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SPOTLIGHT

1. SEQUESTRATION:

Ready or not, here comes the sequester

Whether it brings the apocalypse or just another tedious, predictable outbreak of partisan finger-pointing, sequestration -- a round of automatic cuts to the federal budget -- will kick in Friday, unless President Obama and Congress act this week to avert it.

2. APPROPRIATIONS:

As Congress slogs through another Sequestration Week, whatever happened to regular order?

It's Sequestration Week again, and Capitol Hill is abuzz with suspense. This is only the second Sequestration Week. The first one happened the last week of December when congressional leaders fought off a "fiscal cliff." As part of that package deal to extend middle-class tax cuts, negotiators opted to push the sequester's deadline to March 1. But if history repeats itself -- a possibility President Obama and others are anticipating -- Sequestration Week could turn into an annual affair.

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