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4:30 PM ET, January 21, 2012

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Gingrich Is Well-Positioned as South Carolina Votes  —  Newt Gingrich, who had trailed Mitt Romney by a double-digit margin in South Carolina in several polls conducted just after the New Hampshire primary, may instead be headed to a big victory there, recent polling suggests.
RELATED:
McKay Coppins / Politics:
BYU Students Bus In To South Carolina To Rally For Romney  —  The campaign has been buzzing about growing energy at recent events.  But it turns out, many of the candidate's most energetic fans are actually in from Provo, Virginia, or D.C.  —  (Reuters / JIM YOUNG)
Niall Stanage / The Hill:
Doubts creep in as an awkward Mitt Romney tries not to lose the GOP nod  —  What's wrong with Mitt Romney?  —  In the early stages of this cycle's Republican nominating process, the former Massachusetts governor seemed confident and sure-footed.  Now he seems awkward and defensive.
CNN:
Poll shows big swing as S.C. votes  —  It's a big day for politics in South Carolina Saturday on CNN.  Tune in at 4 p.m. ET to see the candidates debate the issues from Thursday night's edge-of-your-seat debate then, at 6 ET, CNN's special live coverage of the South Carolina primary begins.
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Newt expands South Carolina lead  —  Newt Gingrich heads into South Carolina election day as the clear front runner in the state: he's now polling at 37% to 28% for Mitt Romney, 16% for Rick Santorum, and 14% for Ron Paul.  —  Gingrich's lead has actually increased in the wake of his ex-wife's controversial interview with ABC.
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
Romney demands Gingrich release contract for Freddie Mac work
Discussion: Outside the Beltway and CNN
Fox News:
Gingrich, Romney in savage fight as South Carolina voters head to polls
Charles Dharapak / ABCNEWS:
No Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich Throw Down at Tommy's Ham House
Discussion: National Review
Jon Ward / The Huffington Post:
Mitt Romney Campaign Begins Preparing For Possible South Carolina Loss
Discussion: Los Angeles Times
John Hinderaker / Power Line:
Not Just A Democrat Dirty Trick, But A Crime  —  A few years ago, as part of its strategy of facilitating voter fraud as a means of winning close elections, the Democratic Party undertook a campaign to secure as many Secretary of State offices in swing states as possible.
RELATED:
Kevin Hall / The Iowa Republican:
Former Obama Staffer Busted for Stealing Iowa Secretary of State's Identity  —  Barack Obama's 2008 Iowa New Media Director was arrested Friday for attempting to use the identities of Secretary of State Matt Schultz, and/or his brother Thomas, with the intent to falsely implicate the Secretary Schultz in illegal or unethical behavior.
Shane Vander Hart / Iowa Grounds:
Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz Targeted for Identity Theft by Former Obama Staffer  —  I heard this on WHO Radio tonight driving home, and then I saw this article in The Des Moines Register. … So for political reasons Secretary Schultz and his brother Thomas were targeted... hmmmmm.... Where are we Chicago?
Discussion: Campaign 2012
Charles Murray / Wall Street Journal:
The New American Divide  —  The ideal of an ‘American way of life’ is fading as the working class falls further away from institutions like marriage and religion and the upper class becomes more isolated.  Charles Murray on what's cleaving America, and why.  —  America is coming apart.
Matt Gertz / Media Matters for America:
Huckabee Wants To Know If Obama Got College Loans “As A Foreign Student”  —  During a Fox News appearance this evening, Mike Huckabee suggested that Mitt Romney, who has come under fire for refusing to immediately release his tax returns, respond by challenging President Obama to release …
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama Averages 44% Approval in 3rd Year  —  Averaged 43% job approval in most recent quarter in office  —  PRINCETON, NJ — President Barack Obama averaged 44% job approval for his third full year in office, which ended Jan. 19.  His third-year average is down slightly from his second-year average …
RELATED:
Ron Edmonds / Investor's Business Daily:
Exactly 3 years in, Obama's job approval hits lowest level yet
Cameron Joseph / Ballot Box:
Gingrich confronted on race, agrees to meet with Sharpton  —  GREENVILLE, S.C. — Newt Gingrich was confronted by a black man outside Tommy's Country Ham House, who drilled him on his comments on having poor children work as janitors.  —  The man, who sounded like he had a northern accent …
Discussion: ThinkProgress and Weasel Zippers
RELATED:
Alex Seitz-Wald / ThinkProgress:
Gingrich Says ‘Work’ Is A ‘Strange, Distant Concept’ To Juan Williams
New York Times:
The iEconomy: Apple, America and a Squeezed Middle Class  —  When Barack Obama joined Silicon Valley's top luminaries for dinner in California last February, each guest was asked to come with a question for the president.  —  But as Steven P. Jobs of Apple spoke, President Obama interrupted …
Tara Siegel Bernard / New York Times:
Blacks Face Bias in Bankruptcy, Study Suggests  —  Blacks are about twice as likely as whites to wind up in the more onerous and costly form of consumer bankruptcy as they try to dig out from their debts, a new study has found.  —  The disparity persisted even when the researchers adjusted for income …
RELATED:
Jean Braucher / SSRN:   Race, Attorney Influence, and Bankruptcy Chapter Choice
Jeremy Herb / The Hill:
Obama: State of the Union will focus on building the economy  —  President Obama said that Tuesday's State of the Union address will focus on building an economy “that's built to last.”  —  In his weekly address, Obama touted his Thursday trip to Disney World, where he proposed easing tourist visa rules …
Discussion: Weasel Zippers
RELATED:
Amie Parnes / The Hill:
President Obama holds call to gather ‘input’ on State of the Union
 
 
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 More Items: 
The State:
Rain not dampening turnout in SC GOP primary
Dave Levinthal / Reuters:
Meet the super super PAC
Annie Lowrey / New York Times:
U.S. on Track to Meet Goal of Higher Exports
Discussion: Jared Bernstein
Nasser Karimi / Associated Press:
Agency: Iran shuts down shops selling Barbie dolls
Henry Samuel / Telegraph:
France plans Napoleonland
Mortimer B. Zuckerman / US News:
Barack Obama's Middle East Miscalculation
Discussion: Outside the Beltway
 Earlier Items: 
Guardian:
Undercover police had children with activists
Discussion: Boing Boing and Harry's Place
ABCNEWS:
Obama Makes ‘Change Is’ Focus of Re-Election Pitch
Discussion: Michelle Malkin and Weasel Zippers
Mark Steyn / Orange County Register:
No more ‘women and children first’  —  When Western civilization hits …
Discussion: AMERICAN DIGEST and Ed Driscoll
Greg Sargent / Washington Post:
Left to Obama: Time for constitutional amendment against Citizens United
 

 
From Mediagazer:

David Case / GlobalPost:
Global Post staff pay tribute to slain colleague, journalist James Foley

Felix Gillette / Businessweek:
An entire Hollywood-like industry has grown around YouTube creators; MCNs, agents and advertisers

Bloomberg:
California Lawmakers Strike Deal to Boost Film Tax Credit

 
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