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2:25 PM ET, July 24, 2008


 Top Items: 
Spiegel Online:
Obama Calls Berlin a ‘Symbol of the Victory of Hope’  —  US Presidential Candidate Barack Obama started his much-anticipated trip to Germany on Thursday, and the expectations are massive.  SPIEGEL ONLINE will be following his every move through Berlin with its Live Ticker.
Marc Ambinder:
Obama Team Begins Work On Presidential Transition  —  With less than six months to go before he would be sworn in as the nation's 44th president, Sen. Barack Obama has directed his aides to begin planning for the transition.  —  “Barack is well aware of the complexity and the organizational …
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Competing optics: Cheering Germans or American military?  Update: Snubbing wounded soldiers?  Update: Touring Berlin instead?  —  I guess this is a question of priorities.  Barack Obama apparently ran short on time in his visit to Germany today, and travelers know how schedules can slip during long tours …
Jaketapper / Political Punch:
Obama On Tonight's Berlin Speech: “A Crapshoot”  —  How does one prepare to speak to a million screaming Germans?  —  I asked Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, this question as he boarded O Force One and came back to the reporters' veal pen before the plane took off from Tel Aviv, Israel to Berlin, Germany.
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:   Obama Crowd Builds in Germany: Good or Bad?
Jill Zuckman / The Swamp:
Barack Obama gets a workout at Ritz gym
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blogs
Michael Saul / NY Daily News:
GOP gripes: So we're running vs. Prez Bam?
Discussion: Weekly Standard Blog
Matthew Yglesias:
Beetle in a Box  —  So John McCain said the surge led to the Anbar Awakening even though the Awakening, in fact, happened before the surge began.  So he's ignorant.  Or maybe dishonest.  But now we learn he's also rather stubborn: … Shawn Brimley tries to bring common sense to bear on this …
Spencer Ackerman / ATTACKERMAN:
It's A Beautiful Thing, The Destruction Of Words
Chris Cillizza / Washington Post:
McCain Makes Significant Gains in Four Key Battleground States  —  Majority of Voters in Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin Favor Keeping Troops in Iraq, According to Wall Street Journal Survey  —  Republican John McCain has quickly closed …
David S. Broder / Washington Post:
Obama's Tour de Force  —  It made no sense when Barack Obama left the country on his nine-day overseas tour for some of my fellow columnists to describe it as a high-risk venture.  —  Foreign leaders, who can read the polls as well as anyone, would go out of their way not to embarrass a man who may …
Ilan Goldenberg / American Prospect:
Why McCain Should Embrace Withdrawal
Michael D. Shear / Washington Post:
McCain Still Waiting for His Turn at Good Luck
Discussion: Truthdig
Washington Wire:
Crossing Paths  —  Jay Solomon reports on Barack Obama's trip.
Discussion: Comment Central
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
Sorry We Asked, Sorry You Told  —  Don't ask, don't tell.  And, whatever you do, don't ask Elaine Donnelly to tell you what she thinks about gays in the military.  —  The House Armed Services personnel subcommittee made just such a miscalculation yesterday.
Moon-walker claims alien contact cover-up  —  FORMER NASA astronaut and moon-walker Dr Edgar Mitchell - a veteran of the Apollo 14 mission - has stunningly claimed aliens exist.  —  And he says extra-terrestrials have visited Earth on several occasions - but the alien contact …
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
GOP losing the new-media war  —  Republicans have no lack of would-be George F. Wills.  —  But what they really need are some more Robert D. Novaks.  —  The distinction between the two prominent conservative journalists isn't always obvious, but it's nevertheless important to understand …
Mark Murray / MSNBC:
FIRST THOUGHTS: OBAMA'S ELECTION TO WIN  —  From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Domenico Montanaro  —  *** Obama's election to win: How important has this overseas trip been for Obama?  Look no further than our latest NBC/WSJ poll, which has Obama leading McCain by six points (47%-41%), unchanged from last month.
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
Now, RNC ads attack Obama in Paris—Michigan, Missouri and Maine
Discussion: Hot Air, The Swamp and Wake up America
Wall Street Journal:
Voter Unease With Obama Lingers Despite His Lead  —  Poll Finds Background, Experience Are Advantages for McCain  —  WASHINGTON — Midway through the election year, the presidential campaign looks less like a race between two candidates than a referendum on one of them — Sen. Barack Obama.
Source: Novak's Victim Worse Than First Thought  —  The pedestrian who was struck by prominent Washington columnist and commentator Robert Novak is in worse shape than first thought, a hospital source tells ABC 7 News.  —  The victim, a 66-year-old man, appeared somewhat incoherent, said the source who had seen the victim.
Matthew Yglesias:
The Party of Cheetos  —  I'm a pretty regular Morning Joe watcher as it happens, and I even caught some of yesterday's broadcast.  But I missed the part where Joe Scarborough made a ludicrous defense of John McCain screwing up the chronology of events in Iraq and then launched into an unhinged attack on, well, me and my friends:
Documents Released by the CIA and Justice Department in Response to the ACLU's Torture FOIA  —  Contains “communications from the CIA to OLC on a matter in which the CIA requested legal advice from OLC” and shows that CIA interrogators were permitted to use both “Standard Techniques” and …
National Enquirer:
JOHN EDWARDS LOVE CHILD  —  UPDATE: The NATIONAL ENQUIRER is revealing new details about the political scoop we broke yesterday - the secret meeting between Vice Presidential candidate John Edwards and Rielle Hunter.  —  A team of ENQUIRER reporters caught the married ex-senator visiting …
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 More Items: 
Ellis Henican / Newsday:
Andrew Giuliani files lawsuit against Duke
Wall Street Journal:
Housing Bill Will Extend Federal Role In Markets
John Walcott wins the first I.F. Stone Medal
Kevin Drum / Washington Monthly:
OBAMA vs. McCAIN....For some reason, there seems to be endless …
Timothy Egan / New York Times:
The Oil Man Cometh
Reihan Salam / The American Scene:
Chris Hayes on MoveOn
Discussion: The Corner and Reason Magazine
Melanie Phillips / Melanie Phillips's Articles:
Swooning over Princess Obama
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
McCain to meet with Dalai Lama Friday in Aspen
 Earlier Items: 
Joe Klein / Swampland:
Obama Trip Overload
Discussion: marbury and American Spectator
Karen Tumulty / Swampland:
Jerusalem to Berlin  —  Clearing security at the Tel Aviv airport …
Stephen Moore / Wall Street Journal:
The Insanity of Drive-55 Laws
Manu Raju / The Hill:
Senate GOP hands Dems oil ultimatum
Karen DeYoung / Washington Post:
Berlin Rally Is Off-Limits for Embassy Workers
Sam Stein / The Huffington Post:
McCain Campaign Running Obama-Castro Ad
James Hider / Times of London:
Barack Obama heckled as he visits Western Wall
William Tate /
Putting Money Where Mouths Are: Media Donations Favor Dems 100-1