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5:50 PM ET, February 21, 2008


 Top Items: 
Gabriel Sherman / The New Republic:
The Long Run-Up  —  Behind the Bombshell in ‘The New York Times.’  —  RELATED CONTENT  —  'Charlie's Horse,' by S.V. Date (2/6/08)  —  Last night, around dinnertime, The New York Times posted on its website a 3,000-word investigation detailing Senator John McCain's connections to a telecommunications lobbyist named Vicki Iseman.
The Politico:
Rush, right rally to McCain  —  Rush Limbaugh, who has been critical of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), embraced him today now that they have a common enemy: The New York Times.  —  Limbaugh and other conservative commentators rushed to defend McCain on Thursday against a potentially damaging article …
Ed OKeefe / Political Radar:
Romney Camp Laments  —  ABC News' John Berman Reports: The remnants of the Romney campaign are shaking their heads this morning.  —  For months they were whispering about a New York Times investigation into John McCain's ties to a certain lobbyist.  —  They would poke and prod reporters …
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
John Weaver Speaks  —  John Weaver, a former senior aide to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and the man in the middle of maelstrom surrounding the Arizona senator's relationship (or lack thereof) with lobbyist Vicki Iseman, just spoke to The Fix in an attempt to clarify his role in all of this.
THE ‘NEW YORK TIMES’ AND THE JOHN MCCAIN SEX SCANDAL STORY  —  The New York Times began reporting its story about John McCain's relationship with Vicki Iseman after two sources told its reporters that McCain had had an affair with the lobbyist for many months, and that McCain's wife had become aware of the relationship.
Discussion: Big Head DC
Greg Sargent / Horses Mouth:
About That Times Story On McCain's Relationship  —  Let's try a little experiment.  Let's take the meat of the big New York Times story and substitute the words “Dem Presidential Hopeful” for “John McCain”: … If these words had appeared on the front page of The New York Times …
The Story Is the Drive-By Media Turning on Its Favorite Maverick
Discussion: Salon
Matthew Yglesias:
A Real Story  —  Mark Kleiman points out that the AP's version …
Discussion: TalkLeft and The RBC
Megan McArdle:
Ise, Ise baby . . .  Mark Kleiman links to the AP story on John McCain …
Discussion: The Page and
Greg Sargent / Horses Mouth:
About Bill Keller's Defense Of McCain Story
Discussion: MSNBC, TalkLeft and The New Republic
Slobodan Lekic / Associated Press:
Belgrade's US Embassy set on fire  —  BELGRADE, Serbia - Serb rioters broke into the U.S. Embassy and set fire to an office Thursday, and police clashed with protesters outside other embassy buildings after a large demonstration against Kosovo's declaration of independence.
Serb protesters attack U.S. Embassy
Discussion: Group News Blog
William Branigin / Washington Post:
Serbian Protesters Storm U.S. Embassy Compound in Belgrade
Stephen Ohlemacher / Associated Press:
Obama Wins Democrats Abroad Primary  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — Barack Obama won the Democrats Abroad global primary in results announced Thursday, giving him 11 straight victories in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.  —  The Illinois senator won the primary in which Democrats living …
Hillary Clinton / CNN:
Obama wins Democrats Abroad contest
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
Obama lawyer warns of “reckoning” for Clinton 527 donors and staff  —  Obama lawyer Bob Bauer reiterated the charges made in a memo yesterday (after the jump) that the new pro-Clinton 527, the American Leadership, is breaking the law and warned that donors and aides to the group …
Discussion: The Swamp
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
Obama's New Vulnerability  —  In campaigns, there are sometimes moments when candidates shift ground, causing the race to change dramatically.  Tuesday night was one of those moments.  —  Hammered for the 10th contest in a row, Hillary Clinton toughened her attacks on Barack Obama …
Carla Marinucci / San Francisco Chronicle:
Huckabee's wife takes a breather at a Vegas fight, rests at Hooters  —  What happens in Vegas doesn't always stay in Vegas - especially if you're the wife of a presidential candidate.  Just ask Janet Huckabee, who attended a middleweight prize fight this past weekend in Las Vegas - where she stayed at the Hooters Casino Hotel.
Marc Ambinder:
A Scenario Develops: Blame Weaver  —  The cognoscenti seems to have arrived at the belief that the New York Times story was planted by or somehow originated from former McCain chief strategist John Weaver, who left the campaign in June after a dispute with McCain over the direction of the campaign.
Byron York / The Corner:
McCain Adviser: Iseman's Claims Were “Alarming”
Discussion: and Hot Air
Gallup Daily: Tracking Election 2008  —  Based on polling conducted Feb. 18-20, 2008  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are now tied in national Democratic presidential preferences, based on Feb. 18-20 Gallup Poll Daily tracking.  —  The latest three-day average finds Clinton favored …
Discussion: Hotline On Call, MyDD and Wonkette
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
HOW WE LIVE NOW.  —  a great essay on the need to think about the impacts of driving far beyond the simple fact of tailpipe exhaust.  I was particularly struck by this: … And denser areas are also more livable.  They're more walkable, which is shown to make people healthier, and more social, which is shown to make them happier.
Dana Blanton / Fox News:
FOX News Poll: Obama Has Slim Edge Over McCain, Half Would Never Vote for Clinton  —  If American voters were casting their ballot today, Democrat Barack Obama would have a slight advantage over Republican John McCain in the race for the White House, while McCain would narrowly edge out Hillary Clinton …
Discussion: Megan McArdle
Joomla! powered Site:
TX 2/20 - Pre-debate  —  Ran a poll Feb 20 using a new turnout model.  Anyone who claims to know what Democratic turnout will be is lying, but analysis of earlier contests indicates many new primary voters resulting in higher proportions of women, African-American and younger voters.
Discussion: Burnt Orange Report and Open Left
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 More Items: 
Michael Fabac / KXAN-TV:
Exclusive Statewide Presidential Poll
Victor Davis Hanson / The Corner:
It's Not Over Till It's Over...  Peter Robinson and I still …
Discussion: Amygdala
Bill Roggio / The Long War Journal:
Report: Sadr to extend cease-fire
Noel Sheppard /
Inconvenient Fact: Times Sex Scandal Writer's Left-wing Connection
San Francisco Chronicle:
GOP lobbyist had no work permit
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
A pro-Hillary online effort
Discussion: Spin Cycle
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Consultant spending saps Clinton campaign
Senators' emergency landing in Afghanistan
 Earlier Items: 
Kathryn Jean Lopez / The Corner:
“America at Risk”  —  A Protect America Act reminder from House Republicans.
Discussion: Salon, Bang the Drum and Daily Kos
Think Progress:
McCain: 'I'm The Only Candidate That The Special Interests Don't Give Money To'
Megan McArdle:
Brookings: Income mobility is not what it used to be
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
Today's DBD Cartoon
Discussion: Sadly, No!
John McCormick / The Swamp:
Union group: Clinton may need to exit soon
Boston Globe:
Romney spent $42.3m of own money
Discussion: Associated Press
Bob Van Voris / Bloomberg:
Duke Lacrosse Players to Sue School Over Rape Probe
Robert Winnett / Telegraph:
Biggest brain drain from UK in 50 years
Discussion: Wake up America and Don Surber