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12:40 PM ET, March 31, 2009

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Washington Post:
Most Americans Don't Blame Obama for Economy, Poll Finds  —  The number of Americans who believe that the nation is headed in the right direction has roughly tripled since Barack Obama's election, and the public overwhelmingly blames the excesses of the financial industry, rather than the new president …
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CNN:
Poll: Americans believe world leaders respect President Obama  —  WASHINGTON (CNN)- As Barack Obama takes off for his first overseas trip as president, a new national poll indicates that more than eight in ten Americans think he will do a good job representing the U.S. to the world.
The Politico:
Detroit plan has GOP all over the map  —  President Barack Obama may or may not be able to save the U.S. auto industry, but his dramatic restricting plan is already having some effect: It's sent the highly disciplined GOP message machine careening out of control.
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The Hill:   President Obama's auto plan throws lawmakers
Russell Roberts / Cafe Hayek:
The man of system will now fix the auto industry
Discussion: The Foundry
Bloomberg:
Financial Rescue Approaches GDP as U.S. Pledges $12.8 Trillion  —  The U.S. government and the Federal Reserve have spent, lent or guaranteed $12.8 trillion, an amount that approaches the value of everything produced in the country last year, to stem the longest recession since the 1930s.
Reuters:
U.S. website offers emotional rescue from economy  —  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Stressed out by the economy?  The U.S. government is offering an online emotional rescue kit.  —  The “Getting Through Tough Economic Times” guide at www.samhsa.gov/economy/ is meant to help people identify …
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James Besser / JW Political Insider:
Bashing J Street  —  Follow the Jewish Week on Twitter!  Click here to start.  And we're on Facebook; become a fan today.  —  What is about J Street, the pro-peace process lobby and political action committee, that has the leaders of major Jewish groups in such a snit?
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Ezra Klein / American Prospect:
WHY IS AIPAC SO AFRAID OF J STREET?
Adam Nagourney / New York Times:
Special Election in New York Is a Special Case  —  WASHINGTON — Voters in a House district in New York will elect a replacement on Tuesday for Kirsten E. Gillibrand, the Democrat tapped to replace Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Senate after she became Secretary of State.
Discussion: The Caucus
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Patrick Oppmann / CNN:
Microsoft bridge slammed as waste of stimulus  —  REDMOND, Washington (CNN) — Should a bridge that would connect two campuses at Microsoft's headquarters be funded with $11 million from the federal stimulus package?  —  Critics of using stimulus money for the bridge say it would give the software giant a break on a pet project.
Discussion: Cafe Hayek, RedState and ProPublica
Byron York / www.washingtonexaminer.com:
Beyond AIG: A Bill to let Big Government Set Your Salary  —  It was nearly two weeks ago that the House of Representatives, acting in a near-frenzy after the disclosure of bonuses paid to executives of AIG, passed a bill that would impose a 90 percent retroactive tax on those bonuses.
Jerome Starkey / The Independent:
Afghan leader accused of bid to ‘legalise rape’  —  UN and women MPs say Karzai bowed to Islamic fundamentalists before poll  —  Afghanistan's President, Hamid Karzai, has signed a law which “legalises” rape, women's groups and the United Nations warn.  Critics claim the president helped rush …
Megan McArdle:
Just say no to F-Bombs  —  As in, using the word “fascist” to apply to the current, or indeed previous, administration.  David Henderson writes: … How is this helpful?  Has clarifying the distinction between fascism and socialism really added to most peoples' understanding of what the Obama administration is doing?
Discussion: Outside The Beltway
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David Henderson / EconLog:
Obama Throws the F-Bomb
Discussion: Will Wilkinson and Swords Crossed
BBC:
‘Toilet row’ lowers morale on space station  —  The International Space Station, once a place where astronauts would share food and facilities, is said to be embroiled in a Cold War-like stand-off.  —  A Russian cosmonaut has complained he is no longer allowed to use a US toilet as well as a US exercise bike.
Discussion: PoliBlog
Jack Cafferty / CNN:
Commentary: War on drugs is insane  —  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.
Discussion: TalkLeft and Making Light
Alison Flood / Guardian:
Crumb to publish Bible satire  —  Cartoonist Crumb's vision of the first book of the Bible said to be a ‘complex, even subversive narrative that calls for a re-examination of its role in our culture’  —  The famously subversive US cartoonist Robert Crumb has announced the completion of his long-awaited take on the Book of Genesis.
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Obama Still Popular, GOP Still Doesn't Care  —  With there seeming to be more Senate Democrats who are wary of Barack Obama's agenda than there are Senate Republicans wary of opposing it, Washington often takes on the feel of a town with a president whose honeymoon is over.
Shobhana Chandra / Bloomberg:
Home Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Fell by a Record 19%  —  Home prices in 20 U.S. cities fell 19 percent in January from a year earlier, the fastest drop on record, as demand plummeted and foreclosures rose.  —  The S&P/Case-Shiller index's decrease was more than forecast and compares with an 18.6 percent decrease in December.
Discussion: TalkLeft, Wonkette and Eschaton
The Politico:
What cars are in W.H. driveways?  —  With President Barack Obama showing the ailing U.S. auto industry some tough love Monday, POLITICO wondered — what's ...  ... in the driveways of White House aides?  A lot of foreign cars, as it turns out.  —  A survey of West Executive Drive …
Discussion: The Swamp
Caitlin Taylor / The Note:
Kennedy chairs HHS hearing  —  ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf reports:  —  Sen. Ted Kennedy is on Capitol Hill this morning in a rare extended appearance in front of live TV cameras - he is chairing a confirmation hearing for Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to be HHS Secretary.
Discussion: The Politico and Ben Smith's Blog
Josh Kraushaar / The Politico:
Party leaders stressed about Dodd  —  Interviews with a dozen Democratic state legislators, party officials and operatives in Connecticut indicate there is deep concern back home over whether the incendiary American International Group bonuses issue has delivered a mortal blow to Sen. Chris Dodd …
BBC:
France threatens G20 walkout  —  France will walk away from this week's G20 summit if its demands for stricter financial regulation are not met, the finance minister has told the BBC.  —  Christine Lagarde told HardTalk that President Sarkozy would not sign any agreement if he felt “the deliverables are not there”.
Lois Romano / Washington Post:
Michelle's Image: From Off-Putting To Spot-On  —  At first, they didn't like the way she was talking about her husband's dirty socks.  Then, they said she always looked angry.  Later, they questioned her patriotism when she commented that she only recently became proud of her country.
Discussion: TIME.com
 
 
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 More Items: 
Betsy Rothstein / The Hill:
Gingrich becomes a Catholic, then dines at Café Milano
Peter Baker / New York Times:
Obama Urges Sudan to Allow Aid Groups Back Into the Country
Discussion: TIME.com
Tim Johnston / Washington Post:
Khmer Rouge Defendant Expresses ‘Heartfelt Sorrow’
Discussion: The Daily Dish
Steve Vogel / Washington Post:
EEOC Willfully Violated Pay Law, Arbitrator Rules
Lori Montgomery / Washington Post:
Recession Puts a Major Strain On Social Security Trust Fund
Discussion: Congress Matters and AmSpecBlog
 Earlier Items: 
Nanette Lepore / The Huffington Post:
Laying People Off — Tearfully
David E. Sanger / New York Times:
For U.S. and Carmakers, Many Potential Pitfalls
Rasmussen Reports:
War on Terror Update
Dmitry A. Medvedev / Washington Post:
Building Russian-U.S. Bonds
Discussion: TIME.com
Monique / HotMES:
Does this skirt make me look fat?
Perry Bacon Jr / Washington Post:
Ex-Commerce Nominee Now Top Budget Critic