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5:00 PM ET, May 12, 2009


 Top Items: 
Miss California Topless — Oops, She Did It Again  —  Carrie Prejean must have a really, really bad memory — because TMZ uncovered a brand new set of topless photos “biblically correct” Miss California took before she applied for the crown.  —  These pics were taken just last year — meaning Carrie was the ripe ol' LEGAL age of 20.
Katharine Q. Seelye / The Lede:
Trump Rules: Miss California Is Not Fired
Josh Kraushaar / The Politico:
Conservatives may buck Crist  —  The expected announcement Tuesday by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist that he's running for the Senate would seem to be a rare bit of good news for beleaguered Republicans.  —  But while Crist is a brand-name recruit with sky-high approval ratings and bipartisan appeal …
Josh Kraushaar / Scorecard's Blog:
NRSC endorses Crist  —  Even as Gov. Charlie Crist comes under fire from Florida conservatives, he will be getting some important political backing today as he announces that he's running for the Senate in Florida.  —  The National Republican Senatorial Committee will be endorsing Crist …
Rachel Kapochunas / CQ Politics:
Crist's Senate Bid Flips CQ Ratings on Florida Races
Discussion: Top of the Ticket
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
It's War: Conservative Candidate Uses Image Of Obama To Attack Moderate GOPer
Discussion: TPMDC
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
White House Cheat Sheet: What Crist Means
Josh Kraushaar / Scorecard's Blog:   Cornyn on Crist endorsement
Richard Cohen / Washington Post:
What if Cheney's Right?  —  Blogger Alert: I have written a column in defense of Dick Cheney.  I know how upsetting this will be to some Cheney critics, and I count myself as one, who think — in respectful paraphrase of what Mary McCarthy said about Lillian Hellman — that everything he says is a lie, including the ands and the thes.
Brent Baker /
Koppel: ‘Enhanced Interrogation Technique’ …
Neil A. Lewis / New York Times:
Potential Justice Offers a Counterpoint in Chicago  —  WASHINGTON — When President Bill Clinton had a rare opportunity in 1995 for a Democratic president to fill a vacancy on the federal appeals court based in Chicago, a bastion of conservative thinking, he received an unusually strong recommendation from Senator Paul Simon.
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:   THE DREADED ‘E’ WORD.... When Justice David Souter announced …
Keenan Kmiec / The Politico:
Ever been a ‘judicial activist’?
Discussion: Democratic Strategist
Janet Adamy / Wall Street Journal:
Soda Tax Weighed to Pay for Health Care  —  Senate leaders are considering new federal taxes on soda and other sugary drinks to help pay for an overhaul of the nation's health-care system.  —  The taxes would pay for only a fraction of the cost to expand health-insurance coverage to all Americans …
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Obama administration threatens Britain to keep torture evidence concealed  —  (updated below)  —  Ever since he was released from Guantanamo in February after six years of due-process-less detention and brutal torture, Binyam Mohamed has been attempting to obtain justice for what was done to him.
Discussion: and TalkLeft
Eli Lake / Washington Times:
Obama threatens to limit U.S. intel with Brits
Discussion: The Daily Dish and Wonk Room
Eric Zimmermann / The Hill's Blog Briefing Room:
Inhofe: 200 ‘hard core terrorists’ to be ‘turned loose’ in U.S.
Brian Knowlton / New York Times:
Insolvency for Social Security and Medicare Is Seen Closer  —  WASHINGTON — The financial outlook for Medicare and Social Security has significantly worsened, as the bad economy and mounting job losses have pushed both programs years closer to insolvency, according to a grim report issued Tuesday by the Obama administration.
Timothy F. Geithner /
A MESSAGE TO THE PUBLIC:  —  Each year the Trustees of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds report on the current and projected financial status of the two programs.  This message summarizes our 2009 Annual Reports.  —  The financial condition of the Social Security and Medicare programs remains challenging.
Discussion: On Deadline and AmSpecBlog
Heather / Crooks and Liars:
