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11:10 AM ET, April 2, 2009


 Top Items: 
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
The President Is ‘Keeping Score’  —  Chicago politics has moved into the White House.  —  “Don't think we're not keeping score, brother.”  That's what President Barack Obama said to Rep. Peter DeFazio in a closed-door meeting of the House Democratic Caucus last week, according to the Associated Press.
Mark Murray / MSNBC:
FIRST THOUGHTS: DIPLOMATIC DECATHLON  —  From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Domenico Montanaro  —  *** Diplomatic decathlon: In just a few hours yesterday, President Obama completed the equivalent of a diplomatic decathlon — from pledging nuclear disarmament with the Russians …
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Michelle Obama's Favorable Rating Eclipses Her Husband's  —  Both president and first lady are quite popular  — USA - Favorability - Government and Politics - Presidential Ratings - The Presidency - Americas - Northern America  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Americans have very positive impressions …
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Michelle's recovery  —  The newest Gallup numbers show Michelle Obama as more popular even than her husband, with a 72% favorable rating to his 69%.  —  Her transformation in the public eye is one of David Axelrod's great successes, and really a remarkable thing.
Discussion: marbury
Frank Newport / Gallup:
Obama Working With 61% Approval on Foreign Affairs
Ariel Leve / Times of London:
Protocol is abandoned as Michelle Obama cosies up to Queen  —  Protocol seems to be dispensed with when the Obamas come to town.  —  When the President and his wife, Michelle, attended a reception at Buckingham Palace, the First Lady and the Queen slipped their arms around each other towards the end of the evening.
Howard Chua-Eoan / Time:
The Queen and Mrs. Obama: Did the First Lady Break Protocol?  —  Michelle Obama with Queen Elizabeth II during an audience at Buckingham Palace  —  The rules are set in stone and so the eagerly watching British media sputtered when the First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama …
Susan Crabtree / The Hill:
Sen. Stevens ‘got screwed’ by Justice  —  The Justice Department's stunning decision to drop all charges against former Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) had GOP senators hailing the news as a vindication while government watchdogs fretted over the impact on other corruption cases against public officials.
Andy McCarthy / The Corner:
Politicized Justice Department
Victoria McGrane / The Politico:
Former AIG chief says bailout ‘failed’  —  Former AIG CEO Maurice “Hank” Greenberg says the bailout has “failed” and he's proposing a 10-point alternative focused on saving, not breaking apart, the mega-insurer.  —  Greenberg will reveal his plan during a hearing before the House Oversight …
Liam Pleven / Wall Street Journal:
AIG Debacle Not My Fault, Says Greenberg; Testifies Today
Discussion: Clusterstock
Quinnipiac University:
Dodd Falls Way Behind As Approval Drops To Lowest Ever, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Voters Are Angry At AIG Bonuses And Blame Dodd  —  Connecticut Sen. Christopher Dodd trails former U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons, a possible Republican challenger, 50 - 34 percent in the 2010 Senate race …
Aaron Blake / The Hill:
Romney: Don't root for Obama to fail  —  Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) said Wednesday that Republicans shouldn't oppose President Obama as a reflex and should praise him when he succeeds.  —  Speaking at the National Republican Senatorial Committee's (NRSC) spring dinner …
Discussion: The Politico
Reid Wilson / The Hill:
Romney breaks with GOP on the issue of deregulation
Discussion: Anne Schroeder's Blog
New York Times:
Global Leaders Meet in Bid to Resolve Rift on Economic Plan  —  LONDON — Britain predicted on Thursday that world leaders would bridge their differences on steps to recover from the deepest global economic downturn since World War II, as President Obama and his counterparts from more than 20 industrial …
Manu Raju / The Politico:
Franken puts Pawlenty in a jam  —  The legal fight between Al Franken and Norm Coleman is headed to the desk of Gov. Tim Pawlenty — a no-win predicament for a Minnesota Republican with his eye on a White House run in 2012.  —  Franken won big Tuesday when a three-judge panel allowed …
George F. Will / Washington Post:
Climate Change and Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs  —  Fervent.  1. Hot, burning, glowing, boiling.  —  “Fervently” is how America will henceforth engage in talks on global warming.  So said the president's climate change negotiator Sunday in Germany, at a U.N. conference on reducing carbon emissions.
Ted Barrett / CNN:
Senate rejects controversial fast-track budget procedure  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Senate overwhelmingly voted Wednesday not to use a fast-track budget procedure to pass President Obama's “cap and trade” plan to combat global warming.  —  The vote was a victory for Republicans …
Huma Khan / Political Punch:
What Does One Get a Queen?  —  President and First Lady Obama gave Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II a video iPod with inscription, songs uploaded and accessories, plus a rare musical songbook signed by Richard Rodgers.  —  Uploaded onto the iPod:  — Photos from the Queen's 2007 White House State Visit
J. Taylor Rushing / The Hill:
Gregg says he definitely won't run again  —  Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) has closed the door on seeking reelection next year.  —  Gregg, the ranking Republican on the Budget Committee, said he hasn't changed his mind about not seeking a fourth term in 2010, despite “good-natured” …
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
THE RIGHT WON'T LET THE TAX FAIRY GO.... The National Review's Andy McCarthy had an item yesterday, which was not an April Fools' joke, and which served as a helpful reminder of why discussing tax policy with conservative activists tends to be frustrating.
Jim Rutenberg / New York Times:
Health Critic Brings a Past and a Wallet  —  WASHINGTON — Richard L. Scott is unusual in these tough economic times: a rich, conservative investor willing to spend freely on a political cause.  —  Mr. Scott is starring in his own rotation of advertisements against the broad outlines of President Obama's health care plans.
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 More Items: 
Josh Kraushaar / The Politico:
Murphy's lead shrinks to 25 votes
Demetri Sevastopulo / Financial Times:
Israel expected to hold back on Iran as diplomacy runs its course
Discussion: The Nation and Haaretz
Melanie Trottman / Wall Street Journal:
Obama Urged to Fill Product-Safety Post
Discussion: and Shopfloor
New York Times:
Earmarks of Scandal  —  Speaker Nancy Pelosi should listen …
Discussion: The Politico and Hot Air
Stephen W Smith / CBS News:
Geithner On Ousting CEOs, Reviving Economy
Discussion: Gateway Pundit and Pajamas Media
The Raw Story:
Colbert weeps for Glenn Beck's sanity
Discussion: and Crooks and Liars
 Earlier Items: 
Karen DeYoung / Washington Post:
Lugar Urges Obama to Open Talks With Cuba, Ease Restrictions
Discussion: and Donklephant
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
White House Cheat Sheet: The Rise, Fall and Rise of Tim Geithner
Discussion: The Buzz
Khaled Abu Toameh / Jerusalem Post:
PA: Death to those who sell land to Jews
Discussion: Israel Matzav
Jim Galloway / Political Insider:
Thurbert Baker to enter 2010 race for governor
John Amato / Crooks and Liars:
Ed Schultz gets a new show on MSNBC: “The Ed Show”
Penn Jillette / CNN:
Commentary: Is Obama skidding or crashing?
Discussion: Don Surber