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3:30 PM ET, March 4, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Rush Job: Inside Dems' Limbaugh plan  —  Top Democrats believe they have struck political gold by depicting Rush Limbaugh as the new face of the Republican Party, a full-scale effort first hatched by some of the most familiar names in politics and now being guided in part from inside the White House.
RELATED:
Rasmussen Reports:
Just 11% of Republicans Say Limbaugh Is Their Party's Leader  —  Despite efforts by the Obama political team and its surrogates to link Rush Limbaugh to the Republican Party, just 11% of GOP voters say the conservative radio commentator is the party's leader.
RushLimbaugh.com:
Rush to the President: Debate Me  —  BEGIN TRANSCRIPT  —  RUSH: It is on the record — thanks to Politico.com — since last fall, the White House, led by Rahm Emanuel, the chief of staff to Barack Obama, has been targeting me, your host, your harmless, lovable little fuzzball.
DownWithTyranny!:
BREAKING NEWS: Alan Grayson Apologizes To Rush Limbaugh  —  Late this afternoon, in keeping with apologies to Rush Limbaugh from Georgia Republican Phil Gingrey and RNC Chairman Michael Steele, Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) issued the following statement: … The Congressman then rejoined …
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
Dem Congressman: Limbaugh is a ‘sorry excuse for a human being’
Taegan Goddard's Political Wire:
Behind the Limbaugh Strategy
Discussion: Townhall.com and NewsBusters.org
Byron York / www.dcexaminer.com:
The Growing Republican Unhappiness With Michael Steele  —  (AP File Photo) It's not just the TV appearances that have some Republicans worried.  —  Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele's dust-up with Rush Limbaugh has brought to the fore so-far unspoken concerns …
RELATED:
The Politico:
Steele trap?  GOP fears grow  —  A month after Michael Steele became the first African-American chairman of the Republican National Committee, key party leaders are worried that the GOP has made a costly mistake — one that will make it even harder for them to take back power from the dominant Democratic Party.
David Harsanyi / Denver Post:   Nothing wrong with failure
Mark Preston / CNN:
Democrats' ‘apology’ Web page mocks Limbaugh
David Plouffe / Washington Post:
Minority Leader Limbaugh
Evan Bayh / Wall Street Journal:
Bayh: Why Spending Bill Should Fail  —  A Democratic senator says no to a huge federal spending bill.  —  This week, the United States Senate will vote on a spending package to fund the federal government for the remainder of this fiscal year.  The Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009 is a sprawling …
RELATED:
Kevin Bogardus / The Hill:
Union official: Franken 60th vote on card-check  —  Al Franken could be the missing piece of the puzzle for passage of the labor movement's No. 1 legislative priority this Congress, a senior union official said Wednesday.  —  Once seated, the Democratic Minnesota Senate candidate …
Discussion: Open Left
RELATED:
Philip Webster / Times of London:
Ted Kennedy to be knighted  —  Comment Central: (Sir) Teddy...and Alan...and Bill...  Ted Kennedy, one of the leading members of the family dynasty that dominated American politics in the final decades of the last century, is to receive an honorary knighthood.
Associated Press:
Miami abortion clinic owner threw live baby away, prosecutors say  —  MIAMI - An abortion clinic owner is accused of delivering a live baby during a botched procedure and then throwing the infant away.  —  Belkis Gonzalez, 42, was arrested Tuesday and charged with practicing medicine without …
Discussion: Townhall.com and Babalú Blog
Susanne Craig / Wall Street Journal:
Merrill's $10 Million Men  —  Top 10 Earners Made $209 Million in 2008 as Firm Foundered  —  As bad as 2008 was for Merrill Lynch & Co., it was very good for Andrea Orcel, the firm's top investment banker.  Although Merrill's net loss ballooned to $27.6 billion last year, Mr. Orcel …
Maureen Dowd / New York Times:
Stage of Fools  —  If only Shakespeare had known how to Twitter.  —  There was a bit of King Lear in the scene on the Senate floor, a stormy, solitary John McCain on “this great stage of fools,” as the Bard wrote, railing against both parties and the president in fiery speeches and rapid-fire tweets.
Wall Street Watch:
$5 BILLION IN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS BOUGHT WALL STREET FREEDOM FROM REGULATION, RESTRAINT, REPORT FINDS  —  Steps to Financial Cataclysm Paved with Industry Dollars  —  The financial sector invested more than $5 billion in political influence purchasing in Washington over the past decade …
Hendrik Hertzberg In / New Yorker:
KRAUTHAMMER THEN AND NOW  —  At least one reader of my last post, in thanking me for drawing her attention to Charles Krauthammer's characterization of Obama's joint-session speech ("the boldest social democratic manifesto ever issued by a U.S. president"), assumes that Charles is as fervent a supporter of the President as she is.
