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4:35 PM ET, July 20, 2008

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
Political leverage in the 51st state  —  It's almost a convention of politics that when a politician says he was misquoted, but doesn't detail the misquote or offer an alternative, he's really saying he wishes he hadn't said what he did, or that he needs to issue a pro-forma denial to please someone.
RELATED:
Spiegel Online:
Iraqi Leader Stirs up US Campaign  —  Obama is pleased, but McCain certainly is not.  In an interview with SPIEGEL, Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki expressed support for Obama's troop withdrawal plans.  Despite a half-hearted retraction, the comments have stirred up the US presidential campaign.
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
NICE TRY  —  Der Spiegel is standing by its story, its translation of what Maliki said.  —  And as Ben Smith aptly puts it, “It's almost a convention of politics that when a politician says he was misquoted, but doesn't detail the misquote or offer an alternative, he's really saying he wishes …
Discussion: Eschaton
Mark Murray / MSNBC:
DID MALIKI ENDORSE OBAMA'S PLAN?
Discussion: The Trail and The Jed Report
Christoph von Marschall / Washington Post:
Snubbed by Obama  —  Barack Obama is on his way to Europe, where an adoring public awaits.  But I wonder if the reception would be quite so enthusiastic if Obama's fans across the Atlantic knew a dirty little secret of his remarkable presidential campaign: Although Obama portrays himself …
Discussion: Wake up America and Commentary
RELATED:
Little Green Footballs:
Obama Shunning Foreign Media  —  Christoph von Marschall of Germany's Der Tagesspiegel says the Barack Obama campaign has been making sure Obama doesn't have to answer any real questions from the international media: Snubbed by Obama. … My take: his staff is desperately worried …
Discussion: Ed Driscoll.com and TigerHawk
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Rendering public opinion irrelevant  —  One of the most striking aspects of our political discourse, particularly during election time, is how efficiently certain views that deviate from the elite consensus are banished from sight — simply prohibited — even when those views are held by the vast majority of citizens.
New York Times:
Closed Mouths, but Open Tryouts to Make the Team  —  For all the lengths Senators Barack Obama and John McCain have gone to in keeping their hunt for a vice president under wraps, their deliberations are in some ways being conducted in plain sight.  —  There was Mr. McCain appearing yet again …
Lee Siegel / New York Times:
We're Not Laughing at You, or With You  —  Enough of the labyrinthine Iraq war, the interminable mortgage crisis and the plummeting economy.  Let's talk about the bloody crossroads where satire goes searching for its target.  —  Last week, in the aftermath of The New Yorker's …
RELATED:
Brian C. Mooney / Boston Globe:
Obama's paid staff dwarfing McCain's  —  Democrat targets 50 states as rival focuses on tossups  —  John McCain is sending smaller staffs to some states but spending more on TV ads than his rival, Barack Obama.  (Carolyn Kaster/associated Press)  —  Behind the headlines about the unprecedented success …
Spiegel Online:
Is Obama Speech Site Contaminated by Nazi Past?  —  Finally, Barack Obama's campaign has settled on a site for his Berlin speech.  But some German politicians have now criticized his choice as being one full of Nazi-related symbolism.  —  Finally, it's official.
Gretchen Morgenson / New York Times:
Given a Shovel, Americans Dig Deeper Into Debt  —  The collection agencies call at least 20 times a day.  For a little quiet, Diane McLeod stashes her phone in the dishwasher.  —  But right up until she hit the wall financially, Ms. McLeod was a dream customer for lenders.
MSNBC:
July 20: Al Gore, political roundtable  —  Al Gore, David Gregory, Chuck Todd  —  MR. TOM BROKAW: Our issues this Sunday: He served as Bill Clinton's vice president for eight years, then lost the presidential election to George W. Bush in 2000.  He has since focused on his environmental crusade …
Discussion: TalkLeft and The Jed Report
SilentPatriot / Crooks and Liars:
Obama's Mini State Dept.  —  The discipline and organization of the Obama campaign is truly remarkable.  —  A Cast of 300 Advises Obama on Foreign Policy … In contrast, McCain has loose-knit group of about 75 advisers, consisting of a virtual “who's who” of the neoconservative foreign policy establishment:
Discussion: News Hounds and ParaPundit
CNN:
Obama: Situation in Afghanistan is ‘urgent’  —  KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) — Sen. Barack Obama said Sunday that United States needs to focus on Afghanistan in its battle against terrorism.  —  “The Afghan government needs to do more.  But we have to understand that the situation is precarious and urgent here in Afghanistan.
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 More Items: 
Pamela Geller / Atlas Shrugs:
ATLAS EXCLUSIVE: FINAL REPORT ON OBAMA BIRTH CERTIFICATE FORGERY …
Howard Witt / Chicago Tribune:
Taser death ignites racial tensions
Discussion: Big Brass Blog
Hindrocket / Power Line:
BLOWING THE WHISTLE ON GLOBAL WARMING
Discussion: Maggie's Farm
Jim Tankersley / The Swamp:
Inauguration tix selling fast in Illinois
Washington Wire:
Surprise Visit by Bob Barr at Netroots Conference
Peter S. Goodman / New York Times:
Uncomfortable Answers to Questions on the Economy
Discussion: www.redstate.com
SilentPatriot / Crooks and Liars:
Dan Rather: Jesse Jackson paved the way for...Osama bin Laden?!
Discussion: The Sideshow
Khaled Abu Toameh / Jerusalem Post:
Palestinians: Israel uses rats against J'lem Arabs
Discussion: Israel Matzav
 Earlier Items: 
John P. Avlon / The Politico:
Obama's steady centrism
Matt / Think Progress:
McCain Aide Scheunemann Linked To Bush Library ‘Cash For Access’ Scandal
Mercury News:
County voter drive blocked
Elaine Sciolino / New York Times:
Iran Nuclear Talks End in Deadlock
Discussion: Booman Tribune and TIME.com
CNN:
Preview the Show
Discussion: Firedoglake
Mark Hemingway / The Corner:
The Tautology of Hope  —  I'm pretty sure this is photoshopped …
Discussion: protein wisdom
Ronald Bailey / Reason Magazine:
It Came From Outer Space
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Aaron Barnhart / TV Barn:
MSNBC prez on Fox News: “You can't trust a word they say”
Discussion: NewsBusters.org