The big story of the day is likely to be the trip that Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) is scheduled to make from University Medical Center in Tucson to TIRR (The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research) Memorial Hermann Rehabilitation Hospital in Houston.
This morning, Giffords' husband (astronaut Mark Kelly) tweeted that "GG going to next phase of her recover today. Very grateful to the docs and nurses at UMC, Tucson PD, Sheriffs Dept....Back in Tucson ASAP!"
The congresswoman, who was critically injured in a Jan. 8 shooting rampage at an event she was holding in Tucson (six people were killed and another 13, including Giffords, were shot), is scheduled to leave the Arizona hospital around 11:15 a.m. ET.
Late yesterday, Giffords' office released this photo showing Kelly beside his wife as she got her first chance to get outside since the attack:
In related news, there's a heart-breaking story in The Arizona Republic this morning. Susan Hileman, who took 9-year-old neighbor Christina Taylor Green to the Giffords event that fateful day, talks about her anguish. Here's one passage from the story:
"That day, Hileman did the most anyone can do to protect someone they love. She took three bullets, shielding Christina-Taylor's body with her own.
" 'And I couldn't bring her home,' she says, her voice catching. 'I'm so sorry that I couldn't bring her home.' "
Other stories making headlines today include:
— Morning Edition: President Obama is "under pressure to 'go big' in State of the Union."
— The New York Times: "Path Is Sought For States to Escape Debt Burdens."
— The Washington Post: "House GOP Group Proposes Deep Spending Cuts Over Next Decade."