DAYBREAK DAILY: House bill would restore Navy shipbuilding ability

ABC7 TRAFFIC: ‘Good Morning Washington’ has updates every 10 minutes.

ABC7 WEATHER: Partly cloudy with highs in the low 50s.{ }

‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the stories – Coverage of snowstorm’s aftermath, especially in counties outside D.C.; Redskins face court hearing and questions about their trademark, name and logo; list of scattered school closings as well as openings (Federal government is open).

TRENDING ON ABC7 FACEBOOK: Wishing for another snow day in the District tomorrow? Not going to happen. D.C. Public Schools will be open tomorrow, but Prince William County, Shenandoah County and Page County will not have school Thursday. Stay ahead of all the closings (and openings) here:

A NAVY FIX-IT: For now, anyway, per the Virginian-Pilot, “The U.S. House approved a spending bill Wednesday that would give the Navy the ability to pay for ship repairs and aircraft carrier projects this year in Hampton Roads and avoid possible layoffs of thousands of private shipyard workers.

The bill, which passed the Republican-controlled House 267-151 essentially would set the federal budget for the rest of the 2013 fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30. It gives the Pentagon and veterans programs the flexibility to avoid cutting some programs while keeping most of the federal government at 2012 levels. It also keeps intact automatic cuts - known as the sequester - that began Friday and involve separate reductions in defense and domestic spending.”

ANOTHER VA. CPACer: Old Dominion’s right well-represented, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Rep. J. Randy Forbes, R-4th, is the third Virginian invited this year to speak at CPAC, the annual gathering of conservatives in Washington March 14-16. The Chesapeake Republican will join House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-7th, and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who is the keynote speaker.”

POTUS REACHING OUT: Eating to “break the ice,” per the Washington Post, “. . . Obama invited 12 GOP senators to dinner Wednesday at the Jefferson Hotel in downtown Washington, where they dined for two hours. Obama picked up the tab personally, and two of his guests, Sens. John McCain (Ariz.) and Tom Coburn (Okla.), emerged flashing a thumbs-up.

“I think what he is really trying to do is just start a discussion and break the ice, and that was appreciated,” Mike Johanns (Neb.) told reporters as he left the dinner. “His goal is ours — we want to stop careening from crisis to crisis and solving every problem by meeting a crisis deadline.”

MR. SMITH: Well, kind of, per the New York Times, “A small group of Republicans, led by Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, stalled the Senate on Wednesday by waging a nearly 13-hour old-school, speak-until-you-can-speak-no-more filibuster over the government’s use of lethal drone strikes — forcing the Senate to delay the expected confirmation of John O. Brennan to lead the Central Intelligence Agency. . . After almost 13 hours, Mr. Paul offered his final words: “I thank you very much for the forbearance and I yield the floor,” he said, to loud applause.”

POLITICO PLAY: “The hugely hyped blizzard known as “Snowquester” may have been an annoying dud in Washington, but another kind of storm truly shook up the nation’s capital this week: the Jeb Bush media extravaganza. The re-emergence of the former Florida governor on the national stage with a flurry of media appearances has fired new speculation about his ambitions and intentions. Is his book, Immigration Wars, a step toward a 2016 presidential campaign? Is Bush edging to the right on immigration to undercut Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, his onetime protégé and potential 2016 rival? Is he moving to clear the GOP field, as Hillary Clinton might easily do on the Democratic side?”

THE SNOW DUD: At least it was in the District, per ABC7 -- WJLA, “ABC7’s Hatzel Vela talks with business owners in D.C. who wish there had been more snow. And he visits with the organizers of the original Dupont Circle Snowball Fight that became famous during the “Snowmageddon” three years ago. With no snow in the District, the follow-up snowball fight had no ammunition, so no happy flingers of snow.”

OF GAS AND TAXES: Different methods, different results, per the Washington Examiner, “Virginians would benefit from lower gasoline taxes and, experts say, better prospects at congestion relief than their peers in Maryland as the neighboring states weigh plans to raise badly needed money for infrastructure.”

OUT OF THE MAINSTREAM: Race for D.C. at-large seat mostly mundane, per City Paper, “. . . But one of the seven (candidates) is trying to make himself the exception—a defense attorney running as the race’s cranky truthteller, unafraid to throw elbows or stake out politically unpopular positions. Paul Zukerberg is the campaign’s quirky uncle who thinks the path to the Council dais is doing whatever’s the opposite of what a typical politician would do. He probably won’t come anywhere close to winning, but at least he’s spicing things up.”

LIFE NOT DEATH: Of capital punishment, per the Washington Times, “Maryland is on the fast track to abolishing its death penalty, after the state Senate passed a measure Wednesday that would make it the 18th state to outlaw capital punishment. The Senate voted 27-20 in favor of the bill, sending it to the House and clearing what lawmakers have long considered the largest obstacle toward a repeal.”

SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Wizards lose 87-82 against Minnesota.

NEWSTALK: 10 a.m., NewsChannel 8.

--Skip Wood

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