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4:05 PM ET, December 16, 2009


 Top Items: 
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 …
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.
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 …
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.
Sydelle Moore / Congress Blog:   The Big Question: Should liberals scuttle Senate health deal?
Scarecrow / Firedoglake:
WH Press Sec. Gibbs: Obama Asked Lieberman to Make Concessions, Too
Discussion: The Huffington Post and The Caucus
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
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
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 and The Note
GOP senator freezes health care debate
The Hill:
Senate GOP forces reading of 767-page healthcare amendment
Discussion: Flopping Aces
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.
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
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
Glenn Thrush / The Politico:
Kerry: COP-15 needs to jolt Senate
Discussion: The Page
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 …
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 …
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
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
President Obama writes a new health reform prescription  —  On the campaign trail, Barack Obama vowed to take on the drug industry by allowing Americans to import cheaper prescription medicine.  “We'll tell the pharmaceutical companies ‘thanks, but no, thanks’ for the overpriced drugs …
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?
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 …
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.
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 …
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.
Binyamin Appelbaum / Washington Post:
U.S. gave up billions in tax money in deal for Citigroup's bailout repayment  —  Deal made to recover bailout Firms exempted from rule when U.S. sells its stake  —  The federal government quietly agreed to forgo billions of dollars in potential tax payments from Citigroup as part …
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 More Items: 
Chris Good / The Atlantic Politics Channel:
Rubio Touts His Polling: Rasmussen Puts Him Even With Crist
Andy Barr / The Politico:
Impeachment dropped in S.C.
Josh Kraushaar / Scorecard's Blog:
Tracy's primary colors
Star Bulletin:
Salvage the special election
Exclusive: Former Edwards Aide Speaks Out on Scandal, Affair
 Earlier Items: 
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
Stephanie Clifford / New York Times:
Never Listen to Céline? Radio Meter Begs to Differ
Steve Benen / Washington Monthly:
THE SOURCE OF THE DEFICIT MESS.... Republican lawmakers …