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5:45 PM ET, September 16, 2009


 Top Items: 
The Hill:
Snowe falls away, leaving Senate Dems without GOP support on healthcare  —  Senate Democrats are going to have to move forward on healthcare without a single Republican supporter after Sen. Olympia Snowe said Tuesday she could not back the Finance Committee's bill.
The Note:
Dem Senator Warns of ‘Big, Big Tax’ on Middle Class in Baucus Bill  —  ABC News' Teddy Davis reports:  —  It's not every day that you hear a Democratic senator charge that a fellow Democrat is proposing to raise taxes on the middle class, but that is what happened on Tuesday when Sen. Jay Rockefeller …
Shailagh Murray / Washington Post:
Young Adults May Pay Big Share of Health-Care Reform's Cost  —  As health-care legislation advances through Congress, the young adults who were so vital to President Obama's election are emerging as a significant beneficiary of his top domestic priority, but they are also likely to play a major role in funding any reform.
The Huffington Post:   Baucus Bill: Rockefeller Says Dem Senators Are Not Pleased
Greg Sargent / The Plum Line:
Grassley: I Can't Back Bill Now Because Dems Might Do Bill Without Me Later
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
The Note:
Liberals Blast Baucus Plan
Discussion: ABCNEWS
Derek Thompson / The Atlantic Business Channel:
Does Anybody Actually Like the Baucus Health Care Bill?
Tom Jensen / Public Policy Polling:
Extremism in New Jersey  —  We've been uncovering a remarkable level of anger toward Barack Obama in a lot of our recent polling so for New Jersey we decided to go a step further in determining how extreme some people's feelings are about the President and asked respondents if they think he is the Anti-Christ.
Eric Kleefeld / TPMDC:
New Jersey Poll: Birthers, Truthers, And The Anti-Christ — Oh, My!
Discussion: Think Progress
David Weigel / The Washington Independent:
Poll: One in Three New Jersey Conservatives Thinks Obama Might Be the Anti-Christ
Discussion: Wonkette
SpeakupAmerica / CBS News:
Obama Admin: Cap And Trade Could Cost Families $1,761 A Year  —  Posted by Declan McCullagh The Obama administration has privately concluded that a cap and trade law would cost American taxpayers up to $200 billion a year, the equivalent of hiking personal income taxes by about 15 percent.
Jeffrey H. Birnbaum / Washington Times:
ACORN says workers conduct ‘indefensible’  —  Suspends, plans audit, in wake of videos  —  UPDATED:  —  ACORN, calling the actions of some of its employees “indefensible,” has suspended advising new clients as part of its service programs and is setting up an independent review to see what happened.
Scott Shane / New York Times:
Conservatives Draw Blood From Acorn  —  WASHINGTON — For months during last year's presidential race, conservatives sought to tar the Obama campaign with accusations of voter fraud and other transgressions by the national community organizing group Acorn, which had done some work for the campaign.
Los Angeles Times:
From ACORN, a mighty controversy grows
Rasmussen Reports:
12% Say Most Opponents of Obama Health Care Plan Are Racist  —  Twelve percent (12%) of voters nationwide believe that most opponents of President Obama's health care reform plan are racist.  The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 67% of voters disagree, and 21% are not sure.
Rasmussen Reports:
Election 2010: New Hampshire Senate  —  Ayotte Leads Hodes 46% to 38% in 2010 New Hampshire Senate Match-Up  —  Republican Kelly Ayotte leads Democrat Paul Hodes by eight points in an early look at New Hampshire's 2010 race for the U.S. Senate.  —  The first Rasmussen Reports survey …
Political Punch:
Blowback in the ACORN Wars  —  Recent videos posted online and aired repeatedly on Fox News Channel that seem to show ACORN workers allegedly advising two 20-somethings dressed up as a pimp and prostitute on how to skirt the law, the community group has taken some major hits as of late.
Alexander Zaitchik / Salon:
Meet the man who changed Glenn Beck's life  —  On Saturday, I spent the afternoon with America's new breed of angry conservative.  Up to 75,000 protesters had gathered in Washington on Sept. 12, the day after the eighth anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks, sporting …
Logan Murphy / Crooks and Liars:
Limbaugh Goes Full-On Racist During Rant About School Bus Beating  —  Rush Limbaugh has never hidden his bigoted beliefs, and on Tuesday he went on a racist rant about a highly disturbing incident on a school bus where a black student attacked a white student while other children cheered on.
