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9:50 AM ET, January 31, 2008


 Top Items: 
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Romney falls into McCain trap on Iraq  —  SIMI VALLEY, Calif. - In the final GOP debate before Super Tuesday, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Sen. John McCain of Arizona bickered over a laundry list of past and present positions, most notably whether Romney backed a time-table for withdrawing troops for Iraq.
David Espo / Associated Press:
Romney Tactics Seem Good News for McCain  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — In a major boost for John McCain, Republican presidential rival Mitt Romney signaled Wednesday he's not ready to commit to a costly campaign in the states holding primaries and caucuses next week.
Daniel Casse / Commentary:
The Man Who Blew It  —  Tonight was Mitt Romney's last stand.
Discussion: The Campaign Spot
Hugh Hewitt / TownHall Blog:
An Angry, Defensive McCain
Discussion: Riehl World View
Michael Crowley / The New Republic:
Romney's Missed Opportunity
Discussion: The Corner and Spin Cycle
William Kristol / Weekly Standard:
A Bush Rally  —  Can he close strong in 2008?  —  The Associated Press reported last week that a left-wing group, Americans United for Change, plans to spend $8.5 million to ensure that President Bush's public approval rating doesn't improve in his final year in office.
New York Times:
An Ex-President, a Mining Deal and a Big Donor  —  Late on Sept. 6, 2005, a private plane carrying the Canadian mining financier Frank Giustra touched down in Almaty, a ruggedly picturesque city in southeast Kazakhstan.  Several hundred miles to the west a fortune awaited …
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Mukasey's radical worldview is now the norm  —  Yesterday's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, featuring day-long testimony from Attorney General Michael Mukasey, was extraordinary for only one reason: for our country, what happened in the hearing is now completely ordinary.
New York Times:
A Disappointing Debut
Discussion: Balkinization and The Corner
Jennifer Rubin / New York Observer:
What Will Rush, Hugh Say if McCain Wins?  —  Rush Limbaugh.  —  Certain conservative opinion makers are not pleased.  —  Rush Limbaugh, Hugh Hewitt, much of the roster at the National Review and many (but certainly not all) of their more conservative talk radio and blogger colleagues …
Transcript of GOP debate at Reagan Library  —  This is the transcript of the GOP debate at the Reagan Library Wednesday January 30.  —  (CNN) — ANDERSON COOPER, CNN: The first question is actually a question that will go to all of you, but I'll start with Governor Romney.
Michelle Malkin:
Reagan vs. McCain on profits, business, and the free market  —  Compare and contrast.  —  Class warrior John McCain Edwards at last night's GOP debate held at the Reagan Library (transcript): … Ronald Reagan, “What Ever Happened to Free Enterprise,” Ludwig Von Mises Memorial Lecture at Hillsdale College, November 1977:
Robert D. Novak / Washington Post:
Is McCain a Conservative?  —  As John McCain neared his momentous primary election victory in Florida after a ferocious campaign questioning his conservative credentials, right-wingers buzzed over word that he had privately suggested that Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito was too conservative.
Discussion: Captain's Quarters and Hot Air
Kim Sengupta / The Independent:
Sentenced to death: Afghan who dared to read about women's rights  —  A young man, a student of journalism, is sentenced to death by an Islamic court for downloading a report from the internet.  The sentence is then upheld by the country's rulers.  This is Afghanistan …
Siun / Crooks and Liars:
“Young Democracy” in Afghanistan?
New York Times:
Republican Debate in Simi Valley, Calif.  —  The following is a transcript of the Republican presidential debate in Simi Valley, Calif., as provided by the Federal News Service and CNN.  —  PARTICIPANTS:  —  FORMER ARKANSAS GOVERNOR MIKE HUCKABEE FORMER MASSACHUSETTS GOVERNOR MITT ROMNEY
Clinton Remained Silent As Wal-Mart Fought Unions  —  Tapes Reviewed by ABC News Show Clinton As a Loyal Company Woman  —  In six years as a member of the Wal-Mart board of directors, between 1986 and 1992, Hillary Clinton remained silent as the world's largest retailer waged a major campaign …
Discussion: Captain's Quarters and The Field
Dana Priest / Washington Post:
Soldier Suicides at Record Level  —  Increase Linked to Long Wars, Lack of Army Resources  —  Lt. Elizabeth Whiteside, a psychiatric outpatient at Walter Reed Army Medical Center who was waiting for the Army to decide whether to court-martial her for endangering another soldier and turning …
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
The Dynastic Question  —  In a presidential campaign that has involved battles over everything from Iraq to driver's licenses, one sweeping topic has gone curiously unexamined: Does it diminish American democracy if we keep the presidency in the same two families that have held it since 1989?
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 More Items: 
Associated Press:
Katrina lawsuit vs. Army Corps dismissed
Discussion: Facing South
Christopher Maag / New York Times:
Police Shooting of Mother and Infant Exposes a City's Racial Tension
Robert Pear / New York Times:
Bush Seeks Surplus via Medicare Cuts
Steven Mufson / Washington Post:
Plan for Carbon Storage Dropped
Mark Steyn / The Corner:
President McCain  —  Well, Kathryn, since most of the gang seems …
Hillary on Bill: ‘This Is My Campaign’
New York Times:
Abruptly, Edwards Ends His White House Bid
Adam Nagourney / New York Times:
The New Race: Four Candidates, 24 States and One Hectic Week
 Earlier Items: 
Debbie Schlussel:
EXCLUSIVE - Obama's Nation of Islam Staffers, Edward Said & …
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Haaretz
Rush Does Not Concede, Vows to Fight On
Kristin Jensen / Bloomberg:
Nader Says He's Considering a New White House Run
Discussion: QandO, MyDD, Salon and ABCNEWS
Ricardo Hausmann / Financial Times:
Stop behaving as whiner of first resort
Discussion: Economist's View
Asaf Shalev / Daily Californian:
City Council Passes Motions Criticizing Marines Office
Rasmussen Reports:
Election 2008: Massachusetts Democratic Primary
New York Times:
G.O.P. Exodus in House Bodes Ill for Fall Success