This is a rush transcript from "The Journal Editorial Report," April 3, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
PAUL GIGOT, FOX HOST: This week on the "Journal Editorial Report," fresh from his health care victory, the president plans a spring offensive from cap-and-trade to immigration reform. The priorities he'll push in the months ahead.
This as the battle over Obamacare continues. More than a dozen states signed on to a lawsuit against the federal government. Could this new law be unconstitutional?
And as the first Race to the Top winners are announced, a closer look at how two just states qualified for $600 million in cash. Did union politics seal the deal?
Welcome to the "Journal Editorial Report." I'm Paul Gigot.
Fresh from his health care victory, President Obama is a planning major spring offensive, hoping to capitalize on what Democrats see as regained momentum and the White House plans to push through as many domestic priorities as possible during the midterm election. Some of the things on his to-do list, financial, campaign finance and maybe immigration reform passing cap-and-trade legislation and closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay.
Here with a look what to expect from now until November, Wall Street Journal columnist and deputy editor, Dan Henninger; assistant editorial page editor, James Freeman; editorial board member, Jason Riley; and Washington columnist, Kim Strassel.
Kim, before we get into some of the specific issue areas, I want to ask you a broader political question. Nancy Pelosi, after health care passed, said this is now the model that Democrats plan to use to pass these other priorities. Is this really what they're going to do, try to pass these bills on party line partisan votes?
KIM STRASSEL, WASHINGTON COLUMN: Well, they really don't have any choice if you look at that list that you just put out there. Think about it. Most of these things were actually supposed to be on the agenda and supposed to be passed last year, and one of the reasons they didn't do it not just that they were pre preoccupied with health care, but there has not been a lot of enthusiasm for a lot of these different policy priorities. So there are going to have to — yes — look at votes like, for instance, cap-and-trade in the House last year, passed on the bare minimum. The legislative reform — financial reform bill, again, passed on party-line partisan vote. This is what they're going to be doing. A lot of the stuff has to go through the Senate.
STRASSEL: There's not going to be bipartisanship around here.
GIGOT: Financial reform, James, let's take that first because two Republican Senators, Bob Corker of Tennessee and Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, said they thought this would pass, a hundred percent certainty this will pass. Are they right?
JAMES FREEMAN, ASSISTANT EDITORIAL PAGE EDITOR: They're wrong.
It is nowhere near 100 percent. Those are two senators who are still not backing it. The reason they're not backing it is —
GIGOT: Corker said this week he can't support the current bill.
FREEMAN: Right, because it has no political force. What the administration wants to do is cast this as their bill versus Wall Street.
GIGOT: Right, taking on big banks.
FREEMAN: They can't help themselves. They keep wanting this authority to bail out Wall Street. It's in the Dodd bill and they keep pressing for it to be in there. As long as that's in there, it's not going to have any political force because, bulletin to the White House, Wall Street likes bailouts.
GIGOT: But Democrats are selling this as a populist action against Wall Street.