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12:00 PM ET, April 30, 2014


 Top Items: 
Marcus Thompson II:
Warriors Had the Blueprint For a Dramatic Boycott Ready to Go  —  The plan was set, the product of a 30-minute players meeting.  The Warriors were going to go through pre-game warm-ups and take part in the national anthem and starting line-up introductions.
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Is Barry Whiffing?  —  WASHINGTON — Stop whining, Mr. President.  —  And stop whiffing.  —  Don't whinge off the record with columnists and definitely don't do it at a press conference with another world leader.  It is disorienting to everybody, here at home and around the world.
Discussion: The Daily Caller
Donald Sterling receives lifetime ban
Ben Crair / The New Republic:
How Oklahoma Botched an Execution  —  Clayton Lockett's lethal injection suffered a problem more fundamental than the drugs  —  On Tuesday night, after Oklahoma botched the lethal injection of Clayton Lockett, the director of the Department of Corrections said Lockett's vein had not only “blown,” but actually “exploded.”
Discussion: CNN, Althouse, Firedoglake and The Raw Story
Helen Pow / Associated Press:
Killer dies of heart attack after FORTY MINUTES writhing in agony and sitting up to say …
Discussion: The Jawa Report
Associated Press:
Oklahoma Inmate Dies After Botched Execution, Second Execution Delayed
Discussion: Liberaland and Talking Points Memo
Oren Dorell / USA Today:
Senator: E-mails show how Benghazi story shaped  —  Republicans say e-mails released Tuesday on the attack in Benghazi, Libya, include “the smoking gun” that shows a White House official urged that the assault on the U.S. consulate be blamed on a protest that never happened.
Adam Kredo / Washington Free Beacon:
Benghazi Emails Show White House Effort to Protect Obama
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Senate Democrats plan vote to reverse Citizens United decision  —  Senate Democrats will schedule a vote this year on a constitutional amendment to reform campaign finance as they face tens of millions of dollars worth of attack ads from conservative groups.
Discussion: Liberaland
Burgess Everett / Politico:
Senate to vote on campaign finance  —  The Senate will vote this year on a constitutional amendment that would allow Congress and the states to regulate the nation's campaign finance laws.  —  A roll call on the constitutional amendment, written by Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) …
Jonathan Topaz / Politico:
Tim Pawlenty: Republican Party must back wage hike  —  Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty said Wednesday that Republicans should support a “reasonable” increase in the minimum wage.  —  “If you're going to talk the talk about being for the middle class and the working person …
Discussion: The Hill and The Huffington Post
Alan Fram / Associated Press:
Senate Ready To Sink Effort To Boost Minimum Wage
Anthony Man / Sun-Sentinel:
Looking for complaints, Rick Scott instead finds praise for Obamacare  —  Scott meet with seniors looking for Obamacare horror stories, but found little complaints.  —  Sun Sentinel  —  BOCA RATON— Gov. Rick Scott visited a senior center Tuesday to warn about cuts he said Obamacare …
James Taranto / Wall Street Journal:
The “apartheid” slur has a long history.  —  “I will not allow my commitment to Israel to be questioned by anyone,” John Kerry pronounced in a press statement yesterday.  Far be it from us to defy an order from the secretary of state.  It is clear to us, however, that there is something to which Kerry's commitment is far deeper.
Tampa Bay Times:
Alan Grayson seeks annulment, saying his wife was wed to another man  —  Orlando Sentinel:  —  When U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson married his wife, she was already wed to another man, according to a new court filing by the congressman's lawyers, seeking an annulment on the basis of bigamy.
Jeff Weiner / Orlando Sentinel:
Alan Grayson asks for annulment, accuses wife of bigamy in new court documents
New York Times:
Two Giant Banks, Seen as Immune, Become Targets  —  Federal prosecutors are nearing criminal charges against some of the world's biggest banks, according to lawyers briefed on the matter, a development that could produce the first guilty plea from a major bank in more than two decades.
Coral Davenport / New York Times:
Justices Back Rule Limiting Coal Pollution  —  WASHINGTON — In a major victory for the Obama administration, the Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate the smog from coal plants that drifts across state lines from 27 Midwestern and Appalachian states to the East Coast.
Laura Barron-Lopez / The Hill:
Court upholds cross-state air pollution rule
Discussion: New York Times and Politico
Dylan Scott / Talking Points Memo:
Congressman: Bundy Militia Has Set Up Road ‘Checkpoints’ In Nevada  —  A Democratic congressman from Nevada said in a letter this week that his constituents have reported the armed militia supporting rancher Cliven Bundy have set up checkpoints to verify the residency of anybody passing through.
Congressman Steven Horsford:
Horsford Urges Sheriff Gillespie To Investigate Armed Militia Presence In Bunkerville
Discussion: The Mahablog
Patrick Marley / JSOnline:
Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin's voter ID law  —  By Patrick Marley, Jason Stein and Bruce Vielmetti of the Journal Sentinel  —  In a decision that could have implications nationally and in Wisconsin's November elections, a federal judge on Tuesday struck down the state's voter ID law …
Discussion: Washington Post and Alas, a Blog
New York Times:   Federal Judge Strikes Down Wisconsin Law Requiring Photo ID at Polls
Jason Zengerle / The New Republic:
How Barack Obama Sold Out The Kale Crowd  —  It was seven years ago this July that Barack Obama brought his presidential campaign to the Van Fossen Farm in Adel, Iowa.  There, standing between corn and soybean fields, he held forth on agricultural issues.  Obama didn't have a lot in common with Iowa farmers.
Nelson D. Schwartz / New York Times:
U.S. Economy Barely Grew in First Quarter  —  The American economy slowed drastically in the first quarter of 2014, as wintry weather depressed corporate spending and housing sector activity, while weak exports and smaller additions to inventories by businesses also held back growth.
Jonathan Rauch / Washington Monthly:
It's All in the Implementation  —  Why cannabis legalization is less like marriage equality and more like health care reform.  —  Is marijuana legalization on the gay marriage track toward decisive and irrevocable public acceptance?  The liberals and libertarians who support it …
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 More Items: 
Cliff Schecter / The Daily Beast:
Preparing for War in Indianapolis: Inside the NRA Plot to Terrify America
Reid J. Epstein / Wall Street Journal:
Koch Brothers Still Unknown to Many Americans - WSJ/NBC Poll
Sharon Otterman / New York Times:
Developer Scales Back Plans for Muslim Center Near Ground Zero
Discussion: ABC News and American Power
Richard N. Haass / Wall Street Journal:
A Foreign Policy Flirting With Chaos
China's Income Inequality Surpasses U.S., Posing Risk for Xi
Discussion: Bloomberg View
 Earlier Items: 
Juan Williams / Wall Street Journal:
Getting Past Name-Calling to Talk About Poverty
Alexandra Jaffe / The Hill:
Polls show Tillis poised to avoid N.C. GOP primary runoff
Andrew Sullivan / The Dish:
Donald Sterling's Personal Foul, Ctd
Star Wars: