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10:50 AM ET, October 31, 2008


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Growing Doubts on Palin Take a Toll, Poll Finds  —  A growing number of voters have concluded that Senator John McCain's running mate, Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska, is not qualified to be vice president, weighing down the Republican ticket in the last days of the campaign, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Sarah Palin unready: Former secretary
Washington Times:
Washington Times kicked off Obama plane for finale  —  The Washington Times, which has covered the Barack Obama campaign from the start, was kicked off the Democrat's campaign plane for the final 72 hours of the race.  —  The Obama campaign informed the newspaper Thursday evening of its decision …
Washington Post:
An ‘Idiot Wind’  —  John McCain's latest attempt to link Barack Obama to extremism  —  WITH THE presidential campaign clock ticking down, Sen. John McCain has suddenly discovered a new boogeyman to link to Sen. Barack Obama: a sometimes controversial but widely respected Middle East scholar named Rashid Khalidi.
New York Times:
Political Storm Finds a Columbia Professor  —  Rashid Khalidi had been bracing for the storm for months, friends said.  —  Since an April news report detailing his relationship with Senator Barack Obama, Mr. Khalidi, a Middle East scholar and passionate defender of Palestinian rights …
Wall Street Journal:
Obama and the Runaway Train  —  The race, the case, a hope for grace.  —  The case for Barack Obama, in broad strokes:  —  He has within him the possibility to change the direction and tone of American foreign policy, which need changing; his rise will serve as a practical rebuke to the past five years …
Jonathan Karl / ABCNEWS:
Exclusive: Petraeus Wants to Go to Syria; Bush Administration Says No  —  Petraeus Proposed Visiting Syria But Was Rejected By Bush Administration  —  Apparently Gen. David Petraeus does not agree with the Bush administration that the road to Damascus is a dead end.
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
When Consumers Capitulate  —  The long-feared capitulation of American consumers has arrived.  According to Thursday's G.D.P. report, real consumer spending fell at an annual rate of 3.1 percent in the third quarter; real spending on durable goods (stuff like cars and TVs) fell at an annual rate of 14 percent.
The Huffington Post:
Rick Sanchez V. Michael Goldfarb: McCain Spokesman Wusses Out On CNN  —  Oh, dear.  Michael Goldfarb, who's clearly better off blogging about ABBA and criticizing people for playing Dungeons and Dragons, just pooped his pants on national television.  The McCain campaign is making …
Alexander Burns / The Politico:
Poll: Dead heats in 2 key swing states  —  Barack Obama and John McCain are evenly matched in the swing states of North Carolina and Missouri, though Obama is strongly outpacing McCain in two of those states' crucial battleground counties, according to new Politico/InsiderAdvantage polls.
Discussion: and PoliBlog (TM)
R. Jeffrey Smith / Washington Post:
A Last Push To Deregulate  —  The White House is working to enact a wide array of federal regulations, many of which would weaken government rules aimed at protecting consumers and the environment, before President Bush leaves office in January.  —  The new rules would be among …
David Streitfeld / New York Times:
Mortgage Plan May Aid Many and Irk Others  —  As the Treasury Department prepares a $40 billion program to help delinquent homeowners avoid foreclosure, it confronts a difficult challenge: not making the plan too tempting to people like Todd Lawrence.  —  An airline pilot who lives outside Norwich …
Ed Whelan / The Corner:
Obama's 99% Lie  —  In an MSNBC interview yesterday, Barack Obama repeated his canard that differing judicial philosophies among Supreme Court justices don't matter in “ninety-nine percent of cases [because] the Constitution is actually going to be clear.  Ninety-nine percent of the cases …
Matthew Mosk / Washington Post:
In Final Stretch, McCain to Pour Money Into TV Ads  —  Sen. John McCain and the Republican National Committee will unleash a barrage of spending on television advertising that will allow him to keep pace with Sen. Barack Obama's ad blitz during the campaign's final days …
Agence France Presse:
US election: If Iraqis could vote it would be for McCain … For five years Ali and Mohammed have lived alongside US soldiers in their Baghdad neighbourhood near Rasheed Street, a prominent commercial artery running through the heart of the Iraqi capital.  —  During that time American culture …
John McCormick / The Swamp:
Obama adding ads to GA, ND and AZ  —  COLUMBIA, Mo. - In the closing days of the contest, Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign is adding states to its advertising portfolio that were previously thought to be safe for Sen. John McCain.  —  Obama campaign manager David Plouffe told reporters …
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
McCain for President, Part II  —  Last week I made the open-and-shut case for John McCain: In a dangerous world entering an era of uncontrolled nuclear proliferation, the choice between the most prepared foreign policy candidate in memory vs. a novice with zero experience and the wobbliest one-world instincts is not a close call.
