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8:50 PM ET, March 24, 2009


 Top Items: 
The Huffington Post:
Specter Will Vote Against Employee Free Choice Act  —  UPDATE: Senator Specter ended speculation on where he would come down on the Employee Free Choice Act by declaring, on the Senate floor, that he would oppose the legislation until the economy improves.  —  “The problems of a recession …
Kevin Bogardus / The Hill:
Specter delivers death blow to labor union bill  —  Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) announced Tuesday he will oppose card check, giving an apparent death blow to the most important congressional issue to organized labor.  —  Specter made the dramatic announcement in a floor speech.
United States Senator Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania:
Senator Specter Speaks on Employee Free Choice Act/Card Check
Blue Texan / Firedoglake:
K-Lo & Crew: Only Republicans Should be Honored at Catholic Colleges  —  Right-wing Catholics are furious that President Obama is [defiling the sanctity of] delivering the commencement address at Notre Dame.  —  K-Lo called it “disgraceful,” grunting, “They took a giant step away …
Charles Homans / Washington Monthly:
Culture Shock  —  What happened when one conservative Web site ventured outside the movement bubble.  —  Last May, Conor Friedersdorf, a twenty-eight-year-old recent graduate of NYU's Journalism School, decided he was going to save conservative journalism.
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
The GOP's Cheney Problem  —  The least popular vice-president in memory is not helping the Republicans regroup - according to this piece from the Hill.  But Cheney is not giving these disgraceful and classless interviews to help the GOP.  He's giving them because it is beginning to dawn …
Molly K. Hooper / The Hill:
Go back into hiding, GOP begs Dick Cheney  —  Congressional Republicans are telling Dick Cheney to go back to his undisclosed location and leave them alone to rebuild the Republican Party without his input.  —  Displeased with the former vice-president's recent media appearances …
Thomas Ferraro / Reuters:
U.S. bill seeks to rescue faltering newspapers  —  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - With many U.S. newspapers struggling to survive, a Democratic senator on Tuesday introduced a bill to help them by allowing newspaper companies to restructure as nonprofits with a variety of tax breaks.
Larry Margasak / Associated Press:
Senator proposes nonprofit status for newspapers
Ted Barrett / CNN:
Dems propose cutting Obama budget by billions  —  CNN Congressional Producer  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) — Hours before President Obama was to hold a prime-time news conference — in part to boost his $3.6 trillion budget plan — a key Democratic senator Tuesday unveiled a scaled-down budget proposal.
Frank James / The Swamp:
Obama's 2nd press conference live-blog  —  8:32 pm — Stars and Stripes' reporter ask where will the administration find cuts in the defense or veterans budgets.  Obama says veterans should be held harmless.  Defense contracting is another matter.  “There is uniform acknowledgement that the procurement system doesn't work.
Mike Allen / The Politico:
Reporters war-game Obama questions
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Dems Hammer GOP's New “Too Many Ideas” Strategy  —  Dems are opening fire on the GOP in response to our story below, which quotes Mitch McConnell's spokesperson saying that the GOP will start attacking the Obama administration for throwing out too many ideas on the economy, with not enough cohesion.
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
GOP's Next Attack Line: Obama Administration Has Too Many Plans, Not Enough Cohesion
Discussion: Washington Monthly and MyDD
Christopher D. Carroll / The Economists' Forum:
Treasury rewards waiting  —  Maybe it was worth the wait.  —  Judging from preliminary details, the US Treasury's plan to rescue the financial system is a lot savvier about the relationship between financial markets and the macroeconomy than are the usual-suspects: critics from both left …
Discussion: MoJo Blog Posts
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Bank of America Analyst Thinks Treasury Plan Won't Work
Discussion: The Politico, D-Day and On Deadline
Ben Smith / The Politico:
Reines storm: Clinton conflict brews  —  Hillary Clinton's departure for the State Department was meant to end the era of Clinton drama, and to leave the turmoil of her campaign behind.  But one former Clinton aide, now a senior adviser to Secretary Clinton, has brought at least some of that drama along with him.
Anne Applebaum / Washington Post:
The Russia Reset Button Doesn't Work
Discussion: Outside The Beltway
Manu Raju / The Politico:
Coleman won't rule out federal appeal  —  Former Sen. Norm Coleman is still considering taking his election lawsuit to the federal court if he's unsuccessful in reversing Al Franken's 225-vote lead in the Minnesota Senate recount.  —  Speaking to reporters at the Capitol …
Pat Doyle / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
FEC says donors can pay Coleman, Franken legal bills
Discussion: TPMDC and MSNBC
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
A major difference between conservatives and progressives  —  (updated below - Update II)  —  One of the linchpins of the Bush presidency, especially during the first term (and well into the second, until he became a major political liability), was the lock-step uncritical reverence …
Discussion: TalkLeft and American Power
Associated Press:
Bunning: McConnell making fundraising difficult  —  FRANKFORT, Ky. — U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning is blaming his fundraising difficulties on a fellow Kentucky Republican, Senate Minority Floor Leader Mitch McConnell.  —  Bunning said during a conference call Tuesday that McConnell and Texas …
Glenn Thrush / Glenn Thrush's Blog:
McConnell's sabotaging me, Bunning says
Discussion: Enraged Conservative
Glenn Harlan Reynolds / Forbes:
Money For Nothing  —  Jilted Wall Street donors should rethink future political donations.  —  An honest politician, as an old saw has it, is one who stays bought.  If this is true, then we have the most dishonest bunch of officeholders ever, and it may lead Wall Street to reconsider its donations in the future.
