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11:10 AM ET, February 5, 2009


 Top Items: 
Barack Obama / Washington Post:
The Action Americans Need  —  By now, it's clear to everyone that we have inherited an economic crisis as deep and dire as any since the days of the Great Depression.  Millions of jobs that Americans relied on just a year ago are gone; millions more of the nest eggs families worked so hard to build have vanished.
Jeanne Cummings / The Politico:
Obama losing the stimulus message war  —  At this crucial juncture in the push to pass an economic recovery package, President Obama finds himself in the most unlikely of places: He is losing the message war.  —  Despite Obama's sky high personal approval ratings, polls show support …
David M. Herszenhorn / New York Times:
Senate Adds Homebuyer Tax Credit to Stimulus Bill  —  WASHINGTON — The Senate on Wednesday voted to expand the economic stimulus package with a tax credit for homebuyers of up to $15,000, a provision championed by Republicans as addressing a root cause of the recession.
David Rogers / The Politico:
Obama 1-on-1 with swing senators  —  Working to get the last Senate votes for his economic recovery plan, President Barack Obama reached out Wednesday to his old rival, Sen. John McCain, even as he warned Republicans against making “perfect the enemy of the essential.”
Kate Phillips / The Caucus:
Tax Credit for Homebuyers Passes
Patrick O'Connor / The Politico:
Cooper in doghouse for remark  —  Rep. Jim Cooper is the Al Gore of financial collapse.  —  For decades, the Tennessee Democrat has warned that the country will be in dire straits if the government keeps borrowing billions from foreign creditors.  —  Those doomsday forecasts haven't always …
The Politico:
The Blue Dogs bark
Discussion: Booker Rising
Ed Glaeser / Wall Street Journal:
The GOP Has a Dumb Mortgage Idea  —  It contradicts the ideals of Republicanism and good economics.  —  Few philosophers have done more good than Locke and Montesquieu, whose advocacy of divided government inspired America's Founders.  Our history, and the less happy past of nations without checks …
Volcker Chafes at Obama Panel Delay, Strains With Summers Rise  —  Feb. 5 (Bloomberg) — Paul Volcker has grown increasingly frustrated over delays in setting up the economic advisory group President Barack Obama picked the former Federal Reserve chairman to lead, people familiar with the matter said.
The Politico:
Reporter jumps ropeline after signing  —  A reporter was escorted out of a White House event by Secret Service agents on Wednesday afternoon after he approached President Obama to seek an autograph.  —  At the end of an East Room signing ceremony for legislation funding …
David Ignatius / Washington Post:
An Obama A-Team for Iran  —  Whom should President Obama appoint as his emissary to Iran, to take on what may be the most important diplomatic mission in decades?  The right person (or persons) would have the stature and experience to engage Iran at the highest level …
Discussion: Wonk Room
The White House:
New rules  —  “Shameful.”  That was the President's response last week to the news that Wall Street had doled out $18 billion in bonuses, even after the government had propped up many of the Street's most prominent firms.  —  Today, he and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner took action …
Fox News:
Bill Gates Unleashes Swarm of Mosquitoes on Crowd  —  Microsoft founder turned philanthropist Bill Gates released a glass full of mosquitoes at an elite technology conference to make a point about the deadly disease malaria.  —  “Malaria is spread by mosquitoes,” Gates said while opening …
Discussion: Wizbang, JustOneMinute, Gawker and Moe Lane
William Kristol / PostPartisan:
The Republicans' Opportunity  —  “This plan is more than a prescription for short-term spending — it's a strategy for America's long-term growth and opportunity in areas such as renewable energy, health care and education.”  —  With this key sentence from his op-ed in the Washington Post today …
Discussion: Weekly Standard
Hillel Italie / Associated Press:
AP alleges copyright infringement of Obama image … NEW YORK (AP) - On buttons, posters and Web sites, the image was everywhere during last year's presidential campaign: A pensive Barack Obama looking upward, as if to the future, splashed in a Warholesque red, white and blue and underlined with the caption HOPE.
