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4:25 PM ET, December 16, 2009


 Top Items: 
The Huffington Post:
Labor Holds Emergency Meetings To Discuss Senate Bill, May Formally Oppose  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  Two of the country's largest labor groups, the SEIU and the AFL-CIO, are each holding emergency executive meetings today to discuss whether they should support the latest round of health care compromises made by Senate Democrats.
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
White House as helpless victim on health care  —  Of all the posts I wrote this year, the one that produced the most vociferious email backlash — easily — was this one from August, which examined substantial evidence showing that, contrary to Obama's occasional public statements in support …
Rachel Weiner / The Huffington Post:
Democrats Lash Out At Obama Over Health Care Disappointments  —  WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?  —  Congressional Democrats are starting to voice their anger at President Obama over the way health care legislation has been compromised, blaming him for not fighting harder.
Jane Hamsher / Firedoglake:
White House “Irritated” with Howard Dean, Not Joe Lieberman  —  Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy  —  Last night there was a big party for the press at the White House, and this morning Mika Brzezinski and Savannah Guthrie report back on what was being …
Scarecrow / Firedoglake:
WH Press Sec. Gibbs: Obama Asked Lieberman to Make Concessions, Too
Discussion: The Huffington Post and The Caucus
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Sanders withdraws single-payer healthcare bill amendment  —  Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Wednesday withdrew his single-payer healthcare amendment after Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) initiated a procedural maneuver to shipwreck the measure.  —  Coburn earlier in the day forced the Senate clerk …
Discussion: Raw Story
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
COBURN SLAMS HIS FOOT ON THE BRAKE.... There was a point, about a month ago, in which Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) threatened to ignore institutional norms and force the reading of the entire health care bill, just to delay the process.  Fortunately, he backed off.
Discussion: The Note
Tony Romm / The Hill:
Republican sens. slow health debate; Sanders's amendment read aloud  —  Senate Republicans fulfilled a threat on Wednesday to require chamber staffers to read Democrats' healthcare amendments aloud on the floor of the Senate.  —  When Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) took the floor to begin debate …
Discussion: The Hill, The Note and Liberal Values
The Hill:
Senate GOP forces reading of 767-page healthcare amendment
Discussion: Flopping Aces
GOP senator freezes health care debate
Carrie Budoff Brown / The Politico:
Senate debate stalls as GOP forces reading
Anne Schroeder Mullins / The Politico:
SHENANIGANS: SCHUMER HAS A FLIGHT TO FORGET  —  Schumer has a flight to forget  —  Sen. Chuck Schumer loves the sound of his own voice, but it carried a bit farther than he might have liked on the US Airways shuttle from New York to Washington on Sunday.  —  According to a House Republican aide …
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Gillibrand spox: ‘Nothing more to add’
Michael Grunwald / Time:
Person of the Year 2009  —  The story of the year was a weak economy that could have been much, much weaker.  Thank the man who runs the Federal Reserve, our mild-mannered economic overlord  —  Ben Bernanke  —  A bald man with a gray beard and tired eyes is sitting in his oversize Washington office, talking about the economy.
Jared Allen / The Hill:
Speaker Pelosi to shield vulnerable members from controversial votes  —  Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has privately told her politically vulnerable Democratic members that they will not vote on controversial bills in 2010 unless the Senate acts first.  —  After a year of bruising legislative …
Jared Allen / The Hill:   Pelosi: 'I'm in campaign mode'
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blog:
Dean group attacks mandate  —  Democracy for America, the successor to the Dean campaign, which is now run by his brother, is out today with an email attacking health care legislation on a vulnerable point: The individual mandate.  That's the feature candidate Obama used against Hillary Clinton …
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:  —  Let's not fool ourselves.  Whatever threat the real Afghanistan poses to U.S. national security, the “Virtual Afghanistan” now poses just as big a threat.  The Virtual Afghanistan is the network of hundreds of jihadist Web sites that inspire, train, educate and recruit young Muslims …
Frank Newport / Gallup:
Americans Oppose Closing Gitmo, Moving Prisoners to U.S.  —  Support is 8% among Republicans, 28% among independents, and 50% among Democrats  —  PRINCETON, NJ — Americans remain opposed to closing the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba and moving some of the terrorist suspects being held there to U.S. prisons …
Discussion: The Hill and Commentary
Jordan Fabian / The Hill:
Michael Moore calls for boycott of Connecticut  —  Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore on Thursday called for a boycott of the state of Connecticut in reaction to Sen. Joe Lieberman's (I-Conn.) opposition to key provisions of healthcare reform legislation.  —  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid …
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
SERIOUSLY, FORGET THE RECALL.... Yesterday, Rep. Rosa DeLauro …
Discussion: Politics Daily and TPMDC
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Eric Cantor vs the Safety Net  —  Dave Weigel reports on Rep Eric Cantor's surprisingly candid determination to take the ax to the basic elements of the American social safety net.  He quotes this document from Cantor's office: … Dave remarks that “Those are all pretty popular programs …
Michael D. Tanner / Cato Institute:
Five Health Reform Whoppers  —  This article appeared on (AOL) on December 14, 2009. … When it comes to health care reform, the White House and its allies on Capitol Hill seem to live in an alternate universe.  —  The White House Council of Economic Advisers just released …
Michael F. Cannon / Cato @ Liberty:
Bland CBO Memo, or Smoking Gun?
Mark Murray /
NBC POLL: PUBLIC SOURS ON HEALTH REFORM  —  From NBC's Mark Murray  —  As the Senate sprints to pass a health-care bill by Christmas, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds that those believing President Obama's health-reform plan is a good idea has sunk to its lowest level.
Times of London:
Mystery as Lockerbie bomber goes missing from home and hospital  —  Mystery surrounded the Lockerbie bomber last night after he could not be reached at his home or in hospital.  —  Libyan officials could say nothing about the whereabouts of Abdul Baset Ali al-Megrahi, and his Scottish monitors could not contact him by telephone.
Glenn Thrush / The Politico:
Chaos at climate conference  —  COPENHAGEN — The Copenhagen climate change conference appeared to be imploding from within and exploding from without on Wednesday.  —  Police fired tear gas, brandished batons and detained more than 200 protesters who tried to push through the security cordon around …
Discussion: QandO
Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System:
For immediate release  —  Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in November suggests that economic activity has continued to pick up and that the deterioration in the labor market is abating.  The housing sector has shown some signs of improvement over recent months.
Paul Krugman:
Would cutting the minimum wage raise employment?  —  It seems that more and more Serious People (and Fox News) are rallying around the idea that if Obama really wants to create jobs, he should cut the minimum wage.  —  So let me repeat a point I made a number of times back when the usual suspects …
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 More Items: 
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Bob McDonnell: Campaign of the Year
Whit Jones / It's Getting Hot In Here:
LIVE BLOG: Youth activists sit-in, refuse to leave until negotiators …
Discussion: The Huffington Post and Wonk Room
Sydelle Moore / Congress Blog:
The Big Question: Should liberals scuttle Senate health deal?
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blog
Chris Good / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Rubio Touts His Polling: Rasmussen Puts Him Even With Crist
Star Bulletin:
Salvage the special election
 Earlier Items: 
Exclusive: Former Edwards Aide Speaks Out on Scandal, Affair
Paul Greenberg / New York Times:
A Fish Oil Story
Discussion: The Awl
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
The Leader of the Pack  —  Ezra Klein hails the people he regards …
Discussion: Ezra Klein, American Tory and TalkLeft
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
THE SOURCE OF THE DEFICIT MESS.... Republican lawmakers …