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6:20 PM ET, March 2, 2009


 Top Items: 
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Limbaugh blasts Steele, the GOP  —  On the same night he was offering the keynote address to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Rush Limbaugh drew criticism from an unlikely source: Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele.  —  In a little-noticed interview Saturday night …
The New Republic:
Sympathy for the Limbaugh  —  Rush Limbaugh is drawing some ridicule for saying, “One thing we can all do is stop assuming that the way to beat [the Democrats] is with better policy ideas.”  But I think he's basically right.  Good ideas are meritorious.  But being meritorious isn't what wins elections.
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Rush Limbaugh Launches Brutal Hit On Michael Steele  —  Whoa.  Rush Limbaugh's bid to cement his own role as head of the Republican Party just took a wild new turn, with Limbaugh launching a brutal hit on RNC chair Michael Steele, mocking the GOP for being in a “sad sack” …
Matt Lewis / Political Machine:
Rush Fires Back at Steele (Updates With Audio)  —  Responding to RNC Chairman Michael Steele's recent comments, Rush Limbaugh fired back on his radio show today.  —  “The Republican National Committee and Michael Steele need a little leadership ... we're going to have to drag them kicking …
The Huffington Post:
Steele Takes On Rush Limbaugh: “Ugly,” “Incendiary” (VIDEO)  —  Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele took umbrage Saturday night when CNN's D.L. Hughley referred to radio host Rush Limbaugh as “the de facto leader of the Republican party.”  —  “No he's not.
David Neiwert / Crooks and Liars:
I smell a right-wing feud in the offing: Limbaugh vs. Steele
Discussion: The Raw Story
Glenn Thrush / The Politico:
Pelosi's list: Who's on her bad side?  —  Nancy Pelosi likes to keep lists.  —  As a young political protégé of her father, Baltimore Mayor Tommy D'Alesandro, the preteen speaker-to-be would spend hours leafing through the list of voters her father had helped in some way …
Lost in Transition:
Panel Says Ron Kirk Underpaid Taxes  —  (Credit: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)  —  Leaders of the Senate Finance Committee this afternoon revealed that another of President Obama's nominees — U.S. Trade Representative-designate Ron Kirk — has tax problems.
Discussion: RedState and TPMMuckraker
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Obama hires: Back-taxes, mixed results
Discussion: The Politico
David Espo / Associated Press:
Trade nominee Ron Kirk agrees to pay back taxes
Discussion: Sweetness & Light and Reuters
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Blagojevich's book deal: ‘Six figures’  —  Write your own lede here:....  The second sentence goes like this: The publicist for impeached former Gov. Rod Blagojevich of Illinois says the ousted governor is writing a book.  —  The book will be “exposing the dark side of politics.”
Discussion: The Politico
Ali Frick / Think Progress:
Limbaugh misquotes Constitution while arguing Obama policies are ‘bastardization’ of Constitution.  —  During his speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Saturday, Rush Limbaugh got some of his loudest applause when he declared that President Obama's policies represent a “bastardization of the Constitution.”
Discussion: Political Machine
The Huffington Post:
Limbaugh Misquotes Constitution During CPAC Speech
Discussion: Firedoglake and Text & History
Devlin Barrett / Associated Press:
AP Newsbreak: CIA destroyed 92 interrogation tapes  —  WASHINGTON (AP) — New documents show the CIA destroyed nearly 100 tapes of terror interrogations, far more than has previously been acknowledged.  —  The revelation Monday comes as a criminal prosecutor is wrapping up his investigation in the matter.
New York Times:
Dow Drops Below 7,000 for the First Time Since '97  —  Investor worries about the economy in general, and financial companies in particular, continued to erode the markets on Monday as the Dow Jones industrial average fell below 7,000 for first time since October 1997.
Tim Paradis / Associated Press:   Dow drops below 7,000 for first time since 1997
Brian Beutler:
No Afghanistan strategy?  No help  —  I don't know if you caught it, but Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper rained all over Barack Obama's Afghanistan parade this weekend.  In a taped appearance which aired on CNN this Sunday, Harper said, “frankly, we are not going to ever defeat the insurgency …
Andrew Malcolm / Top of the Ticket:
Canada's candid PM Harper warns Obama: We'll never defeat Afghan insurgents
Pelosi Snowed-Out of Global Warming Rally  —  ( - Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) had to cancel an appearance Monday at a global warming rally in Washington, D.C., that was hit by a snowstorm because her flight was delayed, her office told
Emily Friedman / ABCNEWS:
Upper-Income Taxpayers Look for Ways to Sidestep Obama Tax-Hike Plan  —  President Would Slap More Taxes on Those Who Make Over $250K to Fund Health Care  —  President Barack Obama's tax proposal - which promises to increase taxes for those families with incomes of $250,000 or more …
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Is Obama embracing the lawless, omnipotent executive?  —  (updated below)  —  As I detailed over the weekend, the Obama administration — in the case brought by two American lawyers and their charity-client claiming that their conversations were illegally intercepted by the Bush administration …
Ross Douthat:
Rush and Oprah  —  Hugh Hewitt writes that Limbaugh's speech at CPAC “will be talked about for years and even decades.”  I hope he's wrong about that, but he's definitely right about this: … Not only do I think this is true, I've actually said it myself!  (Though Reihan said it first.)
Discussion: Eunomia and AmSpecBlog
Ronald Brownstein / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Repudiating Bush  —  From his inauguration address forward, President Obama hasn't pulled any punches in criticizing the record of his predecessor, George W. Bush.  In that process—which reached a new peak with the release of the administration's budget plan last Thursday …
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 More Items: 
Abortion could influence Sebelius confirmation
Discussion: Truthdig
Financial Times:
BofA chief calls Merrill aid ‘mistake’
Discussion: TPMMuckraker
Victor Davis Hanson / National Review:
The Triumph of Banality  —  One of the most tired rhetorical tropes …
Discussion: Sadly, No!
Brad Plumer / The New Republic:
Are Scientific Breakthroughs Overrated?
Discussion: The Bellows
David Simon / Washington Post:
In Baltimore, No One Left to Press the Police
Clive Crook / Financial Times:
The budget reveals the liberal Obama
Discussion: Will Wilkinson
Ari Melber / The Huffington Post:
How The Insiders Failed Obama
 Earlier Items: 
George F. Will / Newsweek:
FDR's Sweater Fable
Discussion: Hot Air and The Foundry
Masaru Tamamoto / New York Times:
Japan's Crisis of the Mind
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
NO PASTA.  JUST RICE.  —  Israel, it seems, has been denying shipments …
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias