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4:10 PM ET, February 18, 2008


 Top Items: 
Jeff Zeleny / New York Times:
An Obama Refrain Bears Echoes of a Governor's Speeches  —  CHICAGO — Senator Barack Obama adapted one of his signature arguments — that his oratory amounts to more than inspiring words — from speeches given by Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts during his 2006 campaign.
Mike Allen / The Politico:
Clinton aide accuses Obama of plagiarism  —  Howard Wolfson, the Clinton campaign's communications director, today accused Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) of committing “plagiarism” in a speech in Milwaukee on Saturday night.  —  Wolfson made the explosive charge in an interview with Politico …
David Kurtz / Talking Points Memo:
IT'S ALL ABOUT AUTHENTICITY  —  By now, you've probably heard of the new attack line from the Hillary campaign, accusing Obama of plagiarism because an ad-libbed portion of his stump speech mimicked the language and rhythm of a two-year-old speech by his friend and supporter, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
Is This Really Plagiarism?  No  —  The New York Times makes a big deal about some similarities between elements in Barack Obama's speech and similar constructs in speeches given earlier by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick in 2006.  While the wording appears too close for coincidence …
Big Head DC:
Obama Caught Plagiarizing 2006 Speech?  —  Big Head DC has discovered alarming similarities between a speech made by Sen. Barack Obama on February 16 while campaigning for president in Wisconsin and an October 2006 speech made by Deval Patrick, the current Democratic governor of Massachusetts.
John McCormick / The Swamp:
Obama says he should have credited Patrick  —  NILES, Ohio - Sen. Barack Obama said today that he should have given credit to his friend, Deval Patrick, when he used language very similar to some previously spoken by the Massachusetts governor in 2006.  —  “I was on the stump, and, you know …
Timothy J. Burger / Bloomberg:
Obama Bought His Home With No Rezko ‘Discount,’ Seller Affirms  —  Feb. 18 (Bloomberg) — The couple who sold Barack Obama his Chicago home said the Illinois senator's $1.65 million bid “was the best offer” and they didn't cut their asking price because a campaign donor bought their adjacent land …
Hillary Clinton / CNN:
Obama, Clinton camps point to ‘borrowed rhetoric’
Discussion: Hot Air and The Ruckus
Joe Gandelman / The Moderate Voice:
Clinton And Obama Campaigns Accuse Each Other Of “Borrowing” Rhetoric
Discussion: CNN
Eric Kleefeld / TPM Election Central:
Hillary Campaign: Obama Plagiarized Speech From Supporter
Discussion: Spin Cycle and The Caucus
USA Today:
Clinton campaign accuses Obama of ‘flip-flop’
Discussion: Talking Points Memo
Jeff Fecke / Shakespeare's Sister:   Is Barack Obama a Plagiarist? (No.)
James Joyner / Outside The Beltway:   Obama ‘Steals’ from King and Jefferson
Nedra Pickler / Associated Press:   Obama says borrowed lines not a big deal
Matthew Mosk / Washington Post:
System Worries Clinton Backers  —  Supporters of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton are worried that convoluted delegate rules in Texas could water down the impact of strong support for her among Hispanic voters there, creating a new obstacle for her in the must-win presidential primary contest.
Hilzoy / The Daily Dish:
Competence  —  From the Washington Post (emphasis added, and stolen from publius): … When I read this, I dissolved in giggles after the first sentence.  It was that part about the Texas delegate selection rules “creating a new obstacle for her” that got me.  In what sense are the Texas rules a “new obstacle?”
Publius / Obsidian Wings:
They're Not a Machine  —  This article should put to rest …
Dan Balz / Washington Post:
Clinton's Ties To Texas Run Long and Deep
Andrew Malcolm / Los Angeles Times:
Nearly-naked hotties for Ron Paul!  Really!  —  You better hurry because the last batch of Ron Paul pinup calendars is going quickly.  Which pleases Juliet Annerino no end because she sank a sizable chunk of her own change into printing up hundreds of these calendars to help fund the campaign of her favorite politician.
Ross Douthat:
The Wrong War  —  Ryan Lizza does a fine job of sketching …
Ben Smith / The Politico:
Who's calling who a second-class delegate?  —  A co-chairman of Hillary's Michigan campaign and has a line that's sure to drive a whole bunch of red state governors up the wall:  —  “Superdelegates are not second-class delegates,” says Joel Ferguson, who will be a superdelegate if Michigan is seated.
William Kristol / New York Times:
Democrats Should Read Kipling  —  Browsing through a used-book store Friday — in the Milwaukee airport, of all places — I came across a 1981 paperback collection of George Orwell's essays.  That's how I happened to reread his 1942 essay on Rudyard Kipling.
Big Tent Democrat / TalkLeft:
Will A President Obama Do Anything On Health Care?  —  In an earlier post, I highlighted a David Brooks column that took pokes at Hillary Clinton because Tennessee Bush Dog Democrat Jim Cooper did not like that Hillary fought for universal health care in 1993 and 1994.  To me, that was something GOOD about Hillary.
Discussion: Open Left and The Ruckus
Mike Lux / Open Left:   Jim Cooper Scares Me
Little Green Footballs:
Hizballah = Nazis  —  A photo that says everything about the Lebanese terror gang Hizballah, as they pay tribute to dead mass murderer Imad Mughniyeh with a straight-armed Nazi salute.  The Associated Press caption, of course, takes no notice of it.
Discussion: Solomonia
Robert D. Novak / Washington Post:
Why Torts Trumped Terrorism  —  A closed-door caucus of House Democrats last Wednesday took a risky political course.  By 4 to 1, they instructed Speaker Nancy Pelosi to call President Bush's bluff on extending the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to continue eavesdropping on suspected foreign terrorists.
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
How Evangelical Leaders Blew It  —  Dan Gilgoff does a post-mortem on how the evangelical movement managed to allow John McCain to win the Republican Party nomination over two candidates more amenable to their cause.  Gilgoff focuses on their failure to back Romney, and makes it plain …
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 More Items: 
Liz Sidoti / Associated Press:
Former President Bush backs McCain
Discussion: Pam's House Blend
Gleaves Whitney / National Review:
Whitney: It's Washingtons Birthday, Not Presidents Day
Discussion: Politics Blog and GINA COBB
Michael Powell / New York Times:
Sense of Freedom Follows a Career Crisis
Whistle-blower site taken offline
‘Nazi Philip wanted Diana dead’
Discussion: Harry's Place
New York Times:
Kosovo Is Recognized by U.S., France and Britain
Big Tent Democrat / TalkLeft:
PPP Poll: Obama With Comfortable WI Lead
 Earlier Items: 
You Decide 08!:
Ben Smith / The Politico:
More Obama and Patrick  —  Mike Allen has more on a pretty …
Discussion: The New Republic
David Denby / New Yorker:
KILLING JOKE  —  The Coen brothers' twists and turns.
Discussion: The New Republic
Daniel Martin / Daily Mail:
A&E patients left in ambulances for up to FIVE hours 'so trusts …
Howard Kurtz / Washington Post:
It's All Uphill From Here  —  It was 15 degrees outside …
Michael J. Totten:
The Dungeon of Fallujah
Elisabeth Bumiller / New York Times:
McCain Facing Delicate Choice: A Role for Bush