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11:05 AM ET, April 8, 2009


 Top Items: 
Scott / Power Line:
What happened in Minnesota  —  Minnesota's excruciatingly close Senate election between incumbent Republican Norm Coleman and former unfunny humorist Al Franken is in the final innings of the post-election proceedings.  Franken is of course a left-liberal Democrat about whom I have nothing good to say.
Greg Stohr / Bloomberg:
Coleman-Franken Senate Race May Hinge on Bush v. Gore Decision  —  Republican Norm Coleman's dwindling chances of reclaiming his U.S. Senate seat largely depend on a broad reading of the Supreme Court's Bush v. Gore decision, a ruling the court itself said should be applied sparingly.
Mark Murray / MSNBC:
FIRST THOUGHTS: STEPPING ON ITS MESSAGE?  —  From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Domenico Montanaro  —  *** Stepping on its message?  Very late last night, President Obama finally returned home after his surprise visit to Iraq, where U.S. soldiers there greeted him enthusiastically.
Discussion: CBS News and Alex Conant
Siobhan Gorman / Associated Press:
Electricity Grid in U.S. Penetrated By Spies  —  Robert Moran monitors an electric grid in Dallas.  Such infrastructure grids across the country are vulnerable to cyberattacks.  —  WASHINGTON — Cyberspies have penetrated the U.S. electrical grid and left behind software programs …
Sharon Otterman / New York Times:
Pirates Seize Ship With U.S. Crew Off Coast of Somalia  —  Pirates commandeered a United States-flagged container ship with 20 American crew members off the coast of Somalia on Wednesday, the first time an American-crewed ship was seized by pirates in the area.
Edmund Sanders / Los Angeles Times:
Pirates hijack U.S. ship off Somalia  —  20 American crew members are held on a ship carrying relief aid.  The last pirate attack of an American vessel by African pirates was reported in 1804.  —  Reporting from Nairobi, Kenya — A U.S.-flagged cargo ship that routinely works under contract …
Camille Paglia / Salon:
Bow-ow-ow: Obama's painful missteps  —  Let the new president grow into the job — but he'd better do it fast!  Plus: Readers ask about everything from talk radio, morality and Mary McCarthy, to that big movie about a sinking ship.  —  Dear Camille,  —  In your column, you say …
Wall Street Journal:
U.S. to Offer Aid to Life Insurers  —  Firms Face Capital Crunch; How Much They Will Get From TARP Remains Unclear  —  The Treasury Department has decided to extend bailout funds to a number of struggling life-insurance companies, helping an industry that is a lynchpin of the U.S. financial system …
Robert Schmidt / Bloomberg:   Congressional Panel Suggests Firing Managers, Liquidating Banks
Jennifer Jacobs / Des Moines Register:
Gay marriage: Iowans weigh pros and cons of altering Iowa Constitution  —  If Iowans choose to open the hood on the Iowa Constitution, it could invite all sorts of tinkering, law professors and state lawmakers said today.  —  Voters soon have a once-a-decade chance to step around lawmakers and update the Constitution on their own.
Aluf Benn / Haaretz:
Obama team readying for confrontation with Netanyahu  —  In an unprecedented move, the Obama administration is readying for a possible confrontation with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by briefing Democratic congressmen on the peace process and the positions of the new government in Israel regarding a two-state solution.
Elliott Abrams / Washington Post:
The Settlement Freeze Fallacy
Discussion: The Opinionator
Adam Serwer / American Prospect:
Charles Mahtesian / The Politico:
Palin won't challenge Murkowski  —  Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin won't challenge Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski in 2010, a decision that likely clears Murkowski's path to re-election and enables the GOP to avoid a potentially messy primary next year.  —  A Palin spokeswoman told the Anchorage Daily News …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Feminism as Natalism  —  Michelle Goldberg wades into the debate I've been having with various people about the macroeconomic implications of population decline with an observation I definitely agree with: … I actually agree with both of the points here.
Michelle Goldberg / American Prospect:
Discussion: Ross Douthat and Donkeylicious
John McCormick / Clout St:
Quigley claims victory in race to replace Rahm Emanuel  —  Democratic Cook County Commissioner Mike Quigley claimed victory tonight in the 5th District race to replace Rahm Emanuel in Congress.  —  With 94 percent of the Chicago and suburban Cook precincts reporting totals …
Deanna Bellandi / Associated Press:
Democrat wins Rahm Emanuel's Ill. Congress seat
Peter Hamby / CNN:
Bob Corker to headline South Carolina GOP dinner  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker will headline the South Carolina Republican Party's annual Silver Elephant Banquet in May, a state party official tells CNN.  —  The speaking slot offers the senator a chance to impress …
Alex Isenstadt / The Politico:
CBC members praise Castro  —  Key members of the Congressional Black Caucus are calling for an end to U.S. prohibition on travel to Cuba, just hours after a meeting with former Cuban president Fidel Castro in Havana.  —  “The fifty-year embargo just hasn't worked,” CBC Chairwoman Barbara Lee …
Lydia Saad / Gallup:
Support for Gun-Control Laws at All-Time Lows  —  Americans evenly divided at 49% on need for stricter gun laws  — USA - Crime - Government and Politics - Guns - Personal Safety - Violence - Americas - Northern America  —  PRINCETON, NJ — In Gallup polling conducted prior …
Noah Shachtman / Danger Room:
Gates: Why I Kept Troubled Ship, Swimming Vehicle  —  Defense Secretary Robert Gates says he only killed weapons programs in his reboot of the Pentagon's arsenal if the project's “budget was out of control, or they were overdue, or the technology was too great a risk.”
“I am under a lot of pressure to not diagnose PTSD”  —  A secret recording reveals the Army may be pushing its medical staff not to diagnose post-traumatic stress disorder.  The Army and Senate have ignored the implications. … Listen to a segment of the recording of an Army psychologist at Fort Carson …
Pamela Geller / Atlas Shrugs:
NEO NAZIS LINK UP WITH CHARLES JOHNSON, LITTLE GREEN FOOTBALLS SMEARS BECK, THE GOP AND CONSERVATVES  —  New alliances abound in the new world order.  The libelblogger CJ has a new sandbox.  —  Canadian neo-Nazis excoriate Jews, root for the Taliban, link to Little Green Footballs Jihad Watch
Robert / Jihad Watch:   Canadian neo-Nazis excoriate Jews, root for the Taliban …
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 More Items: 
Sinan Salaheddin / Associated Press:
Police: Bomb near Baghdad shrine kills 7
Ben Smith / The Politico:
New effort fights same-sex marriage
Discussion: CBS News, Washington Times and The Note
Don Van Natta Jr / New York Times:
Firm Acted as Tutor in Selling Towns Risky Deals
New York Times:
Iraq's Newly Open Gays Face Scorn and Murder
Discussion: Wockner
Walter Pincus / Washington Post:
Biden to Shepherd Test Ban Treaty Vote
Discussion:, TPMDC and marbury
 Earlier Items: 
Jared Allen / The Hill:
Earmarks: Online hide and go seek
Kim Zetter / Threat Level:
FBI Defends Disruptive Raids on Texas Data Centers
Attaturk / Firedoglake:
Not even trying anymore  —  Little Lord Fop-leroy …
Amie Parnes / The Politico:
Obama's TV: sports and a few surprises