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11:45 AM ET, May 21, 2009


 Top Items: 
NY Daily News:
FBI arrest four in alleged plot to bomb Bronx synagogues, shoot down plane  —  The FBI busted a homegrown terror cell late Wednesday night as the men sneaked around a Jewish temple in Riverdale planting what they thought were packages of C-4 explosives, sources told the Daily News.
Sheryl Gay Stolberg / New York Times:
Obama Is Said to Consider Preventive Detention Plan  —  WASHINGTON — President Obama told human rights advocates at the White House on Wednesday that he was mulling the need for a “preventive detention” system that would establish a legal basis for the United States to incarcerate terrorism suspects …
New York Times:
4 Accused of Bombing Plot at Bronx Synagogues  —  Four men were arrested Wednesday night in what the authorities said was a plot to bomb two synagogues in the Bronx and shoot down military planes at an Air National Guard base in Newburgh, N.Y.  —  The men, all of whom live in Newburgh …
Howard Fineman / Newsweek:
Ignore the party, Rush, Newt and Cheney are the muscle  —  Right now there are two RNCs here in Washington, side by side.  The contrast is instructive.  —  One, the Republican National Committee, is a clueless self-parody.  The other, the (R)ush-(N)ewt-(C)heney tag team …
Paul Steinhauser / CNN:
Poll: Favorable opinions of Cheney rise  —  CNN Deputy Political Director  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) — As Dick Cheney prepares to give a major speech on the battle against terrorism, a new national poll suggests that favorable opinions of the former vice president are on the rise.
New York Times:
Police Say Terror Suspects Acted Alone  —  The four men arrested Wednesday night in what the authorities said was a plot to bomb two synagogues in the Bronx and shoot down military planes at an Air National Guard base in Newburgh, N.Y. were petty criminals who appeared to be acting alone …
Jules Crittenden:
Split-Screen Irony Alert  —  Politico on a remarkable moment in the political history of television: … That's fascinating.  Couldn't agree more.  Living through the last 8 years of “Bush lied, people died,” Code Pink outrages, Cindy Sheehan being a shrill demented moonbat …
Elisabeth Bumiller / New York Times:
1 in 7 Freed Detainees Rejoins Fight, Report Finds  —  WASHINGTON — An unreleased Pentagon report provides new details concluding that about one in seven of the 534 prisoners already transferred abroad from the detention center in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has returned to terrorism or militant activity …
William Kristol / Weekly Standard:
Text of Cheney's AEI Speech  —  THE WEEKLY STANDARD has obtained an advance copy of VP Cheney's remarks as prepared for delivery later this morning at the American Enterprise Institute.  I've read it quickly.  I think fair-minded people will find it very well-argued and powerful.
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Obama's Speech: A Preview
Discussion: Weekly Standard
Jonathan Dienst / NBC New York:
FBI, NYPD Arrest 4 in Alleged Plot to Bomb NY Synagogues
New York Post:
Discussion: JammieWearingFool and Cold Fury
Michelle Malkin:
Dueling banjos in Washington; Updated
Discussion: The Anchoress
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Setting the stage at AEI
New York Post:
Discussion: Pat Dollard and Gothamist
Bill Sammon / Fox News:
Obama ‘Distracted’ by Biden's ‘Indiscipline,’ Book Asserts  —  The president is so “distracted by his vice president's indiscipline” that he has been forced to rebuke privately Vice President Biden, according to a new book by Richard Wolffe.  —
Directorblue / Doug Ross:
Sacramento Bee publishes vicious screed bashing taxpayers, gets caught, then scrubs with milquetoast replacement  —  Early this morning, the failing Sacramento Bee published a “vicious screed” that pilloried taxpayers for refusing to feed California's insatiable state government.
Discussion: and Hot Air
Erika Lovley / The Politico:
Congressman: We're going to Disney  —  Rep. Alan Grayson was standing in the middle of Disney World when it hit him: What Americans really need is a week of paid vacation.  —  So on Thursday, the Florida Democrat will introduce the Paid Vacation Act — legislation that would be the first …
Randy E. Barnett / Forbes:
A Bill Of Federalism  —  A detailed proposal to redress the imbalance between state and federal power.  —  Lately some state legislatures have been considering so-called “sovereignty resolutions.”  Rather than pass strictly symbolic measures, however, I recommended—in an op-ed last month …
Discussion: The Volokh Conspiracy
Reid Wilson / The Hill:
Specter defends Pelosi, questions CIA's honesty
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Obama's Pronunciations  —  I don't have a problem with the fact that Barack Obama says “Pah-kee-stahn” when referring to the country to the west of India.  Nor do I have a problem with the fact that Obama says “Afghanistan” in the customary American manner.
