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11:20 AM ET, July 2, 2009


 Top Items: 
Mike Allen / The Politico:
WashPost sells access, $25,000+  —  For $25,000 to $250,000, The Washington Post is offering lobbyists and association executives off the record, non-confrontational access to “those powerful few” — Obama administration officials, members of Congress, and the paper's own reporters and editors.
Helen Thomas: Not Even Nixon Tried to Control the Media Like Obama  —  ( - Following a testy exchange during today's briefing with White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas told that not even Richard Nixon tried to control …
John / Power Line:
Health Care Stagecraft  —  President Obama held an “online town hall” health care meeting in Annandale, Virginia today.  It was televised and, coincidentally, I happened to catch the emotional centerpiece of the production on CNN.  Obama gave a long introductory pitch in support of his health care plan …
Clif LeBlanc / The State:
39 trips for Sanford with no security in '09  —  EXCLUSIVE: Governor's secret trip prompts scrutiny  —  Gov. Mark Sanford left the Governor's Mansion without a security escort, 38 times in 2008.  In the first six months of this year, he left the mansion without security, 39 times.
Discussion: Raw Story and The Page
Michael Falcone / The Politico:
House of Pain: GOP's Class of '94
David Saltonstall / NY Daily News:
Blubbering Love Gov. Mark Sanford tears up again over ‘soul mate’ Maria Belen Chapur
Discussion: Real Clear Politics
The Politico:
S.C. GOP: Sanford must go
Washington Post:
U.S.: American Soldier Captured in Afghanistan  —  A U.S. soldier missing from his base in eastern Afghanistan since Tuesday is believed to have been captured by Taliban militants, the military said Thursday.  —  In a statement issued from U.S. military headquarters in Kabul, officials said …
Taliban capture U.S. soldier  —  KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) — A U.S. soldier has been captured by militants in Afghanistan, the U.S. military and the Taliban said Thursday.  —  The unidentified soldier has been missing since Tuesday.  U.S. forces are exhausting all resources to find the soldier, the military said.
Jack Healy / New York Times:
Job Losses Rise in June as Unemployment Reaches 9.5%  —  The pace of job losses quickened in June after slowing just a month earlier, casting a shadow over the Obama administration's attempts to stanch months of declines in the labor market.  —  The American economy shed 467,000 jobs last month …
Shobhana Chandra / Bloomberg:
Payrolls Fall More Than Forecast, Unemployment Rises
Brian Blackstone / Wall Street Journal:
Job Losses Accelerated in June
Discussion: TigerHawk, Betsy's Page and Wizbang
John_Merritt / CBS News:
Palin E-mails Show Infighting With Staff  —  Exclusive: Spat Over Todd Palin's Membership In Secessionist Party Was Major Distraction On Critical Day In '08 Campaign … Internal campaign e-mails exchanged three weeks before Election Day offer a rare look at just how frustrated …
Byron York / Washington Examiner:
Barney Frank: Let's spend TARP profits before taxpayers can get them  —  When President Obama announced on June 9 that some financial institutions would be allowed to repay Troubled Asset Relief Program dollars, he said the massively expensive TARP bailout had made money for the federal government.
Discussion: Power Line, AmSpecBlog and Betsy's Page
Another View: In Praise of Law Firm Layoffs
Discussion: Law Blog
Quinnipiac University:
Cracks In Obama Facade As Disapproval Grows, Quinnipiac University National Poll Finds; But Voter Outlook On Economy, Nation Improve  —  President Barack Obama's first five months in office have seen his job approval remain stable overall - currently at a politically healthy 57 - 33 percent …
John R. Bolton / Washington Post:
Time for an Israeli Strike?  —  With Iran's hard-line mullahs and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps unmistakably back in control, Israel's decision of whether to use military force against Tehran's nuclear weapons program is more urgent than ever.  —  Iran's nuclear threat was never …
Laurie Goodstein / New York Times:
U.S. Nuns Facing Vatican Scrutiny  —  The Vatican is quietly conducting two sweeping investigations of American nuns, a development that has startled and dismayed nuns who fear they are the targets of a doctrinal inquisition.  —  Nuns were the often-unsung workers who helped build …
Discussion: Politics Daily
Wal-Mart Allies With The Left  —  Behind the bipartisan motives for employer-provided health insurance.  —  On Tuesday the CEO of Wal-Mart, long the bête noire of the American left, issued a joint statement with SEIU head Andy Stern and Center for American Progress President John Podesta …
Minnesota Public Radio:
GET WEATHER REPORT GET TRAFFIC REPORT  — News Home - / - Arts & Culture - / - Region - / - Politics - / - Business - / - Education - / - Environment - / - Health  —  St. Paul, Minn. — With the legal battle surrounding Minnesota's Senate race finally over, Democrat Al Franken is headed …
Discussion: The Fix
Howard Kurtz / Washington Post:
Black Reporters on the Beat of Michelle Obama  —  While Michelle Obama was meeting with doctors and patients at the Upper Cardozo Health Center, nearly two dozen journalists stood behind a white rope in a small room upstairs, most finally growing so tired during the hour-long wait that they sat on the floor.
