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11:35 AM ET, May 19, 2009


 Top Items: 
Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
GOP Losses Span Nearly All Demographic Groups  —  Only frequent churchgoers show no decline in support since 2001  —  PRINCETON, NJ — The decline in Republican Party affiliation among Americans in recent years is well documented, but a Gallup analysis now shows that this movement away …
Michael Steele / The Politico:
The Republican Party turns a corner  —  The Republican Party finds itself the minority party in America for the first time in more than 15 years.  I'll be the first to admit it has taken some adjustment.  Republicans have engaged in some healthy soul-searching since Election Day …
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
White House Cheat Sheet: Steele Tries To Turn the Page  —  AP Photo/Savannah Morning News, Richard Burkhart  —  Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele will call for an end to the “era of apologizing” in the GOP and urge his fellow party members to “focus all of our energies …
Daniel Larison / Eunomia:
Not To Worry-Pretty Soon, No Republicans Will Be Influential  —  Gallup finds that the GOP is in retreat among almost all demographics.  Meanwhile, Robert Stacy McCain does fierce battle against that most dangerous of creatures: the conservative who is taken seriously outside of the confines of the cocoon.
Ralph Z. Hallow / Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: RNC's Steele associates' pay spurs questions
Discussion: The Note, The Page and AmSpecBlog
Donald Douglas / American Power:
Partisan Identification and Prospects for the Democratic Majority
The Nation:
‘US special squad killed Benazir’  —  NEW YORK (Online) - Former prime minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto was assassinated on the orders of the special death squad formed by former US vice-president Dick Cheney, which had already killed the Lebanese Prime Minister Rafique Al Hariri and the army chief of that country.
Pakistan Daily Times:
I did not say Cheney killed Benazir: Hersh  —  LAHORE: US journalist Seymour Hersh on Monday contradicted news reports being published in South Asia that quote him as saying a “special death squad” made by former US vice president Dick Cheney had killed Benazir Bhutto.
Andrew Martin / New York Times:
Credit Card Industry Aims to Profit From Sterling Payers  —  Credit cards have long been a very good deal for people who pay their bills on time and in full.  Even as card companies imposed punitive fees and penalties on those late with their payments, the best customers racked up cash-back rewards …
Molly Ball / Las Vegas Review-Journal:
Poll: Reid's re-election numbers don't add up  —  CARSON CITY — Nearly half of Nevadans have had enough of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid as the powerful Democrat heads into his re-election campaign, a new Las Vegas Review-Journal poll finds.  —  About a third of the state's voters …
CNN Poll: Pelosi facing Gingrich-like approval ratings  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) — As Nancy Pelosi continues to face a firestorm over what she may have known about aggressive government interrogation techniques, and when, a new survey has more unpleasant news for the House Speaker.
Rosalind S. Helderman / Washington Post:
Support for Obama Becomes an Issue  —  Moran Targets McAuliffe's Past Alliances  —  As the candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for governor in Virginia enter the final stretch of their primary, former delegate Brian Moran is for the first time trying to bring attention …
Walter Pincus / Washington Post:
CIA Officials Fear That New Rules May Hinder Interrogations  —  Intelligence Officials Privately Warn That New Rules May Hinder Their Interrogations  —  Battered by recriminations over waterboarding and other harsh techniques sanctioned by the Bush administration, the CIA is girding itself …
MPs' expenses: Michael Martin ‘to stand down’  —  Michael Martin, the Commons Speaker, will this afternoon announce that he is to stand down over the MPs' expenses scandal.  —  Mr Martin is expected to inform MPs of his departure in a statement to the Commons at 2.30pm …
Expenses row claims UK Commons Speaker
Discussion: NPR Blogs and RedState
Times of London:   Speaker Michael Martin to resign this afternoon
Jonathan Martin / The Politico:
Palin camp eyed Clinton alliance  —  In an unusual attempt to forge an alliance between two of the most prominent families in American politics, John Coale, a Washington-area Democratic donor and onetime adviser to Sarah Palin, urged the conservative Alaska governor to use her political action committee …
Alex Spillius / Telegraph:
Netanyahu stands firm against demands from Obama  —  Israel stood firm against demands from Barack Obama on Monday to cease the construction of Jewish settlements and embrace the “two-state solution” to achieving peace in the Middle East.  —  Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister …
Discussion: Don Surber and Daily Pundit
Jack Goldsmith / The New Republic:
The Cheney Fallacy  —  Why Barack Obama is waging a more effective war on terror than George W. Bush.  —  Former Vice President Cheney says that President Obama's reversal of Bush-era terrorism policies endangers American security.  The Obama administration, he charges, has …
Discussion: Jules Crittenden
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:   Obama's embrace of Bush terrorism policies is celebrated as “Centrism”
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
LEARNING THE WRONG LESSONS.... I don't want to dwell on the controversy surrounding Maureen Dowd using content from TPM without attribution, but some on the right are using the incident to draw the wrong conclusion.  A prominent conservative site called Hot Air, a project created by Michelle Malkin …
Michelle Malkin:
Obama's $1,300 car tax  —  Nobody in the White House is going to call the president's “mileage and pollution” plan what it is.  —  It's a $1,300 car tax.  On the working class.  On the middle class.  On everyone who has responded to the government's consumption-mania incentives …
Catherine Clifford /
New home building hits record low  —  Government report shows surprising sharp drop in housing starts in April.  Building permits also plummet to record low.  —  NEW YORK ( — Initial construction of U.S. homes sank to a record low in April, according to a government report released Tuesday …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Housing Starts Hit Record Low in April
Discussion: New York Times and The Bellows
Wall Street Journal:
Obama Avoids Test on Gays in Military  —  WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has decided to accept an appeals-court ruling that could undermine the military's ban on service members found to be gay.  —  A federal appeals court in San Francisco last year ruled that the government must justify …
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
Talk of insurance mandate growing  —  Health care could soon go the way of the automobile, with users having no choice but to buy insurance coverage.  —  Within four years, every American could be required to own health insurance or pay their way through tax penalties.
Ross Douthat / New York Times:
Dan Brown's America  —  The movie treatment of his novel, “Angels and Demons,” is cleaning up at the box office this week.  The sequel to “The DaVinci Code,” due out in November, might bouy the publishing industry through the recession.  And if you want to understand the state of American religion …
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 More Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Obama Scored Big at Notre Dame
Discussion: Althouse
Jesse McKinley / New York Times:
Cost of Cigarette Litter May Fall on San Francisco's Smokers
Discussion: Politics Daily and Paradigms Lost
U.S. airstrikes in Pakistan called ‘very effective’
Discussion: Danger Room and Balloon Juice
 Earlier Items: 
Associated Press:
Steelers' Harrison won't visit Obama
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
George Will's Irritable Mental Gestures