Discussion: Think Progress
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Porter Goss Won't Say Whether He And Pelosi Were Told About Use Of Torture  —  Porter Goss, the former GOP Congressman who was in the room with Nancy Pelosi during their 2002 CIA briefing on interrogations, is declining through a spokesperson to say whether the two of them were told that enhanced interrogation techniques had been used.
The Huffington Post:
Obama Huddles With Human Rights Groups Before Security Speech  —  Under heavy criticism for a series of decisions on national security that resembled, for some, those of the Bush years, President Barack Obama hosted a lengthy meeting on Wednesday with the leaders of several key human rights and civil liberties groups.
Karl Rove / Wall Street Journal:
Flip-Flops and Governance  —  Our president isn't quite as advertised.  —  Printer  —  Friendly  —  Barack Obama inherited a set of national-security policies that he rejected during the campaign but now embraces as president.  This is a stunning and welcome about-face.
Adam Nagourney / The Caucus:
R.N.C. Votes Down the ‘Democrat Socialist Party’  —  The Republican National Committee backed away Wednesday from a resolution that officially called Democrats the “Democrat Socialist Party,” but instead voted to condemn Democrats for what it called a “march toward socialism.”
Jennifer Steinhauer / New York Times:
California, a Broke State, Reels as Voters Rebuff Leaders  —  LOS ANGELES — Direct democracy has once again upended California — enough so that the state may finally consider another way by overhauling its Constitution for the first time in 130 years.  —  Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger returned home …
David S. Broder / Washington Post:
President Obama as Commander in Chief  —  No new president finds that every aspect of the job suits him at once; some duties are inevitably more comfortable than others.  What we have witnessed in the past few weeks is Barack Obama trying on and fitting himself to the role of commander in chief.
Fox News:
Trebek Makes Bush Joke as Texas Teen Wins Geography Bee  —  WASHINGTON — The nation's top geography whiz breezed through questions about mountain ranges, rivers and world capitals Wednesday, but he was stumped when National Geographic Bee host Alex Trebek asked him to name one of his weaknesses.
Discussion: PoliGazette and
Pew Research Center:
Independents Take Center Stage in Obama Era  —  Trends in Political Values and Core Attitudes: 1987-2009  —  Centrism has emerged as a dominant factor in public opinion as the Obama era begins.  The political values and core attitudes that the Pew Research Center has monitored since 1987 show little overall ideological movement.
Timothy J. Burger / Bloomberg:
Jesse Jackson Jr. Pays Campaign Funds to Chicago Alderman Wife  —  Representative Jesse Jackson Jr.'s congressional campaign organization has paid his wife at least $247,500 since 2001, including at least $95,000 after Sandra Jackson joined the Chicago City Council two years ago, according to federal election records.
Discussion: The Swamp and Moonbattery
Agence France Presse:
Republicans to seek Pelosi investigation: source  — Republicans to seek Pelosi investigation: source  —  WASHINGTON (AFP) - Republicans in the House of Representatives will call Thursday for a formal probe into Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's charges that the CIA misled her on alleged torture, an official said.
Wall Street Journal:
Pre-emption of State Laws Rolled Back  —  WASHINGTON — In a sweeping order Wednesday, President Barack Obama called for a rollback of Bush administration regulations designed to protect companies from product-liability lawsuits in state courts.  —  The memo didn't name specific industries …
Discussion: Law Blog and Right Wing News
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 More Items: 
Alec MacGillis / Washington Post:
Tracking Stimulus Spending May Not Be as Easy as Promised
Discussion: Say Anything
Ryan Singel / Threat Level:
FCC's Warrantless Household Searches Alarm Experts
Discussion: Raw Story
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Distributing The Regulatory Surplus
Discussion: The Bellows
Gateway Pundit:
Lib California Speaker Karen Bass Says Voters Rejected Tax Hikes …
Michelle Malkin:
Tim Arango / New York Times:
Death Row Foes See Newsroom Cuts as Blow
Discussion: Newsweek Blogs
 Earlier Items: 
Chris Isidore /
Fed's economic forecast worsens
Discussion: Vox Popoli
Bob Davis / Wall Street Journal:
World Economies Plummet
Discussion: The Page and The Big Picture
Jared Allen / The Hill:
Cap-and-trade showdown  —  A committee chairman is threatening …
Discussion: The Politico
Bret Baier / Fox News:
The Death of the Republican Party May Have Been Greatly Exaggerated
Discussion: MSNBC and Gateway Pundit
Steve Stecklow / Wall Street Journal:
Sexual-Harassment Cases Plague U.N.