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9:15 AM ET, March 13, 2009

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Wall Street Journal:
Obama's Poll Numbers Are Falling to Earth  —  It is simply wrong for commentators to continue to focus on President Barack Obama's high levels of popularity, and to conclude that these are indicative of high levels of public confidence in the work of his administration.
Domenico Montanaro / MSNBC:
GREGG: BUDGET FORECAST A LIE  —  From NBC's Ken Strickland  —  It was obvious to most Capitol Hill insiders why President Obama wanted Republican Judd Gregg as a member of his cabinet: He's one of the sharpest money-minds in Congress.  —  But instead of getting Gregg's counsel within the administration …
Eric Etheridge / The Opinionator:
Fight Night: Cramer vs. Stewart  —  CNBC Mad Money host Jim Cramer appearance on the Daily Show last night, the much-anticipated showdown in the feud between the financial network and the fake news show.  The reviews now pouring onto the net are virtually unanimous: Stewart won.
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S. Mitra Kalita / Wall Street Journal:
Americans See 18% of Wealth Vanish  —  The wealth of American families plunged nearly 18% in 2008, erasing years of sharp gains on housing and stocks and marking the biggest loss since the Federal Reserve began keeping track after World War II.  —  The Fed said Thursday …
Discussion: WSJ.com and The Big Picture
Sally Denton / Blogs and Stories:
The Man Obama Double-Crossed  —  As George Clooney Returns, Dr. Mehmet Oz On How ER Changed Our Lives.  —  Web  —  Blogs and Stories  —  The president's staffing nightmares began with Bill Richardson, the erstwhile Commerce nominee, who has told confidants that he was promised the secretary of State job.
Discussion: Buck Naked Politics
Charles Krauthammer / Real Clear Politics:
Morally Unserious in the Extreme  —  WASHINGTON — Last week, the White House invited me to a signing ceremony overturning the Bush (43) executive order on stem cell research.  I assume this was because I have long argued in these columns and during my five years on the President's Council on Bioethics that …
Discussion: Crunchy Con and Betsy's Page
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J. Taylor Rushing / The Hill:
Lieberman open to reunion with Democratic Party  —  Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) is not ruling out running as a Democratic candidate in his reelection race in 2012.  —  Lieberman said on Thursday that he has been asked by friends about the possibility of returning to the party that nominated him for vice president in 2000.
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Lawmakers deny Freeman's Israel lobby charges  —  Republicans on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence said pro-Israel lobby groups did not spur their opposition to Charles Freeman.  —  Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.), a senior member of the House intelligence panel …
Robert Pear / New York Times:
Obama Is on the Spot as Rulings Aid Gay Partners  —  WASHINGTON — Just seven weeks into office, President Obama is being forced to confront one of the most sensitive social and political issues of the day: whether the government must provide health insurance benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
Discussion: Bench Memos, #gay and MoJo Blog Posts
Mother Jones:
Sarah Palin: More Earmark Hypocrisy  —  Alaska's governor campaigned as an anti-earmark crusader, but the just-passed omnibus spending bill contains several she sought.  —  Post Comment  —  On the campaign trail last year, Alaska's Republican governor, Sarah Palin, sold herself …
Matt Corley / Think Progress:
Laura Ingraham mocks Meghan McCain as being ‘plus-sized.’  —  Last night, Sen. John McCain's (R-AZ) daughter, Meghan McCain, appeared on Rachel Maddow's MSNBC show, where she continued to criticize Ann Coulter.  On her radio show today, Laura Ingraham responded to McCain's critique …
David Cho / Washington Post:
Fourth Nominee Withdraws From Treasury's Roster  —  H. Rodgin Cohen, chairman of the New York law firm Sullivan & Cromwell, has withdrawn his name from consideration for deputy Treasury secretary, becoming the fourth pick for a prominent Treasury Department post to pull out in recent weeks.
Carrie Johnson / Washington Post:
How Obama Will Handle U.S. Attorney Posts Remains Unclear  —  One of the better spoils of winning the presidency is the power to appoint nearly 100 top prosecutors across the country.  But filling the plum jobs has become a test of competing priorities for President Obama.