Sara A. Carter / Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: Taliban buying children for suicide bombers  —  Pakistan's top Taliban leader, Baitullah Mehsud, is buying children as young as 7 to serve as suicide bombers in the growing spate of attacks against Pakistani, Afghan and U.S. targets, U.S. Defense Department and Pakistani officials say.
Discussion: Hot Air and Weasel Zippers
Jonathan D. Glater / New York Times:
Finding Debt a Bigger Hurdle Than Bar Exam  —  All his life, Robert Bowman wanted to be a lawyer.  He overcame a troubled childhood, a tragic accident that nearly cost him a leg and a debilitating Jet Ski collision.  —  He put himself through community college, worked and borrowed heavily …
Terror from the Right  —  75 plots, conspiracies and racist rampages since Oklahoma City … What follows is a detailed listing of major terrorist plots and racist rampages that have emerged from the American radical right in the years since Oklahoma City.
Heather Timmons / New York Times:
Indian Court Overturns Gay Sex Ban  —  NEW DELHI —In a landmark ruling Thursday that could usher in an era of greater freedom for gays and lesbians in India, New Delhi's highest court decriminalized homosexuality.  —  “Discrimination is antithesis of equality,” Delhi High Court judges wrote …
Learfield / Radio Iowa:
Someone is doing 2012 research in Iowa  —  A friend of mine in Des Moines, Iowa, got a phone call last night, testing out the names of potential 2012 GOP presidential candidates.  It was an automated survey and did not indicate who the sponsor of the call might be, “but it was quite apparent it was a GOP call,” my friend reports.
Jonathan Cohn / The Treatment:
EXCLUSIVE: The *Real* HELP Bill.  And It's Much Better.  —  A few weeks ago, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions set off an uproar when it submitted a work-in-progress for scoring by the Congressional Budget Office.  The bill was missing major pieces, including a requirement …
Runnin' Scared:
Times Square Tea Party Denounces Obama, Media, Imaginary Tax Rates, Etc.  —  They had another one of those Tea Party things this evening, this time right next to the Times Square subway station on Broadway.  The anti-Obama pep rally occupied part of the street and part of the sidewalk …
Discussion: JammieWearingFool and alicublog
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 More Items: 
North Korea raises tension with missile launch
Discussion: The Daley Gator
Tami Luhby /
California on brink of IOUs
Douglas Belkin / Wall Street Journal:
A Bank Run Teaches the ‘Plain People’ About the Risks of Modernity
Discussion: Blog and Reason
Nicholas D. Kristof / New York Times:
When Our Brains Short-Circuit  —  Our political system sometimes …
Discussion: Cafe Hayek
Andy McCarthy / The Corner:
Senators Sessions and Kyl Demand Answers on Obama's Negotiations …
Discussion: Power Line and Washington Times
Robert Stacy McCain / The Other McCain:
Michelle Malkin Reports on IG-Gate
 Earlier Items: 
Aaron Blake / The Hill:
A few victory laughs for Sen.-elect Franken
Discussion: SEIU
Daily Mail:
CoE school bans girl from wearing crucifix - but allows Sikh pupils to wear bangles
Discussion: Don Surber and Weasel Zippers
Robert Berkvist / New York Times:
Karl Malden, Actor Who Played the Uncommon Everyman, Dies at 97
Discussion: normblog, The New Republic and ArtsBeat
Daily Mail:
Rigged?  ‘Suspicious’ Iranian ballot papers show name Ahmadinejad …
Discussion: Hot Air and Weasel Zippers
Ezra Klein / Washington Post:
We're Getting A Bad Feeling About Our Food
Discussion: D-Day, and Ezra Klein
Matt Walker / BBC:
Ant mega-colony takes over world
Discussion: Pharyngula