Ready on Day One

READY ON DAY ONE…. There have been some reports recently that the transition team would love to have major pieces of legislation sitting on the Oval Office desk, awaiting the president’s signature, literally on Barack Obama’s first day in office.

Democratic leaders in Congress seem fairly anxious to accommodate.

Democratic Congressional leaders and the nascent Obama administration are moving quickly to assert control over federal policy, aiming to have economic, health and spending legislation waiting on the new president’s desk almost the minute he gets back down Pennsylvania Avenue from the inauguration.

Given the severity of the problems facing the nation, officials on Capitol Hill and in the Obama team say Democrats have put their schedule on fast-forward rather than allowing the usual lull between the start of the new Congress, this time on Jan. 6, and President-elect Barack Obama’s swearing-in two weeks later.

Lawmakers and staff members are already laying the groundwork for a running start, and Congress is scheduled to remain in session once its expanded Democratic majorities are sworn in.

Earlier this week, Congressional Quarterly reported (no link available) that senators have been told they should expect to work throughout January, and the House “hopes to have the stimulus ready for Obama around the time he takes office.” One Hill aide said, “We are already tired, and he hasn’t even been inaugurated yet.”

Expect a fast start come January.