Glenn Reynolds / Instapundit:
AN INSTAPUNDIT EXCLUSIVE: A report from Michael Yon.  —  It's Raining  —  By Michael Yon  —  05 February 2009  —  There had been a light, cold drizzle just before the Muslim taxi driver picked me up in Jerusalem.  It should be a 90-minute drive to Sderot, in southern Israel.
Discussion: Power Line
Reid Wilson / The Hill:
Romney to headline Senate GOP dinner  —  Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney will headline the National Republican Senatorial Committee's annual fundraising dinner, keeping the potential 2012 presidential candidate's name in the news while providing minority Republicans with some much-needed cash.
Discussion: TPMDC and Boston Globe
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
White House Cheat Sheet: Bypassing the Media Filter  —  During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama and his team learned a very important lesson that they are seeking to put into practice in the White House: the power of the media is overrated.  —  Time and again during the campaign …
Nat Hentoff / Cato Institute:
Senior Fellow  —  Nat Hentoff is one of the foremost authorities on the First Amendment.  While his books and articles regularly defend the rights of Americans to think and speak freely, he also explores our freedoms under the rest of the Bill of Rights and the 14th Amendment by showing …
Ralph Z. Hallow / Washington Times:
RFK Jr.: Hog farms bigger threat than Osama  —  WASHINGTON — Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on Wednesday said he thinks hog farmers are a greater threat to Americans than Osama bin Laden.  —  Mr. Kennedy, son of the the slain New York Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, is an environmental law attorney …
Nathan Hodge / Danger Room:
Air Base Loss Could Hobble Afghan War Effort  —  So now it's official: Kyrgyzstan ain't bluffing.  On Monday, Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev caught the Pentagon off guard, saying his country planned to close Manas Air Base, a major logistics hub for supporting U.S. operations in Afghanistan.
The Charlotte Observer:
Change we cannot and do not believe in  —  When Barack Obama was running for the Democratic nomination last year and then for the presidency in the fall, one of the most attractive things about his candidacy was his promise of change that we all could believe in.
David Kocieniewski / New York Times:
Rangel's Financial Disclosures Omitted Data Over 30 Years, a Report Says  —  Representative Charles B. Rangel's financial disclosure forms had at least 28 omissions in the past 30 years and failed to account for what became of more than $239,000 in assets, according to a report issued Wednesday by a private government-ethics group.
Menzie Chinn / Econbrowser:
Why Can't We All Just Get Along?  The Great Multiplier Debate  —  I've been thinking about why the numbers that are typically bandied about in policy circles (at least that I'm familiar with) have so little impact on the overall general and blogosphere debate (see some examples here and here).
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
Panic!  —  Michael Hirsh sounds the alarm: … Theda Skocpol says the same: … I hope I'm not being blithe but I don't see it this way.  Obama still has majorities in both Houses.  The GOP surely won't filibuster the bill in the Senate.  What matters is the end-result, for which the president will ultimately be accountable.
Howard Schneider / Washington Post:
New Jobless Claims Surge to 626,000  —  New claims for unemployment benefits spiked to a quarter-century high of 626,000 last week, as businesses continued shedding workers to cope with the economic downturn.  —  The number represents a larger-than-expected increase over the 591,000 people …
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias
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 More Items: 
Bernie Becker / The Caucus:
Former Chief of Staff to Obama: Put Your Jacket On
Discussion: The Note, ATTACKERMAN and Emptywheel
The Hill:
Sen. Klobuchar steals show at Congressional dinner
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
Democrats Try Trickle-Down Economics
Discussion: Betsy's Page
Gateway Pundit:
Robin Carnahan Linked to Criminal Outfit That Hired Rapists …
Discussion: and RedState
Israel seizes Gaza-bound aid ship
 Earlier Items: 
New York Times:
D'Amato Uses Clout to Assist Democrats
Discussion: Scorecard's Blogs
David E. Sanger / New York Times:
Senate Agrees to Dilute ‘Buy America’ Provisions
Discussion: TalkLeft and
Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo:
Trump: Obama ‘absolutely right’ on pay limits
Andrew Jacobs / New York Times:
Chinese Learn Limits of Online Freedom as the Filter Tightens
Discussion: The Peking Duck