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1:30 PM ET, October 16, 2009

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Paul Krugman / New York Times:
A Hatchet Job So Bad It's Good  —  In the past, the insurance industry's power has been a major barrier to health-care reform.  Most notably, the industry paid for the infamous “Harry and Louise” ads that helped kill the Clinton plan.  But times have changed.
Mickey Kaus / Kausfiles:
It's All Going According to Plan!  —  Peter Beinart thinks Obama's on track to success.  Actually, Beinart understates the favorability of the circumstances.  If, like me, you assume that the most desirable and popular part of Obama's agenda is health care reform, while the rest of it is studded …
Al From / Wall Street Journal:
Democrats Don't Need the Public Option  —  Transformational reforms have always passed with bipartisan majorities.  —  Printer  —  Friendly  —  Now that the Senate Finance Committee has voted for a health-care bill that does not include a government-run plan, it would be a mistake …
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Compromise is a Two-Way Street  —  Al From has one of these op-eds where you urge liberals to drop hopes for a public option in the interests of being pragmatic and passing health reform.  I sort of agree with this—reform is worth doing even without a public option.
Discussion: TalkLeft and MoJo Blog Posts
William Kristol / Weekly Standard:
Shouldn't the Republican Establishment Help a Republican Win a Congressional Seat?  —  A new poll in the November 3 special election for the congressional seat, NY-23, vacated by Army Secretary John McHugh, confirms what knowledgeable observers have suspected for a while …
Discussion: American Power
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Erick Erickson / Erick's blog:
Today Newt Gingrich Takes Himself Out of the 2012 Running  —  Conservatives have been a little concerned behind the scenes about 2012.  There are many stars on the right wanting to run, but many of them were going to be overshadowed by Newt Gingrich.  —  He has, deservedly or not …
Discussion: Salon and Townhall.com
Naftali Bendavid / Wall Street Journal:
Tea-Party Activists Complicate Republican Comeback Strategy  —  PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. — The rise of conservative “tea party” activists around the country has created a dilemma for Republicans.  They are breathing life into the party's quest to regain power.  But they're also waging war …
Meghan McCain / Blogs and Stories:
Don't Call Me a Slut  —  Blogs and Stories  —  Hours after The Daily Beast's Meghan McCain posted a self-portrait on Twitter it made national news and she was a pariah.  But she says it's the media who are the real boobs.  —  On Wednesday I posted a hastily-taken self-portrait on Twitter …
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Jeffrey M. Jones / Gallup:
John Edwards, Sarah Palin Both See Favorable Ratings Slide  —  Edwards' popularity down 27 points since January 2008  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Former presidential and vice presidential candidate John Edwards, embroiled in personal scandal, is rated favorably by 21% of Americans and unfavorably by 59%.
Charles Krauthammer / Washington Post:
No Nobel Results From Obama Foreign Policy  —  About the only thing more comical than Barack Obama's Nobel Peace Prize was the reaction of those who deemed the award “premature,” as if the brilliance of Obama's foreign policy is so self-evident and its success so assured that if only the Norway Five …
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John / Power Line:
What's “Divisive”?  —  A postscript on the Rush Limbaugh/St. Louis Rams story, which I wrote about here: the conventional criticism of Limbaugh, by those not dumb enough to fall for the fake racist quotes, is that he is a “divisive” figure.  That, for example, was the objection …
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David Brooks / New York Times:
The Reality Moment  —  That which can't continue doesn't.  A nation can spend and spend, pile debt upon debt, but eventually there comes a reality moment when some leader emerges to say enough is enough and when decent people, looking around at themselves and their own best nature, respond by demanding a return to responsibility.
Connie Hair / Human Events:
BREAKING: Dems Go Nuclear on Obamacare  —  House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) held a hearing this morning to certify that H.R. 3200 — the main House Obamacare bill which was the subject of all the town hall rage in August — has met all requirements to pass as a “budget reconciliation” measure.
