Saxby Chambliss Defeats Jim Martin in Georgia, Bill Richardson Named Secretary of Commerce, Debating the Auto Bailout

Chambliss defeats Martin by a wide margin, and a beardless Richardson gets his third cabinet post.

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Republicans Get Carried Away With Chambliss Win

Saxby Chambliss's win over Jim Martin in the U.S. Senate runoff in Georgia is good news for Republicans. It's a relief for them, at the least; at best, it's a "wake-up call" to Democrats and a sign that Americans don't want to give a "blank check" to the Democratic Party. Liberal bloggers aren't surprised by the outcome and say that, while it's disappointing, it hasn't given Republicans any real momentum. Marc Ambinder has a guide to the meaning of Chambliss's win, and Chris Cillizza explains who benefited from the runoff and who didn't.

Richardson, Sans Beard, Named Commerce Secretary

President-elect Barack Obama named New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson as his pick for secretary of commerce today. Obama made the announcement during a news conference at which he finally took questions from Fox News after having snubbed the network at such events. One of the questions, about the disappearance of Richardson's beard, is of particular interest to some beard-loving bloggers. Conservatives are more worried about his views on immigration, while liberal bloggers are more positive about the choice. A Huffington Post blogger thinks Richardson was more suited to be secretary of state, but Gawker says that "he's terrible with foreign policy."

A Ford-Tough Bailout for the Automakers

Bloggers debate the implications of a federal bailout for the nation's auto industry. Conservatives oppose adding an additional bailout to the $25 billion already sent to the auto industry to raise fuel-mileage standards. "Is the U.S. really about to become bailout nation?" asks Larry Kudlow at the National Review. Liberals, on the other hand, argue that the bankruptcy that would result if the bailout is denied "would have too devastating an impact on employment." The bailout money should be used to jump-start the low-carbon car economy while protecting the auto industry as well. Other liberals, however, could not disagree more. "These idiots don't deserve a dime," filmmaker Michael Moore argues at the Huffington Post.