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4:45 PM ET, October 18, 2006

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Why The White House Has To Be Optimistic  —  Perhaps the biggest danger to Republicans in the wake of all these bad polls is that their volunteer base, so critical to victory in 2004, won't put their heart in their work.  If volunteers become convinced that Republicans will lose control of Congress …
Pallavi Gogoi / MSNBC:
Wal-Mart workers walk out  —  Employees at one store in Florida stage a protest-and win a reprieve  —  For months, politicians and activists have been saying that the low prices at the world's largest retailer, Wal-Mart Stores, come at a tremendous cost to its low-paid employees.
Discussion: The News Blog and TBogg
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Kevin G. Hall / Real Cities:
Health care, wages, energy costs put squeeze on middle class
Discussion: Political Animal
David Leonhardt / New York Times:
A Lesson From Europe on Health Care
Ellen Knickmeyer / Washington Post:
Violence in Iraq Kills 10 U.S. Soldiers  —  BAGHDAD, Oct. 18-Ten U.S. soldiers were killed in Iraq on Tuesday, one of the bloodiest days of the war for American forces outside of major combat operations.  —  The toll included four soldiers killed by a single bomb in Baghdad …
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William Sim / Bloomberg:
Bush to Blame for North Korean Crisis, Soros Says (Update1)  —  Oct. 18 (Bloomberg) — Billionaire investor George Soros today blamed U.S. President George W. Bush for escalating tensions with North Korea, which last week tested a nuclear bomb for the first time.
Discussion: Austin Bay Blog
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Rasmussen Reports:
Pennsylvania Senate: Santorum Trailing by 13  —  Casey (D) 54% Santorum (R) 41%  —  With just a few weeks to go until November 7, Senator Rick Santorum's chances of securing reelection fade a bit more every day.  The latest Rasmussen Reports election poll finds that challenger Bob Casey …
Marc Kaufman / Washington Post:
Bush Sets Defense As Space Priority  —  U.S. Says Shift Is Not A Step Toward Arms; Experts Say It Could Be  —  President Bush has signed a new National Space Policy that rejects future arms-control agreements that might limit U.S. flexibility in space and asserts a right to deny access to space to anyone "hostile to U.S. interests."
Jon Craig / Cincinnati Enquirer:
Governor's race turns ugly  —  Blackwell campaign links Strickland to predators, hints he's gay  —  COLUMBUS - With Republican Ken Blackwell trailing by double digits in almost every poll, Blackwell's campaign Tuesday tried to link his Democratic opponent to child sex predators …
David Ignatius / Washington Post:
Which Way to Win?  —  As we head toward Election Day 2006, political analysts are focusing on a few dozen tossup races that will determine whether the Democrats take the House and Senate.  But there's a larger, overarching battle this year between two visions of America …
Peter Robinson / Opinion Journal:
The Dartmouth Fracas  —  Alumni trustees can reconnect the university with American life.  —  Ho-hum about the clash of civilizations?  Blasé about the struggle for Congress?  Then turn your attention to Hanover, N.H., home of Dartmouth College, where the fighting is really intense.
Discussion: Power Line and Armavirumque
Matthew Mosk / Washington Post:
Tyson Ready to Enter The Ring for Steele  —  Former heavyweight boxing champ Mike Tyson says he is so bullish on Republican Michael S. Steele's campaign for the U.S. Senate, he would return to the ring if Steele thought it might help him.  —  "I would do anything to help Michael," …
Discussion: TAPPED and The Caucus
Steven E. Moore / Opinion Journal:
655,000 War Dead?  —  A bogus study on Iraq casualties.  —  After doing survey research in Iraq for nearly two years, I was surprised to read that a study by a group from Johns Hopkins University claims that 655,000 Iraqis have died as a result of the war.
Ian / Hot Air:
Video: 'Wrong' Rosie won't voice support for US victory in Iraq  —  Bill O'Reilly was on this morning's "The View" to discuss his book, "traditionalists" and "secular progressives", and a variety of other issues.  —  Before Bill O came out with the gals, Rosie introduced "Disagree" and …
New York Times:
Alarm Bells for G.O.P. in a Battleground State  —  Supporters of both candidates in the Senate race in Ohio hit the streets on Friday in Dayton.  Senator Mike DeWine, a Republican, is trailing.  —  The bellwether state of Ohio appears to have become hostile terrain for Republicans this year …
Michael Freund / Jerusalem Post:
Pro-Israeli editor beaten in Bangladesh  —  A Muslim journalist facing charges of sedition for advocating ties with Israel was recently attacked and beaten by a crowd in Bangladesh that allegedly included leading officials of the country's ruling party, The Jerusalem Post has learned.
Brian Ross Reports / The Blotter:
FBI Yet to Find Evidence of Foley-Page Sexual Contact  —  Brian Ross Reports:  —  After interviewing some 40 former congressional pages, FBI agents have yet to turn up any evidence of direct sexual contact between underage pages and former Congressman Mark Foley.
Discussion: Hot Air and PoliPundit.com
Richard Norton-Taylor / Guardian:
Iraq war cost years of progress in Afghanistan - UK brigadier  —  Commander echoes criticism of Blair's foreign policy by head of army  —  The invasion of Iraq prevented British forces from helping to secure Afghanistan much sooner and has left a dangerous vacuum in the country for four years …
BBC:
Human species 'may split in two'  —  Humanity may split into two sub-species in 100,000 years' time as predicted by HG Wells, an expert has said.  —  Evolutionary theorist Oliver Curry of the London School of Economics expects a genetic upper class and a dim-witted underclass to emerge.
Jim VandeHei / Washington Post:
Funding Constrains Democrats  —  Party Chiefs See Chance to Take 40-Plus Seats With TV Push  —  Top Democrats said yesterday that they are planning to significantly expand the number of GOP House seats they will target during the final 20 days of the campaign but that financial disputes …
John Kerry / The Huffington Post:
Will You Fight With Them?  —  Anyone who comes to Huffington Post has seen that the bloggers here have been the first to stand up and defend veterans from Admiral Sestak to Tammy Duckworth when they've been slandered.  It should be a source of pride and testimony to how the blogosphere …
Guardian:
Gaza doctors say patients suffering mystery injuries after Israeli attacks  —  Rory McCarthy in Gaza City  —  Doctors in Gaza have reported previously unseen injuries from Israeli weapons that cause severe burning and deep internal wounds often resulting in amputations or death.
Ann E. Marimow / Washington Post:
Hoyer Remark 'Racist,' GOP's Steele Charges  —  Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele accused a leading Democratic congressman yesterday of racial insensitivity for saying the Republican candidate has "slavishly" followed the GOP.  —  Steele, an African American running for the U.S. Senate …
 
