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11:15 PM ET, August 19, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
New Rx for Health Plan: Split Bill  —  The White House and Senate Democratic leaders, seeing little chance of bipartisan support for their health-care overhaul, are considering a strategy shift that would break the legislation into two parts and pass the most expensive provisions solely with Democratic votes.
RELATED:
Pew Research Center:
More See White House and GOP Leaders at Odds  —  Democratic Favorable Ratings Slide  —  Americans are in an increasingly sour mood about Washington.  Barack Obama's approval ratings continue to inch downward and a growing proportion of Americans (63%) think that the president and Republican leaders …
Marc Ambinder / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
White House Will Weather Liberal Anger; Baucus Doubles Down  —  The White House and Senate Democrats won't buckle to demands from liberals that they revise their health care strategy, officials said today.  —  White House advisers and Democratic strategists concede that President Obama's poll numbers …
CNN:
Reid spox: ‘Patience is not unlimited’
Washington Post:
White House Is Seeking to Repair Intraparty Rift About Public Option
Rasmussen Reports:
Without Public Option, Enthusiasm for Health Care Reform, Especially Among Democrats, Collapses  —  Just 34% of voters nationwide support the health care reform plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats if the so-called “public option” is removed.
RELATED:
John Amato / Crooks and Liars:
Chuck Todd thinks we support the public option just because conservatives don't  —  On Andrea Mitchell's show this morning, Chuck Todd was on to opine about health care reform.  He said one outrageous thing and one right thing.  The Toddster said that progressives might be attached …
Discussion: Hullabaloo
Scarecrow / Firedoglake:
Prospect's Starr to Progressives: Thanks for Being Pawns; Now Chill on the PO  —  There is something of value when elites tell you the truth, even while they're insulting you.  So when the courageously anonymous *cough* senior White House official told the Washington Post that anyone who thinks …
Discussion: American Prospect and Salon
Ian M. / Think Progress:
Bachmann: Health Care Reform Is Unconstitutional
Discussion: #gay and The Political Carnival
Brian Beutler / TPMDC:
Major Health Insurance Company Urges Employees To Attend Tea Parties
Discussion: Brave New Films blog
Steven Pearlstein / Washington Post:
Time to Give Up on the Public Option
David Weigel / The Washington Independent:
The LaRouche Cult and the Health Care Protests  —  After noting that the disturbed woman who accused Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) of supporting a “Nazi policy” was a LaRouche cultist, I checked out the trove of videos that LaRouche's Virginia-based organization has made available since …
RELATED:
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
HOW IT'S DONE.... This is quickly making the rounds, but if you haven't seen it, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) held a town-hall event last night, and was confronted with a nut, carrying a picture of the president to make him look like Hitler, who asked why Frank would support a “Nazi policy.”
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
A deeper look at the birthers  —  After we conducted polls over the last couple of weeks finding significant numbers of ‘birthers’ in North Carolina and Virginia, we decided to take the question national but also drum down more specifically on where exactly the people who think Barack Obama …
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Is there really a boycott of Glenn Beck?  Update: Law of unintended consequences?  —  We've heard about the boycott of the Glenn Beck Show on Fox News Channel, one where as many as 20 advertisers have dropped their spots, thanks to pressure from left-wing groups angry at ... well, their latest anger du jour.
Washington Post:
Majority in Post-ABC Poll Say Afghan War Not Worth Fighting  —  Few Express Confidence in Lasting Results From Thursday's Election  —  A majority of Americans now see the war in Afghanistan as not worth fighting and just a quarter say more U.S. troops should be sent to the country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.
The Politico:
Dem investigators target insurers  —  House Democrats are probing the nation's largest insurance companies for lavish spending, demanding reams of compensation data and schedules of retreats and conferences.  —  Letters sent to 52 insurance companies by Democratic leaders demand extensive documents …
RELATED:
Ben Pershing / Capitol Briefing:
House Democrats Increase Pressure on Health Insurers
Mark Mazzetti / New York Times:
C.I.A. Sought Blackwater's Help in Plan to Kill Jihadists  —  WASHINGTON — The Central Intelligence Agency in 2004 hired outside contractors from the private security contractor Blackwater USA as part of a secret program to locate and assassinate top operatives of Al Qaeda, according to current and former government officials.