Discussion: Hot Air, Nitpicker and TPMCafe
New York Magazine:
November 5: Post-Election Plans of Prominent Politics Bloggers  —  The election is almost over, and if you think you'll be relieved, imagine the political bloggers who've spent the last eighteen months dissecting everything from Obama's flag pin to Mitt Romney's Battlefield Earth obsession.
Discussion: Reason
Steven Pearlstein / Washington Post:
Hank Paulson's $125 Billion Mistake  —  It was only a few weeks ago that most right-thinking economists and left-leaning bloggers were jumping on Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson for his plan to jump-start the markets in asset-backed securities by having the government buy them up at auction.
Discussion: Salon and Commentary
Change of Subject:
08 reasons Barack Obama will win next Tuesday  —  Today I offer 08 reasons why Barack Obama will nevertheless win handily:  —  1. Obama's supporters are more energized.  —  Obama draws enormous crowds wherever he goes and has energized young and first-time voters in a way that will surprise …
Discussion: New York Times
Barack Obama gives Daily Show biggest ever audience  —  Barack Obama's appearance on US cable channel Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart pulled in the series' highest ever rating on Wednesday night.  —  Obama's interview, which aired between 11pm and 11.30pm, EST …
Discussion: The Huffington Post
The Huffington Post:
Court Docs: GOP Donor Secretly Funneled $75K To Coleman Family  —  The CEO of a major marine technology company is alleging that he was pressured by a friend and associate of Norm Coleman to secretly funnel tens of thousands of dollars to the Senator's family.
Alan Fram / Associated Press:
AP poll: 1 in 7 voters still persuadable  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — Patrick Campbell worries Barack Obama will raise his taxes but thinks John McCain will send people off to war.  He says that leaves him leaning toward Obama ... maybe.  —  “I'm split right down the middle,” …
Los Angeles Times:
Somalia's pirate problem grows more rampant  —  For many Somalis on the coast, piracy is the only way to earn a living in a country without a functioning government and faced with soaring inflation, civil war and rising malnutrition.  —  Reporting from Haradhere, Somalia, and Nairobi …
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 More Items: 
Alan Boyle / MSNBC:
Voter registration smashes records
Get Ready For ‘Stag-Deflation’
Dave Montgomery / McClatchy Washington Bureau:
Bush once was Texas' favorite son, but not any longer
Discussion: Think Progress
Kathy Kiely / USA Today:
His diversity a plus, Obama says
Discussion: and
Elisabeth Bumiller / New York Times:
In Ohio, McCain Is Everywhere Even if Joe the Plumber Isn't
Discussion: and The Caucus
New York Times:
McCain and Obama Advisers Briefed on Deteriorating Afghan War
Discussion: The Foundry and USA Today
Jeff Zeleny / New York Times:
Obama Plans a Four-Day Hunt for More Democratic Voters
Discussion: MSNBC, and The Caucus
 Earlier Items: 
Joby Warrick / Washington Post:
Intelligence Head Says Next President Faces Volatile Era
David Hambling / Danger Room:
Military Investigates Amnesia Beams
Discussion: Jules Crittenden
The Media Line / Jerusalem Post:
Iran threatens US with suicide bombers
Discussion: PoliGazette, Hot Air and Jihad Watch
Japanese man petitions to marry comic book wife
Edward Luce / Financial Times:
Obama prepares for quick transition
Carl Prine /
Majority of Allegheny prostitutes are on the Democratic side