 
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 More Items: 
O. Kay Henderson / radioiowa.com:
McCain: "I'd just commit suicide" if Democrats take control of Senate
Redstate:
Senate Democrats Bankroll Extortion
Charlie Cook / MSNBC:
The blue wave of the future is clear
Center for American Progress:
Securing the Common Good  —  Georgetown University, Washington, DC, Gaston Hall
Christy Hardin Smith / Firedoglake:
Getting To The Heart Of Things
Charles S. Johnson / Billings Gazette:
Iraq plan ignites Burns-Tester debate
Washington Post:
Virginia's Senate Race
 Earlier Items: 
CNN:
Ministry: Iraq families join exodus to escape violence
Mark Mazzetti / New York Times:
Report Spells Out Abuses by Former Congressman
Paul Kiel / TPMmuckraker:
Sweeney: You Call That A Sweatshop?
Alan Dershowitz / New York Sun:
Clinton And I  —  Several years ago, I provoked a storm …
Glenn Harlan Reynolds / TCS Daily:
We're All Soldiers of Fortune Now  —  Survival kits …
Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Pastor endorses Bachmann; IRS gets complaint
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Aaron Fritschner / @fritschner:
[Thread] Uri Berliner's essay on NPR bias has significant problems, including verifiable falsehoods, flawed arguments, and questionable voter registration data

Dylan Byers / @dylanbyers:
Sources: former Disney TV chief Ben Sherwood and former Hearst Magazines exec Joanna Coles will buy a 49% stake in The Daily Beast; Barry Diller will retain 51%

Matthew Keys / The Desk:
Federal prosecutors charge Marco Gaudino with one count of conspiracy for allegedly giving Tim Burke credentials to access systems used by Fox News and others

 
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