Discussion: Talking Points Memo and Emptywheel
Ylan Q. Mui / Washington Post:
Whole Foods Devotees Lash Out at CEO  —  Customers, Angry Over His Health-Care Views, Share Feelings of Betrayal on Web  —  Whole Foods aficionados who assumed the company's management was as crunchy as the brand are feeling betrayed.  —  They have stormed Twitter, Facebook and the blogosphere …
RELATED:
James Brown / CBS News:
TV News Giant Don Hewitt Dies At 86  —  CBS News Legend And “60 Minutes” Creator's Career Spanned 60 Years  —  (CBS) Don Hewitt, recognized as a father of modern television news and the creator of the medium's most successful broadcast, “60 Minutes,” died Wednesday after battling pancreatic cancer.
Mike Zapler / Mercury News:
Legislature to vote on sweeping prison reforms  —  SACRAMENTO — Democratic lawmakers and Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger are poised as soon as today to enact a package of far-reaching prison reforms that would allow some prisoners to serve the last 12 months of their sentences under house arrest …
Discussion: TalkLeft
Warren E. Buffett / New York Times:
The Greenback Effect  —  IN nature, every action has consequences, a phenomenon called the butterfly effect.  These consequences, moreover, are not necessarily proportional.  For example, doubling the carbon dioxide we belch into the atmosphere may far more than double the subsequent problems for society.
Carla Marinucci / San Francisco Chronicle:
Senate bid dogged by Fiorina's failure to vote  —  (08-18) 19:51 PDT — Republican Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard CEO, took her first formal step Tuesday to challenge incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer - but does she pass the Citizenship 1o1 test?
Nat Hentoff / Jewish World Review:
I am finally scared of a White House administration  —  The members of that ultimate federal board will themselves not have examined or seen the patient in question.  For another example of the growing, tumultuous resistance to “Dr. Obama,” particularly among seniors, there is a July 29 …
Zaid Jilani / Think Progress:
New poll finds that 39 percent of Americans want government to ‘stay out of Medicare.’  —  As ThinkProgress has noted before, conservatives have frequently obscured the fact that Medicare is a government-run single-payer program.  Constituents appearing at health care town halls have even demanded …
Jim Towey / Wall Street Journal:
The Death Book for Veterans  —  Ex-soldiers don't need to be told they're a burden to society.  —  Printer  —  Friendly  —  If President Obama wants to better understand why America's discomfort with end-of-life discussions threatens to derail his health-care reform, he might begin with his own Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Discussion: Israpundit and Pundit & Pundette
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
A call with the rabbinate  —  From the Washington Jewish Week, and confirmed just now by Gibbs:  —  President Barack Obama needs some outside help pushing health care reform, and he's turning to rabbis to get it.  —  In a morning conference call with about 1000 rabbis from across the nation …
Domenico Montanaro / msnbc.com:
FIRST THOUGHTS: OBAMA'S GOOD, BAD NEWS  —  From Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, Domenico Montanaro, and Ali Weinberg  —  *** Good news and bad news: The (relatively) good news for the Obama White House in the new NBC News poll is that the contours of the health-care debate haven't really changed …
 
 
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 More Items: 
George Stephanopoulos / George's Bottom Line:
Will the WH Use Hillary on Health Care?
Discussion: MyDD
Associated Press:
Mom of Bristol Palin's Ex Cops Plea
The Huffington Post:
Pollster Behind Controversial Public Option Poll Has Long Ties To Insurance Industry
Discussion: Firedoglake
Bkrueger / Raleigh News & Observer:
Etheridge considering Senate bid
 Earlier Items: 
Greg Giroux / Top Stories from CQ:
McCain: Maverick No More?  —  He ran for president last year as a …
Discussion: Think Progress
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Anti-Reform Group's Internal Memo: “Rumors Of The Death Of The …
BBC:
Ink-redible: 150-million-year-old squid discovered
James Bone / Times of London:
Vogue model Liskula Cohen wins right to unmask offensive blogger
Michelle Malkin:
SEIU Watch: Obama to rouse Purple Army in special conference call
Political Punch:
Back in Home Districts, Much-Wooed Blue Dogs Not Barking for …