Jesse Ventura: You Give Me a Water Board, Dick Cheney and One Hour, and I'll Have Him Confess to the Sharon Tate Murders  —  You can view this video right here by getting the latest version of Flash Player!  —  On Larry King Live Jesse Ventura takes on the Bush administration chickenhawks and Rush Limbaugh, and defends Colin Powell.
Lt. Daniel Choi / CNN:
Gay soldier: Don't fire me  —  • Military … Open Letter to President Obama and Every Member of Congress:  —  I have learned many lessons in the ten years since I first raised my right hand at the United States Military Academy at West Point and committed to fighting for my country.
Ben Armbruster / Think Progress:
Army Lt. discharged under DADT writes to Obama: ‘I beg you today: Do not fire me.’
Discussion: Neptunus Lex
Declan McCullagh / CBS News:
It's A Good Time To Work For Uncle Sam  —  President Obama's call last year for “shared sacrifice” doesn't extend to federal employees, at least based on the details of his administration's 2010 budget released this week.  —  At a time when the official unemployment rate is nearing double digits …
Ali Frick / Think Progress:
Palin distinguishes herself as the only governor to refuse energy conservation funds.  —  Every single governor except Sarah Palin (R-AK) has written to Energy Secretary Steven Chu accepting millions of stimulus dollars meant to increase energy conservation and efficiency.
Dermot Cole / • Fairbanks, Alaska:
Statewide energy code not necessary to qualify for federal conservation money
The Plank:
Obama Breaks With Gates, Cancels Nuke Program  —  Obama's new budget plan includes a little-noted sea change in U.S. nuclear policy, and a step towards his vision of a denuclearized world.  It provides no funding for the Reliable Replacement Warhead program, created to design a new generation …
Byron York /
Obama's dangerous budget leaves GOP at loss for words  —  Obama is a self-deceived person.  In the end America will have mediocrity or much worse wether there are “savings” or no “savings.”  More government bureaucracy is not the answer.  When will Obama and the Democrates tackle the looming Social Security and Medicare disaster?
Discussion: protein wisdom
William Kristol / Washington Post:
An Anti-Obama Agenda for the GOP  —  The Republican Party's navel is a pretty unattractive thing.  —  So maybe Republicans should stop obsessively gazing at it.  Instead, the GOP might focus on taking on the Obama administration, whose policies are surprisingly vulnerable to political and substantive attack.
Charlie Cook / National Journal Online:
Sometimes Silence Is Golden  —  The GOP Would Be Well-Advised To Take A Page From The Democratic Playbook And Steer Clear Of Politically Divisive Issues  —  The other day, a Republican campaign operative whose experience dates back to George H.W. Bush's White House political office was lamenting …
Discussion: Open Left and Balloon Juice
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 More Items: 
Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar / Associated Press:
Senators weigh tax hikes to pay for health care
Discussion: This ain't Hell …
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
Faking Left  —  Among their many aspirations for his presidency …
Discussion: Wonkette
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Can Mitch Daniels Save the GOP?
Discussion: AmSpecBlog
Edwin Mora / CNSNews:
U.S. Will Pay $2.6 Million to Train Chinese Prostitutes to Drink …
Discussion: Hot Air
John H. Richardson / Esquire:
Acts of Conscience  —  As President Obama taps Lt. Gen. Stanley …
Discussion: Raw Story
Jennifer Finney Boylan / New York Times:
Is My Marriage Gay?
 Earlier Items: 
Rick Hasen / Election Law:
Discussion: TPMDC
Michael J. Totten:
The Future of Iraq, Part I
Discussion: Daily Pundit and Pajamas Media
Andy Kessler / Wall Street Journal:
Was It a Sucker's Rally?
Discussion: Clusterstock and Wizbang

From Techmeme:

Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:
AT&T says it will begin notifying consumers about a data breach where cybercriminals stole phone records of “nearly all” of its cellular and landline customers

Javier Espinoza / Financial Times:
Preliminary findings: the European Commission says X's paid blue checkmark deceives users and breaches the DSA; X could be fined up to 6% of its global revenue

Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Amazon says its AI shopping assistant Rufus is live in the Amazon mobile app for all US customers, after launching in beta for select customers in February 2024

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