Tu Thanh Ha / Globe and Mail:
Instructed to curtail crushing red tape, guards watched girl die in her cell  —  Court transcripts obtained by The Globe reveal staff instructed not to stop frequent self-asphyxiation attempts if 19-year-old was still breathing  —  As Ashley Smith slowly choked herself to death at dawn in her Kitchener …
Big Tent Democrat / TalkLeft:
Remember The “Gang Of 14?”  —  You remember those 14 Senators who agreed: … (Emphasis supplied.)  Among the Senators who agreed to this were John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe.  The other day, these 4 Republican Senators reneged on this agreement.
Discussion: Republican.Senate.Gov
Raleigh News & Observer:
Marriage rally draws 1,000  —  Aim is to stir support for an amendment that would ban same-sex marriage  —  RALEIGH — More than 1,000 people, many from Baptist churches across the state, stood on the ice-covered lawn outside the Legislative Building on Tuesday to demand that state legislators give …
Discussion: Right Wing Watch
Fox News:
Russian Scholar Says U.S. Will Collapse Next Year  —  MOSCOW — If you're inclined to believe Igor Panarin, and the Kremlin wouldn't mind if you did, then President Barack Obama will order martial law this year, the U.S. will split into six rump-states before 2011, and Russia and China will become the backbones of a new world order.
Greg Mankiw / Greg Mankiw's Blog:
Wanna bet some of that Nobel money?  —  Paul Krugman suggests that my skepticism about the administration's growth forecast over the next few years is somehow “evil.”  Well, Paul, if you are so confident in this forecast, would you like to place a wager on it and take advantage of my wickedness?
Spencer Ackerman / The Washington Independent:
If You're a Defense Lobbyist, It Might Be Time to Panic  —  It's really, really, really difficult to be optimistic about cutting Pentagon waste.  There is a massive amount of entrenched interests — in the services, on the Hill, among the hordes of defense firms just across the Potomac …
CNN:
Polls spell trouble for Corzine re-election bid  —  (CNN) — A new poll spells trouble for New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine's bid for re-election this year.  —  Forty percent of New Jersey registered voters questioned in a Fairleigh Dickinson University survey released Wednesday approve …
David Leonhardt / New York Times:
Job Losses Show Breadth of Recession  —  What does the worst recession in a generation look like?  —  It is both deep and broad.  Every state in the country, with the exception of a band stretching from the Dakotas down to Texas, is now shedding jobs at a rapid pace.
Discussion: Shakesville, The BLT and theheretik.us
David Evans / Bloomberg:
Hidden Pension Fiasco May Foment Another $1 Trillion Bailout  —  The Chicago Transit Authority retirement plan had a $1.5 billion hole in its stash of assets in 2007.  At the height of a four-year bull market, it didn't have enough cash on hand to pay its retirees through 2013, meaning it was underfunded to the tune of 62 percent.
Alan K. Ota / CQ Politics:
Democratic Revolt May Slow Obama Agenda  —  Democratic Reps. Jim Matheson of Utah and Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona have joined a quiet revolt in the House that could slow some of President Obama's fast-moving priorities.  —  The two are among 49 Democrats from congressional districts …
 
 
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 More Items: 
The Politico:
Credit card firms back in hot seat
James Hamilton / Econbrowser:
How much is a trillion?  —  A trillion dollars used to be a sum …
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
Missouri Republicans push birth certificate questions to oppose ‘tyranny’
Glenn Thrush / The Politico:
Republicans declare Iraq victory
Sharyl Attkisson / CBS News:
Loan Charity's High-Flying Guests Exposed
Timothy P. Carney / www.dcexaminer.com:
Obama's hidden bailout of General Electric
Discussion: Clusterstock and Bloomberg
 Earlier Items: 
Roger Catlin / TV Eye:
CNBC's Kudlow After Dodd's Seat?
Discussion: Hot Air
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
The NAACP Takes a Stance Against
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blogs
Steven Pearlstein / Washington Post:
Debt Doesn't Have to Be A Burden
Mark Sherman / Associated Press:
Supreme Court rejects limits on drug lawsuits
Phillip Elliott / Associated Press:
Obama seeks major change in federal contracting
Discussion: Reuters and Agence France Presse
David Streitfeld / New York Times:
You're Dead? That Won't Stop the Debt Collector
Discussion: TPMMuckraker