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12:55 PM ET, January 3, 2009


 Top Items: 
Chicago Sun Times:
Reid pressured Blagojevich not to appoint Jackson Jr. to Obama's U.S. Senate seat  —  Days before Gov. Blagojevich was charged with trying to sell President-elect Barack Obama's U.S. Senate seat to the highest bidder, top Senate Democrat Harry Reid made it clear who he didn't want in the post …
Lynn Sweet / Chicago Sun Times:
Roland Burris tells Lynn Sweet: ‘We are the senator’  —  NO CIRCUS?  Says he'll try to avoid a scene when he shows up to claim seat  —  WASHINGTON — Roland Burris, being Roland Burris, put it to me this way Friday when we talked: “We are the senator.”  —  And we, that is he …
Manu Raju / The Politico:
Coleman may lose office until election is decided  —  When the 111th Congress convenes on Tuesday, Norm Coleman may be out of an office, even though his Senate race remains far from settled.  —  Coleman's first term officially expires at noon on Saturday, and he is locked …
Khalid al-Ansary / Reuters:
U.S.-installed Iraqi ex-PM says Bush “utter failure”  —  BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Former U.S.-installed Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi has denounced the policies of President George W. Bush as an “utter failure” that gave rise to the sectarian venom that ravaged his country.
Ron Ben-Yishai / Ynetnews:
IDF artillery targets Gaza  —  IDF escalating attacks?  For first time since Gaza op's start, IDF artillery units shell targets in Strip.  Meanwhile, Air Force hunts for senior Hamas terror activists in Strip, hits dozens of targets Saturday; Hamas officer killed after car hit by aircraft
The Raw Story:
CNN: US weapons ‘killing innocent civilians’ in Gaza
Discussion: Mondoweiss and Guardian
Justin Lahart / Real Time Economics:
Ignoring the Oracles: You Are With the Free Markets, or Against Them  —  It's hard to tell what's more striking about Raghuram Rajan's 2005 presentation at the Kansas City Fed's Jackson Hole symposium — the way many of the dangers he laid out came to pass, or the way he was attacked, and then discounted.
Laurence H. Tribe / Forbes:
Blagojevich And The Constitution  —  The Senate doesn't have to seat Burris.  —  President-elect Barack Obama has urged the Senate to exclude from the seat he once occupied anyone appointed by embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.  —  But if, as some have argued, the Senate …
Discussion: Balkinization and PoliBlog
Chicago Breaking News:
Burris asks high court to move fast
Julian Sanchez / Law & Disorder:
Reinventing conservatism, one tweet at a time  —  Since the humbling results of the November election came in, the conservative movement has been scrambling to assess what happened—and to figure out how to prevent it from happening again.  Much of this effort, in light of the Obama campaign's …
Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Senate recount proceeds as high court seeks more ballot information  —  A statewide review that is adding wrongly rejected absentee ballots to the Senate recount moved toward a conclusion today.  Meanwhile, all were waiting for a decision by the state Supreme Court on a Coleman motion to modify the review procedure
Discussion: TalkLeft and On Deadline
Dave Rochelson /
American Recovery and Reinvestment  —  In this week's weekly address, President-elect Barack Obama lays out the challenges that face us in the new year, and his plan for taking them on.  —  “We need an American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan that not only creates jobs in the short-term …
Discussion: Political Punch
Philip Rucker / Washington Post:
Back at Work, Obama Pitches His Stimulus Plan
Discussion: Buck Naked Politics
David Kocieniewski / New York Times:
Rangel Pushed for a Donation; Insurer Pushed for a Tax Cut  —  On April 21, 2008, Representative Charles B. Rangel met with officials of the American International Group, the now-troubled insurance giant, to ask for a donation to a school of public service that City College of New York was building in his honor.
Louis Uchitelle / New York Times:
Some Forecasters See a Fast Economic Recovery  —  Economics as the dismal science?  Not in some quarters.  —  In the midst of the deepest recession in the experience of most Americans, many professional forecasters are optimistically heading into the new year declaring that the worst may soon be over.
Lori Montgomery / Washington Post:
U.S. Debt Set to Soar in This Year  —  $2 Trillion Increase May Test Federal Ability to Borrow  —  With President-elect Barack Obama and congressional Democrats considering a massive spending package aimed at pulling the nation out of recession, the national debt is projected to jump …
Discussion: Macsmind
David Hanners / Austin American-Statesman:
Social activist, organizer ... and FBI informant  —  It was all about stopping violence, says Austin man who revealed alleged firebomb plot at GOP convention.  —  ST. PAUL, Minn. — In a federal courtroom in Minneapolis this month, the public transformation of Brandon Darby of Austin will become complete.
Discussion: Power Line and Hot Air
Frank Main / Chicago Sun Times:
Blagojevich stripped of access to classified federal security information  —  Gov. Blagojevich's access to classified federal security information was revoked by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security after he was charged last month with trying to sell a Senate seat to the highest bidder, officials confirmed Friday.
Washington Post:
Peacemaking Event Is Attacked in Iraq  —  A suicide bomber sneaked through the back door of a crowded hall where guests had gathered Friday for a reconciliation lunch at the invitation of a tribal leader, killing as many as 32 people and wounding dozens more in the worst attack in Iraq in weeks.
Discussion: Think Progress
Andy Barr / The Politico:
States want $1 trillion to ‘keep afloat’  —  A group of Democratic governors warned Friday that without as much as $1 trillion in federal assistance, many states will not be able to pay their bills in the next year.  —  “There are states that are talking as California has of not being able …
Discussion: Donklephant and Reuters
Jon Hurdle / Reuters:
U.S. governors seek $1 trillion federal assistance
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 More Items: 
Cynthia Dizikes / Los Angeles Times:
Khat — is it more coffee or cocaine?
Discussion: PoliBlog and Althouse
Orange County Register:
Mark Steyn: Gaza has its version of rocket scientists
Discussion: five feet of fury
Jeff Taylor / Reason:
Why 2009 Will be Worse than 2008
Gaza: Gang on rampage in Golders Green
Discussion: Mere Rhetoric
Dexter Filkins / New York Times:
Taking a Break From War With a Game Anything but Gentle
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
Early Test of Obama View on Power Over Detainees
Discussion: Political Punch
 Earlier Items: 
Demian McLean / Bloomberg:
Obama Moves to Counter China With Pentagon-NASA Link
Discussion: The Strata-Sphere
Bill Ayers / The Huffington Post:
Obama and Education Reform
Amie Parnes / The Politico:
Coloradans react to Bennet pick
Discussion: New York Times and Reuters