Discussion: JammieWearingFool
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Fox News:
House Panel Paves Way for ‘Nuclear Option’ in Health Care Reform Bill
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
FOX News vs. White House: Round three  —  In Glenn Beck's pursuit of every member of the Obama administration who ever hung a Che Guevera poster on his college dorm wall, White House Communications Director Anita Dunn has become a new target for.... Well, for criticizing FOX News.
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Michelle Malkin:
Anita Dunn: A corruptocrat flack and a Mao cheerleader
Lori Montgomery / Capitol Briefing:
CBO Estimates House Health Bill at $905B or Less  —  Congressional budget analysts have given House leaders cost estimates for two competing versions of their plan to overhaul the health-care system, concluding that one comes within striking distance of the $900 billion limit set by President Obama and the other falls below it.
Associated Press:
Interracial couple denied marriage license in La.  —  HAMMOND, La. — A Louisiana justice of the peace said he refused to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple out of concern for any children the couple might have.  —  Keith Bardwell, justice of the peace in Tangipahoa Parish …
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Reid Wilson / The Hill:
Pence's trips to Iowa, South Carolina, spur White House chatter  —  In the unofficial race for president, just one Republican has been to both Iowa and South Carolina.  —  It's not former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty or former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
Discussion: TPMDC and GOP 12
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Alexander Bolton / The Hill:   Graham steps from McCain's shadow right into his shoes
The Lede:
Interview Sets Off Skeptics of Balloon Drama  —  Falcon Heene, fearful of being punished for messing around with his father's balloon, had been hiding out above the garage at the family's home in Fort Collins, Colo., his parents said.  —  But on Thursday evening, after Falcon and his family appeared on CNN …
CNN:
Michigan Dem responds to GOP charges about Muslim interns  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) - House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers is blasting charges by a group of Republican lawmakers that a Muslim activist group has planted interns on Capitol Hill in an effort to alter national security legislation.
Discussion: Think Progress
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John / The City Square:
A Tea Party greets Obama in San Francisco  —  Even in San Francisco, Pres. Obama cannot escape protesters.  He held a fundraiser at the St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco tonight (Thursday) and a crowd turned out across the street on Union Square to let him know what they thought …
Nicholas Graham / The Huffington Post:
Glenn Beck Cries AGAIN On Air, Pining For A Simpler Time In America (VIDEO)  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  Glenn Beck was in the middle of pining for a ‘simpler time’ in America when he decided the best way to illustrate this idea was to show two advertisements from said 'simpler …
Discussion: Politics Daily and Townhall.com
Lee Fang / Think Progress:
Patient Denied Care For Her Brain Tumor Says Insurers Want You To ‘Die Now, So We Can Save Money Later’  —  Yesterday, Dawn Smith — who has a brain tumor her insurer has refused to help treat — traveled from her home in Atlanta, Georgia to request a meeting with H. Edward Hanway, CEO of the health insurance giant CIGNA.
 
 
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 More Items: 
Michael Brick / New York Times:
At A&M, a Dance of Decorum for Obama Visit
Discussion: NewsBusters.org
CNN:
Clinton criticizes Bush handling of Afghan conflict
Discussion: The Page
Manu Raju / The Politico:
Ensign pulls in less than $33K
Discussion: TPMDC
Andrew Sullivan / The Daily Dish:
“Grab A Mop”
David Ignatius / Washington Post:
Technical Hitch May Weaken Iran Nuclear Threat
Jennifer Saba / Editor and Publisher:
EXCLUSIVE: Huffington Post Passes WashingtonPost.com in Unique …
The Politico:
WHITEBOARD
Discussion: marbury and The Page
The Buzz:
Charlie Crist supporters alarmed with Rubio
Discussion: Salon
 Earlier Items: 
David S. Hilzenrath / Washington Post:
Wellness Incentives Could Create Health-Care Loophole
Discussion: Hot Air, Suburban Guerrilla and Gawker
Andrew J. Hawkins / cityhallnews.com:
Adam Clayton Powell IV To Open Exploratory Committee For Rangel's Seat
Roxana Tiron / The Hill:
$400 per gallon gas to drive debate over cost of war in Afghanistan
Discussion: Politics Daily, Raw Story and msnbc.com