Discussion: Law Blog
Don Surber:
52 days, 52 mistakes  —  Let me count them up, in no particular order.  Some are big.  Some are small.  —  We all make mistakes.  Here's his:  —  1. A do-over on the oath of office.  —  2. Tim Geithner.  —  3. Bill Richardson.  —  4. Tom Daschle.  —  5. Eric “Nation of Cowards” Holder.
Discussion: Atlas Shrugs and JammieWearingFool
Anne Flaherty / Associated Press:
Army fired 11 soldiers in Jan. as openly gay  —  The Army fired 11 soldiers in January for violating the military's policy that gay service members must keep their sexuality hidden, according to a Virginia congressman.  Democratic Rep. Jim Moran said he has requested monthly updates …
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Congressman Jim Moran:
Don't Ask, Don't Tell Discharge Data for 2009 Released
Conor Clarke / The Atlantic Business Channel:
Obama and Biden will shame you  —  Obama and Biden both gave stern warnings yesterday about misuse of stimulus funds.  “If we see money being misspent, we're going to put a stop to it,” Obama told a gathering of state officials at the White House.  How?  Obama says “we will call it out and we will publicize it.”
CampusProgress.org:
Ross Douthat: the College Years  —  A look at the newest New York Times columnist's undergrad writing.  —  The New York Times reported yesterday that it had hired conservative Atlantic blogger Ross Douthat as an op-ed columnist.  Douthat, who will be one of the youngest—if not the youngest …
MSNBC:
‘Hardball with Chris Matthews’ for Wednesday, March 11  —  Guests: Michelle Bernard, Mary Thompson, Lawrence O'Donnell, Pat Buchanan  —  CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST: We band of Bushies.  —  Let's play HARDBALL.  —  Good evening.  I'm Chris Matthews.  Leading off tonight: We just can't quit you.
Discussion: David Corn
Stephen Dinan / Washington Times:
Stimulus overseer: Waste ‘inevitable’  —  The chief watchdog for spending from the $787 billion stimulus package says it's guaranteed there will be waste and fraud.  —  Earl Devaney, tapped by President Obama to track the giant spending plan, also said it will be at least a year …
Discussion: AmSpecBlog
Associated Press:
White House objects to UN calling US ‘deadbeat’  —  WASHINGTON (AP) - The White House objected Thursday to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's description of the United States as a “deadbeat” donor to the world body.  —  Ban used the phrase Wednesday during a private meeting with lawmakers at the Capitol …
New York Times:
How to Surge the Taliban  —  “DONT worry, we are not going to lose this war.”  —  These were the parting words to us from Brig. Gen. Sher Muhammad Zazai, commander of the 205th Corps of the Afghan National Army in Kandahar.  He was echoing the sentiments of a group of village elders …
Discussion: Connecting.the.Dots
LILEKS (James) Welcome:
I'd have preferred his prosecutor got the job, but I'm vindictive like that  —  I know it's old news, but it's fascinating.  Remember this guy?  —  John Walker Lindh, the “American Taliban.”  Caught in Afghanistan after the invasion while fighting on the side of the Taliban against the Northern Alliance …
Discussion: NewsBusters.org
 
 
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 More Items: 
New York Times:
Investors See a Glimmer and Shares Soar Worldwide
George Packer In / New Yorker:
DOUTHAT JOINS THE OP-ED PAGE
Bill Roggio / The Long War Journal:
US missile strike in Kurram agency levels Taliban training camp
Discussion: Danger Room
Adam Nagourney / New York Times:
In Interview, Republican Chairman Strays From the Party Line on Abortion
Nia-Malika Henderson / The Politico:
Michelle Obama tours Fort Bragg
Discussion: New York Times
 Earlier Items: 
Jeff Pope / Pajamas Media:
Does Voting Matter Anymore?
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Public Wants to Believe In Big Government
Steven Thomma / MiamiHerald.com:
Obama v. Limbaugh: Poll finds it's no contest