obama is hosting Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the White House Tuesday, looking to his southern neighbor for help implementing the president's changing policies on immigration and Cuba."
The Boston Globe looks at SecDef nominee Ashton Carter's views on when to recommend using military force.
From the AP in New York: "A manhunt was under way Tuesday for at least two suspects who shot and wounded two New York City police officers responding to a robbery in the Bronx. Both officers were listed in stable condition."
"Stock markets around the world tumbled on Monday as the decline in energy prices stoked fears about deflation," reports the Wall Street Journal.
OFF TO THE RACES: R.E.S.P.E.C.T -- Jeb
Jeb Bush is calling for the "respect" of same sex marriages after Florida began allowing them Monday.
Writes POLITICO on Jeb Bush: "Allies of the former Florida governor are planning to roll out both a leadership PAC and a super PAC in the coming days in an effort to lock up major donors and give pause to potential rivals for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, according to several sources."
Stu Rothenberg: "If the question is whether Bush has any chance, some chance or even a reasonable chance to be nominated in 2016, the only possible answer is yes. But I don’t regard him or any other potential candidate in the race as the current front-runner, or even the favorite for the nomination. At least, not at this point."
NBC's Kelly O'Donnell: "Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones paid for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to attend Sunday's game against the Detroit Lions, including a ride on his private jet, aides to the governor confirm."
The Star-Ledger: “New Jersey’s Republican Party will pay for Gov. Chris Christie to travel to more than a half dozen states this month to be on hand for the swearing-in ceremonies of fellow GOP governors, officials said.”
ALASKA: "Attorney General Craig Richards is expected to recommend a special investigator to Gov. Bill Walker in the next few weeks to look into years of allegations of sexual misconduct and cover-ups in the Alaska National Guard," according to the Dispatch News.
ILLINOIS: Via Lynn Sweet: "Mayor Rahm Emanuel took the first public steps on Monday to rescue the University of Chicago’s troubled bid for the Obama Presidential Library and Museum, moving to secure rights to Chicago Park District land and taking the South Shore Cultural Center off the table."
IOWA: Joni Ernst is keeping a low profile so far, the Des Moines Register reports.
NEW YORK: It may be the first day of school on Capitol Hill, but Roll Call reports that one member, moderate Republican Chris Gibson, is already saying he won’t run again.
VIRGINIA: Former Gov. Bob McDonnell will be sentenced today, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
WISCONSIN: From the New York Times: "Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, who rose to national prominence in the Republican Party by cutting the collective bargaining rights of most public sector unions, strongly indicated in the final days of his re-election campaign that he had no plans to expand the battle with labor unions that defined his first term."
And from the Journal Sentinel: "Walker did not promise major new tax cuts over the next two years in his speech, and the top two GOP legislative leaders downplayed that possibility as well. Both of those leaders also discounted the possibility of boosting the gas tax, as Walker's transportation secretary has recommended."
*** Tuesday’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall” line-up: Mara Gay from the Wall Street Journal on the two NYPD officers shot, and reaction to Mayor Bill DeBlasio’s and Commissioner Bill Bratton’s news conference, Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) on the 114th Congress convening, and Dr. Natalie Azar on the severe flu season.
*** Tuesday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” line-up: NBC’s Andrea Mitchell interviews Rep. John Lewis, Financial Times Assistant Editor Gillian Tett, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Spokesperson Tom Kelly, NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell, Luke Russert, Rehema Ellis and Kevin Tibbles, the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza and AP’s Julie Pace.