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4:20 PM ET, December 19, 2006


 Top Items: 
Washington Post:
White House, Joint Chiefs At Odds on Adding Troops  —  The Bush administration is split over the idea of a surge in troops to Iraq, with White House officials aggressively promoting the concept over the unanimous disagreement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, according to U.S. officials familiar with the intense debate.
Julian E. Barnes / Los Angeles Times:
Sadr Army is called top threat in Iraq  —  A Pentagon report cites the danger of the Shiite cleric's militia.  —  WASHINGTON — Armed militiamen affiliated with radical Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr pose the gravest danger to the security and stability of Iraq, surpassing Sunni Arab insurgents …
Pentagon: Militia more dangerous than al Qaeda in Iraq … WASHINGTON (CNN) — Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's Mehdi Army has replaced al Qaeda in Iraq as "the most dangerous accelerant" of the sectarian violence plaguing Iraq for nearly a year, according to a Pentagon report.
Discussion: Centerfield and AMERICAblog
Robert Burns / Associated Press:
White House: No fight with Joint Chiefs
Stephen Dinan / Washington Times:
Conservatives fear tax-increase deal  —  The Bush administration has sent signals since last month's elections that the president is prepared to accept some tax increases on upper-income families, worrying congressional Republicans and fiscal conservative watchdogs who say he will compromise …
Greg Tinti / The Political Pit Bull:
Bush Considering Raising Taxes in Exchange for Social Security Reform?
Discussion: Daily Pundit
Glenn Kessler / Washington Post:
Ex-NSC Official Says White House Is Stifling His Criticism of Iran Policy
Curt / Flopping Aces:
AP Covering It's Tracks  —  Kind of curious that the AP has taken their response of Nov 28th off their website.  The address that I, along with many other bloggers, linked to is this one.  —  What kind of information was given in that response? … Also they said in that response …
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Jamilgate: Is the AP covering its tracks?
David Axe / Popular Science:
Semper Fly: Marines in Space  —  A proposed suborbital space transport will put boots on the ground anywhere in the world in two hours or less.  But can it overcome huge technological—and political—hurdles?  —  As any battlefield commander will tell you, getting troops to the fight can be as difficult as winning it.
Discussion: BLACKFIVE and Argghhh!
Barry Arrested, Claims He Was Targeted  —  Barry Considers Suit Against D.C., Park Police  —  WASHINGTON — Marion Barry said that he is talking to his lawyers and thinking about suing the D.C. government and the U.S. Park Police after he was stopped, arrested and then released this past Saturday.
Marc Santora / New York Times:
Iraqi Ex-Minister Escapes Jail in Green Zone  —  Iraq's former electricity minister, the most senior official arrested on corruption charges here, made a brazen escape Sunday afternoon from an Iraqi jail in the heavily fortified Green Zone.  —  There were conflicting reports about how the former official …
Borzou Daragahi / Los Angeles Times:
Private U.S. team linked to jail escape
Susan Estrich / Fox News:
DUKE JUSTICE DEMANDS NIFONG'S REMOVAL  —  This is not the way the system is supposed to operate.  Prosecutors are supposed to be out for justice, not blood; committed to the truth, at all costs, not winning, without more.  —  Prosecutors aren't just morally obliged but legally required …
Christy Hardin Smith / Firedoglake:
BREAKING: Cheney On Libby Witness List  —  Hot off the wires from the AP: … Here are the things I'm wondering: (1) Is Cheney going to be called as a regular defense witness, or will they be calling him as a hostile witness to the defense?  —  (2) If Team Libby calls Cheney as a defense witness …
Discussion: Associated Press
Steve LeBlanc / Associated Press:
Romney against bias to gays despite opposition to gay marriage  —  BOSTON —Gov. Mitt Romney said Monday he opposes discrimination against gays and lesbians despite his ongoing battles to outlaw same-sex marriage in Massachusetts, including a pending lawsuit.
James Glanz / New York Times:
Iraq Insurgents Starve Capital of Electricity  —  Over the past six months, Baghdad has been all but isolated electrically, Iraqi officials say, as insurgents have effectively won their battle to bring down critical high-voltage lines and cut off the capital from the major power plants to the north, south and west.
Glenn Thrush / Newsday:
Poll: Hillary tops McCain, ties Rudy  —  WASHINGTON — Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton beats John McCain and ties Rudolph Giuliani in a new Newsweek national poll, a stunning counterpoint to recent surveys showing the former first lady trailing the GOP's dueling presidential frontrunners.
Susannah A. Nesmith / Miami Herald:
Wily 'court jester' is a frequent case-winner  —  Attorney Sy Gaer's courtroom antics are legendary, but the aging veteran of the defense is also known for his legal skills.  — … Ladies and gentleman, Sy Gaer, a little old man who is something of a giant in courthouse circles.
Washington Post:
Giuliani's Primary Hurdle  —  Polls Aside, Skeptics Say GOP Won't Nominate a Social Liberal for President  —  His national poll numbers are a dream, he's a major box office draw on the Republican Party circuit, and he goes by the shorthand title "America's Mayor."
Dave Itzkoff / New York Times:
Joseph Barbera, Half of Cartoon Duo, Dies at 95  —  Joseph Barbera, an innovator of animation who teamed with William Hanna to give generations of young television viewers a pantheon of beloved characters, including Tom and Jerry, Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound and the Flintstones, died yesterday at his home in Los Angeles.
Arizona Republic:
McCain tapping Bush's donors  —  Federal PAC contributions outpacing possible 2008 rivals  —  WASHINGTON - Sen. John McCain has tapped into President Bush's vast network of campaign contributors in greater numbers and amounts so far than has a leading potential rival for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, Rudy Giuliani.
Discussion: Andrew Sullivan
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 More Items: 
Robin Wright / Washington Post:
State Dept. Losing a Top Figure In Terror War
Discussion: TPMmuckraker
US to warn Iran with naval buildup in Gulf- CBS
Discussion: Booman Tribune
Hotline On Call:
Kissinger, Peterson, 57 Major Donors Join Team McCain
Christopher Hitchens / Slate:
The Real Sunni Triangle
Discussion: Centerfield
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Audio: Round two — Truther moron vs. Danny Bonaduce
Bennett Roth / Houston Chronicle:
GOP hopefuls cast eye on Texas cash
Discussion: Hotline On Call
David Boaz / Cato-at-liberty:
Republicans and the Libertarian Voters
Susan Paterno / American Journalism Review:
From AJR, December 2006/January 2007
Discussion: CBS News and On Deadline
 Earlier Items: 
David Kranz / Argus Leader:
Son: Dad back at work 'sooner rather than later'
Discussion: The Caucus
Bruce Bartlett / Real Clear Politics:
Libertarian or Libertarian?  —  In a recent column …
Discussion: QandO and The Moderate Voice
Shaila Dewan / New York Times:
Georgia Man Fights Conviction as Molester
Zachary Coile / San Francisco Chronicle:
Pelosi seeks input from diverse array of confidants
Discussion: TIME
Associated Press:
'Islamophobia' on the rise in Europe, report says
New York Times:
New Dispute Over Firing of Publisher
E. J. Dionne Jr / Washington Post:
'The Real America,' Redefined
Libya sentences medics to death
Discussion: Pharyngula and Polimom Says