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10:05 AM ET, January 28, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Alec MacGillis / Washington Post:
Democrats Among Stimulus Skeptics  —  Republican criticism of the stimulus package that the House will vote on tonight has focused on its soaring price tag, but some Democrats on Capitol Hill and other administration supporters are voicing a separate critique: that the plan may fall short …
RELATED:
Jeffrey Sachs / Financial Times:
The stimulus is a fiscal straitjacket  —  The US debate over the fiscal stimulus is remarkable in its neglect of the medium term - that is, the budgetary challenges over a period of five to 10 years.  Neither the White House nor Congress has offered the public a scenario of how the proposed mega-deficits …
The Hill:
Praise for Obama, not votes  —  President Obama's trip to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to sell his economic stimulus package won style points but few GOP votes.  —  Republicans praised Obama's conciliatory tone and his willingness to listen to their ideas, while Obama offered an olive branch …
Discussion: The Swamp, MSNBC, The Note and USA Today
New York Times:
Aides Say Obama's Afghan Aims Elevate War  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama intends to adopt a tougher line toward Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president, as part of a new American approach to Afghanistan that will put more emphasis on waging war than on development, senior administration officials said Tuesday.
Perry Bacon Jr / Washington Post:
Backlash Against Bush Apparent in RNC  —  Many Members Seek New Chairman to Steer Party in a Different Direction  —  As they begin meeting in Washington today, many members of the Republican National Committee are focusing their ire against what they considered George W. Bush's anti-conservative policies …
Discussion: MSNBC, TIME.com and Political Machine
Watts Up With That?:
James Hansen's Former NASA Supervisor Declares Himself a Skeptic - Says Hansen ‘Embarrassed NASA’, ‘Was Never Muzzled’, & Models ‘Useless’  —  This is something I thought I'd never see.  This press release today is from the Senate EPW blog of Jame Inhofe.  The scientist making the claims …
The Politico:
The case for doing nothing  —  Most of Washington has reached quick consensus: Government must do something big to shock the economy, and it should cost between $800 billion and $900 billion.  —  But dissident economists and investment professionals offer a much different take: Most of Washington is dead wrong.
Discussion: Maggie's Farm
Christopher Lehmann-Haupt / New York Times:
John Updike, a Lyrical Writer of the Middle-Class Man, Dies at 76  —  John Updike, the kaleidoscopically gifted writer whose quartet of Rabbit novels highlighted a body of fiction, verse, essays and criticism so vast, protean and lyrical as to place him in the first rank of American authors …
RELATED:
Kenneth P. Vogel / The Politico:
Bill got $2M foreign after State buzz  —  Bill Clinton pulled down $5.7 million in speaking fees last year - almost entirely from foreign sources, including nearly $2.1 million after news circulated that Hillary Clinton was in line for Secretary of State.  —  Former President Clinton's …
Discussion: Wall Street Journal and TIME.com
RELATED:
Matthew Lee / Associated Press:
Bill Clinton made millions from foreign sources
Discussion: Hot Air and Pajamas Media
Fredreka Schouten / USA Today:
Geithner names ex-lobbyist as Treasury chief of staff  —  WASHINGTON — Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner picked a former Goldman Sachs lobbyist as a top aide Tuesday, the same day he announced rules aimed at reducing the role of lobbyists in agency decisions.
Discussion: The Politico and The Foundry
RELATED:
Lee Speigel / Political Punch:
House Dems Strip Stimulus of $200 Million Provision to Refurbish National Mall  —  On Tuesday evening the House Rules Committee stripped two provisions from the stimulus package: the family planning money that President Obama personally lobbied Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., to remove yesterday …
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Republicans all a-Twitter over the visit  —  Audiences usually treat presidents to a round of polite applause, but when President Obama addressed House Republicans on Tuesday, they started Twittering.  —  Just a week after being inaugurated and becoming the most powerful man in the world …
Discussion: Lost in Transition
RELATED:
Mark Preston / CNN:   GOP targets Reid in new ad buy
Paul Shukovsky / Seattle Post-Intelligencer:
FBI saw mortgage fraud early  —  Agents say they lacked resources to pursue it  —  The FBI was aware for years of “pervasive and growing” fraud in the mortgage industry that eventually contributed to America's financial meltdown, but did not take definitive action to stop it.
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
House GOP member to Rush: Back off  —  Rush Limbaugh may command a large following, but his caustic comments Monday about the GOP's congressional leadership have at least one Republican House member defending his colleagues and offering an unusually candid critique of the talk radio powerhouse and his fellow commentators.