Discussion: Moe Lane and Blue Crab Boulevard
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Obama seeks filter-free news  —  At a time when his Washington honeymoon is turning into a hazing, President Barack Obama and his team are launched on a strategy to sail above the traditional White House press corps by reaching out to liberal commentators, local reporters and ethnic media.
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Obama: ‘We will recover from recession’
Discussion: The Politico and Guardian
Jeffrey Lord / American Spectator:
The 1966 Election's Warning to Obama  —  It was a historic tidal wave of rejection.  Symbolized by, of all things, housewives boycotting supermarkets.  And the active participation of seven future presidents of the United States.  —  The 1966 “off year” or congressional elections …
Gateway Pundit:
House Passes Hitler Youth Bill  —  Obama promised during the campaign to create a Socialist National Civilian Security Force similar to what they have in other Marxist regimes.  Yesterday, the US House took the first step in organizing Dear Leader's dream youth service corp.  —  German youth praising Hitler.
Joe Weisenthal / Clusterstock:
Maxine Waters Puts On Her Goldman Sachs Conspiracy Hat (CLIP)  —  Whenever they hold these banking hearings, there are two people we enjoy hearing from: Ron Paul and Maxine Water.  Ron Paul because he challenges the administration on core questions of monetary theory and that's fun.
Discussion: Riehl World View and Hot Air
Meghan McCain: ‘I support the president’  —  (CNN) — Meghan McCain, a contributor to, is the daughter of Sen. John McCain and Cindy McCain.  But it's her recent verbal sparring with conservative Republicans that's put her in the spotlight.
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
TAMMY BRUCE.  —  It's worth considering the full context of Tammy Bruce's comments on Michelle Obama yesterday.  Bruce said this of the first lady: … Right.  Nothing that makes a racist comment more obvious than a self-conscious attempt to qualify it as not being racist.
Mazal Mualem / Haaretz:
Labor votes in favor of joining Netanyahu coalition  —  The Labor Party Central Committee voted on Tuesday in favor of joining Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition, despite vocal opposition from within the party.  —  Netanyahu reached the preliminary agreement with Barak early Tuesday.
Discussion: Matthew Yglesias, The RBC and Truthdig
Jeffrey A. Miron / CNN:
Commentary: Legalize drugs to stop violence  —  Editor's note: Jeffrey A. Miron is senior lecturer in economics at Harvard University.  —  CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts (CNN) — Over the past two years, drug violence in Mexico has become a fixture of the daily news.
Michael Brooks / New Scientist:
Space storm alert: 90 seconds from catastrophe  —  Related editorial: We must heed the threat of solar storms  —  IT IS midnight on 22 September 2012 and the skies above Manhattan are filled with a flickering curtain of colourful light.  Few New Yorkers have seen the aurora this far south but their fascination is short-lived.
Discussion: The New Republic
Khaled Abu Toameh / Hudson New York:
On Campus: The Pro-Palestinians' Real Agenda  —  During a recent visit to several university campuses in the U.S., I discovered that there is more sympathy for Hamas there than there is in Ramallah.  —  Listening to some students and professors on these campuses, for a moment I thought …
Discussion: Power Line and Atlas Shrugs
Erin Durkin / NY Daily News:
Madoff's pain is a Queens man's gain  —  Someone is finally making some money off Bernie Madoff.  —  A Queens construction worker used the swindler's prison number to play the lottery and won $1,500.  —  Ralph Amendolaro, 50, noticed the digits under Madoff's mug on the front page …
Jack Cafferty / CNN:
Commentary: Time for another tea party?  —  Editor's note: Jack Cafferty is the author of a new book, “Now or Never: Getting Down to the Business of Saving Our American Dream.”  He provides commentary on CNN's “The Situation Room” daily from 4 to 7 p.m. ET.  You can also visit Jack's Cafferty File blog.
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 More Items: 
Deborah Solomon / Wall Street Journal:
Contender for TARP Job Drops Out
Discussion: The Politico and Associated Press
Blagojevich to host radio show
Discussion: CBS News
Josh Gerstein / The Politico:
Summers briefs $5k conference goers
Discussion: Open Left
James Kanter / Green Inc.:
World's Cheapest Car: Boon or Bane?
Discussion: Chicago Boyz
New York Post:
Discussion: A Blog For All
 Earlier Items: 
Patrick J. Buchanan / The American Conservative:
The Weimar Way  —  “The best way to destroy the capitalist system …
Dane Schiller / Houston Chronicle:
Border plants to be killed to reveal smugglers
Discussion: On Deadline and TalkLeft
Lyle Denniston / SCOTUSblog:
Analysis: Campaign films may get OK
Discussion: Election Law
Wall Street Journal:
Will Obama Listen to Iran's Bloggers?
Discussion: Right Wing News
Washington Post:
U.S. Seeks Expanded Power to Seize Firms