Discussion: The Reaction
Paul R. Pillar / Washington Post:
Terrorists' Real Haven Isn't on the Ground, It's Online  —  Rationales for maintaining the counterinsurgency in Afghanistan are varied and complex, but they all center on one key tenet: that Afghanistan must not be allowed to again become a haven for terrorist groups, especially al-Qaeda.
Anne E. Kornblut / Washington Post:
As Right Jabs Continue, White House Debates a Counterpunching Strategy  —  Facing a near-daily barrage of attacks from conservative opponents, White House officials are engaged in an internal debate over how hard to hit back, even as they have grown increasingly aggressive in countering allegations they deem to be absurd.
Audrey Hudson / Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: W.H. collects Web users' data without notice  —  Social-media messages go into archives  —  The White House is collecting and storing comments and videos placed on its social-networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube without notifying or asking the consent of the site users …
Discussion: Cato @ Liberty and Atlas Shrugs
Michael O'Brien / The Hill:
Waters: Probe ‘birthers and the teabaggers’ at rallies for racist views  —  The media should investigate the racial views of conservative activists like the ones who descended on Washington last weekend, one liberal congresswoman said Wednesday.  —  Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) …
Discussion: Don Surber, Hot Air and Weasel Zippers
Charlie Savage / New York Times:
Ignoring a Law on Foreign Relations  —  WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has declared that President Obama can disregard a law forbidding State Department officials from attending United Nations meetings led by representatives of nations considered to be sponsors of terrorism.
Discussion: and Commentary
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
‘Jackass!’  —  And here's that video, which shows, above all else, the president as a normal person — and moreover, a normal pol, utterly immersed in the cable-news frivolity he affects to disdain.  —  UPDATE: Not so much: Wiser heads than mine at POLITICO made the call to take down the video of the “jackass” moment.
Discussion: Mediaite
Matt Viser / Boston Globe:
Votes are lined up to appoint a senator  —  Top Democrats press for Mass. bill  —  Senate President Therese M. Murray has not pushed the bill.  —  Legislative leaders on Beacon Hill believe they have narrow majorities in both chambers to give Governor Deval Patrick the power to appoint …
Discussion: and Swing State Project
Gregg Easterbrook / Wall Street Journal:
The Man Who Defused the ‘Population Bomb’  —  One of America's greatest heroes remains little known in his home country.  —  Printer  —  Friendly  —  Norman Borlaug arguably the greatest American of the 20th century died late Saturday after 95 richly accomplished years.
Douglas Elmendorf / Director's Blog:
Preliminary Analysis of Specifications for the Chairman's Mark of the America's Healthy Future Act  —  CBO has just issued a preliminary analysis of specifications for the Chairman's mark of the America's Healthy Future Act, which was released by the Senate Finance Committee earlier today.
Roll Call:
Ethics Panel Investigates Waters, Graves and Jackson  —  The House ethics committee revealed Wednesday it is investigating allegations involving three lawmakers in unrelated incidents.  —  The Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, commonly known as the ethics panel …
Discussion: The Anchoress
Alan Riquelmy /
Judge tosses out Army captain's complaint questioning president's birth; Orly Taitz on notice  —  U.S. District Court Judge Clay Land tossed out on Wednesday a complaint by an Army captain fighting deployment to Iraq by questioning the legitimacy of President Barack Obama.
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 More Items: 
Nicholas Beaudrot / Donkeylicious:
Baucus Blunders, Part II: Affordability
Sam Youngman / The Hill:
Gibbs blasts GOP critics of Obama czars
Discussion: Washington Monthly
Michael Gerson / Washington Post:
Today's Singles, Lost Without a Courtship Narrative
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Pawlenty will stop state funding for ACORN
Ezra Klein:
The Baucus Bill: The Neutered Co-Ops
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
Contest Semifinals: Vote for Member Who Just Won't “Walk the Talk”
David Kravets / Threat Level:
Obama Backs Extending Patriot Act Spy Provisions
Discussion: The Impolitic and
 Earlier Items: 
Erick Erickson / Erick's blog:
15 Days and We're Not Meeting the Goal
Don Loos / Big Government:
SEIU: ‘One of the Pillars of the ACORN Family’
NY Daily News:
Elite FBI unit set for more anti-terror raids in Queens
Discussion: The Jawa Report and A Blog For All
Evan Miller / The New Argument:
BREAKING: DNC, OFA Dump Demand for the Public Option
Discussion: Obama'08 and The Plum Line
John Nolte / Big Hollywood:
If Jay Leno Wants Better Reviews He Can Start By Removing the Lapel Flag
Discussion: Reuters and Liberal Values