Reid Wilson / The Hill:
On Bennet, Colorado GOP takes wait-and-see tactic  —  Michael Bennet is getting an early pass from Colorado Republicans, who say they want to give the new Democratic senator a chance to show his stripes before they officially begin running against him.  —  Gov. Bill Ritter (D) …
Discussion: Colorado Independent
John Bresnahan / The Politico:
Rove subpoena a new hurdle  —  Rep. John Conyers Jr.'s decision to subpoena Karl Rove to testify about the “politicization” of the Bush Justice Department has dumped a thorny legal question in the laps of President Barack Obama's White House lawyers before they've even had time to settle into their new jobs.
Joan Gralla / Reuters:
New York City fears return to 1970s  —  NEW YORK (Reuters) - While many U.S. cities worry that their economies are deteriorating to the level of the 1930s Great Depression, New York City fears reliving a more recent decade that features strongly in city lore.
Discussion: Runnin' Scared
Times of London:
President Obama leads US drive to topple Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe  —  Tim Reid in Washington and Jonathan Clayton in Johannesburg  —  President Obama wants a fresh approach to toppling Robert Mugabe and is discussing with aides an unprecedented, US-led diplomatic push to get tough …
Michael Gerson / Washington Post:
Weasels vs. AIDS Relief  —  Some of the personnel stumbles of the Obama administration — including the abortive nomination of Bill Richardson as commerce secretary — resulted from incompetent vetting.  William Lynn's reception as deputy secretary of defense has been complicated by hypocrisy …
Discussion: The Campaign Spot and Firedoglake
Andie Coller / The Politico:
Grassley launches porn inquiry  —  Chuck Grassley knows it when he sees it.  —  The “it,” of course, is pornography.  And Grassley has seen it deep in a demurely titled section of a report from the National Science Foundation — a report that says NSF employees have been spending significant amounts …
Discussion: Texas on the Potomac
Wall Street Journal:
Stimulus Bill Near $900 Billion  —  Obama Agrees to Trim Alternative Minimum Tax; Lobbies Rush for Cut of the Pie  —  WASHINGTON — The U.S. economic stimulus package neared $900 billion in the Senate, as President Barack Obama wooed Republicans ahead of an expected House vote Wednesday.
Wall Street Journal:
A 40-Year Wish List  —  You won't believe what's in that stimulus bill.  —  “Never let a serious crisis go to waste.  What I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things you couldn't do before.”  —  So said White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in November, and Democrats in Congress are certainly taking his advice to heart.
Aaron Blake / The Hill:
Redistricting is a hidden weapon for gloomy GOP  —  As Republicans brace for a 2010 election cycle that begins their long road back to the majority, they do have one major weapon in their arsenal — redistricting.  —  In 2000, Republicans used redistricting to solidify their majorities.
Discussion: Betsy's Page
Victor Davis Hanson / The Corner:
The Hysterical Style  —  If anyone wished to know what the baby-boomer generation would do when, in its full maturity, it hit its first self-created, big-time recession, I think we are seeing the hysterical results.  After two decades of unprecedented economic growth, rampant consumer spending …
Discussion: TigerHawk
New York Times:
News You Can Endow  —  “THE basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right,” Thomas Jefferson wrote in January 1787.  “And were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government …
Discussion: First Draft
James G. Gimpel / Publications:
Latino Voting in the 2008 Election: Part of a Broader Electoral Movement  —  Key Points  — Exit polls from Election Day indicated that President Barack Obama won 67 percent of the Latino vote, and John McCain 32 percent.  This compares to estimates of Latino support for George W. Bush in the range of 39 percent or higher in 2004.
Discussion: The Corner and Macsmind
 
 
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 More Items: 
Alan Reynolds / Wall Street Journal:
$646,214 Per Government Job
Dee Dee Myers / Vanity Fair:
Is Obama the Most Famous Living Person Ever?
Leslie Wayne / New York Times:
Troubled Times Bring Mini-Madoffs to Light
Discussion: Law Blog
Tara Parker-Pope / New York Times:
The Myth of Rampant Teenage Promiscuity
Discussion: cab drollery and Feministe
Ian Welsh / The Huffington Post:
What Obama's Nixing Family Planning Money Tells Us
Media Blog:
Jake Tapper on ‘Unrequited’ Media Love for Obama [Tim Graham]
Discussion: Riehl World View
 Earlier Items: 
Jeremy Page / Times of London:
Don't call us dogs, say Slumdog protesters in cinema rampage
Discussion: FP Passport
David Roberts / Gristmill:
Carbon tax is a poison pill
Washington Whispers:
Tales From The Inside: What Obama Told Republicans
The Huffington Post:
Bailout Recipients Hosted Call To Defeat Key Labor Bill