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7:55 PM ET, January 10, 2014

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Bridge Scandal Documents Indicate Effort to Hide Political Motive  —  Officials loyal to Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey went to elaborate means to make it appear that the September closing of lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, N.J., was part of a traffic study …
RELATED:
Sahil Kapur / Talking Points Memo:
Port Authority Chief Warned That Bridge Lane Closures Were Illegal  —  Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye wrote an impassioned email to the general manager of the George Washington Bridge on Sept. 13, arguing that lane closures that spiraled into a major scandal this week were illegal.
Discussion: Liberaland
Eric Lach / Talking Points Memo:
NJ Senate President Rejects Maddow's Alternate Bridge Scandal Theory  —  New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D) on Friday dismissed an alternate theory that was floated by MSNBC host Rachel Maddow about the George Washington Bridge scandal.  —  “That's a real conspiracy thing, right?”
Discussion: Mediaite
msnbc.com:
An alternate theory of the Christie scandal  —  Rachel Maddow presents a new possibility of what the induced Ft. Lee traffic jam was retribution for if it wasn't over the mayor's gubernatorial endorsement.
Herb Jackson / NorthJersey.com:
U.S. Senator says he'll hold off on GWB hearings if federal probe ensues
Pete Kasperowicz / The Hill:
House Dems break ranks with the White House on ObamaCare vote  —  Dozens of House Democrats broke ranks with President Obama on Friday to support legislation that would require people to be notified of security breaches under ObamaCare.  —  The House passed the Health Exchange Security and Transparency Act …
Discussion: Politico, The Gateway Pundit and CNN
RELATED:
Ryan Grim / The Huffington Post:
White House Dares Democratic Senators Pushing Iran Sanctions To Admit They Want War  —  WASHINGTON — The White House on Thursday challenged a group of senators to admit they are working to push the country toward war with Iran, upping the tension between the administration and Senate advocates …
Justin Sink / The Hill:
Obama to unveil NSA reforms on Jan. 17
The New Yorker / Culture Desk:
Cover Story: Barry Blitt's “Playing in Traffic”  —  “I'm hoping this cartoon diverts a lot of traffic to my Web site,” Barry Blitt says about “Playing in Traffic,” the image of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie that he penned for next week's cover.  —  KEYWORDS - CHRIS CHRISTIE; - COVERS
Tyler Durden / Zero Hedge:
People Not In Labor Force Soar To Record 91.8 Million; Participation Rate Plunges To 1978 Levels  —  Curious why despite the huge miss in payrolls the unemployment rate tumbled from 7.0% to 6.7%?  The reason is because in December the civilian labor force did what it usually does in the New Normal …
RELATED:
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Liberal Self-Identification Edges Up to New High in 2013  —  Fifteen-percentage-point conservative advantage ties as smallest to date  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Americans continue to be more likely to identify as conservatives (38%) than as liberals (23%).  But the conservative advantage …
RELATED:
Michael Barone / Washington Examiner:
The cause of partisan bitterness? Competent political competition
Discussion: The Monkey Cage
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
U.S. to Recognize Utah Gay Marriages Despite State Stance  —  WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday said that it would recognize as lawful the marriages of 1,300 same-sex couples in Utah, even though the state government is refusing to do so.  —  Wading into the fast-moving legal battle …
RELATED:
Chris Geidner / BuzzFeed:
Obama Administration To Recognize Utah Same-Sex Couples' Marriages
Discussion: Washington Blade and ThinkProgress
Sahil Kapur / Talking Points Memo:
BREAKING: Obama Administration Will Grant Benefits To Married Gay Couples In Utah
Discussion: Daily Kos
Daniel Strauss / Talking Points Memo:
Georgia GOPer Attacking Free School Lunch Expensed $4,200 In Meals  —  Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) warned that there's “no such thing as free lunch” for school children in Georgia, but he seems to have enjoyed a few.  —  An investigation by Georgia's WSAV channel 3 found that Kingston …
RELATED:
Rachel Maddow / PolitiFact:
Rachel Maddow claims Florida group that backs drug-testing welfare recipients is affiliated with Koch brothers  —  PunditFact isn't always the first to weigh in on the tit-for-tat of cable news shows, in part because the nature of our work requires more than claims and counterclaims.
Fox News:
Christie crackdown ups scrutiny over Obama's scandal response  —  While New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is getting hammered over a close aide's involvement in snarling traffic as an apparent act of political retribution, he's nevertheless set himself apart from the Obama administration in his response to scandal.
Discussion: Daily Kos
RELATED:
Ed Kilgore / Washington Monthly:
Beyond Polarization to Warfare  —  At WaPo's Monkey Cage subsite today, there's an important piece by University of Texas political scientist Sean Theriault that gets to a distinction in political attitudes that some of us have been trying to articulate ever since the radicalization of one of our two major parties occurred:
RELATED:
Washington Post:
Polarization we can live with. Partisan warfare is the problem.
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Byron Tau / Politico:
Supreme Court to mull right to lie in political ads  —  The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case delving into the government's right to police alleged lies in political advertising.  —  The high court announced Friday afternoon that it will take up a lawsuit filed by Susan B. Anthony List …
Discussion: Mediaite
RELATED:
LAW.com:
Campaign Lies Are Common, But Are They Actionable?
Discussion: Election Law Blog
ThinkProgress:
Crisis In West Virginia: Wal-Mart Calls In Police To Guard Bottled Water Delivery  —  Residents of South Charleston, W.Va., wait in line at Kroger to buy water following a chemical spill on the Elk River that compromised the public water supply of eight counties on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014.
Discussion: New York Times and Liberaland
RELATED:
Paul Krugman:
The Medicaid Cure  —  Something really interesting is happening on the health-care front: costs are rising much less rapidly than anyone expected.  This is good news for the budget; it's also good news for Obamacare.  There was much skepticism about promises that health reform would …
Discussion: Salon and Washington Center …
David Weigel / Slate:
The Funniest Part of Robert Gates' Very Serious New Memoir  —  My colleague John Dickerson has already analyzed former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates' memoir Duty; I'm punching my way through it.  Present at the Creation this ain't.  Gates is a matter-of-fact, frills-free writer …
Washington Post:
Obama administration to end contract with CGI Federal, company behind HealthCare.gov  —  The Obama administration has decided to jettison CGI Federal, the main IT contractor that was responsible for building the defect-ridden online health insurance marketplace and has been immersed in the work …
 
 
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 More Items: 
The Monkey Cage:
Why people call themselves “independent” even when they aren't
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Masha Gessen / Slate:
“I Was My Own Person Again”
Tom Precious / Buffalo News:
Trump ‘serious’ about possible run for governor
Discussion: Politico and Capital New York
Kate Nocera / BuzzFeed:
Lobbying Talking Points Show Insurer Freak-Out Over Potential Obamacare Provision Repeal
Discussion: Hot Air
Politico:
Mark Warner and Terry McAuliffe: Best of rivals
Discussion: CNN
 Earlier Items: 
Richard A. Oppel Jr / New York Times:
Falluja's Fall Stuns Marines Who Fought There
Discussion: National Review
Charlie Cook / NationalJournal.com:
The Parties Have Already Devised Their Midterm Messages
Ronald Brownstein / NationalJournal.com:
How Millennials Have Already Reshaped Politics
Cameron Joseph / The Hill:
Begich misses jobless vote for speech in Hawaii
Discussion: Roll Call and National Review
Maggie Haberman / Politico:
Chris Christie's damage control
Discussion: Guardian
 

 
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