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9:45 AM ET, April 18, 2009


 Top Items: 
Major Garrett / Fox News:
Obama, Chavez Shake Hands at Summit of the Americas  —  Venezuela quoted Chavez as saying, “I'd like to be your friend.”  —  —  PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago - President Obama made the first move to greet Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez, but it was the acerbic …
Michelle Malkin:
At least he didn't bow  —  I can't stand to look at our president's dumb grin as he warmly greets Venezuela's thug-in-chief:  —  Gag.  —  Did anyone smell sulfur during the photo op?  —  Now, the Evil Clown (as Allahpundit calls him) can add his friendly pic with Obama to his Chavista Fan Club photo album:
Discussion: PoliGazette and Hot Air
Carol E. Lee / The Politico:
Obama faces tough crowd at summit
Discussion: Sister Toldjah
Scott Shane / New York Times:
Divisions Arose on Rough Tactics for Qaeda Figure  —  WASHINGTON — The first use of waterboarding and other rough treatment against a prisoner from Al Qaeda was ordered by senior Central Intelligence Agency officials despite the belief of interrogators that the prisoner had already told them all he knew …
Discussion: Think Progress
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
VIDEO: Obama asks Cabinet for cuts  —  President Barack Obama will ask his Cabinet Monday to identify cuts in their budgets as he moves in the coming weeks to eliminate dozens of wasteful government programs.  —  In his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama also announced the appointment …
Discussion: The Swamp and New York Times
Adam Graham-Silverman / CQ Politics:
Will Congress Agree to Ease Conditions on Aid to Palestinians?  —  The administration is looking for a way to keep aid flowing if the Palestinians form a government that includes elements of Hamas, the militant anti-Israel group that controls Gaza.  —  Obama wants to alter language …
Dan Collins / protein wisdom:
Stacy McCain Rouses the Rabble  —  “Politics is about who's got the best list.”  —  Petticoats gratefully accepted.  —  Meanwhile, in Obamatopia:
Times of London:
Israel stands ready to bomb Iran's nuclear sites  —  The Israeli military is preparing itself to launch a massive aerial assault on Iran's nuclear facilities within days of being given the go-ahead by its new government.  —  Among the steps taken to ready Israeli forces …
Chris / TVNewser:
Partied-Out CNN Reporter Takes a Break  —  Two days after Susan Roesgen's much talked-about Chicago Tea Party live shots, we are learning more about what happened off-camera.  —  Sources close to the situation tell TVNewser as Roesgen was reporting her 2pmET live shot for CNN …
City Room:
Child Obesity Is Linked to Chemicals in Plastics  —  Exposure to chemicals used in plastics may be linked with childhood obesity, according to results from a long-term health study on girls who live in East Harlem and surrounding communities that were presented to community leaders on Thursday …
Fox News:
McCain Strategist Warns GOP Risks Becoming ‘Religious Party’  —  Steve Schmidt urges Republicans to begin voicing more support for civil unions and gay rights.  —  —  John McCain's top adviser from the presidential campaign urged fellow Republicans on Friday to warm …
Discussion: Vox Popoli
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
Obama Averages 63% Approval in His First Quarter  —  Highest first-quarter average since 1977  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Barack Obama's first quarter in office concludes on Sunday, and during this early stage of his presidency he has averaged a solid 63% job approval, reaching as high as 69% …
Andrew Bolt /
Picture is kiss of death for George Bush prejudice  —  SEE this picture?  That's odd, because the Sunday Age's editor can't.  Unimaginable, she calls it.  —  Last weekend, her paper began yet another editorial praising new US President Barack Obama like this:
Discussion: Stop The ACLU
Wall Street Journal:
Union Intensifies Efforts to Organize Workers at Wal-Mart  —  The United Food and Commercial Workers union is ramping up organizing at Wal-Mart Stores Inc. after a five-year lull, dovetailing with its efforts to win support in Congress for a bill to make union organizing easier.
Matthew Balan /
CNN: Palin Family Issues Like Soap Opera; Downplays Obama Relatives' Troubles  —  CNN has displayed a double standard in its coverage of the difficulties involving the extended family of Sarah Palin versus that of President Barack Obama.  Two programs on the network on Thursday evening used …
John Rogers / Associated Press:
How Barack Obama resurrected The Dead  —  LOS ANGELES - He's still got a little work to do on the economy, but already President Barack Obama has accomplished at least one task that had appeared all but impossible just a year ago: He's put The Dead back on the road.
Gateway Pundit:
Change!... FARC Killers— Not Terrorists... US Veterans— Terrorists  —  A. M. Mora y Leon at The American Thinker reported that the Obama Administration has reclassified the FARC killers in Colombia as insurgents and not terrorists: … This is not really so surprising considering the news …
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 More Items: 
David Rothkopf:
It's official: Obama creates more czars than the Romanovs
Kevin Poulsen / Threat Level:
Documents: FBI Spyware Has Been Snaring Extortionists, Hackers for Years
Associated Press:
Obama ‘seeks a new beginning’ with Cuba, talks
Discussion: Babalú Blog
Heather / Crooks and Liars:
Countdown Special Comment: Future of US Depends on Torture Accountability
Ryan Grim / The Huffington Post:
Schakowsky On Torture: “Just Following Orders” A Historically Bogus Argument
Discussion: Firedoglake
Media Matters / Media Matters for America:
Rivera: “[T]he grand total of all of the tea party demonstrators” …
 Earlier Items: 
Melissa Del Bosque / The Texas Observer:
Lights, Cameras, Mayhem!
Discussion: Lean Left
Ceci Connolly / Washington Post:
Limited Federal Funds for Stem Cell Work Using Donated Embryos
Maia Szalavitz / Time:
An Oregon School for Troubled Teens Is Under Scrutiny
Fox News:
Biden's List of Political Blunders
Arloc Sherman /
Income Gaps Hit Record Levels In 2006, New Data Show
Glenn Thrush / Glenn Thrush's Blog:
Burr told constituents not to mob ATMs
Charles Homans / Washington Monthly:
Culture Shock  —  What happened when one conservative Web site …
Discussion: PoliGazette