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7:50 AM ET, March 11, 2009


 Top Items: 
Laura Rozen / The Cable:
Freeman speaks out on his exit  —  Retired Amb.  Chas Freeman, who said today that he no longer accepts an offer to chair the National Intelligence Council, has just sent this message: … More to come.
Ben Smith / The Politico:
Freeman hits ‘Israel lobby’ on way out  —  President Barack Obama's controversial pick for a top intelligence post blasted the “Israel lobby” on his way out the door Tuesday, intensifying a debate on the role Israel's allies played in the latest failed Obama appointment.
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Schumer Takes Credit For Getting Chas Freeman Ousted  —  Chuck Schumer's office sends over a statement from the Senator himself, saying he's the one who got Chas Freeman dumped from the post of National Intelligence Council chief: … As I reported the other day, Schumer had privately communicated …
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Charles Freeman fails the loyalty test  —  Obviously, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt are rabid, hateful paranoids — total bigots and anti-Semites — for having suggested that there are powerful domestic political forces in the U.S. which enforce Israel-centric orthodoxies …
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Controversial intelligence pick withdraws  —  Charles Freeman, the Obama administration's choice to head the National Intelligence Council, has withdrawn from consideration after facing strong opposition from Senate Republicans.  —  Freeman is the latest in a string of Obama administration appointees …
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
The Freeman Precedent  —  There are a couple of things worth noting …
Discussion: Real Clear Politics
David Rothkopf:   Freeman is forced out  —  So Chas Freeman withdrew his nomination …
Ron Kampeas / Capital J | JTA:
Freeman speaks  —  Laura Rozen at Foreign Policy got the scoop …
Discussion: Power Line, The Corner and Commentary
Siobhan Gorman / Wall Street Journal:
Intelligence Pick Derailed by Critics
Discussion: Gates of Vienna
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
Freeman's withdrawal
Discussion: Mondoweiss
Thomas Omestad / US News:
Embattled Ex-diplomat Chas Freeman Gives Up Top Intelligence Analyst Post
Camille Paglia / Salon:
Heads should roll  —  President Obama's clumsy, smirky staff is sinking him — and resurrecting a deflated GOP!  Plus: Lay off Rush!  And a Brazilian diva, up close and electric  —  View a slide show of Daniela Mercury at the 2009 carnival in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil.  —  Free Barack!
Paul Krugman:
Can America be saved?  —  So I read this: … and I wonder if this country can handle the crisis we're in.  Remember, John Boehner is, in effect, the second-most influential member of the GDP (after Rush Limbaugh).  And while Democrats hold a majority, it's not enough of a majority to make the minority party irrelevant.
Discussion: AMERICAblog News and Lean Left
Alec MacGillis / Washington Post:
The Employee Free Choice Bill Battle Is Joined
Discussion: The RBC
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:   The Chamber Mobilizes  —  I'm probably not breaking any news …
Alex Isenstadt / The Politico:
Reid pushes for 60 on labor union bill
Discussion: Rough Sketch and The Hill
Howard Fineman / Newsweek:
A Turning Tide?  —  Obama still has the approval of the people, but the establishment is beginning to mumble that the president may not have what it takes.  —  Surfer that he is, President Obama should know a riptide when he's in one.  The center usually is the safest, most productive place in politics …
Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
ZOMBIE LIES THAT WILL NOT DIE.  —  We're not even going to talk about the tendentious Matrix analogy laced into this column Amity Shlaes wrote for Bloomberg.  Not.  Even.  Going.  To.  Talk.  About.  It.  I already read the thing for you.  I refuse to relive it.
Amity Shlaes / Bloomberg:   Obama's ‘Matrix’ Alters Reality of Health Care: Amity Shlaes
Ben Smith / The Politico:
The new left-wing conspiracy  —  The vast new left-wing conspiracy sets its tone every morning at 8:45 a.m., when officials from more than 20 labor, environmental and other Democratic-leaning groups dial into a private conference call hosted by two left-leaning Washington organizations.
Ali Frick / Think Progress:
Specter on Steele: 'I wouldn't pay a whole lot of attention to him.'
Discussion: Salon
Allahpundit / Hot Air:
Politico: 20+ lefty groups holding daily calls to coordinate messages
Discussion: Wizbang and Exurban League
Judicial Watch:
Judicial Watch Uncovers Documents Detailing Pelosi's Repeated Requests for Military Travel  —  House Speaker Issued Unprecedented Demands for Military Aircraft and Wasted Taxpayer Resources with Last Minute Cancellations  —  Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates …
Fox News:
Pelosi Made Repeated Requests for Military Aircraft, Documents Show  —  Representatives for Judicial Watch, which obtained e-mails and other documents showing the requests, say House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has treated the Air Force as her “personal airline.”  —
Chuck Norris claims thousands of right wing cell groups exist and will rebel against U.S. government  —  The call by some right wing leaders for rebellion and for the military to refuse the commander in chief's orders is joined by Chuck Norris who claims that thousands of right wing cell groups …
Will Bunch /
What the Huck?  Chuck Norris' roundhouse kick to the gut of American democracy
Discussion: WorldNetDaily
Mike Allen / The Politico:
No quit: the campaign to boost Bush  —  The defense never rests.  When President Barack Obama released his own policy this week on former President George W. Bush's practice of attaching controversial signing statements to legislation, a reporter quickly got a tip from a Bush loyalist …
Discussion: The Politico
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Obama Creates White House Women's Council
Discussion: and Corrente
Wall Street Journal:
The President Politicizes Stem-Cell Research  —  Taxpayers have a right to be left out of it.  —  Yesterday President Barack Obama issued an executive order that authorizes expanded federal funding for research using stem cells produced by destroying human embryos.
Nicholas Wade / New York Times:
Rethink Stem Cells? Science Already Has
Discussion: and The Caucus
Teddy Davis / The Note:
S.C. Guv to Obama: Thanks, But No Thanks  —  ABC News' Teddy Davis reports:  —  South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford (R) has completed his review of the recently enacted stimulus package and will be sending President Obama a letter in the next few days asking for permission to apply a quarter …
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 More Items: 
Chuck Todd / MSNBC:
Discussion: Weekly Standard and Betsy's Page
Neil A. Lewis / New York Times:
Obama's Court Nominees Are Focus of Speculation
Discussion: The Volokh Conspiracy
Bob Barr / San Francisco Chronicle:
Movie industry's shortsighted fight
Discussion: RedState and
Jake Tapper / ABCNEWS:
Is Obama Doing Too Much Too Soon?
Discussion: and Political Punch
Spencer Ackerman / The Washington Independent:
Uh, We're Bragging About Sending Citibank to Help the Iraqi Banking Sector?
Discussion: Multi-National Force
 Earlier Items: 
Justin Elliott / TPMMuckraker:
Exclusive: Inside The Pentagon's Idea Factory
Discussion: DefenseLINK and Danger Room